What bra to use post op is a difficult one. I too was a 36J before my smx and immediate implant reconstruction at the end of May this year. I now have one breast at a 36J still and then the (much) smaller reconstructed fake boob. I will eventually need surgery to even me up. The bcn suggested cutting the wires out of bras that I already had and using bra extenders so I’d know the bras would fit?! For me that wasn’t a good, helpful or sensitive suggestion on this disempowering journey YMMV.
However, I’ve found that whilst NOT cheap the best thing for me is the Theya Healthcare bamboo peony front fastening post surgery bras. They adjust across the front and by length of straps and whilst not sexy aren’t as frumpy as some of the ones I’ve looked at. I found the XL size works for me. I managed to find some in the sale online at House of Fraser (of all places) that were only £33 each, whereas at Amazon, Bravissimo, Cancer care etc they’re closer to £50 or more. FYI Bamboo is super comfortable, temperature regulating and has natural antibacterial properties which is important when you’re trussed up like a chicken 24/7 post op!
Sports or sleep bras are also worth considering, and hopefully you’ll find something that works for you.
I just had my surgery last week and after numerous online orders to try on bras I found a company called Central Medical supplying Carefix post surgery bras. All the medics and breast care nurses when I was in having my op were very impressed with the level of compression and separation of breasts so no uniboob look. I had my nipple and another area of calcification removed from my left breast and a symmetrising reduction of my 32G cup which means I’m about a 32D/E now The sizing measurements on the website are fairly accurate but not remotely like normal bra sizes. I ordered a Medium A-C cup for post surgery and it’s perfect, firm compression which eases pain as well, they have various styles/levels of compression and going up/down a size decreases/increases the compression. I originally ordered a Carefix Mary bra on Amazon but it was twice the price and I ordered a Large but the compression for post surgery wouldn’t have been enough though it fitted me at my 32G size. Hope that’s helpful? The Ava bra was £23 which I thought was reasonable. The bra is very comfortable to wear as it has no seams. I would carefully measure using their size guide and perhaps order two sizes and see what works best. Remember post surgery bras are meant to be tight compression and won’t feel comfortable like a normal bra. Having tried about 10 different styles including sports bras I am very happy with my purchase
Hi ladies, I found M&S very good initially, but due no doubt to the economic climate I think their products have deteriorated. Three years after my initial diagnosis I now rely on Figleaves for my non wired 38FF . Free postage, free returns. Not a huge range in that size but better than anywhere else I found. Often I can pick up a bargain in their outlet, just need to keep eyes open. They do carry a couple of post surgery bras. The issue is getting the vat off, where M&S did it at the till. Post surgery I went with crop tops from supermarkets- cheap but little support, plus a lined support tee. Still a good combo for ct scans. Good luck, ladies. Oh to be glamorous again! 💝
I had a lumpectomy in January. I used Nicola Jane on a friend's recommendation. They were very helpful on the phone. I bought a couple as I really wasn't sure which size&to be honest,found their sizing a bit hit or miss-but there was absolutely no problem about sending them back&getting refunds.
The front fastening one sounded a really good idea(I wish I had known about such things when my mother dislocated her shoulder)&I thought it would be good for when I was having radiotherapy but honestly,trying to put it on made me feel like a Victorian in a corset. All slightly odd!
I've always worn Sloggi bras as I've never liked underwired ones,which bring me out in a rash,&I prefer natural fibres.They are 95%cotton so really soft with a little bit of Lycra and I found them really comfortable after surgery as they don't have hard seams-but I am only a 36 B(now 34A maybe in the lumpectomy side?!) so not sure what size cup they do. I think John Lewis sell them or the Evil Amazon.
(If you're having radiotherapy later,don't wear the new ones!Every day,you get covered in so much red marker pen,your bra comes home covered in red splodges which doesn't seem to wash out!Save the new ones for when you're finished as a treat to look forward to! )
Good luck& I hope all goes well for you☺
This is something I've recently been struggling with too! I had a double mastectomy and reconstruction at the beginning of October and found the Asda post surgery bras good as I could adjust size in bust with 2 different options at bust front although the band could get a bit uncomfortable. They're also really good value!! 2 for £16!
The M&S post surgery bras were a funny fit in the cup for me but possibly because I overestimated my new size!!
I then got gifted a post surgery bra from Royce lingerie. Think it's called comfort fit and just wish I had this from the beginning as for me anyway, it is miles better than either the Asda or M&S. I don't want to take it off it's so much more comfortable than the others.
Best of luck! X
Your breastcare nurse should be able to advise you. Give them a ring. Part of their service is to fit us with prostheses and generally they have a good supply of sample bras to match. Nicola Jane is considered one of the specialist bras services but I don’t know about their sizing.
After surgery, I found I needed strong support, even tightness. I chose Under Armour sports bras which are a good tight fit. They weren’t post-surgery bras as it was early days. Avoid ‘comfort bras’ as they offer little support and your objective is to reduce movement of the breast.
Good luck bra-hunting x
I'm having a similar problem! I'm a 32G and have Paget's disease in my left nipple with another small precancerous area in my breast. Surgery in 2/3 weeks but can't find a comfortable sports bra that separates my boobs. I've tried all the M&S ones they recommended and none fit well now never mind after surgery, I definitely could not wear them day and night for next three months, so uncomfortable. If you find any let me know please.
If M&S hadn't just stopped making it (argh!) I could have pointed you in the direction of a really good bra for surgery! Go for a non-wired bra, either a sports bra or post surgery bra. I had lumpectomy and then 2 reductions on the bigger side to try and balance out a bit. I found a good supportive sports bra seemed to help reduce bruising/swelling. If you can find one which doesn't have any seams in the surgery area all the better (the M&S one was seamless cup, extra high impact, but like I say they have just stopped making them).
I found I had quite a bit of swelling around the band area so if you get something which fits pre-op, I'd recommend buying some bra extenders (from M&S, John Lewis etc) and putting on the bra ready for post op. You can then go back down all the hook levels as your band size shrinks back to normal! Besides M&S quite a few women mention ASDA for post surgery bras.
Some women say they find the front fastening bras good. Being a larger cup I found that I really struggled to hold everything in place and get the zip up....not sure if I was doing something wrong, but not for me, certainly not after surgery with a dressing on! Plus you can't use an extender with them.
Make sure its comfortable since it helps to wear day and night...reducing pain and bruising while your cells knit back together.
If anyone else out there has recently found a larger cup seamless sports bra which isn't scratchy please let us know!
Seabreeze (6 years on and doing ok) x
Hi everyone 👋 I’ve just recently been diagnosed with breast cancer and I’m due to have a Wide local excision (Lumpectomy) in the coming weeks, my Consultant has advised me to get a bra for after surgery...I’m finding it’s a minefield as I am a 36J my head is spinning....please can someone help