The 6 Best Nursing Bras of 2021 | Stylish, Practical, Comfy

By  Paula McLaren - Norland Nurse NNEB RSH | Updated - 25 February 2021

Choosing the best nursing bras for your nursing needs can seem like a daunting task. There are endless options on the market costing anywhere from £5.80 ($8) up to and above £60 ($85)!

So how on earth do you even BEGIN to choose?! What features do you need to look out for? What styles are best for you? How are nursing bras even different to my normal bras?

Well... sit back and relax. I've spent (literally) hours scouring the internet hunting for the absolute best nursing bras in the market.

How to Choose Your Best Nursing Bras

Additional Notes: This bra has removable foam inserts for comfort, shape and discretion. As well as a full drop away bra cup design for maximum skin-to-skin contact and easy nursing access.

BRAVADO! Designs Seamless Wireless Maternity & Nursing Bra

What is it? Award-winning seamless and wire-free nursing bra.

Why do I recommend it? This bra from Bravado ticks a lot of boxes when it comes to the best nursing bras for new moms. The stretchy fabric means it is super comfortable and expands & contracts as your breasts do. They also come in a range of colours.

Size Range: XS to 5XL

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Best Nursing Bras for Large Breasts 

Additional Notes: It has easy, one-handed, clip-down cups with removable padding that allow quick access for nursing or skin-to-skin contact with baby.

Kindred Bravely Simply Sublime Seamless Nursing Bra

What is it? A seamless nursing bra made from super soft fabric that comes in at a good price and offers excellent support for nursing moms with larger breasts.

Why do I recommend it? This nursing bra is comfortable enough to sleep in and looks great under T-shirts, dresses, and your favourite maternity tops because of its seamless silhouette and supportive stretchy fabric.

Size Range: S to XXL

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Best Nursing Bras for Small Breasts

Additional Notes: This bra comes in a choice of hook and eye or pullover styles.

MOMANDA Women's Wire-Free Lightly Lined Maternity Nursing Bra

What is it? Pretty lacy nursing bra with adjustable straps for the perfect fit.

Why do I recommend it? This is a very pretty bra for the smaller busted mom. It is non-wired and lightly padded for support and comes in a choice of pretty colours as well as providing easy access for nursing.

Size Range: 32A to 40E

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Best Nursing Sports Bra 

Additional Notes: This bra is made from moisture-wicking material to keep you dry.

BRAVADO! Designs Seamless Yoga Nursing Bra

What is it? Super comfy sports bra with moulded cups that offer excellent support for low impact exercise.

Why do I recommend it? The Bravado range of bras are always lovely and this sports bra is no exception. It has 4-way stretch fabric that makes it perfect for pregnancy and has a full drop away cup for easy access when nursing too.

Size Range: S to XL

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Best Nursing Bras For Lounging and Sleeping

Additional Notes: This bra offers gentle support while sleeping as well as a range of exclusive Busty sizes, designed for women with E, F, G, H, and I cups.

Kindred Bravely French Terry Racerback Nursing Sleep Bra

What is it? Ultra-soft, pull-on nursing sleep bra with racerback.

Why do I recommend it? This is a nursing sleep bra that features easy pull-aside breastfeeding access with ultra-soft, stretchy fabric which is ideally designed for fluctuating breast sizes.

Size Range: XS to XXL

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Best Nursing Bras for Pumping

Additional Notes: This bra offers gentle support while sleeping as well as a range of exclusive Busty sizes, designed for women with E, F, G, H, and I cups.

Simple Wishes Hands-Free Pumping Bra

What is it? Award-winning silky soft nursing and hands free pumping bra.

Why do I recommend it? This bra is extremely comfortable made with seamless fabric and is wireless free. It also works with all the major breast pump brands by combining all the best features of a maternity, nursing and hands-free pumping bra. If you are looking for a comfortable and attractive pumping bra then you can’t go wrong with this one.

Size Range: 34C - 40H (USA) and S-XL (UK)

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Top Tip

Consider using a nursing tank for extra warmth when nursing in colder months.

Of course... choosing the best nursing bras is a very personal experience and you will find many different designs that suit your style and nursing needs. But they are an essential item that every mother should have on their baby registry or pre-baby checklist.

The above bras are my personal favourites that I have discovered in the vast expanse of the internet...

BUT if you're looking around to find your own bras, there are a few things you need to be looking out for when choosing the best nursing bras for YOU!

