Dolly Doctor

Am I ready for a bra?

How to know when it's time to tame those ta-ta's.

Dear DOLLY DR,

My boobs have started growing but I don’t know if I’m ready to get a bra or not yet. How do you know when you should get one? Mum says I’m too young but sometimes I feel embarrassed and uncomfortable without one.

Hayley

Whether your breasts are just growing or fully grown, it might interest you to know that there’s no medical reason to wear a bra (or not). It’s really just personal choice.

The first stages of breast development involve a small breast bud growing underneath the nipple. Some girls feel self-conscious because there’s a small amount of tissue pointing out that wasn’t there before. Wearing a bra won’t really affect this – it’s part of your natural development.

Bras can have the effect of “flattening” out breasts or they can enhance or pad out what’s there. There are many styles of underwear for girls who are experiencing breast development – you could wear a crop top for example. The difference between a bra and a crop top is that a bra has two distinct cups. The smallest cup size is AAA, which suits many girls in the early stages of breast development, but can also be too big if you’re right at the very beginning.

It’s very likely that your mum really does know best – she might be able to see that a bra isn’t likely to fit. On the other hand, she might not appreciate how embarrassed and uncomfortable you’re feeling and you could ask her to at least take you to try a bra or two on.

Want to know everything there is to know about boobs? Get clued up with our boobie bible.

Suffering from pesky stretchmarks? Get it sorted, stat!

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