How do you wear a nursing bra?

Put your nursing bra on, do up your hooks and adjust your shoulder straps. Voila!

Smart ass comment aside, it’s surprising how many moms don’t know how to wear a nursing bra so that it gives them the best support without being uncomfortable.

How to adjust your nursing bra to fit just right

Assuming you have a nursing bra that is the correct size for you:

  • Adjust the under-bust band

Good nursing bras come with at least 3-6 hook and eye options. Adjust your band so that it sits flat on your ribcage. It should lie horizontal around your chest and back. If it is riding up too much at the back, you might need to adjust the straps or choose a bra with a smaller band size.

You should be able to fit 2 fingers underneath the band.

  • Adjust your shoulder straps

Adjust your straps so that they hold up your bra. Again, you should be able to fit 2 fingers underneath each strap. If your straps are too  loose, they will fall off your shoulders. Your breasts will also feel heavy and unsupported. If they are too tight, you will feel them cutting into your skin and your under-bust band might ride up your back.

  • Exchange your bra

Unfortunately some nursing bras come in fixed sizes and are not adjustable. If your nursing bra doesn’t fit just right, don’t settle. Return or exchange it.

How to know if your nursing bra is too big (and what to do about it)

  • Your cups gape or wrinkle. You should be able to insert a hand under each cup. Any more space than that and you have cups that are too big. Choose a nursing bra with a smaller cup size.
  • Your boobs can slip out of the bottom of your cups. Choose a bra with a smaller band size.
  • The under-bust band rides up in the back even on the tightest hook. Choose a smaller band size.
  • The straps slip off your shoulders even when tightened. You can do some fancy stitching to shorten the straps. The easier option would be to return the bra and buy a different one with shorter straps or a racerback design.

How to know if your nursing bra is too small (and what to do about it)

  • Your breasts spill out the top. You will need to buy a bra with full cups and in a bigger cup size.
  • Side boobs. Buy a bigger cup size. Some bras have taller side wings to prevent this.
  • The straps dig into your shoulders. Loosen the straps if they are too tight. Or buy a bra with wider straps.
  • The flexi-wire pokes into you. Go up a cup size. Or buy a wireless nursing bra instead.
  • The center doesn’t lay flat between your breasts. You might need to go down a band size. Or try a different nursing bra brand.
  • Your boobs feel too restricted. You might need to go up a cup size, buy a bra with more flexible material, or go wireless if you haven’t already.
  • You can’t breathe or move properly. You definitely need to go up a band size or two. And buy a bra with stretchy material.

To wrap up

Make sure you adjust your nursing bra so it is comfy and provides adequate support. If your nursing bra is too big or too small, or even if it just doesn’t feel good, exchange it for a different size. You might even want to return it and buy a different bra or brand.

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