14 features to look for when choosing your perfect nursing bra 

When it comes to choosing the best nursing bras, there are several things to take into consideration. 

Each woman is unique and their breast will change in their own unique way during their breastfeeding journey. 

Therefore, finding the right bra is extremely important as you want to be able to concentrate on the job of establishing breastfeeding and not be distracted by how uncomfortable your bra is.

1. Comfort

All women know how important a comfortable bra is and this is never more so than when you are pregnant and nursing.

When it comes to choosing the best nursing bras, avoid underwired bras in the first few weeks and go for a seamless nursing bra that is wire free and supportive made from soft, stretchy fabric.

When nursing, it is normal for breast sizes to fluctuate throughout the day so a bra that is able to stretch is best to accommodate the changes, while still keeping you comfortable.

Also, ensure that you choose a bra with comfortable shoulder straps that do not dig into your skin but rest comfortably on your shoulders.

2. Size and Fit

If you are able then you should ideally get a professional fitting to ascertain your correct breast size and get the perfect fit.

It is a good idea to be fitted for your nursing bra before you have your baby at around 8 months, as you will certainly not feel like or have time for doing so afterwards.

Knowing your correct bra size will make future purchasing easier too!

3. Cup size

When choosing a nursing bra, it is best not to go with bras that do not have specific cup sizes as flexibility is important in the first 8 weeks until your breasts have settled into nursing. Try to find bras that has sizes such as Small, Medium, Large etc...

Avoid an underwire bra and opt for seamless, wire free bras made of stretchy flexible fabrics to get the most comfort and perfect fit.

Once you have settled into nursing you can consider buying a more structured nursing bra.

4. Band size

The band of your bra offers 80% of the support that you need so it is VERY important.

When being fitted for your nursing bra, your bra should be on the loosest hook and eye before birth as this will allow you tighten the band for when your rib cage contracts after birth.

5. Adaptability

The best nursing bras will have a 4-6 hook and eye sizing options to allow for a flexible fit as your breasts change and your rib cage contracts after birth.

Also consider your lifestyle when choosing a nursing bra. Will you need a sports bra? Will you be returning to work? Do you want a sleeping bra as well as a daytime bra or one that is suitable for both? 

6. Material

Take into consideration the material that your bra is made of. Going eco-friendly is always a good call. Opt for bras made of soft fabric that does not chafe. Ones with extra padding to protect sore nipples are also good.

Moisture wicking materials are also perfect in case of leakages, especially in the early days of nursing and, of course, they're an essential for sports bras.

7. Style

When it comes to choosing a style of a maternity nursing bra it largely depends on what you find to be the most comfortable.

Support and comfort are always important but, depending on the size of your breasts, you may want to opt for flexi wired bras which offer a little more support or seamless bras made from stretchy fabric.

Ultimately, go for the bra that is the most comfortable but also makes you feel good!

8. Look 

Nursing bras do NOT have to be unattractive.

New mums don’t always feel their best... so it is important that you have a nursing bra that makes you feel good.

Check what your nursing bra of choice looks like under different clothes and the shape it gives you. Consider if it comes in different colours as you may like a change now and then. For some more beautiful maternity and post-baby clothing, be sure to check out my Parenting Toolbox for some of my favourite brands!

9. Ease of use

The best nursing bras should offer drop down cups that are easy to handle and offer easy access for feeding. Some bras are more discreet than others so you really need to think about which one makes you feel the most comfortable when you are nursing.

Being able to do things with one hand when you are holding your baby is also hugely important, so check if the straps are easy to unhook.

10. Value for money

As with every clothing item, there is a huge range of nursing bras to choose from coming in at a hugely varying cost. You don’t need to spend a lot of money on nursing bras but if you do opt for the more expensive ones consider if they will wash well and can they be easily laundered. 

PS: If it costs the world, it does NOT mean the bra is perfect! It does not matter if it comes from the supermarket or a specialist. Find what fits you and suits your needs and stick with it.

11. Sleep bras

You don’t necessarily need a specialised sleep bra. Especially if you have opted for wireless bras for day time wear. Lots of mums find that seamless, wireless nursing bras are so comfortable that they want to wear them all the time.

For many this will be the first time you have had to wear a bra at night so making sure your sleep bra is comfortable is of paramount importance!

12. Sports Bra

Thankfully, there are a great choice of nursing sports bras out there, which have comfort and flexibility in mind.

