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What To Do With Bras That Don't Fit

We know: it can be a tough to come to terms with the fact that a bra simply doesn’t fit anymore. Whether it’s because you lost weight, gained weight, or another factor entirely, the reality is that your bra size can change — in fact, it’s likely to change multiple times within your lifetime. And when that happens, there’s no use keeping around bras that don’t fit you anymore. Aside from taking up valuable space in your lingerie drawer, you also may be more tempted to wear these uncomfortable, not to mention unflattering undergarments.

The question is, what do you do with them? Tossing that embroidered longline bra, comfy T-shirt bra, or playful patterned plunge bra may just prove too painful to bear. Luckily, there’s no reason to — there are plenty of more satisfying alternatives.

Here’s what to do with bras that no longer fit: 

Donate them to a thrift shop or local lingerie store

More and more shoppers are opting to buy clothing at thrift stores to save money. If your bra is in very good condition or new, bring it to your local Salvation Army or other second-hand store and rest assured someone who may not have been able to afford that full-price bra will get some good use out of it. Goodwill also takes clean, new or gently used bras — and those that aren’t wearable still benefit the nonprofit when they’re sold as scrap.

Another great place to donate your bras? Your local lingerie boutique. Many lingerie stores accept new and gently used bra donations year-round. Plus, the expert bra fitters at these stores will help you find new bras to replace the ones you’re giving away. Check out our store locator to find a lingerie store near you.

Hand them off to a woman in need

That bra that doesn’t fit you anymore could make a huge difference in another woman’s life. And there are a number of organizations that will accept your unwanted undergarments and distribute them to women experiencing financial hardship or in disadvantaged communities. For example, The Bra Recyclers sends bras to a slew of nonprofit partners across the world, which then make sure they are given to women and girls in need. You can submit your donation at one of their drop-off locations or mail it in, and any that aren’t in adequate condition are recycled.

Donate Your Bra also accepts used bra  and distributes them to women-centered charities, shelters, and breast cancer support groups. Another nonprofit, Free the Girls, partners with safe houses across the globe to help human trafficking victims to make a living by selling the donated bras. This organization also accepts bras via multiple drop-off locations and by mail as well.

Related: Where To Donate Old Bras

Recycle them

Did you know that most bras are recyclable? As long as they’re made of an absorbent fabric (such as cotton), they can be turned into a textile by-product or industrial rag. This is another fabulous option as recycling reduces landfill, thus having a positive impact on the environment.

Repurpose them

If you’re on the crafty side, you may be able to repurpose some parts on those bras that no longer fit in a multitude of ways.

Remove the padding from that push-up bra and you sew it into a backless or strapless dress or top for some added coverage and support. That padding can also be used as a shoe insert — simply pop it into the footbed on a pair of heels, wedges, or boots that are uncomfortable or a tad too big for you.

If you sew two bra cups nearly together and place scented potpourri, sachets, herbs or dryer sheets in the middle of them, you freshen up your lingerie drawer or even your gym bag by placing the pouch inside.

We know it can be difficult to part with your bras, but there’s no need to keep underthings around that don’t fit your figure flawlessly. Any of these aforementioned options will give your beloved bras new life, and best of all, getting them out of your drawer makes room for some exciting new pieces.

Related: Bra Shopping Guide: Tips For Buying New Bras

We Highly Recommend

Whether you’re shopping for new everyday bras or lingerie for a special occasion, it’s always a good idea to seek out a second opinion. We know how hard it is to find bras that fit well and feel good, especially when you’re doing it on your own. If you’ve ever felt unsure about your bra size or you just don’t know where to go to find good bras, it’s time to let a bra fitter help.

Many specialty lingerie boutiques offer bra fittings. Their expert bra fitters will take the pain and frustration out of bra shopping and do all the work for you. Even better, their product knowledge can save you time and money. Plus, they know where all of the best bras are hiding.

If you’ve struggled with finding bras in the right size, it’s time to make a change. Visit our specialty store locator to find a store near you and schedule an appointment.

Happy bra shopping!

Featured image lingerie:
Mod By Parfait Sweetheart Padded Bra A1391 | Mod By Parfait Sweetheart Hipster A1395 in Bright White/Almond Blossom


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Published by

Rebecca Strong

Rebecca is a Boston-based freelance writer who focuses on style, fitness, food, and travel. She has contributed to such publications as HuffPost, Elite Daily and U.S. News & World Report. When she's not writing, she can be found at home or in the studio working on the songs for her upcoming album. Her favorite bra is a black demi-cup style with all-over-lace — timeless and feminine.

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