How To Choose the right Size Pumping Bra For You
September 26, 2022

How To Choose the right Size Pumping Bra For You

Throughout your pregnancy your body has been going through a seemingly relentless series of changes. Now that your beautiful baby is here those changes will continue – a regular bra just isn’t going to cut it anymore. You’ll need a practical and comfortable pumping bra to support nursing at home and pumping when you're on the go.

Finding the right size pumping bra can pose a challenge, especially when certain parts of your body are a completely different size and shape than they were before pregnancy. Knowing when and how to measure will make all the difference in finding your perfect fit.

pump up bras

When to Measure

The ideal time to measure yourself for a pumping bra is around three to four months after delivery. Every woman’s body responds uniquely to pregnancy and lactation. Some women see very little change in their cup size, while others find they are two to four cup sizes larger than they were before pregnancy. By waiting three to four months post-partum you ensure you’ve had time to regulate your milk supply and understand the changes to your breast tissue. It’s best to take your measurements midday, before feeding, when breasts are full, to ensure the most comfortable fit.

Obviously, many women don’t want to wait until after they give birth to start shopping for their pumping bra. Experts say that you can take adequate measurements around the 8th month of your pregnancy. At this point your body will have undergone most of the major changes; you’ll have gained the baby weight which may impact variation in your cup size.

Remember, the first few months of your pregnancy will be all about you and your baby. You’ll be on maternity leave and spend most of your time at home getting to know your new little one. At this stage comfort will be the main priority. Consider shopping for a softer nursing bra initially, and finding a pumping bra that offers more support once you're ready to get back to work.

How to Measure

To measure yourself you’ll need a soft measuring tape, a standard non-padded bra that fits you well, and a pen and paper. If you don’t have a soft measuring tape, a ribbon or scarf and a traditional ruler will work in a pinch.

First, put on your standard bra. This will give you an easy line to hold the measuring tape against to measure your underbust. Wrap the measuring tape snugly around you following the line of the band. Avoid pulling the measuring tape too tight. Round your measurements up to the next whole, even number to find your band size. You’ll have to do a little math soon, so make sure to jot this number down.

Next, wrap the measuring tape around your back and the fullest part of your breast. Write this number down. You’ll now use this number to determine your cup size by subtracting it from the measurement of your band size. Each whole number difference is a cup size: A is a one inch difference, B is two, C is three … etc.

Properly taking your measurements is essential to finding the right size for your pumping bra. It’s important to note that like regular bras, pumping bras do not take a one size fits all approach. Take the time to look at the size charts for all options you consider as there may be slight size discrepancies between styles and brands.

Try on the Bra

Once you’ve found your size you can order your pumping bra and try it on. This is the final step in finding the perfect fit. While breastfeeding and pregnancy is a magical time in a woman's life, it can also be extremely uncomfortable. Your breasts will be full and occasionally ache. You’ll be more sensitive than usual. When you try on your bra identify if the material will be at all abrasive, as this may further irritate delicate areas.

You’ll know you found the right size pumping bra for you if: the straps lie flat on your shoulders, the band sits horizontally on your backout without riding up, and the cups cover your entire breast. The bra may be too small if you are spilling out the sides or tops of the cups, or too large if the band is pulling up in the back.

By trying the pumping bra on you’ll be able to assess its fit and level of comfort. Try out a couple different brands and styles to find your perfect fit. As a busy mom, you’ll want at least three pumping bras because – let’s face it – babies are messy little creatures. Having options is the best way to find the right size pumping bra for you. You may fall in love with one and order multiples to always have a clean bra on hand, or you may opt to have a few different styles to suit different occasions.

Whatever you decide, having a comfortable pumping bra will make the journey into motherhood just a little bit easier.