If you wear bras, then the chances are pretty high that you're not washing your bras as often as you should. I know I don't. Bras are expensive and they're usually super delicate, too, so many of us are afraid of over-washing them. Plus, if you only have two or three bras to rotate between, it might be hard to find a good time to clean them all up, and since doing laundry may be the single most boring way to spend an afternoon, washing your bras probably just isn't your top priority.
So I totally get why knowing how often you should be washing your bras may not seem that important. That said, if you're not washing your bras enough, you could be growing all kinds of bacteria and fungus in there, and then pushing it up against your body.
There isn't a simple way to figure out how often you should be washing your bras, though. Evidently, the frequency with which you toss your boob prisons in the washing machine (or hand-wash them in the sink) depends on what kind of bras you're dealing with, how often you wear them, what fabric they're made of, and how much you sweat while you're wearing them.
Ultimately, your cleaning schedule is your call, but here are a few things you might want to know about how often you should be washing your bra.
1. Don't Wash Your Bra Every Time You Wear It
OK, so I don't know a single person who washes their bra after every wear, but I still feel like this needs to be said. Clearly, bras can get super gross very quickly. They collect sweat, bacteria, dead skin flakes, and even fungus if you're not careful; but over-washing your bras is just as ill-advised as under-washing them.
As I'm sure you're already aware, over-washing your bra can damage the elasticity, which means it will become less supportive. Additionally, once a bra loses its shape, it's not going to fit you the way you need it to, either. So know that you don't need to be washing your bras every time you wear them. If you do, you'll ruin them.
2. You Should Be Washing Your Primary Bra At Least Once A Week
I have this one super comfy, trustworthy, but still sexy bra that I tend to favor over all of my other bras. However, because I love wearing it, I almost never wash it. According to Buzzfeed, though, bras that see a lot of action should be washed a minimum of once a week.
So if you habitually wear the same bra, and hardly ever wash it because it feels like a damn cloud against your boobies, then you might want to consider buying a second one just like it to wear on laundry day. Because you need to start washing that thing on the regular.
3. If It's A Sports Bra, Wash It Every Time You Wear It
I won't lie to you, guys, I definitely don't wash my sports bra every time I work out. It's more like once every four times I work out. If you're negligent about how often you wash your sports bra, too, then you should probably start washing it after every gym session as well.
Dr. Joshua Zeichner, M.D., a New York-based dermatologist, told Buzzfeed, “If you’re wearing a sports bra and you’re exercising and generating a lot of sweat, then that bra should be washed before you wear it the next time.”
4. ... Unless Your Workout Didn't Get Too Sweaty
Unless your sweat glands are particularly active, or your skin is just naturally more oily, then you don't need to wash your sports bra unless your workout results in some major boob sweat.
Those days when you only wear your sports bra to do 15 minutes of restorative yoga poses, or to take a short walk around the block, don't require a wash. So the next time you don your sports bra, don't feel like you have to wash it — unless you get sweaty.
5. If It's A "Special Occasion Bra," Wash It Every 3-4 Wears
I think it's safe to say that most bra-wearers have at least one bra that they only sport on special occasions, like first dates, V-Day, and other romantic adventures. These bras obviously don't need to be washed every single week, because unless your love life is just incredibly ambitious, you probably don't bust out your fanciest bras super often. Just remember to wash these pieces every 3 to 4 wears, and you should be good.
Images: Andrew Zaeh/ Bustle, Giphy (5)