A “bra”-zarre debate recently broke out during lunch with the girls: One camp strongly argued in favour of keeping their breasts strapped and supported 24/7 to prevent the dreaded boob sag. The rest felt that caging in their girls at night just isn’t comfortable, nor is it healthy (“they need to rest easy and breathe too!”).
Determined to get to the bottom of this bra battle and bust any boob myths once and for all, we called in the expert – Consultant Plastic Surgeon, Dr Tan Ying Chien, from The Sloane Clinic.
“There isn’t strong medical evidence to support the anti-aging theory of sleeping in a bra,” explains Dr Tan. “But we know that sagging of the breasts is a basic function of gravity, size and time. The downward pull of gravity stretches the skin around the breast all day, all year. As we age, the breast skin’s natural collagen support system thins out and weakens, making it harder to bounce back.”
Size matters…immensely, too. Understandably, the larger the breasts are (whether genetically endowed, or with pregnancy, breast-feeding and weight gain), the more vulnerable they are to gravitational forces, the faster the skin and suspensory micro ligaments get overwhelmed and overstretched, and the higher your droop potential.
So, while it probably shouldn’t worry the average A’s and B’s that much, but ample bosoms might do better sleeping with support to prevent premature deterioration. In fact, Marilyn Monroe is believed to have worn more than just Chanel No. 5 to bed. It has been rumoured that she kept her 36D curves perky by keeping her “breast” buddies on at night.
Which ever direction the “bra-or-no-bra-to-bed” debate goes, what’s vital is for every woman is to wear a well-fitted bra when you wear one. It’ll not only ensure your assets look and feel its best, it can pare pounds off instantly.
“It has been estimated that more than 80 percent of women are walking around in the wrong-sized bra. That’s not going to give them the support they need, and might cause problems like backaches and chafing. Every lady should get a professional bra fitting about once a year, or more often after life-changing events like pregnancy and breast-feeding. Most department stores and intimate shops offer free bra fittings.”
And since we’re on the topic of soft cups vs wired lingerie, you can put this myth to bed: Other than a pinch or poke here and there, there’s no scientific evidence that tight-fitting underwired bras cause or increase your risk of breast cancer.
So ladies, don’t rush to burn your brassiere just yet – they are our bosom buddies, not enemies. Just wear the right one, and you can wear them as long as you like.
– By Emily Wong