When Wearing ANY Clothing At All Is Painful
We hope you love the items we recommend, and just so you know, Quit Chronic Fatigue may receive a small commission from links in this post at no additional cost to you.
Many people with fibromyalgia avoid wearing any underwear at all unless they absolutely HAVE to get dressed to go out. Staying home in comfortable pajamas or a big soft T shirt is often the only way to feel comfortable. And, on days when symptoms are flaring even the most comfortable underwear for women can still feel like you are wearing way too much clothing.
Pain from fibromyalgia comes in many forms and some common types of pain include:
- Pain in your muscles and joints
- The feeling you have a sunburn which is known as Allodynia, when even very light pressure can cause skin to be super sensitive.
- Nerve pain
- Neuropathic pain that gives your skin itching, crawling, tingling or burning feelings.
- Pelvic and abdominal pain that can be caused by digestive issues common to fibromyalgia sufferers.
As anyone with fibromyalgia knows, if you don’t wear comfortable clothing you’ll be in distress all day long. And, making sure you are comfortable starts with the very first layer you place against your skin. It’s real hard to feel confident going about your business in underwear that hurts your super sensitive skin and makes your chronic pain symptoms even worse.
Particularly when symptoms are flaring, too tight elastic in waistbands, and wires, clips and fasteners or scratchy fabric like lace in underwear can mean agony for fibromyalgia sufferers. Standard underwear that is OK for non sufferers can set off waves of pain for fibro sufferers making you feel like your skin is on fire or like you are being jabbed repeatedly with a sharp knife.
When dealing with fibromyalgia it can be a struggle to find underwear that both looks and feels good and let’s face it there is nothing worse than schlepping around numerous stores trying on underwear when you have chronic pain. Struggling in and out of underwear in a stuffy and hot dressing room is definitely the last thing you feel like doing, particularly if your energy levels are low AND you are dealing with chronic pain.
Choosing underwear is so personal as everyone has different likes and dislikes regarding style, even without having fibromyalgia. But when you add in individual pain levels and differing types of pain, underwear selection becomes even more tricky.
We’ve put together a selection of underwear suggestions here in the hope you’ll be able to find something that will suit your particular body shape making it easy by ordering online and taking the stress out of underwear shopping. And we’ve listed our suggestions by underwear types to make it easier if you are looking for a particular item, panties, bras, camisoles etc.
4 Important Points To Consider When Selecting Underwear For Fibromyalgia
The style of any underwear you choose is important, your best choices are for underwear that is seam free, although this is not always possible, but try to choose underwear that has as few seams as possible . If seams exist it is better if they are flat with stitching that doesn’t irritate.
Your underwear style should also be supportive but not too constricting without wires, and too tight narrow elastic that can dig into sensitive skin.
Ease of Putting On/Taking Off
As well as considering the style of your underwear it should be easy to put on and take off. Struggling out of garments made using tight constricting fabrics will add to your fatigue and pain. If possible choose garments made from lightweight stretchy fabric.
Type of Fabric
Attention should be paid to the types of fabric used in the manufacture of the garment. Some people swear by all cotton, but bamboo and modal fabrics are also good for their smooth soft feeling against the skin and the slight stretch and breathability these fabrics provide.
Paying attention to the fit of your underwear will also help ensure better comfort. Particularly for bras it is important you are wearing the right size so as not to feel constricted. Additionally, if garments are too loose it can cause movement and painful bunching or chaffing.
Fit is particularly important for bras, it is a good idea to have a professional measure you to work out what size you actually are. Many women, particularly as they get older continue to wear a B cup bra when in fact they are a D cup.
Check out the underwear suggestions below and if you are currently using underwear items you find work particularly well for your fibromyalgia, please feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of this post, as you might help a fellow sufferer find the perfect underwear.
They are such a simple piece of clothing, but pretty tricky to find a style that provides true comfort. When you are dealing with fibromyalgia, forget about thongs and lace and even some boy leg styles. Because while these styles look good each can cause chaffing around your butt and thighs. Many people find hipster style best if they have sensitive abdomens, while others prefer panties that sit around the waistline. Here is our selection: –
Amazon Essentials Women’s 4-Pack Seamless Bonded Stretch Hipster Panty
The first suggestion for comfortable panties is this 4 pack from Amazon Essentials. Due to their seamless construction these panties are super comfortable with no back or side seams that could potentially dig into tender skin. Due to the bonding of the fabric the leg opening is flat which also reduces the risk of any painful elastic jabbing into your skin.
And, many people find this hipster style is best as it sits below the waistline avoiding any fabric touching the sensitive waist and abdomen area.
Constructed from a super smooth nylon and elastane fabric, they are lightweight with a slight stretch meaning they move with your body for super comfort and are easy to pull on and off too.
