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Daily Archives: May 4, 2014

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How to choose maternity lingerie

Finding a bra’s challenging as it is, let alone scoring one during pregnancy that’s comfy, adapts with your body’s changes and makes you feel attractive.

Tracey Montford knew this all too well when she started maternity lingerie brand after her own pregnancy. Australian-owned sexy lingerie is an award-winning global brand popular with celebrities including Pink, Heidi Klum, and Penelope Cruz – and our very own Jackie O and Chrissie Swan.

Tracey says a poor-fitting bra worn during pregnancy and nursing isn’t only incredibly uncomfortable, it can lead to back and neck strain. “Hormonal changes result in rapid growth and fluctuations of the breasts. The skin and tissue is placed under a considerable amount of strain. This is followed later by loss in elasticity and volume,” says Tracey.

Structured and supportive maternity underwear is designed to protect breasts against ligament damage and provide a much desired relief and comfort for pregnant women and new mums.

“There are six different types of bra tailored to suit a woman’s body shape and requirements based on the stage of her pregnancy. This begins from as early on as 0-3 months, up until she finishes nursing,” says Tracey.

Best types of bra by pregnancy stage

0-3 months
An increase in cup size begins early on in a pregnancy with hormones creating glandular development and leading to engorgement in the first three months. Tracey advises on a stretchy, seamless maternity bra. “This will grow with you and will provide relief as you begin to develop.”

3-6 months
Breast growth will start to slow during this period, but the ribcage begins to expand. “Select a flexible-wire, non-wire or contour bra with six hooks and eyes. This will provide greater support and will allow extension with the body to manage growth,” she says.

6-9 months
Cup size at this stage will last into the first four weeks of nursing. “Purchase a minimum of three supportive nursing bras providing you with one to wear, one in the wash and one for your drawer. I recommend a flexible-wire, soft cup, contour, or fuller figure bras.”

Flexibility is a necessity. “Your breasts will swell and rapidly change size as they try to regulate milk supply. Use a non-wired, stretchy, seamless maternity bra that grows with you. A comfortable, non-restrictive bra can help avoid complications such as mastitis.”

Tracey’s top-6 tips for maternity underwear shopping

1. Choose a bra that fits comfortably to the near-tightest hook to accommodate the ribcage as it expands from the second trimester onwards.

2. The bra should provide good bust support and, importantly, doesn’t flatten or squash your breast. Your breasts should appear separated and fit clearly into each cup.

3. A bra must comfortably fit towards the loosest hook. This will accommodate the ribcage as it contracts to its original size.

4. If you only need to increase your band size, remember to drop a cup size and vice versa. Bra bands are designed relative to body size.

5. Properly fitted, flexible-wire bras provide superior, unrestricted support. When selecting one, ensure it sits under and behind the breast tissue.

6. Importantly, your size will most probably vary with each pregnancy. It’s best to be re-sized to ensure you receive the right levels of comfort and support.