If your underwire bra is uncomfortable, or has broken free and stabbing you in the boob, it could be one of these reasons:
Wearing the Wrong Size: if you wear a size too big, then as you move, your bra is wriggling around all over the place too. This causes the underwire to rub against its casing and eventually making its way through the fabric.
And make sure sure your bra fits. It’s tempting when your body changes, to just suck it up and wear a bra that fits your old body. But that’s probably not going to feel great, and definitely bad for your bra. This is especially true if your bust size has gone up. There’s more weight being carried by wires that weren’t designed to carry it, which means greater risk of underwires poking out or snapping. Get bras for the body you have now, not the body you had a year ago or hope to have a year from now.
Death by Laundry: as kids Mum made us hand wash our delicates (being one of 11 kids you can see her logic huh) and it stuck with me throughout adulthood. But sometimes life gets a bit cra-cra so using a lingerie wash bag is a must and make sure the machine is on a cold wash delicate cycle. Throwing your bra into the washing machine with the rest of your clothes will get given the same treatment that a chocolate bar would receive when thrown into a group of recovering chocoholics – it will get torn apart. This strain will not only misshape your wires but will push them around, inside their casing, so much that they are bound to eventually, poke through.
Finally, under no circumstances, ever, should you put your bras into the dryer.
No Birthdays Allowed! Even with the best care, every bra has a lifespan. As your bra gets on in age, get in the habit of doing a quick inspection on wash day. Catching worn spots before they give out gives you the chance to replace your bra – without the reminder of a pokey wire. As below, quality does matter when it comes to longevity and durability.
If you’d prefer spending $40 every 3 to 6 months on a bra versus $80 or more on a sports bra that will last longer, you might not care when the underwire breaks. Maybe it’s harder to justify spending more when you can get two bras for the price of one, or maybe you just don’t like to spend that much in one go on bras, or don’t have the money to spend all at once. Either way, when you choose a more affordable bra, recognize that it might not last as long as something more expensive.
- Poor Quality: as above, sometimes the underwire breaks no matter how well fitted the bra is, and no matter how careful you are when you wash it. Some more affordable underwire bra brands use less expensive materials that simply don’t have the durability and longevity of more expensive, high-quality brands.
Go forth and poke no more.
Now that you know why your underwire pokes out, you can do something about it! Sometimes it seems like these kinds of problems are just part of being busty, but they don’t have to be. Protect your boobs! Take care of your underwires and next time you're trying a new sports bra on with underwire, remember these tips:
1. Put on your sports bra properly (see below), then assess your underwires.
- Underwire diameter is too small - The underarm end is poking breast tissue, or catching your arm as it moves forward. You need a larger cup size.
- Underwire diameter is too large - The underarm end is poking into your armpit. You need a smaller cup size or a bra with shorter underwires.
2. Assess your underwires in the middle of your chest.
- Underwires are tilting forward and away from your chest - this is usually a sign that you need a larger cup size.
3. The underwires in the middle of your chest should be resting comfortably against your sternum. The one exception to this would be a minimizer style bra.
- Underwires are coming up too high in the center - if so, chances are you are short waisted or petite in height so look for a sports bra with shorter underwires.
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