Is it Bad to Sleep with a Sports Bra On? (Find Out Now!)

Last Updated on October 3, 2023 by Alex PT

Sleeping with a sports bra on is generally safe, but it may not provide the same comfort as a regular bra. It can restrict movement, potentially affecting sleep quality. Opt for a comfortable sleep bra or go braless for better sleep.

Wearing a Sports Bra to Bed and Breast Sagging

Can Wearing a Sports Bra to Bed Affect Sagging

Wearing a sports bra to bed may not directly cause breast sagging, but it can have implications for breast health. While there’s limited scientific research on this topic, here’s an overview:

  1. Lack of Support: Sports bras offer strong support, which is great during workouts. However, when worn for extended periods, they can compress breast tissue, leading to discomfort.
  2. Blood Circulation: Tight sports bras can potentially restrict blood flow to breast tissues, although the impact is minimal for most women. Adequate blood circulation is essential for overall breast health.
  3. Collagen and Elasticity: Breast sagging is primarily influenced by factors like aging, genetics, and pregnancy. Collagen and elastin fibers in the skin naturally break down over time, contributing to sagging. Wearing a sports bra at night doesn’t directly affect collagen and elastin.
  4. Comfort: Many women find sports bras uncomfortable for sleeping, leading to poor sleep quality. Restful sleep is crucial for overall well-being.
  5. Alternative Options: For those concerned about breast sagging, it’s recommended to wear a comfortable, non-restrictive sleep bra or go braless at night. These options offer support without the discomfort of a sports bra.

Does Sleeping in a Bra Prevent Breast Growth?

There are several myths and misconceptions associated with breast growth, one of which is the effect of wearing a bra while sleeping. Women of all ages, especially the younger ones who have just started to experience breast development, often harbor this concern. This article aims to dispel some of these myths and explore the relationship between sleeping with a bra on and breast growth.

1. No Scientific Correlation

Contrary to popular belief, there is no scientific evidence that confirms that wearing a bra at night restricts or prevents breast growth. Most instances of changes in breast size are due to hormonal influences, age, weight fluctuation, pregnancy, and genetics.

2. Bras Do Not Restrict Growth

It is important to note that bras are designed to support the breasts, not constrict them. Sleeping in a bra should not inhibit breast growth as they are not tightly bound or in a restricted environment, especially if you are wearing the correct bra size.

3. Use of Sports Bras

Some women prefer to wear sports bras while sleeping due to comfort reasons. Sports bras adequately support the breasts without applying too much pressure. However, like regular bras, they have no connection with breast growth.

Type of BrasEffect on Breast Growth
Regular BrasNo impact
Sports BrasNo impact

4. Issues with Continuous Bra Use

While there’s no evidence that wearing a bra to bed negatively affects breast growth, continuous bra use may have some adverse effects. These could potentially include skin irritation, restlessness due to discomfort, or impeding lymphatic flow if the bra is too tight. However, these effects have also not been conclusively proven by research.

5. Comfort is Key

The decision to sleep in a bra should primarily depend on a woman’s comfort. If it gets uncomfortable or you feel your sleep quality is being compromised, it might be best to avoid wearing a bra to bed.

In conclusion, sleeping in a bra has no direct impact on inhibiting or promoting breast growth. Health factors, lifestyle, genetics, hormones, and nutritional intake play a more significant role in determining breast size. Therefore, the decision to wear or not wear a bra while sleeping should be based on personal comfort rather than the myth of regulating breast growth.

When to Avoid Wearing a Sports Bra to Bed

When is it Bad to Wear a Sports Bra to Bed

Having a bra that you can depend on and get comfortable in is essential. If it is too tight or binding, making you feel uncomfortable while wearing it, it isn’t working for you anymore. Do not sleep in the following bras; 

  • A bra that pinches the skin
  • Bras that cause rashes in the mornings
  • Wrong size
  • High-impact sports bra
  • A bra that is a too-snug fit

As a young woman, always ensure that you wear the right sports bra style to bed. Wearing the wrong bras can result in pain and discomfort, not to mention wiry poking underwires! Be aware of what materials are generally commonly used in products of this kind to protect your health better.

The (Potential) Benefits of Sleeping in a Sports Bra

Sleeping in a sports bra can have potential benefits for some individuals, although it may not be suitable for everyone. Here are some reasons why some people choose to sleep in a sports bra:

