My, How They’ve Grown: Boob Changes in Pregnancy
Just when you feel you’ve made peace with your big boobs…Pregnancy! Even before I became pregnant, I wondered how much bigger my boobs would get, how I’d feel about it, and what it would look like. And I also wondered how the growth would translate to bra size and finding a good fit.
There’s nothing better than just showing you all how they changed, so here’s a photo journal through my pregnancy. Originally DH and I just took these photos for us to look back on, so you get an uncensored look at how exactly I was feeling toward the end of my first trimester (who needs a nap in photo 4??) and how awesome I felt in my second (beaming smiles in every one of those photos…ha!).
HOW MY MEASUREMENTS CHANGED
So how exactly did my bust grow?
Here are the measurement and the approximate weeks things changed. Sometimes it took a bit to realize my bra wasn’t really fitting anymore and to get out the tape measure, which is why these are labeled “about week X,” since I only know when I took the measurements. Also, I wore an Ewa Michalak PL Black for the photos in week 10, 12, and 15, so my bust does look a little bigger even though it hadn’t changed yet (see my recent post here on how their PL style adds visual inches to my bust), and the EM CH Toffik in week 26, which also adds volume (my breasts actually look a tiny bit smaller in week 29 than 26 from wearing this bra!).
- Before pregnancy: 29.5″ underbust, 38.5″ overbust
- After first trimester: No change, but felt “fuller”
- About week 18/second trimester: No change on underbust, 40.5″ overbust [up two cup sizes; you can see the breast growth on the first two pics of the bottom row versus the top row, especially on week 24!]
- About week 28/third trimester: No change on underbust, 41″ overbust
- Week 31 and 32–breech baby, head up by my left ribs: 31″ underbust, 41.5″ overbust
- Week 33–baby flipped head down (yay!): 30″ underbust, 41.5″ overbust
Something that really surprised me was how much the baby being breech for a couple of weeks affected my underbust and the fit of my bras. As I wrote here, I felt like I had inflatable boobs during this time because my bras were fitting tighter. Because the bands were tighter, the cups also felt strained, too. Now, with the baby flipped down, I was shocked to see my ribcage measurement drop down another inch again. I could actually feel about 1-2″ of empty space under my ribcage after the baby flipped where his head had been before!
- When I started my pregnancy, I was in the middle of being re-fit by Claire at Butterfly Collection. The first batch of 30GG bras she sent (before my measurements had changed) were too big in the band and slightly small in the cup, so I’m guessing I was about a 28H/HH in the beginning.
- By week 18, we’d worked out I was fitting 28J bras.
- Now I’ve moved into 30 bands and I’m fitting well in J/JJ cups. During the two weeks of the breech baby, I tried a 32 band (which did not work–pics to come tomorrow) and then just wore my 30s on looser hooks, which felt better.
BOOB CHANGES AND SELF ESTEEM
I always thought changing this much would put me back in that place where my boobs felt freakishly large. But overall, there has been so much change going on with my body that the change in my breasts haven’t seemed as scary as I thought they might be. I’ve had fun waiting for the belly to overtake the bust, and, looking around at other pregnant women, I’ve realized that tons of us have huge boobs right now–more than I’ve ever noticed before! It really is par for the course. However, every once in a while, I do have one of those days. To head it off, I’ve:
- Tried to make sure I am in the right bra size. Sometimes that feeling is a sign that that my bras are starting not to fit and to check in with the tape measure. I have to say, I always felt awesome in my Panache sports bra and my Cleo Chloe (while it lasted; I outgrew it around week 29)! They were incredibly supportive and fit like gloves.
- Tried to avoid a bra style that makes me feel bustier. Several of my Ewa Michalak bras made my bust look even more pronounced and contributed to that feeling of inflatable boobs. So, on those days I do feel more sensitive about my bust size, I avoid my EM PL styles and go with one of the Panache Cleo bras that lift but don’t project my breasts. If you’re looking for new bras during this time, it might help to try and take a few minutes before deciding which ones to purchase and see how you feel in it. Try it on with your clothes. Go for the ones, if you can, that are comfy *and* give you a shape you like!
KEEPING UP WITH BOOB CHANGES AND BRA SIZE
So, how, exactly, can you keep up with the growing bust during pregnancy and stay in well fitting bras? This has been a huge learning experience for me, so tomorrow I’m going to be sharing the tips and advice I’ve gotten from bra fitters along the way. Stay tuned!