Sports bra chafing is a problem that can affect women of all ages and different body types. It’s common for women to wonder, ‘why does my sports bra chafe’? Many women are unaware of the causes and how to prevent them. For several women chafing could lead to bruises, open wounds, and scars. It is why every woman should be aware of how the type of bra they wear can affect their body.
In this article, we will talk about sports bra chafing and how to prevent it. The causes of sports bra chafing might be friction, moisture, fabric, or other factors, so it is important to be well informed. Also, treating your chafed skin with the appropriate remedy is equally essential.
What Is Chafing?
Chafing is a skin condition that arises when certain parts of your body rub against each other or a piece of clothing. It causes irritation on your skin which can lead to various symptoms. Usually, it causes a burning sensation in the affected area. Areas you might have chafing are your armpit, thighs, your back, underneath your breasts, etc. Some people call chafing from a bra “bra burn” which I agree is a pretty good name for it.
How To Identify Chafed Skin
Lots of ladies mistake chafing for a bra fitting too firmly and causing pressure, or even a dermatitis type rash.
You will know when your skin is chaffed as it will literally burn when you jump in the shower. Water on chafe is pretty excruciating.
Sometime chafing can also get so bad that scabs form on the top of the chafe.
It can take months (or years as I have seen once of twice before) for chronic chaffers to get the chafe marks off their skin. Over time they will appear less red and more like darker patched of skin. I have also seen a few ladies with genuine scaring from chafing which will likely staff with them for their lifetime.
Why does my sports bra chafe?
Knowing what causes your sports bra chafing will help you determine ways to curb the problem. Friction is what leads to chafing. The friction occurs as a result of the bra rubbing against your body. Moisture can also encourage friction. Sweating makes it easier for the sports bra to rub against your body.
Several elements can increase the possibility of friction, and we’ll discuss them below. Sports bra chafing can occur at the back, between your boobs, underneath the boob, the strap area, or around your underarm.
Common causes of sports bra chafing include:
1. Wrong Sports Bra
There are different types of sports bras for various activities. The more movement you perform, the more friction occurs. So when you’re performing an activity that involves a lot of motion, wear a high-impact sports bra. They are more steady and less likely to cause friction.
How To Prevent Sports Bra Chafe with the right sports bra
Before choosing a sports bra, you should pay attention to its features, if it suits you, and the activity you’re performing. For example, one major cause of sports bra chafing is wearing a bra that doesn’t hold your boobs sturdily and causes them to rub against each other. It is common for women to wear crop sports bras for activities with lots of motion.
Instead, wear a sports bra that can hold individual boobs steadily. Also, wear one that has a wide band. The wider it is, the more supportive. Some sports bras have seams that could cause chaffing, so you best avoid them. Checking your sports bra to see if they have the necessary padding is also important.
Lastly, pay attention to whether the sports bra is without wire or underwired. Underwired sports bras are known to give more support, but what’s the use if they cause chafing? Find which one works best for you and stick to it.
2. Bra Fabric
The fabric of your bra is one of the reasons why your sports bra chafe. Sports bras do not have soft or light materials. Sometimes its thickness might irritate as it rubs against your skin. Also, there are some materials like silk and satin that would cause chaffing when you wear them too often. These materials are not gentle on the skin despite them being high quality. Be mindful of the quality of fabric to prevent sports bra chafing. If the fabric of your bra is not skin-friendly, it can cause chafing.
If you’ve identified that the material of your bra is what’s causing the chafing, the best way to prevent the fabric of your bra from chafing is to understand what materials are best for your body. If a sports bra you have doesn’t cause chafing, buy other bras that have similar materials and weight.
Another way to prevent chafing is not to wear fabric prone to irritate the skin for too long. If you must wear a silk sports bra, ensure it’s not too tight. It will allow breathability and prevent your skin from rubbing the material too much when you run.
Ensure your sports bra has padding to prevent the bra from rubbing aggressively against your skin.
3. Wearing A Bra that Doesn't Fit
The wrong sports bra fit is probably the easiest thing you can control when it comes to sports bra chafing. A sports bra that is too loose will causes chafing. Most ladies who experience changing instantly assume that the bra is too firm – which is wrong. As you workout in your sports bra, a bra that isn’t firm enough will move against your skin, causing chafing.
To ensure your bra fit doesn’t cause chafing make sure it is firm enough to be “suctioned” against your body. If when you lift your arms the ribcage band moves it means your bra will likely cause chafing after a long training session.
Once you notice signs that your bra doesn’t fit well, the best thing to do is get remeasured at a reputable Sports Bra retailer.
4. Wearing Your Bra For Too Long
Sports bra chafing can occur when you wear your bra for long hours. The more movement you make, the more friction there is. It is one of the reasons why it is advised you take your bra off when you sleep or when it’s not needed.
How To Treat Chafing
According to WebMD, you can treat sports bra chafing by cleaning the area with water and then patting it dry with a towel. It would be best to rub Vaseline or any petroleum jelly around the area. If you have severe symptoms, you should visit the hospital for proper medication. Please give the chafed area time to heal before you begin any activity that will promote friction.
My Final thoughts on Sports Bra Chafe
Sports bra chafing is normal, and almost every woman experiences it in their lifetime. Once you find out the cause, make adjustments to prevent it from happening again.
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