These machine washable hipsters come in sizes X Small to XX Large and a wide choice of pack colors. The pack shown here is their ‘warm’ color pack, however you can choose all black, neutrals, nudes and pretty pastel colors too. If you like to match your panties to your bras, you are sure to find a range of colors to suit.
Jockey Women’s Elance Supersoft Bikini 3-Pack
These bikini briefs from Jockey are manufactured from a super soft blend of 92% Tencel brand Micromodal and 8% spandex. Micromodal yarn is even finer and of a lighter weight than standard modal making these panties extra comfortable to wear. And the spandex in the fabric gives enough stretch to allow them to move with you and stay comfortable all day long.
There are seams in these panties, however due to the fine construction of the fabric used, the seams lie flat. The styling gives full coverage at the back and is mid rise. Again as with the style above, these panties sit below the navel which many people with fibromyalgia find is the most comfortable style to wear.
You can machine wash and dry these panties and they come in sizes 4 to 11 or Small to XXL. You will be spoiled for choice in pack selection as there are so many color options to choose from.
With most packs offering a combination similar to that shown here which includes two plain colors and a pattern, but there is also a basic all white pack as well as a pack containing the good old standby combo of solid black, white and nude.
INNERSY Mid Rise Tagless Cotton Hipster Panties 6-Pack
If you are a cotton girl your choice of panties is pretty limited. And styling in 100% cotton panties I find can be a bit uncomfortable as there is little give in the fabric. The next best thing to 100% cotton could be these hipster style panties from Innersy.
Manufactured using 95% cotton and 5% spandex to give a little more comfortable stretch they give good butt coverage and stay in place. The 5% spandex in these panties makes them a comfier option than many 100% cotton versions.
This pack contains 6 pairs and the size range runs from X Small to XXX Large. Innersy don’t use tags on these panties which can be a major irritant, even if you cut the tag off, the little bit that remains can still be enough to irritate your skin. So no tags is a definite plus for fibromyalgia sensitive skin.
There are loads of pack choices in this range and mostly solid colors (unlike the polka dots shown here). You’ll have no trouble teaming these panties with your bras and other underwear.
They are machine washable and their website advises you can also iron them! Not sure about ironing panties, seems like way too much work to me, but good to know I guess.
Molasus Women’s 100% Cotton Underwear Soft Breathable Full Coverage Briefs – 4 Pack
If 100% cotton is an absolute non negotiable for you then these panties by Molasus could be a good choice. Unlike the styles above this pantie style is mid rise sitting about 1.5″ below the waist which might be a problem for some who prefer their panties hipster or bikini style. However, for those who can handle a bit more coverage, these could be ideal.
The fabric is 100% soft combed cotton which provides complete breathability. The elastic waistband is completely covered with the soft cotton, so no elastic touches the skin avoiding any possible irritation. And the styling offers more room for bottom and thighs to prevent underwear rolling up. The smooth look and slightly higher leg opening gives a more modern look to this all cotton pantie.
Machine washable and available in sizes Small to XX Large there are only two packs to choose from, all nude or a basics option as shown in the photo.
Warm Sun Bamboo Viscose Multi Pack Mid Waist Panties
These panties are made using bamboo viscose fiber. Also known as bamboo rayon it is a regenerated cellulose fiber that right now is very popular for use as an apparel and home furnishing fabric.
Although bamboo viscose can be a little more expensive than other cellulose fiber it offers fantastic comfort and a soft handfeel. And if sustainability is a concern for you, bamboo is one of the fastest growing grass plants there is.
These mid rise panties are made from 95% Bamboo Viscose and 5% Spandex for a little added stretch to fit your curves. They fall at mid waist level and offer plenty butt coverage. With a 2″ self fabric band they won’t roll down, or jab into tender skin.
With a silky smooth touch this fabric is comfortable, soft and lightweight. Sizing ranges from X Small through to XXX Large.
There are a couple of pack sizes to choose from, a 3 pack as shown here but they also offer 2 packs and a 5 pack which offers extra value. Although the color range is pretty basic it is comprehensive enough so you can find something suitable for everyday wear. The recommended machine washing at cool temperatures makes these panties easy care too.
There is no doubt that bras are definitely uncomfortable, even without the added complication of fibromyalgia. How to avoid that feeling of needing to rip your bra off the minute you arrive home is something every woman wants.
If you have fibromyalgia it is particularly advisable to steer clear of underwires and lace, save those for special occasions and date nights. For comfortable everyday wear go for wireless, seam free if possible and choose styles with wider straps for super comfort.
And as with panties, fabric choice is also important. You want smooth, soft fabrics. An added plus is choosing fabrics with wicking qualities, particularly if you live in a hot climate or are struggling with body temperature regulation.
