How to Choose the Best Nursing Bra During Each Stage of Pregnancy & Postpartum

Every pregnancy is different, and a mama's body changes can differ significantly. So just like a great pair of jeans, not one style will suit every body shape. Our Hotmilk design team have spent the last 18 year perfecting their craft, developing the most luxe nursing bras, and pairing beautiful fabrics with innovation to support and empower you through your pregnancy and breastfeeding journey. 

Below are a couple of our favourite styles for each of the Trimester. This is just a guide to finding a style and support to ease you through your motherhood journey and make you feel like the warrior you are! 

What bra to wear in the first trimester

For some women, the first hint of pregnancy can be a change in breast size and/or shape from as early as four weeks. If you are spilling out of your current bra, then now is the time to invest in new maternity bras. Styles with cotton-lined cups or natural fibres are great if you are finding increased skin sensitivity. In addition, multi-fit cup styles are a great option if your cup size has yet to settle completely.

When fitting a new maternity bra in the first Trimester, we recommend fitting on the firmest hooks so you can loosen the band as your ribcage extends during trimesters 2 and 3.`

Warrior Soft Cup 

We love this option for the soft wirefree band, combined with the luxe sheer lace look. Multifit cups will grow with you, which is perfect for pregnancy and your changing body. Our signature magnetic nursing clips are a discrete and gorgeous feature of this style. Available in soft ivory or stunning jet black, this style is one of the most photographed maternity shoot styles. At a time when confidence can be rocked, this style is elevated comfort. 

Show Off 

This buttery-soft wireless style with cotton-lined full cup coverage and discrete A-frame support offers uncompromising softness on newly tender skin. With fully adjustable straps and a wirefree band, our global award-winning bra is the perfect everyday maternity bra from a D-H cup with 10-20 Band inclusivity. 

Ambition T-shirt 

This style's smooth profile contour cups offer modesty under tight tops for changing breasts and nipples. The wirefree style with soft band offers medium support and comfort. Cotton-lined cups offer softness on tender skin and the half-length adjustable straps can be converted to racerback. We love this style for the workplace. 


What bra to wear in the second trimester

Some women find this to be their power trimester! Enjoying a fuller cup size, morning sickness settling, gentle exercise feels excellent, and the knowledge of what your body is capable of can be empowering. Whatever you are feeling, we have the style for you. Generally, your cup size will settle in this Trimester, and growth will be all baby. You may feel like your ribcage (band) is starting to increase; this is where the 6 hooks and eyes on all Hotmilk bras come into their own. When fitting a new maternity bra in the second Trimester, we recommend fitting on the firmer hooks so you can loosen the band as your ribcage extends during trimester 3.


This is the perfect time to get active if you are feeling up to it. The flexi underwire provides support for a fuller bust up to an H cup—the comfort of padded front straps and breathable with four-way stretch and a moisture-wicking lining. With a convertible racer-back, wear this style your way. 


The wirefree alternative to Reactivate, with easy-to-fit dual-sizing foam cup support. If you love Yoga, walking or hiking, the Balance sports bra is for everyday light exercise and comfort.

Warrior Plunge 

This style will inspire confidence and strength. The beautiful lace overlay and half contour cup lend themselves to one of the most insta-worthy maternity bras of its time. Define your journey through motherhood with a plunging neckline and flexi underwire ensuring lift and shape are not compromised. 

True Luxe 

Empowerment is key with this style, available up to a 16J cup: the stunning semi-sheer three-piece cup lifts, rounds, and supports. The flexi underwire supports this luxuriously refined large floral lace maternity bra, combined with Hotmilks signature magnetic nursing clips. It's hard to believe stunning and comfortable can be found in one bra.

What bra to wear in the third trimester

Your due date is just around the corner. During the third Trimester, your baby is doing a lot of growing. As this happens, your breasts also change and need extra support. As your body gets short on room, at this stage, a wirefree option may be the comfiest option around your ribcage. 

