How Often Should You Replace a Bra?
Be honest. How old is your oldest bra… and did you think about lying in response?! (It happens. We’ve heard it all.) Whether the answer is two years or five plus, we’re here to help, not judge – promise.
Though we consider bras the most important items in any woman’s wardrobe - the literal foundation of almost every outfit throughout adulthood - they’re unfortunately an afterthought for many. Sure, your old bra may still be “holding up,” but you’re likely wearing it way past its expiration date. By the time we’re done here, wearing bras till their demise will be but a thing of the past. Here’s everything you need to know about when to buy a new bra.
How long do bras last?
Sadly, bras do not last forever. If you’re a college grad and know there are styles from high school in your top drawer, start planning their retirement party! We can help you with finding new ones that fit well and support you comfortably all day.
The simplest rule of thumb: if you can’t remember when you bought your bra, or if it’s showing any of the signs denoted below, it’s probably time for a new one.
How often should you replace your bra?
We recommend replacing your bra every six months to a year, depending on how many bras you own and how often you wear them. For example, if you only wear one bra regularly, you’ll need to swap it out for a new one much sooner.
Three bras is a great starter pack - one on your body, one in the drawer, and one in the wash - but having more will help their longevity. That’s why we suggest keeping at least five to seven bras in your rotation (think “day of the week” bras for every workday) so they get some time off in-between. Giving bras a breather instead of wearing the same one multiple days in a row can help your bras last much longer. In the same way a dryer’s heat can hurt the elasticity, repeat wearings without rest can do the same. Give your bras their own version of a weekend before sending them back to work.
How do I know it's time to replace my bra?
If it’s stretched out on the largest hook, literally falling apart or just plain gross, it’s time to replace your bra.
More signs to look for include:
…And yet somehow wear and tear are also the most ignored signs that you need a new bra! Clear indicators that your bra has reached the end include stretched-out elastic, loose threads, poking wires, and holes. It’s time to recycle that bra! (Bonus: your old bra works like a coupon, so you can get a discount on a new, better bra. All you have to do is donate your old bra at one of our stores.)
If you feel any differences in comfort from when you first purchased your bra, that is a good indicator that you should replace your bra. For instance, you may feel that your cups lose their shape throughout the day and bunch up against your skin, or that certain areas of the bra are pinching or pulling uncomfortably. If you find yourself fussing with your bra more and more, that’s how you know it’s time to replace your bra.
This one may not be as obvious as you think! Differences in support can show up in different ways. For example, you may find that your bra straps are stretched out to the point of no return and are constantly falling off your shoulders, or you may feel that your band feels too loose on the tightest hook and keeps riding up. At this point, your bra is no longer doing its job of keeping you comfortable and supported, so there’s no point in holding onto it.
Why do I have to replace bras so often?
Even if you have very few in rotation, a high quality bra should last longer than a couple of months, or yikes, a couple of wearings before signs of wear and tear begin to show. If you feel like your bras are not lasting as long as they should even with proper care of them, (accidentally!) having improper fit or wearing the wrong size could be part of why! It’s natural for bodies to change, and our bras should change with them. Curious if your bra still fits properly? Watch our Fit Expert Ra’el Cohen walk you through how a bra should fit.
A good tip for extending the life of your bras is to take good care of them. This means storing them properly in your bra drawer and hand-washing them when you can. It may not sound like the most convenient option, but we promise it’s worth the effort.
Time for a new bra? Try our comfortable, supportive, high quality bras! Shop every style we offer here!