Your baby is here now and deciding to breastfeed or not is your next move. If you decide to go for it, then you need to be ready for the challenge. It is therefore important that you have the right clothes, as being comfortable is one of the first things you need to learn during breastfeeding. This will make the whole journey a lot easier and, after a while, enjoyable. Breastfeeding will help you bond with your newborn child, and, why not, lose some baby fat.
What a new mother should always have in mind when she goes out shopping for nursing clothes is that she doesn’t need to change all her wardrobe. While some of the clothes you’ll have to buy, others can be adapted to suit your new needs. Some common clothes that are super useful, are the tank tops, v-shaped dresses and nursing bras.
What Type of Clothes Should You Buy When Breastfeeding?
Breastfeeding clothes should enable easy access to the breast, they should be comfortable in a way that they are not too tight, they should be made of soft absorbent material in case of milk leaks and above all, they should be stylish. A new mother should not wear clothes that make them feel out of fashion and ugly.
If you have the right clothes, then breastfeeding in public, or at work, will not make you feel uncomfortable. There are tons of discreet tops that can be used when your little one is hungry. On the other hand, tight bras and tight tops, can cause great discomfort and even encourage mastitis. With the above in mind, here is a selection of the must have pieces of clothing that every new nursing mom that should have:
- Maternity Nursing Bras
Maternity nursing bras are different than the regular ones. There are bras with underwire and bras without. While some women prefer those with underwire, since they offer support, others find them really uncomfortable and prefer those without. As long as the bra provides easy access to the milk supply, then you chose the right one. The hooks should therefore be easy to unhook with one hand . However, you should also be considerate of your nipples this time, and get a bra made of a good and soft fabric like lace, nylon, cotton, spandex or sling.
- Nursing Tops
After selecting the right bra, it’s important to also have nice tops to go together. As noted earlier, nursing clothes don’t need to be an expensive affair. Nursing tops are those blouses and shirts with buttons and zips at the front or back. The zippers and buttons enable easy access to the breasts at any given time.
Darker shades are better since they can hide any potential leaks. However, in the mood of keeping up with stylishness, brighter colors can also go, you will just have to make sure to wear breast pads underneath your bra.
- Button-Down Dresses
Button down dresses are ideal for breastfeeding. If you like to wear dresses, then this type is the perfect choice for you. Or, if you just got super bored of wearing the specifically designed nursing tops from H&M, then dresses might be a nice change. The buttons will help you to easily access your breast and breastfeed with ease, whenever your baby wants. This kind of dress is ideal for outdoor activities such as: parties, shopping, or just waking on the beach. The stretchy and comfortable nature of a button-down dress makes it a must have for any breastfeeding mother.
- Nursing Tank Camis
Unlike the nursing tops, nursing tank camis are tailor made for breastfeeding. These tanks are very useful especially when you need to breastfeed in public. They normally come in bigger sizes, which will help you feel more comfortable. They can also be worn over maternity jeans or leggings. Like all the maternity clothes, they are also made of a soft fabric which offers more comfort and it is easy to wash.
- Nursing Dresses and Formal Wear
Nursing dresses are specifically designed to ease breastfeeding. The dresses come in different varieties such as:
- v-neck line wrap dress
- maxi dresses
- bodycon dresses
Some are designed with a side zipper, so you can discretely breastfeed while on the go. The nursing dresses can also be worn as formal wear. They can come in different fabrics like cotton, lace or acrylic. Sometimes you just want a break from all the motherly look, and want to feel elegant, so if you feel like it, just go shopping, and by one, you deserve it.
Can You Wear an Underwire Bras?
For a long time, there has been widespread information that wearing an underwire bra is not good while nursing, because the wire can press on the milk ducts and this will lead to lower the milk production. However, this is not true since milk production comes from the internal part of the rib cage up to the armpit.
However, expert advice that you should not wear an underwire bra in your first six weeks after delivery. During the first months, the breasts are enlarging due to changes in the milk production. Therefore, the breasts will not fit in the cups of your regular underwire bra. After the six week period, the breasts growth would have stopped, so you would know by then the right size for you. Underwire bras can be worn after that, since they can fit perfectly and give the breasts a nice shape.
What Are The Best Nursing Bras?
As noted earlier, the best nursing bras need to offer comfort, are absorbent and offer access to the breasts when your little baby is hungry. The best nursing bra therefore is the padded bra with easy to remove straps. Underwire bras or seamless are also good for nursing. For a good selection of the best nursing bras, you can read our article on some of the nicest bras you can get during breastfeeding. Some of them can also be used for pumping.
Are Wrap Dresses Good for Nursing?
Wrap dresses are the best pick while nursing your child, and there few types you can choose from. For instance, the V-neck wrap dress is ideal for bringing out a nice body outlook; it flatters the baby tummy and enables easy breastfeeding. Other types include the polka dot dress and the Maxi dress. They offer easy access for pumping as well. Whether it’s a V-neck or a maxi dress, it’s very easy to pump while you are on the go.
What Should A Nursing Mother Wear During the Night?
If you breastfeed during the night as well, then you need to have a pair of the nursing pajamas, as you would want easy and fast access to your breast when your baby wakes up. And yes, nursing pajamas exist, I was surprised too when I got them as a present at my baby shower. And they are also very comfortable. For women with big breast, wearing a nursing bra might be a smart choice, but if you have small breasts like mine, then you are better off without.
I used to not wake up every 3 hours during the night, to breastfeed, as I’d like more to wait for the baby to wake up on her own, so I sometimes, woke up in a puddle of my own breastmilk, and it was not a nice feeling. I was soaking wet, so I had to change my favorite pajamas. I remember that I used to sleep with one (or two) of my husband’s t-shirts by the bedside, so I could easily change during the night. This was because I refused to wear my nursing bra, with breast pads. But, if you leak during the night as much as I did, and you are comfortable wearing your bra, then I totally recommend you do so.
Nursing time may sound like a very hard, difficult and challenging time, and it is, but it is also the most beautiful, divine time, when you have the chance to hold your little one in your arms, and look at him while he is holding one small hand on the breast he is breastfeeding at, and the other one on the other one. It always amused me how my daughter would just pinch my other nipple, as if she wanted to push the milk to get out of the other nipple. I will always cherish these memories, as they are the best.