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Bras 101: The Great Post-Exchange Debate

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Comments

  • TessaW
    TessaW Member Posts: 148

    the placement and size of my implants don't seem to be supported by bras.

    They are very round and widely spaced.

    So I haven't worn a bra even though the plastic surgeon suggested it because without being able to fit one there isn't any point.

    I wish they were more natural-looking and closer together as well as higher up on my chest.

  • minustwo
    minustwo Member Posts: 12,989

    Tessa - If you have a Nordstrom's anywhere close, they have bra fitters who are especially trained to fit breast cancer & reconstruction patients. Call and make an appointment.

  • aussie-cat
    aussie-cat Member Posts: 5,496

    Tessa, I'm sorry that your implants didn't turn out the way you'd like. Maybe crop tops would fit you okay. There are some quite supportive ones and they tend to be less structured than other bras.

  • Shoregirl
    Shoregirl Member Posts: 338

    Tessa, the Nordstrom fitter is a great place to start, also Soma does fittings. Gravity does still take its toll with implants so a bra is important. If you are still unable to find a good fit would you consider having a revision being so unhappy with the placement of your implants? The implants could be moved closer together and higher. Fat grafting also helps them look and feel more natural and provides warmth.

  • Keepongoing
    Keepongoing Member Posts: 30

    I like Bali comfort revolution bras . They are no wire and they come in small, medium, large sizing instead of numbers. I find them comfy. They have hook in back . I like the genie type bras that pull over or step into alsoand wear them and sports bras a lot. The Bali ones are good if you like the hook closure and they fit to your shape I feel

  • lala1
    lala1 Member Posts: 974

    I agree with the Bali. It's the 3488 I believe. My mastectomy was 6 years ago and this is still the ONLY bra I can wear. They also have a version that has adjustable straps and there is a version that isn't lined. I'm a UNI so I have to have the lined version. I love these bras and pray they never stop making them!


  • Keepongoing
    Keepongoing Member Posts: 30

    I live in a rural area and do not have big department store access . I too hope Bali keeps making this bra

  • minustwo
    minustwo Member Posts: 12,989

    Do pay attention to what your PS recommends. Some are rabid about using underwire. Just as many are radical about NEVER using underwire.

  • Keepongoing
    Keepongoing Member Posts: 30

    My PS is in the no underwire ever group. My pre -cancer bras fit me post surgerybut we're all underwire so I had to get rid of them.

  • aussie-cat
    aussie-cat Member Posts: 5,496

    It's possible to remove underwire from bras and then keep using them, although they won't be as supportive afterwards. It sure beats getting rid of all your old bras if they work okay.

  • Golden01
    Golden01 Member Posts: 527

    I was diagnosed with BC back in 2011 so don't come here often anymore. I had a terrible time finding bras after my reconstruction surgeries and this thread was such a help to me. My implants are good-sized (750 cc) so even though the BS said I didn't need to sleep in a bra, I always have felt better wearing a bra at night. I wear underwire bras in the day and soft cup ones at night.

    Recently, I bought a new "sleep bra" and absolutely love it so thought I'd share that is is from True and Co - https://trueandco.com. The one I ordered is the "True Body Lift Scoop New Full Cup Bra". The size chart they provide gave me a perfect fit.

  • SuQu31
    SuQu31 Member Posts: 73

    I'm not sure whether to reply to this thread because it doesn't seem very active any more, but here goes. (I am trying to read every post in hopes of something helpful, but that's going to take a while).

    I'm delighted to have completed my exchange surgery and I've been told to find a bra and start wearing it. I'm only a little over two weeks out, but I have almost no swelling and they said the size should not change. I'm very pleased with the way my breasts look and I want to keep them looking good. My PS wants me to wear underwire. I need to be wearing it 24/7. I can't find anything to fit correctly. I'm incredibly frustrated. Beyond frustrated.

    Just so you know what I've done so far: I've been shopping four times, fitted two different times, tried on approximately 75 to 100 bras and purchased 7. Every bra I have purchased has been "okayed" for proper fit and support by someone who supposedly knows about such things. Both fitters came up with the same size(s). I'm about 2 hours away from the closest Nordstrom. I was fitted at Soma, and I've also shopped at Belk (where I was fitted into Wacoal during their "fit for a cure") and then purchased 2 Natori bras at a different Belk yesterday. I feel confident that I've picked up on what I need to be looking for, fit-wise (and yes, I was wearing the wrong size before). At this point, I'm willing to pay whatever is necessary to get a good-fitting bra.

