Recovery Bras 101
Recovery Bras 101

Recovery Bras 101

Dana Donofree
4 min read

Post-Surgery Mastectomy Recovery Bras

After undergoing breast surgery, the last thing you probably want to think about is bras. After all, your chest will be naturally very sore and you will have many weeks of recovery ahead of you to deal with. Plus, you’ll have bandages and dressings on until you are advised by your doctor to take them off. 

But after your surgery, you will want to have the right recovery bras at your disposal to help you progress through the rest of your recovery in greater comfort. And this is where things can get confusing because you might be surprised to discover just how many different types of breast surgery recovery bras there are to choose from.

That’s why we chose to create this quick and easy guide to post-surgery recovery bras. In this post, you will learn more about the different types of post-surgery bras and which types are best suited for each type of breast surgery, so you can get the best bra for your unique recovery needs.

Best Post-Surgery Recovery Bras for Mastectomies

Mastectomy bras and post-operative vests are designed to be worn anywhere from a few weeks to a few months after surgery. These products are specifically made with healing and support in mind. They have several key features built-in which help reduce pain, inflammation, and swelling, including:

  • Wide back bridges
  • Adjustable straps and bands
  • Easy to open front closures
  •  Built-in compression
  • Seamless fabrics
  • Soft, wire-free cups
  • Built-in pockets for accommodating breast inserts


    post surgical front closure uni-sex vest for post chest surgery and recovery

    Shop the Post-Op Vest

    AnaOno’s post-surgery recovery bras and post-surgical vests can help you get back to feeling like yourself again much quicker, regardless of whether you recently had a mastectomy or a non-cancer-related surgery on your chest.

    To get a better idea of what type of recovery bra or vest will be best for your recovery, it is recommended to speak to your doctor. If you will require temporary drainage ports after your surgery, then the post-operative vest will most likely be your ideal choice, as it has strategically placed pockets on either side of the vest which conveniently and conspicuously store the drainage system’s holding vessels.

    Best Bras For Lumpectomy Recovery

    After undergoing a lumpectomy, you will want to wear a bra that is comfortable and supportive, but one that also has larger arm openings to help reduce the risk of your bra irritating your incision sites. As a result, the best bras for lumpectomy recovery feature ultra soft, stretchable fabrics with no underwires. They also include pockets to allow for the use of breast inserts or modesty pads if you want to balance out any resulting breast asymmetry. 

    Because support is so important to your post-surgical recovery, usually a recovery bra featuring a sports bra style of design is best. The Bianca Front Closure Sports Bra is an excellent example of this. The Bianca has a cross-back design that delivers greater support, whether you’re returning to work or restarting your workout regimen. It also has breathable mesh panels that help keep you cool. The Bianca is designed to fit snugly, which is why the bra provides such outstanding support and comfortable compression. This feature also makes it an excellent choice for those who suffer from back pain and shoulder pain.

    bianca pocketed front closure bra on model unclipping the front rows

     Shop the Bianca Front Closure Bra

    Best Recovery Bras for Breast Reconstruction Surgery

    If you choose to have breast reconstruction surgery after your mastectomy or lumpectomy, then you will want to avoid wearing a standard underwire bra for some time after your surgery. What you will need now is a bra that delivers greater comfort, gentle compression, and better support because you will want to reduce the risk of swelling and inflammation that can occur at the incision sites.

    A bra with a front enclosure can also be beneficial because it will not only make it easier and more comfortable for you to put on and remove, but it will also allow you to care for your post-surgical dressing much easier.

    The Rora Recovery Front Closure Bra is not only one of the best front-closure recovery bras on the market, it’s also been recommended by doctors nationwide. This bra has the softness, adjustability, and style that will help you feel better about your bra choices after your mastectomy.

    The versatile Rora Recovery Front Closure Bra is non-wired with molded foam cups which help reduce the pain and irritation that bras with wired cups can cause. It also has pockets to accommodate any modesty pads, prosthesis, or lightweight breast forms that you may wish to use.

    rora pocketed front closure bra with model unclipping the front hooks to show how bra functions

     Shop the Rora Recovery Bra

    Do I Really Need a Recovery Bra?

    Any type of breast cancer surgery, whether it is a mastectomy, lumpectomy, or breast reconstruction is a comprehensive and invasive surgery. As a result, you will have incisions that will be inflamed and sore, and you may even have a temporary drainage port in place to help ensure your wounds remain sufficiently drained. Because of these factors, a standard bra should be avoided until your doctor advises you that you have healed enough to comfortably wear one. 

    Recovery bras are specially designed to provide you with all the comfort, support, and peace of mind that you expect from your bra. But unlike a standard bra, your recovery bra has built-in features that will help you feel more comfortable by keeping your inflammation and swelling down.

    At AnaOno, we have recovery bras that can help you feel more like yourself after surgery. Best of all, every one of our post-operative bras and vests are designed to be worn for as long as you like. Many of our customers continue to wear their recovery bras long after their incision sites have healed simply because they’re the most comfortable and supportive bras they’ve ever worn.

    If you are scheduled for breast surgery or you have recently undergone surgery, you can find the perfect bra to help you recover in greater comfort and support at AnaOno. We’re confident that you will find your next favorite bra in our collection.

    Dana Donofree
    Dana Donofree

    Founder and CEO of AnaOno. After a diagnosis of breast cancer in her late 20’s, Dana took her own lived experience and fashion design background and (re)designed intimates for those that have undergone breast surgery. Dana’s story has been published around the world in outlets like New York Times, BBC, Huffington Post, The Today Show, and more.