Training bras can be sensitive subject, and are not without controversy. It has always been important to me to provide my customers with as much information as possible, in order to help them make informed decisions and make shopping with us a pleasurable experience. I would like to highlight that we do not support companies that inappropriately promote provocative underwear to young children. We don’t encourage overly “sexy” underwear for young girls, but would rather suggest they find something that is comfortable and age appropriate. I hope this information is helpful for both parents, and young women embarking on the incredible journey into womanhood. It is my desire that you will grow into beautiful confident women, who are accepting and proud of their bodies.
My first bra guide for young women and parents
The journey into womanhood begins – your first bra
As a young girl your first bra is more than just an article of clothing. It is, more accurately, a symbol maturity. The changes in your appearance indicate the beginning of the process of transition from a girl to a woman.
Training bras are for girls who are wearing bras for the first time and just beginning to develop breast buds. They are lightweight undergarments designed specifically for young girls entering puberty and don’t usually come with underwire support. They familiarise a young woman with the feeling of wearing a bra.
Wearing a bra may take some time to get used to, but, if you wear the correct fitting underwear, it should begin to feel natural and comfortable. You will most probably not need to be fitted for your first bra but, as your breasts develop, it is important to wear properly fitted, comfortable and supportive bras. Although your new bra might feel strange, it should never be uncomfortable or hurt.
Who should I share this experience with?
It is a time of adjustment and at Sarah Elizabeth we believe that girls should learn to be proud of their bodies and have the opportunity to grow into confident women. Shop for your first bra with someone you trust and feel comfortable with.
Make sure that you choose a bra that fits well and does not itch. Make sure that the straps do not hurt or dig into your shoulders.
I’m developing breasts – what can I expect?
The changes you are going through are normal and natural, and nothing to be scared or ashamed of.
Your breasts may feel tender during puberty.
Your breasts are beginning to develop and are made up of fatty tissue, milk glands and milk ducts which determine the shape and size.
Nipples come in all shapes and sizes and will also differ in colour. Nipples can get hard and stick out when you are cold or aroused. Some girls may have inverted nipples, which point inwards rather than outwards.
Both your breasts may not develop at the same time; one might grow faster than the other. These should eventually even out, but it is very common for women to have slightly different sized breasts.
Not everyone will develop breasts at the same time; you may even get attention from both other girls and boys. If you are struggling with any unwanted attention speak to an adult that you can trust.
Respect your breasts. It is very important to remember that everyone’s breasts are different and should be respected, no matter what the size or shape. Your breasts are a unique part of you!
Advice for parents when shopping for your daughter’s first bra:
Make it memorable. Try to create a relaxed and enjoyable experience for your daughter. Shopping for her first bra is a milestone and hopefully one she will remember fondly. Take her shopping and try to make it a special occasion, perhaps by splurging on lunch or a treat together. A nice way to remember the day is to buy her a card and write a message in it that she can keep and treasure. Whatever you do, try and make it a special experience while respecting your child’s preferences.
Find out what she likes. Sit together and browse through some sites offering training bras and ask her opinion. Some girls might like to choose their own first training bra while others may like to receive one as a gift or want your advice.
Reinforce the idea that, regardless of the changes she is experiencing, she should be proud and respect her body. As a parent, you may feel slightly uneasy or sad because the first signs of puberty mean your little girl is growing up. It is, however, important to walk this journey into womanhood with her allowing her to know that the changes she will go through are normal and natural.
Be sensitive to your child’s personality. Some girls are desperate to wear a bra, especially if their friends are, while others may try and delay it as long as possible. Ask your daughter if her friends are wearing training bras and how this makes her feel.
Unlike regular bras, which provide support, the purpose of a training bra is to deal with social and physiological issues rather than physical ones. During this time of development, be aware that your daughter might be developing earlier or later that her peers. The desire to look the same is very powerful at this stage of development so don’t simply dismiss a request to go bra shopping, even if you think she doesn’t yet need to wear one. The desire to fit in might be the bigger issue.
The average age to start wearing a bra is roughly eleven. Some girls may have a need for one from as young as 9, while others may not need one until much later. We strongly suggest that you start encouraging discussions about training bras, periods and body changes prior to puberty.
As the nipples start to protrude it might be a good idea to introduce crop or tank tops to begin with. When the breast tissue starts to develop, then move onto a soft cup bra. Avoid underwire bras as this can interfere with the development of breast tissue.
It is advisable to purchase two to three bras to allow for washing.
If you would like any advice or assistance, don’t hesitate to contact usso that we can help you or your daughter.