    Here's the issue. The bras seem fine in the store. The underwire seems to be in the right place, doing its thing. When I wear the bras, after about an hour (maybe less), I have a dent from the underwire on the underneath and cleavage side of one breast. It's the smaller of the two breasts - go figure. It seems as if I don't have enough room between my breasts. I don't feel any pain, but I do not want to damage the implant. I went up a size yesterday to see if I could get more room in the cup. I figured it might be a little too loose, but right now I'm not wearing an underwire bra like I'm supposed to be doing, so anything seemed preferable. I got home, relieved to have found something, and ….same problem.

    I'm allowed to choose a non-wired bra, but I can't seem to find one with the proper support and fit that does not push down on the top of my breast where I had fat grafting. I have a bra that I wore while I had tissue expanders - it does not have enough support, but right now, it's all I have. I almost miss those terrible TEs - at least I didn't have to worry about gravity!

    With all the problems people have on this board, I realize how fortunate I am. However, I have made it through everything and I'm ready to move forward, and now this. I was not expecting it to be such a problem, so that makes it even worse. I am not a quitter - I will keep trying on bras until I find something. However, I almost burst into sloppy tears in the middle of the store - I haven't burst into sloppy tears in public during any of this process.

    Can anyone suggest something for me?

  • minustwo
    minustwo Member Posts: 12,989

    SuQu - so sorry for your frustrating search. My PS said I'd never have to wear a bra again if I didn't want to. Funny how some say absolutely NO underwire and yours has said ONLY underwire. I agree, you don't want wires pressing into your implants. Maybe try a good sturdy bra w/o underwire for now since you're only 2 weeks out. The swelling does change for up to 6 months as the implants " drop & fluff", so don't spend your retirement fund on bras now.

    I wore only sports bras until I ended up with breast & truncal lymphadema. Now I wear a compression bra 24/7. It's probably not heavy duty enough to suit your PS.

  • SuQu31
    SuQu31 Member Posts: 73

    Minus Two - thanks so much for your response (and I love your name). I agree that it is amazing how each PS seems so different in their approach. My PS prefers underwire, but I can wear one without underwire if I can't tolerate the wire. Since I still have some sutures under my breasts, I'm going to look for a bra without wires that still has good support. So far, I have not had luck finding one that fit well and also had good support. I'm trying to find the delicate balance of pushing my breasts toward the center, but not too much, when I already don't have much space between them. Maybe as the swelling goes down, I will find something with wire that fits better than what I have now.

    I really can't completely understand or explain why this has frustrated and upset me so much. It's embarrassing. I realize I am very fortunate compared to so many. But in my mind, once the exchange surgery was over, I would heal, slap on a new bra, and go back to my old life with perkier breasts. This is just a bump in the road, but I am so sick and tired of bumps in the road.

    I've given myself a pep talk, and I already have plans to be at the store tomorrow morning when it opens, ready to spend however long is necessary to come away with at least one bra that fits and supports my new breasts.

  • aussie-cat
    aussie-cat Member Posts: 5,496

    SuQu31, I had mastectomies without reconstruction but I thought I might still have some ideas for you that may help. Firstly, it sounds like if you can't find an underwire bra that won't dent your implants, it would be better to go for non-underwire (which you already seem to have worked out). I know that there are a lot of non-underwire supportive mastectomy bras (like Amoena or Anita brands) so even if you don't need the pockets, you may find them more suitable. Also, I've heard that implants are wider than regular breasts and so some brands make bras more suited to that than regular bras. I wonder if someone else might have more specific suggestions of that for you.

    I also want to say that your frustration is understandable and after so many challenges, it's not surprising that you're finding this stage really difficult. I didn't realise some of the challenges I would be faced with after surgery too. Please be kind to yourself about your understandable feelings. I really hope you find some good bras soon!!

  • SuQu31
    SuQu31 Member Posts: 73

    Aussie-Cat,

    Thanks so much for responding, for the suggestion and the brand names. I will look for those today. My PS's office just called and gave me some info about a business/shop that works with breast cancer patients and does custom bras. Hopefully I can find something less expensive, but it's good to know that is an option for me.

    Thank you also for the support. I am so grateful for the people in this community who provide information, hope and virtual hugs for so many.



  • LiveLoveLaugh2020
    LiveLoveLaugh2020 Member Posts: 173

    Is there anyone who had fat grafting that was given a compression bra and told to wear it 24/7 for six weeks? I see there are so many different recommendations from different PS's.

  • minustwo
    minustwo Member Posts: 12,989

    And that's the rub. Each PS has their own favored recommendation post surgeries. I hope someone who has had fat grafting responds.

  • LiveLoveLaugh2020
    LiveLoveLaugh2020 Member Posts: 173

    I can see, each one is so different. So confusing!

