38 answers

Bra Question 12 Year Old Help!!! = )

Well, this may be a little weird, but I am the kid in this scenario. My mom keeps bugging me about bras, and I wear a sports bra, but she thinks it is outgrowing me. I really don't want to wear a cup bra, but I know I probably should. I just need support, and I do need it because I am pretty evenly proportioned now, I'm not overweight, but I'm not one of the little skinny cheerleader girls either. I don't know what to do. ( Sorry about bothering all you moms!) Is there some sort of bra that will give support and is like a sports bra, or should I just give in?

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I wear a wireless triangle one. You can get them at Target. They don't have a formed cup like a wonder bra type but they give good support without making you look to 'cheerleaderly'. Underwires are the worst invention of all time!!!

You definitely need a regular bra now! My daughter and all her friends starting wearing them around 11. Go the girls section at Target and they have a lot of options.

Hello T.,
I like the "shelf" bras, personally. Super comfortable and kind of like a sports bra. Gap has some:

More Answers

When my daughter was your age, I took her bra shopping at a really good department store as she had outgrown the sports bras. You need to go just with your mom or another adult female you are comfortable with and you need to get properly sized (if you are not too embarrassed) and just try on bras until you find the one that fits you and is comfortable. Everyone's taste and comfort level is different. My daughter loved underwire bras and still does. I HATE underwire bras. Sometimes you have to try on a couple of dozen until you find the right one. When it fits properly, doesn't bind, and you can move freely without pinching or chaffing, then you have the one. Buy three. One to wear, one to wash, and one in the drawer. You will probably out grow them in a few months and you will have to do this all over again. Good luck. It can be a good mother daughter bonding time. PS Don't let any younger or older siblings or dad come. This is a girls only shopping trip. Maybe grandma could come.

Get used to trying on several styles and several sizes...that's how bra shopping will always be. You won't grow to one size and stay that way forever. Your bust will change size and shape every few years throughout your whole life, and the bra that fits will have to change too. It's just reality.

I can understand your concern. I got my first bra at age 12 and it was very hard. I found the bra very intimidating. I would ask you - what do you like about the sports bra? Is it the fabric? The way it fits? or How it makes your breast look?

What is wrong with the sports bra? My sports bra gives me good support because it is well made.

You could consider the following
1. Jockey makes simple bras in cotton - which are nice because the fabric is a natural fabric.
2. Ask someone you feel comfortable with to take you to a store that specializes in women's undergarments and have a fitting - the right fit really makes a difference.
3. Ask around for a sports bra that has better support.

Good luck.

T., I remember being in your exact shoes when I was eleven. My mom and I both knew I needed a bra with cups (I wasn't wearing even a sports bra). My mom took me shopping, and my grandma, aunt, and girl cousins showed up. I was so embarrassed. If I had to do it over again, I would have asked my mom to take me alone and we would both pick out something together. Wearing a bra is something you will be doing from now on. It may be a little uncomfortable at first (I'm getting used to a new one right now), but it will get easier. Your mom really does want what's best for you. Hopefully, the two of you can make the shopping trip something special.

Hello. There are various bras available. Jockey makes many soft cup bras that give plenty of support without wires. Hanes makes a few nice bras as well. The only solution is to go and try on many styles. I am sure you will find something that is not a "mom" bra if you take the time to look. Or you can get the sports bras that have cup support. Champion makes a whole line of them in great colors. It is very important to wear something that gives you proper support. I know at 12 it seems ridiculous to think about the breast tissue sagging but if you are larger than a B cup and do not have a good bra it will become uncomfortable to do you favorite sport activities and eventually can lead to back pain. I suggest you take a friend or cousin or someone that is not your Mom and go Bra Shopping.
Target and other retail stores have a broad selection. You do not have to go to one of the "specialty stores" that cater to the grown ups looking for fancy lace and colors.
Hope this is helpful to you.

I am almost 40 and loathe cup bras... so freakishly uncomfortable. Occasionally, I have to wear one in a dress and it is the worst most miserable experience. I can't wait to take it off. Sports bras give you support and let you breathe too. I would not rush to make yourself miserable. Wear whatever is comfortable. Show your Mama the responses you get here, so she knows you are not alone.

Speedo (and several other's) make underwire sports bras... no uni-boob!... and excellent support.

