Real Talk: How often should you wash your bras?

I own a lot of bras, and I imagine most women do.  With so many shirts, halters and dresses requiring you to wear a variety of different styles, it can be quite easy to lose track of how often each has been cleaned.  But you don't want to end up standing next to a hottie and smelling like you just crawled out of a sweaty gym bag!

There was a story recently on Jezebel that talked about how often, or rather how infrequent, most people wash their bras and it's pretty shocking to learn how little people actually think about this! They give us support when we need it the most yet many do not realize how much sweat is sucked into the garment after just a couple of uses. 

Experts are still out as to the exact number of times that women should wash their bras. Some say after 2-3 wears while others say that you can safely wear bras at least 7-8 times before having to launder. (No, spraying with perfume or Febreeze does not count!) 

Most of us keep pretty busy schedules and the proper maintenance of your undergarments may not be at the forefront of your mind but it may be time you reconsider the importance.  

Washing Options:

1. Hand Wash: With women investing more than 16 million dollars on bras each year, you would hope they would opt for the very best care.  Hand washing certainly is more tedious but it helps your bra maintain its original form and the integrity of the fabric better than any other option.

Soak in gentle soap (I use Woolite) and water for 30 minutes using cool water. Work the soap out thoroughly with your hands making sure all the suds disappear and rinse. To not wring the water out or it will ruin the shape of the cups! Hang the bra to dry or lay it out flat until dry.

To save time, wash more than one at a time but wash whites and colors separately.

2. Washing Machine: Why yes, you can launder many of your everyday bras in the washing machine!  ALWAYS use the gentle cycle and make sure you clasp the back hooks to avoid tangling or damage. When finished, reshape the cups and hang to dry.  You can also opt to lay it out flat to dry but never use the dryer.

Another no-no: Bleach.

If using a washing machine, we recommend the use of a mesh bag or the highly rated Bra Ball.  Follow the same hand washing rules and do not mix white bras with colored ones.  

Sound off in the comments ladies!  How often do you wash your bras? What is your preferred technique to extend the life of your biggest supporters?!


  1. I usually wash after two days of everyday wear. If I have been to a concert or a club I will wash it before I wear it again.

    1. You go girl! Do you hand wash or washing machine?

  2. Same here, wash after 2 uses, 3 max. I use a mesh bag and in the washing machine they go.

  3. I have to confess that most of the time, I don't wear a bra. I don't really need it! :) But this is great information anyway, because I don't pay a lot of attention to the few bras I have and use. It's good to know how they need to be treated ;)

  4. Can you believe I've never hand washed my bras!! Crazy, right. I know it's the best option for undergarments, but I'm just too busy to even think about it.... unless I'm caught in an emergency. But then again, I'll just grab another one! :) Great tips. Passing to my sis who is obsessed with all things bra!

    1. Thanks for spreading the word Bren! I hate that I have to hand wash my bras but they would get way too damaged in the washing machine.

  5. This bra is very strong for heavy breast. Very comfortable, smooth under your clothes the lace is flat and does not show through your thin shirts. Playtex bras are my favorites bras.