Woops, I’ve been sitting on these pictures for a long time but forgotten to hit publish on the review – you’ll have to excuse the change in hair colour from my last post as we jump back a few months!
Every so often on the blog, we like to throw in a curveball – here I’m reviewing a nursing bra. And before you mention it, no – I’m not pregnant! (Spoiler alert: I’m getting married in May next year so it would be erring on the side of disastrous if I were to be right now!). In fact, I actually own 3 bras that you could call maternity bras: the Ewa Michalak Nina bra reviewed here and a Mimi Holliday Peach silk maternity bra. And these function as lounging around the house, comfortable bras – they act as bralettes essentially for me.
So when Royce Lingerie offered us the chance to review a couple of bras, we jumped in with the Poppy bra for our maternity columnist and I decided to give one of their bras a go myself: the Candy Blossom in a 32 E/F/FF.
Shape & Appearance
The first thing you notice about the Royce Candy Blossom bra is that it’s oh-so-cute! While I’m definitely a fan of strappy, bondage style lingerie, I’m possibly an even bigger fan of lingerie that’s pretty, pink and pastels. As a lover of all things retro, this appeals to the cotton candy, pin up girl in me.
The second feature about the bra I want to highlight is that it’s entirely wirefree, as are most maternity bras. It’s made from a soft and stretchy cotton jersey fabric. The interior of the bra is also all stretch cotton jersey aside from some side padding. Due to the stretch of the fabric, the shape is very natural – there’s not a lot of uplift but you do get your breasts pushed into the centre of the bra thanks to the padding.
I have to draw attention to another feature which is the drawstring at what would be the centre gore of a normal bra. This can be pulled to tighten it creating a lower neckline – ideal for under scoop or V neck tops – or left looser for more coverage.
Then, of course, like most nursing bras, it features the clip at the top of the cups which allows easy access for breastfeeding. This clip is made of white plastic which seems plenty sturdy enough for my quite heavy and dense breasts – even though I’m not breastfeeding, I imagine my breast tissue has a similar weight to those who would be at my size!
Size, fit & comfort
Fitting a maternity or nursing bra is always going to be something women struggle with. Fortunately, the Royce Candy Blossom bra has a few options which mean that the bra is usable across the range of sizes you may experience during pregnancy.
First up, the bra is designed in a unique sizing system: across 3 cup sizes. I chose the 32 E/F/FF, but it’s also available as a C/D/DD and G/GG/H on 32 to 40 bands. The reason they can do this is that the fabric across the cups is stretchy enough to contain a range of sizes.
The drawstring centre of the bra is also useful in terms of fitting various cup sizes. If you find that you’re needing a smaller fit at the beginning of your pregnancy or during breastfeeding, the drawstring can be pulled tighter – this pulls the centre of the cups slightly inwards and I found the top edge of the cup getting tighter too. When you need the cups larger, loosen off the drawstring a little.
Finally, the bra fastens with a lot more hooks at the back fastening meaning that it can easily be adjusted to fit a wider range of band sizes throughout your pregnancy.
But how does it fit me? I chose the 32 E/F/FF after debating between that and the 32 G/GG/H. Technically my sister size on a 32 band is a FF cup, but I was worried I might not have enough room. In the end, I’m glad I made this decision as it fit really well – enough room in the cups, thanks to the stretch they have, and the band size worked well when it was on the tightest hooks. With maternity bras, you should generally choose one that fits better on the loosest hooks when you’re at the start of your pregnancy or are not feeling bloated or uncomfortable. That way, the band can be loosened to grow with you, whether that’s as your bump expands or when you experience any of the discomfort feelings of pregnancy that mean you don’t want anything tight around your body. I was glad to find that as a 28/30 band, this bra could even work for me.
In terms of comfort, the super soft cotton jersey fabric means there’s no irritation against the skin, although I do wonder if sensitive skin types might find the interior a little irritating where the side padding ends. For me, it cut across my breast tissue in a slightly strange place – slightly off to the side – so for those breastfeeding, I don’t imagine it would help much with leakage.
I’ve actually now passed the bra on to a better owner as I wasn’t wearing it all that much – with the recent trend of bralettes taking centre stage, I’ve actually had the opportunity to buy some bralettes that actually come in my size (or nearby enough!), so this hasn’t had as much wear as I planned. Ben’s aunt is currently nursing, so I’ve passed it on to her. She hasn’t had the chance to try it on yet, but I’m hoping it’ll be a good fit for her.
The Royce Lingerie Candy Blossom bra is available to buy directly from Royce Lingerie for £32 in sizes 32 to 40, C/D/DD to G/GG/H. It’s also available in black polkadot, white floral and animal print. You can also purchase it from Figleaves (£15), Amazon (£30) & John Lewis (£32).