Nordstroms has my alltime favorite bra fitters (which makes a HUGE difference in how a bra fits/feels... most of the time you shouldn't even be able to feel it... if you're being poked, pinched, scraped, wobbling about, "hovering" (where the bottom of the bra or the triangle bit don't actually touch your skin) or double-boobing (when the breast pokes out over the top edge of the bra) it's the wrong size. I thought I was a 36D for years. Turns out I was actually a 34DDD. Even though I always measure initially as a 40 or 42, my ribcage ducks in. Bad fitters have tried to insist that I wear the 40 or 42 (ummmm...no), while the Nordstroms fitters always just laugh at the effect and bring back the different sizes until the "triangle" is resting on my sternum and the girls are up where they belong. Nowadays I'm a 38DDD, and holding. I can go left a size (36DDDD) but not right (40DD). Most of us can move in one direction or another, but not both. My BFF can go right from a 34C to a 32D, but not left. A good bra fitter will also find your "range"... which opens you up to finding more styles and better fit. Don't be surprised if you go through 30+ bras trying things on, and that's AFTER you find your "perfect" size.

DO remember... bra fitters have seen us ALL naked. From skinny-miny things to my sister (the 44J-46i) to 80 year old women....to everyone in between So no shame!

Um... I'm a 12 year old boy, and I talk to all my friends that are girls about this stuff... you should just go to a cup bra unless you don't feel comfortable, then try to find a sport bra thats your size (you might think I'm weird, but just take my advice. Trust me, me and my friends talk about this all the time.

Hi, T.,

(I hope that's your name, and not your mom's name that is on the account! ;D)

Instead of giving advice on a particular brand, I thought I'd just offer some more general thoughts. I remember being totally miserable when I needed to get my first bra. I was an early bloomer, and one of only two girls in 5th grade who actually needed one, and I was so deeply embarrassed. I have 3 daughters, though, and they tended to see bras as fashion accessories; 2 of them started pestering me to buy them bras when they were only 8. Go figure.

Keep in mind, when you feel your mom is bugging you about anything, that she's doing it because she loves you. I know, you hear that all the time, and you probably hate it. But, moms remember how awkward and miserable it is to be an adolescent, and how easily the "mean girls" tease about every little thing. She's trying to spare you from being embarrassed or made fun of. Sometimes moms try to "fix" whatever they think went wrong in their lives by trying to give their kids whatever it is that they, the mom, wanted at that age. I've known moms who insist on doing hairstyles that are 20 years out of date on their miserable kids, because it's the style that was "in" when Mom went to school, so she's sure it will impress people. Moms are human, too.

My mom was pretty hands-off about my clothes, makeup and hair, and I really appreciated it. So, with my kids I am pretty hands-off. If I don't have a health or morality issue with something, it's OK with me. I've always been proud of that. Two of my daughters are grown now, and one is 11, and I'm getting criticism, from them and their friends and occasionally from my friends, that I wasn't "involved" enough in choosing their clothes and hairstyles. I've been told that I was wrong because I never "taught them how to shop or have a sense of style." (Frankly, I don't have much sense of style, and I think that's OK! I have no patience with vanity.) A daughter who fought me ferociously when I said things like, "You cannot wear flip flops in the snow" is now telling me, "Well, even if I argued, you should have insisted on choosing my clothes." I cannot imagine why, and I told her so. All that would have done is make sure we argued for hours a day - how would that be good?

Anyway, I'm telling you this so you can know that no matter what you OR your mom do, somebody will criticize it!!! That doesn't mean either of you are wrong. It means we all need to be considerate of everyone else's feelings (even if they step on our feelings.)

Also, the difference between a comfortable, supportive bra and one you can just tolerate is huge! Sometimes one you think will never work is the best. Don't be afraid to try a lot of different options, or to change your mind after weeks of wearing a particular bra. (I'm a 38 F; I can't buy cute little slip of nothing bras.) Breathe deep, have fun and don't stress!

They do make sports bras that have built in cups. Maybe you could try one of those.

Sports bras give great support to your breast, and will keep them healthy. I say, wear what you are most comfortable - personally, I think that sports bras are more comfy than cup bras. If you were my daughter ( I have one that is 11), I would encourage you to buy a cup bra, because there may be a time when the sports bra won't be the right cut for a dressy outfit - but other than that - wear what is comfortable for you.........honestly, I think your mom is the one who should give in.

Cheers to the sports bra!
From the mom of an 11 year old girl

Just get a bigger sports bra. They make them even for adults. Ask your mom to take you shopping and pick out something you both are ok with. Good luck. As long as you are supported & not exposing too much you should be comfortable and be able to choose what you like!! Good luck

I think you should ask your mom to take you bra shopping. I did that with my (now) 11 yr old daughter...she wanted to try on all the different types to find the ones she liked. There are several styles of bras that have a sport-like back, so that the straps don't slip, but that still have "cups" , maybe your sports bras are giving you the "uniboob" look?

