Back in 1992, when two friends couldn’t find comfy nursing bras that were also fun or fashionable, they sat down at the kitchen table and made one—out of leopard print fabric, no less. That’s how Bravado Designs was, well, born.
Fit and comfort are paramount to this brand by moms, for moms. “We get it: Breastfeeding has its ups and downs. We want to help women feel comfortable and confident with maternity and nursing bras that make sense for this crazy, exciting stage in life,” says Tara Hoth, head of design. “We firmly believe bras shouldn’t be bland. We offer fun colors in addition to classic beige and black, and a little bow, polka dot or print isn’t out of the question.”
Like Bare Necessities, Bravado Designs is “pretty much obsessed with fit,” says Tara. She and her designers are black-belts when it comes to feel-good fabrications and sanity-savers like easy-release clasps and cups that fully drop down for those zonked-out 4 AM feedings. (Look for band sizes 32-46 and cups B-M.)
What’s extra cool: an innovative Test Wearer program in which real moms road-test the bras and nursing tanks, from new prototypes to existing designs. Their input helps Tara’s team fine-tune the details that make all the difference. And since necessity is—pun intended—the mother of invention, here’s what’s new and exciting for moms right now from Bravado Designs:
A NEW INNOVATION
Clip and Pump Hands-Free Nursing Bra
Most women who breastfeed are also adept around a breast pump, be it at work or even in the car (been there, done that—this writer once pumped while hurtling through Manhattan’s Times Square, true story, insert laughing-crying emoji here). Until now, we’ve had to hold those pumps in place or turn to a hands-free pumping bra—basically a bandeau with two holes to push the shields through—which is (how to say this tactfully?) less than ideal. You need to expose yourself to get it on, it’s awkward to assemble, you will cry over spilled milk when removing the bottles and you lose suction if you dare to ever-so-slightly reposition.
That’s what makes the new Clip and Pump Hands-Free Nursing Bra Accessory an angels-singing revelation. Made to clip onto Bravado Designs bras, the Clip and Pump is like a camisole that layers over your bra to give the discretion and ease that’s so far been sorely lacking. You don’t need to take off your shirt or bra; its ‘figure 8’ openings make inserting and removing bottles so easy, it begs the question: Why had no one thought of this until now? Using your bra as an anchor, it gives you the security and freedom to actually get things done while hooked up to a pump. Now that’s what we call a hands-free device.
We speak from personal experience about what a game-changer the Clip and Pump can be. Says Jeni Doherty, a Bare Necessities buyer: “My sister spent two months in the hospital with my nephew. This often meant pumping in public, and when I saw the Clip and Pump, I knew she’d find it useful. She said the clips went flawlessly onto her nursing bras, and the opening for the pump felt very secure—more than other camis she’s tried in the past. The soft material was gentle against her sensitive skin. She also never felt like she was exposing herself; it was so discreet.”
A NEW COLLECTION
This spring’s Petal-Soft Collection takes comfort to another level—and that’s saying something when your milk is coming in or letting down. Chosen for its incredibly soft feel, cooling effect and stretch-and-recovery properties, this fabric practically self-selected. Find it in these two beautiful (yes, we said it!) nursing bras:
- Buttercup Nursing Bra: Beyond the Petal-Soft fabric, its super soft molded foam cups adjust to your changing shape. How do we love it? Let us count the ways: modern silhouette; wire-free frame; power-mesh wings; wide band; convertible straps; complimentary bra extender and conversion kit to change it to a regular bra when you and baby are ready.
- Ballet Nursing Bra: As simple and soft as a nursing bra gets, basically. The Petal-Soft exterior is lined with modal for relief for even the most sensitive nipples. Choose this non-constricting, pull-on-style bra for light support on days spent at home and those nighttime feedings or pumping sessions.