Thursday, June 23, 2011

How Long Should My Bra Last?

Lately, I have been asked a lot “How long should my bra last?”. Unfortunately bras do not come with a lifetime warranty but, with a little care you can extend the life of your delicate undergarments. With so many women asking this question I thought I would do a little investigating and find the answer. We tell clients that with proper wear and care you can get a year out of a bra. You can imagine my surprise when I found most blogs, bra companies, and retailers claim that a good bra will last 3 to 6 months! Truthfully, with proper care, mine have lasted just over a year.

There are a few things you can do to help lengthen the life of your bra. When you come in for a fitting at The Girls Bra Shop Inc.™ our fitters take the time to go through all of this but sometimes we need a refresher.
  • Never wear the same bra 2 days in a row. A bra is made of thousands elastine fibres. By wearing the same bra every day, it would break down the elasticity quicker, shortening the life of the bra. By giving it a day off you allow the bra to restore its shape and maintain the support required.
  • Build a bra wardrobe. In order to rotate your bras, you are going to need to build a bra wardrobe. While some women have a slight addiction to lingerie, others are more pragmatic about their bra wardrobe, but there are some essential bras every woman should consider adding to her collection, everyday bras, wireless, sport, to name a few. I will admit I have a few favourites in my collection so to make sure I don’t wear them out too fast I’ve invested in that style by getting one in each colour. To learn more about bra wardrobes, see Your Bra Wardrobe.
  • Hand Wash Your Bras. We all know to wash our bras by hand in a gentle detergent but I bet there are many of you out there that still sneak them into the washer and dryer. Here’s what happens when you go against this important rule. Even using a lingerie bag, a bra’s underwire could potentially get entwined in other garments and ruin the composition of the wire. The dryer’s heat can be damaging to the delicate elastine fibres causing them to break down much quicker than a handwashing.
  • Use a gentle detergent. Let’s not forget the detergents used in washing machines are too harsh. Products like Forever New™ are formulated specially to preserve the elasticity of micro fibre and Lycra™ fabrics while gentle enough for delicate fabrics, promoting a long life to your undergarments.
  • Wash your bra after every 3 to 4 wears. This is a general rule of thumb. Obviously an exception to this would be your sports bras after your zumba class or run. If you are an avid runner like me, you may want to get a couple so you get them washed and dried for your next run day.
  • Hand washing is so very easy. Fill a sink with water and a gentle detergent like Forever New. Soak your bras. Rinse them. Pat them with a towel and then hang them to dry. No rubbing and scrubbing, this can break down the fibre as well. And unless you are a mechanic and spilling oil on your bra, it's unnecessary.
  • Take extra care of your T-Shirt bras. If there is a bra that you certainly MUST follow these rules with it's the foam lined, or padded, T-Shirt bras. Not only do you have the elasticity of micro fibre and the Lycra to worry about but you want to take care of that foam lining that gives you the smooth invisible look you love so much. Machines can cause the foam to break down creating wrinkles that will be visible under your clothing. We also recommend storing your T-Shirt bras in their natural shape, do not crush or fold them, as this too will damage the foam lining and create wrinkles and less support.
Of course, we all treat our bras differently, but following the above will definitely add life to your bra. To learn more about bra care, see Caring for Your Bra.

When is it time to replace it?
When you have reached the last set of hooks, you no longer get the lift and support needed are signs it is time to update your lingerie drawer. To learn more about when you should come in for a fitting or check up, see Do Your Ears Hang Low...

And remember, it is good breast health to keep your girls well supported in a proper fitting bra.

Ann and Tammy
real women. real bras. real beauty. ©2011, The Girls Bra Shop Inc.
Pin It button on image hover