My oldest daughter (13-who won't run, even for $$) LOVES the padded cup-underwire bras, so after we figured out her size, I have just bought her those at Costco, they have some nice ones by Maidenform, at a good price. She is fairly thin, wears 32 or 34 A.

My middle daughter has a totally different build & likes sports. She doesn't really like her sister's style, so we went to Kolh's & she tried on a lot of bras...til she found a couple that fit her & she felt like she wouldn't have to fiddle with bra straps...she doesn't like that, which is why she likes sports bras. She plays soccer & dances & she doesn't like to mess with the straps. What she didn't like about the sports bras we had been buying, was that the straps showed when she wore a regular necked shirt. They were fine with t-shirts, but not some of her other shirts that had a little lower neck line. I adjusted the straps of the different ones she would try on & had her raise her arms & move around, to make sure they wouldn't bug her later. I did buy her a couple of nice underwire bras that she liked & she said she would wear them for dress up...but I haven't washed them yet--& it's been 6 months, at least.

I think the ones she likes the best & wears the most are called "Barely There" maybe by Playtex? They give some support & aren't padded (which she didn't like), but not so thin you could see through them & come in some cute colors, pink, lavendar, blue + the basics: black, nude & white. You can buy them in department stores, never have noticed them in Target or Wally World.

They have pretty good bra sales on line at www.onehanesplace.com once you know what you like. You can get a variety of great bras & other clothes from them at good prices. You can check them out on line before you go shopping, to save time wading through the millons of bras at the store.

If you are bigger than a B cup though, I would look at the "No Poke Underwire" by Bali, they also have a wireless sytle that is comfortable with great support. I personally will only wear Bali bras, everything else bugs me. I've spent a lot of time on this issue recently, I think I have our situation solved, for a while anyway...I have an 8 year old girl too.

Also, remember to buy bra bags to wash them in..the kind that are for underwire bras made by Woolite or Tide work really good...after spending a small fortune for them, you'll want to make them last! Good Luck!

Hey T.-
I am sure you can find a comfortable bra for you. I agree you should try to go for a wireless bra or another sports bra, something soft that doesn't bother you. If you go to a department store that actually has sales personal they measure you and find the perfect fit for you and then you know which model you are comfortable with for the next times. All the best!

I would ask your mother to take you to store that sells under garments only, for example Maidenform or Victoria Secret... the women/young ladies who work there are very knowledgeable & can not only help you find the type of bra you like but the correct size as well. Good Luck ;)

Hi T.,
you seem like a very smart girl...my advice to you is to compromise...try looking online for "bra makers" or something of the sort. I know where i am at,in Montrose, Ca there is a woman who specializes in making and fitting bra's for all types of women...perhaps if you and your mother look up one of these ladies here or in in your neck of the woods maybe they can design a sports bra for you that has the support you need or they can find one for you that can be inbetween. what do you think?? i hope that i helped a little!!! Good luck on your journey!!!

The important thing about bras is: COMFORT!!!! Bras are like shoes in that regard - if it is uncomfortable in the store DON'T BUY IT!! You don't want a bra that is uncomfortable for you, and there are so many kinds out there! I would suggest going to a real department store where they have a consultant in the intimates department. It sounds weird, but they can help you get the right fit. Then buy a bunch of the kind that feels right and fits you. It is really worth it. It might be kind of fun for you and your mom to go together, she might be wearing bras that don't fit her right, too! Then you can both come away with some new comfy underthings! Good luck!

Why not just ask your mom to go with you to a major department store to the bra section...you can see what she has in mind...and you can see what they have and try them on. If you dont like any...you can humor her and let her buy you one or just tell her youre not ready.

I wear a wireless triangle one. You can get them at Target. They don't have a formed cup like a wonder bra type but they give good support without making you look to 'cheerleaderly'. Underwires are the worst invention of all time!!!

If you are really more comfortable in a sportsbra, stick with them. Just get one that offers more support than a regular sports bra. Sportsbras made specifically for jogging offer better support than regular sportsbras. I wear a 36C cup, and I wear the jogbras when I work out but also on the days that are closer to my period when "the girls" are more swollen. I like the ones made by Nike and Addidas.