  • simonerc
    simonerc Member Posts: 149

    LiveLoveLaugh2020,

    I have had fat grafting 2 times. The first time it was at the same time as the exchange surgery. The second time, I had pocket revision surgery on one side as well. Which each of my 4 breast surgeries, two of which included fat grafting, he wanted me in a post surgical bra for 4 - 6 weeks. After a few weeks, I was told I could also wear a soft, supportive, front zip exercise bra as well. I ordered a few Jockey brand ones from Amazon. I also accumulated 4 post surgical bras, which I still sleep in.

  • LiveLoveLaugh2020
    LiveLoveLaugh2020 Member Posts: 173

    Simone thanks for your response. When you say post surgical bra was it the MX bra or compression bra? I don't see the PS for a couple more weeks but the NP said compression 24/7 and that I could switch into the MX bra here and there so I'll see what he says. How did your FG take? Did you have good results? My PS wasn't able to get a lot of fat so I know I'll be needing another round. I hope that's it after that.

  • minustwo
    minustwo Member Posts: 12,989

    bumping this to the top for Scoop

  • magari
    magari Member Posts: 335

    Since my incisions were in the crease under my breasts, my surgeon said no underwire for a while post-surgery. I got the okay to switch to underwire and went to Nordstrom for a fitting.

    My saleswoman was a survivor herself, and she was great. I asked her to bring me some pretty bras, and she chose about 15 from various brands, in different styles. She then brought me more styles that were similar to ones that worked for me; I probably tried about 25 total.

    It turned out that Natori was the best fit for me. I bought a few at Nordstrom, and several more from Nordstromrack.com Not everything I ordered online worked for me, but at less than $30 each and with the ability to return to my local Rack, it was a great way to rebuild my "wardrobe" without spending insane amounts of money.

    I also got a couple of styles from Skarlett Blue. Super pretty, sexy European styling at relatively reasonable prices. From Nordstromrack.com, they were only about $25 each.

    It's a joy to be wearing something less "industrial" looking!

  • DaisyAnn
    DaisyAnn Member Posts: 9

    I have been searching for a great post surgical bra for years! I finally found one. Jockey's Forever Fit! This bra is so comfortable. The sides are a bit higher so no overflow. There are two models one without padding and one with padding. I prefer the bra without padding. I highly recommend this bra.

  • minustwo
    minustwo Member Posts: 12,989

    Great to see a new recommendation

  • annachinn
    annachinn Member Posts: 1

    i am a true fan of bali intimates since years , love you link i'll buu this for sure yesterday i bought bali 3488 bra from ustradeent dot com

  • Lostchick
    Lostchick Member Posts: 4

    I'm so happy to be here! Honestly. I think (hope) I'm done with all of the surgeries! And hope to keep it that way. That said, I had my exchange surgery 8 days ago and feel great! I had my follow up this morning and was told I could ditch the surgical bra but would do best with a push up bra to help keep the new foobs where they need to be. I HATE bras. Like before all of this happened, I lived in sports bras and camis. I bought a push up bra. Wore it for about 45 minutes and then put my surgical bra back on :(. I even bought a wire free push up bra but I hate the feeling of the push up bra. I feel like my foobs are going to fall out of the top of them. Anyone know of a good, soft, wire free FULL COVERAGE push up bra? Anything out there have the feel of a sports bra without compressing and making my new ones fall into my armpits? I'm welcome to any recommendations. I feel lost because I'm such a bra noob.

  • veggal
    veggal Member Posts: 261

    No specific advice here, but know that the sensation will be wonky for several, if not many weeks. You are doing a lot of healing. If the surgi bra feels good, wear it! I would normally suggest that you get professionally fitted for a bra in a few weeks, but with covid, that may not sound appealing.

    Hopefully someone else will come along with more specific suggestions.

  • lala1
    lala1 Member Posts: 974

    Lostchick---I don't know if your doctors will allow it but I wear the Bali 3488 exclusively. It's not underwire but it fits like a sports bra but with hooks in the back so you don't have to pull it over your head. I even wear it in the gym working out because I don't flop around in it. I can push my boobs up and they pretty much stay in place. It's not sexy but may be the most comfortable bra I've ever worn. If I need low cut, I wear the Warner Cloud 9 wirefree contour bra. Second most comfortable! My PS never made me wear underwire. He said once I healed up from exchange surgery to wear whatever I wanted. I'm 7 years out and my foob still looks as good as my boob!

  • ibis
    ibis Member Posts: 56

    As above, I also wear Bali Women’s Comfort Revolution 3488 daily. Nordstrom’s fitted me with Wacosl 852189, but I like the Bali better. I don’t know about push up, but it’s very supportive and comfortable.