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Out with the old, in with the new!

4 signs that it’s time for new underwear

When was the last time you did a big clothing purge? (And before you think we’re all sweaters, jeans and jumpers, we’re not – we’re inspecting the panty pile) Oh yes, the undies drawer is getting a clean out! A good bra and panties can last years, but only if you take really good care of them.

Not sure if it’s time to toss your undergarments? These are some obvious tell-tale signs that they’ve given up the ghost.

They WERE sexy, NOW they’re stretchy!

Undies are not like wine; they don’t get better with age! In fact, after a while you may notice a fray here, fade there. Truth is, over time the elastic in the waistband eventually wears out, causing them to lose their shape — and potentially fall off your body. The same goes for your brassiere. “If your bra is no longer stretchy in the straps or back, it won’t offer the proper support,” says Lexie Sachs, a textiles product analyst in the Good Housekeeping Institute.

They’re a little smaller than you remember

Because underwear is washed so often, shrinkage can be expected, especially if they’re made of cotton. You don’t want to cut off your circulation or be sentenced to a day of discomfort – ditch any briefs that may feel a little too tight for your tush!

When it comes to your bra, your breasts probably change way more than you realize, so that bra that was once a perfect fit might be causing you some problems including back pain. And while not as problematic as back-pain, no lady wants her tatas turning downwards either! Spillage, or a band that doesn’t lay horizontal, and tightness (even on the last clasp), are all signs your bra is too small.

You’d rather go commando! 

This should be a given, but if you have a pair of undies that just don’t feel right — it’s time to toss them! Especially if you’re a fan of the lacy version. These delicate pieces can – after multiple washes – get rough and irritating. According to Mona Gohara, M.D and Associate Clinical Professor of Dermatology at Yale School of Medicine, scratchy or irritating underwear can cause cysts and other symptoms.

You stayed in shape, they didn’t!

If the padding or cups of your bra shift and rumple, it’s time to buy a new one, says Sachs. The last thing you want are gaps or bulges — your cups should align with your breast. Otherwise, you’re not getting the support you need, which is why you want to be wearing a bra in the first place.

Even though your undergarments might now show these signs of wear-and-tear right away, you should still plan a cupboard clear-out every six to 12 months. It ain’t all bad news though, even if you have to let go of your favourite polka-dot panties, you won’t have to get rid of your favourite bra so soon, if you simply rotating them regularly!

Related Stories:

• Your 7 Biggest Bra Questions — Answered!
• 6 Mistakes You Make Buying a Bra

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