My boyfriend sent me this article, probably to coax me into adopting the natural look more often. I thought it was interesting, though it most likely won't serve his intended purpose.
Why breasts sag and will bras prevent breasts from sagging?
What causes sagging of breasts?
Sagging or drooping of breasts is a natural, inevitable process that happens to all women at some point - except those with fairly small breasts. The most notable sagging happens with the process called breast involution (see below), but breasts can start drooping a little at any age, because they do NOT have muscles in them. They have ligaments and connective tissue. When the gravity pulls the breasts down, those ligaments and the skin can stretch, and so the breast then droops. This depends on the elasticity of your skin and of your ligaments, as determined by your genes and diet, and also on normal aging processes. Obviously large breasts will sag easier since the gravity is pulling them down more.
Breast involution is a process where the milk-making system inside the breast shrinks because it's not needed anymore. This happens either after weaning, or right after pregnancy if you don't breastfeed at all, or during menopause. When the tissues inside breast shrink, and the skin surrounding it doesn't, the breast can look 'empty' and saggy. Over time, some fat gets deposited back to the breast so it will look somewhat fuller but sagging usually remains.
Will bras keep the breasts from sagging?
Bras will keep your breasts from sagging while you're wearing them - but not for the remainder of time. There is no published medical literature showing that bras prevent sagging. Even the bra industry seems to know this, as the following quote illustrates:
"We have no evidence that wearing a bra could prevent sagging, because the breast itself is not muscle, so keeping it toned up is an impossibility. What it can do, particularly for larger-breasted women, is obviously to provide the comfort and the support. So, if a woman wants a particular breast profile, she will buy a particular brand, and that is what they're designed for. There's no permanent effect on the breast from wearing a particular bra. The bra will give you the shape the bra's been designed to give while you're wearing it. Of course, when you take it off, you go 'au natural.' "
executive John Dixey at Bras, Bare Facts documentary
However, there is some support for the idea that breasts in bras actually sag more (when bra is taken off). How could that be since the main idea of bras is to lift the breasts upward? The main idea is that the ligaments which support breasts in normal circumstances, would atrophy (get thinner and weaker) when breasts are immobilized within bras and don't have to bear their own weight.
There are lots of studies showing that ligaments and tendons in limbs do atrophy when the limb is immobilized. Bras obviously prevent the the natural slight up-down movement of breasts when we walk, and let shoulders bear the weight of breasts. If breast ligaments behave like limb ligaments, it may be a matter of "use it or lose it".
(The article goes on to describe a couple of studies that support the hypothesis about bras contributing to sagging breasts.)
There is one more notable study concerning sagging and bra wearing, which found that jogging caused breasts to bounce enough to sretch the Cooper's ligaments inside the breast. Naturally, stretched ligaments would cause the breast to sag more.
The lesson to take home from this study is that if you engage in jogging or some other type of very active sport, sports bras are recommendable.
To prevent or lessen the eventual sagging that will come with age, let breasts be free of bras when you can so that the ligaments inside them can be "in use"; however protect the breasts from bouncing too much doing sports by using proper sports bras.
Proper nutrition will probably also be helpful to maintain elasticity of those ligaments and of the skin.
Large breasts often droop at a young age.
Ladies, this is more common than not,
so why worry about it!
Answer by skinnyslokita at 11:26 PM on Apr. 11, 2013
Answer by Hollyhock. at 11:13 PM on Apr. 11, 2013
Answer by Shaketa123 at 11:13 PM on Apr. 11, 2013
Answer by kmath at 11:14 PM on Apr. 11, 2013
except those with fairly small breasts.........
thats not true. i have As and mine sag..
Answer by chrstny88 at 11:20 PM on Apr. 11, 2013
Answer by Izsarejman at 12:47 AM on Apr. 12, 2013