 A nursing sports bra needs to have all the attributes of any other nursing bra such as comfort, stretchy fabric and most importantly support. It also needs to have space for breast pads and easy access for nursing!

13. Pumping

There are bras on the market that are dual purpose. Not all nursing bras are pumping bras, but some do offer both options. 

A pumping bra allows you to attach your pump and go hands free as well as being able to nurse. Find a bra that suits your needs.

14. Washing

Finally, you also need to consider how your nursing bra needs to be washed. Are you prepared to hand wash and line dry or do you want a bra that can be machine washed and tumble dried?

Ease of care and what you are prepared to do will need to be taken into consideration when choosing your best nursing bras.

Top Tip

When trying on a nursing bra... move around in it, lift your arms above your head and reach from side to side to ensure that you feel comfortable in every position.

Your Nursing Bra Questions Answered

Below are some common questions that most new mothers ask about nursing bras and I’m here to help give you a clear answer to them all! 

When should I start wearing a nursing bra?

During pregnancy your breasts will change enormously. You may want to buy maternity bras as you go through pregnancy, but as the big day approaches you can start thinking about purchasing your nursing bra.

Around 8 months is the best time to be professionally fitted as you will be able to purchase a well fitted bra that will change as you change and transition into a well functioning, comfortable nursing bra.

Is there a difference between maternity and nursing bras?

The answer quite simply is YES.

Maternity bras are designed to be worn whilst you are pregnant and provide healthy support for your breast as they change during this time.

Nursing bras are designed for when you are nursing. 

During the early days of nursing your breasts will constantly be changing until they settle into a nursing pattern so your bra needs to be adaptable, provide easy access for feeding and above all, be comfortable!

What Are the best nursing bras to buy?

The best nursing bras to buy are ones that you feel the most comfortable in, will suit your lifestyle and help you feel at ease when nursing. 

Initially, I would go for a couple of comfortable seamless bras with good support. 

Once your breasts have settled into nursing, you can then look at buying bras for specific uses such as hands free pumping, or a sports bra for exercising.

How many nursing bras should I buy?

To be safe I would recommend a minimum of two nursing bras that you absolutely love with a couple on standby. However... the number of nursing bras you need will vary from person to person. 

If you are someone who normally has a large number of bras, then you will probably want to buy a fairly large selection of nursing bras. But, if you normally survive on just a couple of favourites, then you will probably be happy with just that when it comes to nursing bras. 

Do you really need nursing bras?

Yes, you really DO need a nursing bra. 

You may think that you can get away with a regular bra and just hitch it up to feed but this will not be sustainable. TRUST ME.

A good, comfortable well fitting nursing bra will make your nursing journey so much easier. They are designed to protect your sore nipples, enable you to use nursing pads and feed your baby easily.

You will be dealing with a lot in those first few weeks of motherhood and a good nursing bra will be a god send.

Have another question?

If your question has not been answered and you’d like to ask, be sure to send an email to [email protected] and I will do my best to help you out!

Additional Notes: This bra has removable foam inserts for comfort, shape and discretion. As well as a full drop away bra cup design for maximum skin-to-skin contact and easy nursing access.

BRAVADO! Designs Seamless Wireless Maternity & Nursing Bra

What is it? Award-winning seamless and wire-free nursing bra.

Why do I recommend it? This bra from Bravado ticks a lot of boxes when it comes to nursing bras for new moms. The stretchy fabric means it is super comfortable and expands & contracts as your breasts do. They also come in a range of colours.

Size Range: XS to 5XL

If you click this link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

If you enjoyed this post and know other parents who would enjoy this content, be sure to give it a share! 

As I mentioned in this post, if you're looking for products for your little one and you're not sure where to begin, be sure to check out my Parenting Toolbox.

It is full of all my favourite products which I've tried to ensure are all non-toxic, eco friendly, sustainable and, of course, they’re all baby proof!

Do you have any blog recommendations that you'd like me to write about? Drop me an email [email protected] and let me know!

I love hearing from you!

Thank you for your continued support!

Teething to Tantrums Author

Paula McLaren is the founder of Teething to Tantrums and has been in the childcare industry as a Norland Nanny since 1982. Since then, her mission has been to help parents become the best they can possibly be. And each year, she continues to help more families understand their child's development, the trials and joys of parenting and of course, how to care for their little ones.

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