Heroine Bralette 

This fabulous soft sheer lace bralette provides everyday comfort. The multi-fit cup sizing is perfect for cup fluctuations, and traditional nursing clips are perfect for leading into your breastfeeding journey.   

Lunar Eclipse 

Based on our award-winning style Show Off, this soft slinky microfiber wirefree style is the basis of comfort in your last Trimester. Magnetic nursing clips from a D-H cup and 10-20 band this style lifts and rounds your natural shape while giving a smooth line under clothing. 

What bra should be in your hospital bag 

Mum wearing Dream Maternity Nightie

The most asked question at this stage is, "how do I know what my bra size will be after giving birth?". A valid question and this is why our recommended styles are multi-fit, allowing for the changes you will encounter. We advise you not to delay getting ready as your baby may arrive earlier than anticipated, catching you by surprise. Need help packing your hospital bag? Check out our ultimate Hospital Bag List. 

My Necessity Bra 

Our most loved piece for late pregnancy and birth. Soft to the touch, no seams for pressure points and light support on tender breasts. Multifit to grow with your increasing cup size. Smooth contour cups help hold your breast pads in place during sleep. Perfect for around the home, hospital and sleep. We recommend at least 3 of these as your staple in your wardrobe.  My Necessity comes in Regular and Full Cup

My Necessity Cami – A multi-fit cami that will support you like a bra, perfect for in the hospital, keeping your stomach covered with easy access for nursing. A supportive stretch feels great for new mama bodies, pop a pair of leggings and a cardi, and you are dressed for the day!

Dream Nightie

A multi-fit nightie our mamas love to give birth in. Super soft viscose fabric is light and breathable while offering a built in bra with full cup A-frame support. An easy-fit size range makes this perfect for a baby shower gift for an expecting mama.

What bra to wear in the fourth trimester

Mum wearing Temptation Maternity Bra while holding her baby

Your multi-fit styles will be perfect for those initial weeks after birth, as it's likely that your breasts will feel tender and sensitive as your milk comes in, but what are our favourites when you are ready to take on the world? You may feel fuller/denser or heavier with breastfeeding and need more support. Our Range of flexi underwire could be the perfect solution. We recommend waiting for cup fluctuation to settle and breastfeeding patterns to regulate before moving to a flexiwire. In the 4th Trimester, we recommend fitting on the looser hook and eyes so you can readjust and tighten the band over the coming months as your ribcage contracts. 

Forever Yours

This style's smooth profile contour cups offer modesty under tight tops for changing breasts and nipples. The flexi underwire offers great support, especially if your breasts feel full. Cotton-lined cups offer softness on tender skin, and the fully adjustable straps can be converted to racerback. We love this style for its simplicity and support. 


Offering a smooth contour shape without adding bulk, this style has fuller cup coverage than Forever Yours. Our most supportive T-shirt bra with Flexi Underwire up to a J cup. 


A soft cup flexi underwire in gorgeous lace over cotton lined cups. Racerback convertible provides extra uplift and support luxurious enough for special occasions yet comfortable for all-day wear. Temptation is perfect with a lower centre with lace full cup coverage, in this bra you can take on the world!  

We offer different styles and support to suit your changing body through the wonder that is motherhood. It's important to remember our suggested styles are just a starting place; you know your body best. Some mamas love the supportive feel of flexi underwire right through pregnancy and into breastfeeding. Other mamas love wirefree and will never go back. Whether you prefer lace luxe or understated simplicity, Hotmilk supports all mamas. 

Unsure of your current bra size? We have online measurement charts to help guide you in the right direction. Visit our devoted FIND MY FIT section for a more in-depth look at finding your perfect bra, and our team support team are always here to help

← Older Post Newer Post →


Join to get special offers on maternity bras, free giveaways, and once-in-a-lifetime nursing bra and sleepwear deals.