Asking for a friend: Is sleeping with a bra on good or bad for you?

Quick question: Do you wear a bra to bed? Y/N. 

While some people freak out about the idea of sleeping in a bra (Uncomfy! Sweaty! Restrictive!), others claim it can help keep your boobs from stretching and sagging.

If you give it a Goog, you'll read articles vouching for these aforementioned benefits of sleeping in a bra, while others while talk about the possible risks. It's all very confusing. 

So, what's good? Which claim is correct?

Watch: You know what you need right now? Some facts about big boobs, of course! Post continues below.

Video via Mamamia.

We asked registered nurse Madeline Calfas, who is the founder of The Wellness Group and co-founder of GMC Cosmedical, for the answer.

Let's go!

Can sleeping in a bra do you any harm?

"I grew up in the era of being told you should never wear your bra to bed as it would damage breast tissue and ultimately cause your breasts to stretch and sag," said Calfas. "Like nearly every other girl on the planet, I dutifully obeyed."

SAME. So, is it actually bad for you? There's some weird rumours about breast cancer and stuff...

"There has not been any direct causational link proven between sleeping in a bra and sagging breast tissue. Nor has there been any direct link proven between sleeping in a bra and breast cancer. So, while we're at it we can scratch that one off the list as well," said Calfas.


If you do like sleeping in a bra, though (each to their own, ladies), Calfas said to just make sure you pick out the right sort of bra - because apparently there can be a helluva lot of nasty consequences if you don't. Like, waaaay more than we ever imagined.

She said the main thing here is to just steer clear of bras with wires and look for soft-cups, rather than tight or padded options. These are too restrictive and can really mess with your skin if you're wearing them 24/7.

"Sleeping with an under-wire is about as comfortable as sleeping on a park bench, and really won't lend itself to getting those much-needed zzz's. Likewise, sleeping with a tight bra can also lead to the development of fungal infections."

Oh! How good.

"When you have tight, constricting clothes against your skin, you are more prone to sweating, and that provides a warm, moist environment that fungus thrives in," adds Calfas.

Not only can it be super uncomfortable and not great for the health of your skin, but apparently sleeping with an under-wire can also have a negative impact on the lymphatic system. 


"By constricting the lymph nodes, you are preventing them from clearing the toxins (think of it like a blocked drain in your bathroom), which means ultimately your lymph nodes can't do their job, making you more prone to oedema (swelling) and inflammation."

But wait, you guys. There's more. (Anyone else completely shook as to how important it is to choose the right bra for sleeping?! Like, what?). 

Calfas said sleeping with a tight bra or under-wire can also lead to other skin issues like hyperpigmentation, or a darkening of the skin where the bra rubs on the skin. 


"Underwires can cause friction, especially when your skin is being constantly subjected to it 24/7, and it is this constant friction that stimulates melanocyte production (melanocytes are the cells that are responsible for skin colour)," said Calfas. 

"Constant friction can also lead to irritation of the skin, regardless of skin colour, so this is something else that needs to be taken into consideration."

Well, s**t.

Luckily, there are heaps of good sleeping bras out there, that are designed to give you some support without the need for under wires. 

We recommend looking for something seam-free, tag-free and label-free. "Soft, breathable material that will keep your breasts where you want them without creating the problems that can be associated with them," said Calfas.

Okay. So... is there actually any benefit to sleeping in a bra?

The main benefit of wearing a bra to bed? Comfort. That's basically it. 

"Many women actually find it more comfortable to sleep with a bra than to spend a night with the girls going free range," said Calfas.  

"A lot of girls would rather have some kind of support under their pj's, especially when you are a lot larger in the bust, so that when you do the 5am garbage dash, you are far less self-conscious!"

The verdict? Sleeping with a bra won't stop your breast sagging. If anything, it looks like there are more reasons as to why you shouldn't wear a bra to bed. 

But! If sleeping with a bra on is more comfortable for you, then you do you, friend! Just make sure you choose the right one, mmmkay?

Do you wear a bra to bed? Share with us in the comment section below.

Feature image: Getty.