  1. Breast Support: Sports bras are designed to provide excellent support during physical activities. Some women find that wearing a sports bra to bed helps keep their breasts in place, reducing discomfort from breast movement while sleeping. This can be especially beneficial for women with larger breasts.
  2. Reduced Discomfort: For some individuals, breast soreness or tenderness, particularly during menstruation, pregnancy, or breastfeeding, can make sleeping without any support uncomfortable. A sports bra can offer gentle compression, which may alleviate discomfort.
  3. Post-Surgical Support: After breast surgery, such as a reduction or augmentation, doctors may recommend wearing a sports bra 24/7, including during sleep, to provide necessary support and ensure proper healing.
  4. Preventing Skin Irritation: Some people experience skin irritation or chafing from friction between their breasts or between the breasts and the chest wall during sleep. Wearing a sports bra with moisture-wicking fabric can help reduce such irritation.
  5. Enhanced Comfort: Sports bras made from soft, breathable materials can be more comfortable to sleep in than traditional bras. They may not have underwires or clasps that can dig into the skin, making them a comfortable sleepwear choice.
  6. Breast Shape: While there’s limited scientific evidence, some women believe that sleeping in a sports bra can help maintain their breast shape over time by reducing movement and potential stretching of the breast ligaments during sleep.
  7. Privacy and Confidence: For some, wearing a sports bra to bed provides a sense of privacy or confidence, especially if they are sharing a sleeping space with others.

The Potential Risks of Sleeping in a Sports Bra

Sleeping in a sports bra can have potential risks and drawbacks, although it may be suitable for some individuals. Here are the potential risks associated with sleeping in a sports bra:

  1. Restricted Blood Circulation: Sports bras, especially those with tight bands or compression, can potentially restrict blood flow to breast tissues. This prolonged restriction can be uncomfortable and may not promote optimal breast health.
  2. Skin Irritation: The elastic bands, seams, or straps of a sports bra can rub against the skin during sleep, leading to skin irritation, redness, or chafing. This can be particularly uncomfortable in sensitive areas.
  3. Breast Discomfort: While sports bras are designed for support during physical activity, some may find them uncomfortable to sleep in, especially if they have underwires, rigid cups, or compression that can dig into the skin.
  4. Breast Ligament Health: There’s a misconception that wearing a sports bra to bed can prevent breast sagging. However, limited scientific evidence supports this claim. Allowing the ligaments in the breast to move naturally during sleep may have potential benefits.
  5. Overheating: Sports bras are often made of synthetic materials that may trap heat and moisture, leading to overheating during sleep. This can disrupt sleep quality and lead to discomfort.
  6. Fungal Infections: The moisture and lack of ventilation in the bra area can create an environment conducive to fungal infections, such as candidiasis, which can be uncomfortable and require treatment.
  7. Pressure on Lymph Nodes: Extremely tight sports bras can put pressure on lymph nodes, potentially impacting the lymphatic system’s ability to remove toxins from the breast area. However, this claim lacks substantial scientific evidence.
  8. Potential for Breast Pain: Women with sensitive breasts or certain medical conditions, like fibrocystic breast disease, may experience increased breast pain or discomfort when wearing a sports bra to bed.
  9. Breathing Difficulty: Sports bras with tight bands can constrict the chest area and restrict lung expansion during deep breathing, potentially leading to breathing difficulties during sleep.
  10. Strap and Wire Discomfort: Some sports bras have straps or underwires that can become uncomfortable when lying in certain sleeping positions, leading to sleep disturbances.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does wearing a sports bra at night cause breast cancer?

There have been several cleverly worded campaigns conducted by bra manufacturers who would like women to believe there is no scientific evidence suggesting their products cause or contribute to breast cancer. However, it has not gone entirely unnoticed by scientific professionals that women choosing to wear a bra twenty-four hours a day and when sleeping, isn’t the best route for their health and wellness.

At least not according to past studies conducted through Duke University, which made the link between wearing bras and causing breast cancer more apparent and found other factors that contributed to the disease’s development.

Can sports bras damage your breasts?

Bras do support your bust. When exercising and playing sports, the breasts are held together by fatty and connective tissue. Constant stretching can result in injury over time, which can cause pain to your connective tissue. Bras that offer a lot of support avoid this issue and any potential discomfort or pain caused by worn-out sports bras that have lost their elasticity.

What are the side effects of not wearing a bra?

Not wearing a bra can result in almost as many problems as having too much caffeine before bed. Women are among the few rare species that willingly go without them (whales, spotted hyenas, and other mammals are on that list too). We know it sounds crazy, but we’re here to remind you there’s something wrong with it because, believe it or not, breasts belong on the body for reasons like a natural cushion or general health purposes.

The final point is that gravity is impartial, and unfortunately, gravity doesn’t take days off from working whether you’re wearing a bra or not, so over time, they will sag regardless of what happens to them.

Are sports bras good for a teenage girl?

Sports bras are suitable for teenage girls as they help support their developing breasts. Adolescent girls still developing their breasts require a good sports bra to protect their delicate breasts while performing rigorous activities. Manufacturers have designed sports bras with adjustable straps to aid teenage girls in supporting their tender breasts optimally.


Never make the mistake of sleeping with a regular bra, as this could be detrimental to your health. While wearing a sports bra could potentially be something done for comfort, it could be best if you avoid sleeping with a bra that pinches your skin or one that fits tightly. It is not a bad idea to wear your sports bra to bed, but if the fit is tight, you will be uncomfortable, and it is not worth it. Always ensure that the bra you wear to bed supports your breasts optimally and provides sufficient comfort.


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