Can Compression Sports Bras Make Your Breasts Smaller?

Compression sports bras should not shrink your breast tissue.

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When you exercise, your “girls” can bounce up and down so much, it can be painful and disconcerting -- you may worry they’ll start to sag. If you wear a bra cup size smaller than a B, you may turn to the compression bra to keep everything in place. While it may temporarily make your breasts look smaller, it shouldn’t cause any long-term changes to your breasts other than to keep sagging at bay.

Compression Bra Significance

A compression bra is a sports-type bra that pulls your breasts closer to your chest. When they’re pulled in, they're less likely to bounce around. A compression bra can have a side effect in which your breasts are sort of mashed and look like one breast instead of two. This sports bra type is better for smaller-chested ladies because the compression fabric may not be able to rein in a larger chest size.

Breast Size and Compression

Since compression bras push your breasts toward your chest, it’s possible you may find you look a little flatter when you check out your reflection in the mirror. In some ways, the compression bra acts as shapewear to protect your breasts, so it will make them appear slightly smaller. Since the bra is meant to minimize jiggle, it’s really doing its job when it keeps you breasts pushed toward your chest.

No Permanent Reduction

If you hit the gym a lot, don’t fear that your compression sports bra is going to make your breast tissue smaller. Your breasts are made of very elastic tissue, so when you take your compression bra off, your breasts will return to their normal shape. If you notice you're losing breast volume while working out, it may be due to your weight loss itself -- not the kind of compression bra you’re wearing.

A Fine Line

While compression bras are meant to hold you in, they aren’t designed to be uncomfortable. If your breasts feel as if they're too smushed against your chest, or your breast or arm tissue is bulging out from your sports bra, it simply doesn’t fit. You may need to step up a size in your sports bra or consider switching to a compression/encapsulation bra, which works best for C and D cups. This bra type has individual cups to support each breast and a panel in the front to compress your breasts. You may find this combination more comfortable without making your breasts appear too much smaller.

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