If you think your bedtime routine of night cream and brushing your teeth is enough, you may be missing out on another major act of self-care. ‘Sleep’ bras have long been a comfy staple for some women for not just sleeping, but all-day wear (especially those with sore and tender breasts from pregnancy, nursing, or menopause), and can eliminate that feeling of wanting to rip your bra off at the end of the day (we’ve all been there). But we’re here to tell you that all women can benefit from wearing one.
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While there’s no scientific research that sleeping in your bra does anything to or for your breasts, it can mean the difference between a good night’s sleep and a restless one. As The Bra Expert and bestselling author of The Bra Book, I hear questions from women regularly, and “Should I sleep in a bra?” is pretty high on the list.
Larger busted women, nursing or pregnant women, or those with sore, tender breasts may reap the most benefits from a sleep bra and especially if you tend to sweat at night (boob sweat at night is just as bad as boob sweat during the day) or you just can’t stand the feeling of your boobs spilling into your armpits.
It can provide a soft and sweat-proof barrier between your breasts and your body, as well as gently hold them in place as you toss and turn.
What to look for in a sleep bra
Just like when shopping for any other type of bra, there are some specific attributes you’ll want to look for in sleeping bras. After all, you’ll be wearing it for eight hours or more!
Soft, breathable fabric
This goes without saying, but the same criteria for your PJs apply to your sleep bra! You don’t want anything that’s going to be scratchy or chafing. Instead, look for soft cotton or a nylon/spandex blend that’ll be non-irritating and wicking. The material also needs to be breathable for nighttime temperature changes.
Skip the hardware
Your bed is not the place for the underwire push-up bra you’ve been saving for a special occasion. Your best bet is to skip any hardware so there’s nothing that’s potentially constricting or poking your ribcage while you snooze. That means avoiding adjustable straps, clasps in the back, or wires.
Just like with the bra you wear during daylight hours, the correct size is super important. A bra that’s too tight will feel suffocating while you sleep, and you could even wake up with indents or breast pain because of it. One that’s too loose might move around on the body and cause chafing. Your best bet is to wear it and test it while lounging around the house to see if it’s the right fit for while you sleep.
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The 8 best sleep bras
While some bras may be labeled sleep bras, plenty of options aren’t sleep-specific but will get the job done. We’ve rounded up the eight best sleep bras to support you through the night comfortably.
One last thing…
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Studies have shown that essential oils like lavender can help you sleep better and even cure insomnia. Put a few drops of an essential oil specifically designed for sleep, like Yoursy’s formulation, in a spray bottle with some water and spritz it on your bra before you go to bed. You’ll be drifting off to dreamland in no time!