I also second getting a bra fitting done at Nordstroms. Every year I go back to the same gal and get one done and buy 3 or 4 bras to last me the year. I also suggest not buying the cheaper bras, but go with a good $30 to $50 bra. I know it sounds very expensive, but seriously I buy 3 or 4 bras a year and that's it. With the cheaper $20 bras from places like Victoria Secrets I would end up buying bras every 6 months because the quality is just not as good as the bras from Nordstrom (bras are the only thing I buy from Nordy's because I usually shop at the cheaper stores for everything else).

It may take a few times of trying on all kinds of bras, but you will find one that fits you properly and that you like. Don't give up, don't give in, just keep trying until you find one that you like.

My big brother had to tell me to wear a bra for the first time, now that was embarassing! LOL I would say just give in. Get one without an underwire, they are more comfortable to start. No bother sweetheart, should be fun for you and mom to go out and pick one out. Great time to do it would be this Friday they should have some great sales. You can go with mom and try on some different ones and find one that suits you. I suggest Victoria's secret because they will take time with you, measure you, and find you what you are looking for. Nordstrom would also be a good place to start for the same reason. Have fun! p.s. I was not one of the "skinny cheerleader girls" either. : )

It may seem like a big bother, but your Mom is just trying to make sure you have the right support and that you don't have any embarassing moments where your body shows through your clothing (your"front") without you realizing it. Just go with the flow and have her take you to nordstroms or macy's for a fitting. It will be painless and satisfy both of you.


M. An l

News Team
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Monday, May 19, 2008

Special Report: Banish the Bra?

Posted: 05/19/08


No longer just hidden under shirts, Victoria's Secret brought the bra out into the open, making it a real fashion statement.
But could a woman's bra actually be dangerous to her health?

"Our research has shown that the bras issue, we believe is the leading cause of breast cancer", said Sydney Ross Singer, who wrote a book about what he believes is a link between breast cancer and bras.

"In fact to look at breast disease and ignore bras is like looking at foot disease and ignoring tight shoes," said Singer.

Singer's center conducted a study involving five thousand American women, half had breast cancer.

They looked at past behavior, including how tight the bras were and how long the women wore them. Here's what they found:

Women who wore a bra for 24 hours a day, had a 3 out of 4 chance of developing breast cancer.

If a bra is worn 12 hours a day, there was a 1 in 7 risk.

And women who didn't wear a bra had about the same rate of developing breast cancer as a man.

"So what's happening with the bra is that women are preventing the proper flushing of fluid and toxins out of their breasts," said Singer.

Singer claims a bra is too constricting, interfering with the body's lymphatic system.

This causes toxins to build up, eventually causing cancer.

"If you get rid of the bra, your breasts will finally be able to flush out the fluid," said Singer.

But mainstream medical doctors dismiss the study.

"There's no evidence in any of the world research data that I'm aware of that supports the fact that breast cancer risk is increased by wearing a bra or a bra that's too tight," said Dr. Ermilo Barrera of the American Cancer Society.

Dr. Barrera says women should get mammograms to reduce risk factors and not worry about their bras.

"Watch their weight, exercise, drink only in moderation and don't smoke," said Doctor Hussein.

Doctor Atif Hussein, Medical Director at the Memorial Cancer Institute calls the bra study interesting, but said, "it really is hard to tell you wearing the bra in itself was the contributing factor."

He says it's not the bra, but the risk factors of the women who wear them that is the deciding factor.

"Women who may be overweight tend to wear bras, therefore I would say the factors that contributed to those women wearing the bra contributed to their high risk rather than the bra itself," said Doctor Hussein. He said the issue should be studied more.

But despite criticism from the medical community, Singer is sticking to his mission saying, "there's absolutely nothing good about bras, it's completely a fashion accessory."

He is encouraging women to banish their bras for better health, saying, "We live in a culture where women feel insecure with a natural bust line, but if the price of fashion is disease, then you have to decide whether you want to participate in that or not."

Singer is now studying women who go bra-free to find out if they have lower rates of breast cancer.

Sorboni Banerjee, 7News.

(Copyright 2008 Sunbeam Television. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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Read more: http://www1.whdh.com/features/articles/specialreport/BO78... i go braless all time health ok to

Hey T.,
I believe that there are double lined sports type bras out there. This will give you good support, while still giving you some comfort. A great suggestion would be to have your mom take you to Nordstrom for a bra fitting. They can help you find exactly what you're looking for (and also accommodate your mom as well). The bra fitting does not cost a cent!

Well, there's always a saying that "mothers know best"...lol...but seriously, if you are already fully developed, then yes, your mother is right. Sports bras are great especially for back support and sports activities. But for the daily wear, bras are great. For one, to support yourself and maintain the positioning of your breasts. But then everyone is different. There's a saying that underwire is better so the breasts won't sag as you get older. To me, I just got with whatever I'm comfortable with. It's not too bad at all to wear regular but comfortable, suitable bra. When I play sport, I wear my regular bra, and top with my sports bra for better firm steadiness. Maybe your mom is sometimes sees a view out of you when you wear a sports bra that maybe a joking matter thinking teenage level. I have seen it too in grownups. I have seen females that the view are NOT very appealing at all out of sports bra and become a laughing and joking matter to others around. Your Mom is just looking out for you in a positive way. There's a time for sports bra and time for just comfortable suitable daily wear bras. :)

there are tons of sports bra type bras out there. just go to your local department store or even Kohl's and try some on. :)

Target sells a Danskin sports bra with a cup (no wires) and an x back that is very comfortable. It is inexpensive( $15) and offers a good amount of support and an attractive shape. It is so cute you could even double it as a bikini top. The coverage is excellent. I have a D cup, and it supports me, so I am sure it will do well for you. Danskin is a good athletic line, and You may even find some tanks with built in's that will also work for you. Good luck! I think you are very wise to pose this question to a bunch of moms!

I wanted to thank you for asking your question, I learned something reading the advice given to you from other Mamas.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

I have recently gone to a major department store, and had myself professionally fitted for my bra. They have so many kinds of bras and not one of them was under 80 dollars. Once your mom sees the price of all these bras, she might rethink her decision on buying you a bra that's not a sports bra. I too wear sports bras A LOT! I LOVE THEM. I work out everyday, so I do wear them to work out and find them so comfortable that I hate to take them off to wear those fitted wire bras. But, hey, those bras can be beautiful in the department stores.

I was very similar to you growing up. I wore a "sports bra" type until part way through my freshman year of high school, then I made the switch. As long as you are comfortable and well supported, pick something that works. I agree, make a little shopping trip, try on several different types, you may really like a "cup type" but without underwire, be willing to try different styles so that you are getting the best fit and support. Good luck!

There are different types of sports bras that have great built in support. I would plan on going to a store, looking around and try on a bunch of different types to bras so that you can fine one you like. The right bra can make a big difference on how you look in your clothes as well. Good luck!

I can remember this stage in my life and my older sister taught me a little trick. She suggested to try a regular cup bra, and then put a sports bra over it. It may sound silly but it really worked for me and made me more comfortable. I also know that there are bras that are like a sports bra with cups. I would as your mom to take you shopping( don't be embarassed we all did it at some point) and look at a few bras. There are many options, padded, underwire, sports... the list goes on. It may take a few tries but don't give up. Eventually you will find the one the fits you best.

Hi T., My daughter is 13 and is going through the exact same thing. She likes the sports bras, so that is what she wears. I don't argue. They are more comfortable and they support. Period.

Hey if I could get away with a sports bra everyday I would..and I am 40! Girl, you will have your entire life to wear uncomfortable bras, shoes, dresses etc...enjoy the comfort while you can!

Family Success Coach

Hello T.,
I like the "shelf" bras, personally. Super comfortable and kind of like a sports bra. Gap has some:

All really great advice here! You may also want to try the store Justice (formerly Limited Too). I noticed they sell cotton bras, without under wire, and they look really comfortable. They also sell shelf bras and sports bras so you can try them all. You and your mom can compare and perhaps come to an agreement.

You definitely need a regular bra now! My daughter and all her friends starting wearing them around 11. Go the girls section at Target and they have a lot of options.

I think your mom should get off your back and let you wear what you want, it's your body. I don't know how receptive your mom is, but just let her know that you understand her wishes but to you a sports bra is just more comfortable.

My daughter is only 2 now, but I would never pressure her into wearing or doing something she didn't want to. My theory is, as long as your not harming yourself or others go for it.

Hi T.,

If you think sports bras are most comfortable, I think you just need to get a bigger size. Don't switch to underwire cups if you don't want to. Sports bras provide a lot of support - they are designed for holding you in while running, exercising, etc - so you'll definitely feel supported if you find one that fits right.

Some sports bras have cups built into them and some don't. Try both styles and see which one you like better. Also, consider getting one with an adjustable back (like a regular bra) so you can make sure it fits you correctly.

The most important thing is to be comfortable.

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