Boody Body EcoWear Padded Shaper Bra
This bra is seam free with padding for light support and no nasty underwires, clasps or fasteners but a soft comfortable band that sits in place under your boobs to keep everything in place. This bra can be comfortably pulled on over your head. And the wide straps prevent any shoulder pain.
Made from sustainably sourced 80% Bamboo Viscose, 13% Nylon and 7% Spandex this bra is soft, smooth, cool and breathable for sensitive skin. Read the information above on Bamboo Viscose if you need to know more.
Sizes range from X Small to X Large. The color range is basic white, black and a few nude shades. But, really this color choice is all you need for basic everyday wear.
lttcbro Seamless Yoga Bra
This bra definitely gives more than the usual amount of coverage than a standard bra. This style has a scoop neck front and tall back. But if you are simply too uncomfortable in standard bras this yoga bra may be the solution. Although this bra offers a lot more coverage than a standard bra, the seamless design is invisible under clothing.
Made from 75% Nylon and 25% Spandex this seamless bra uses bonded technology avoiding the need for seams. You can even cut the bra in some areas to shape it to your body if you need to.
The smooth soft fabric and style of the bra ensures no under arm dig in and the wide shoulder straps make it super comfortable for a tight sore neck and shoulder area. As with the bra above this one offers light support and the under breast hem avoids the bra riding up.
Removable cups and pull on design add to the comfort features of this bra and the size range goes from Small to XX Large. The color choice is limited to only two colors, black and nude but both colors work well under most clothes.
Playtex Women’s Play Vacationer Bra
For ladies who need a bit more support, bra selection becomes a little more difficult as most bras for larger ladies generally have underwires and quite a bit of padding. This underwire free bra has stretchy molded cups that fit your breasts snuggly and are lined with a ventilated knit fabric that provides breathability and comfort.
Made using 94% Nylon and 6% spandex the fabric is soft and smooth. This smooth fabric covers the elastic at the top edge of the bra for better fit and no irritation.
Pull on bras like the first couple of suggestions are generally OK for smaller cup sizes, however when you need more support a bra like this with back hook and eye closure is a better option.
The sides and back of this bra are seamless and wide helping create more comfort and a smoother look by eliminating side and back bulge. And the wide adjustable straps also have ventilated knit fabric for the most comfort possible.
Machine washable and available only in white, the sizes run from Small to XX Large. Playtex provide a handy size chart with instructions on how to measure to assist you in choosing the right size for the best possible comfort.
Carole Martin Front Closure Comfort Bra
For days when lifting your arms and twisting causes too much pain a front fastening bra is a good idea. This Original Full Freedom bra will provide light to medium support for B to D cups in sizes 34 to 48.
The construction of the bra is wire free and non padded for the best possible comfort. And front opening hook and eye fastening makes putting on and taking the bra off easy. Extra width in the shoulder straps help reduce the strain on your back, shoulders and neck.
Made from a multi directional stretch Nylon and Spandex blend fabric it provides a smooth feel and look to keep you lightly supported all day.
If you are used to a lot of support and padding this bra may feel a little light. But on painful flare days at home it can be a super comfortable option. The color range while not huge has enough options to suit everyday wear.
Playtex Women’s 18 Hour Breathably Cool Bra
Another bra suitable for more well endowed ladies is this next underwire free option from Playtex which gets good reviews for both comfort and support.
The fabric is nylon and spandex with moisture wicking fabric technology to help keep you cool and comfortable even in warmer climates by moving moisture away from your skin. This fabric and the style of the bra is not only comfortable but provides a smoothing appearance to your back and sides.
Playtex pay special attention to the straps by adding cushioning to relieve pressure on the shoulders and a subtle lace detail sits on top of the smooth fabric so it won’t dig into your skin.
This bra has hook and eye closure at the back, and is available in a range of colors, It is machine washable, and comes in a range of basic everyday colors like cafe au lait shown here, and also white and black options.
The size range is quite extensive running from 36B to 42C. Playtex provides a size and measuring chart to ensure you order the correct size to be comfortably supported all day.
Women’s Zip Front Sports Bra
Another great bra with easy front opening is this zipper bra from Wanayou. Unlike the front fastening Carole Martin bra, this one comes with removable bra pads which provide a little more support and coverage and they are easy to put in place or remove through the tiny opening at the sides of the bra.
This medium support sports bra is made from ultra lightweight 92% Polyamide 8% Spandex fabric which helps prevent any chafing for a comfortable fit.
The zippers are neatly covered by fabric at the top and bottom to prevent any possible irritation. A wide under breast fabric band ensures the bra sits comfortably in place and this soft fabric adds to the comfort factor. Racerback styling and wide shoulder straps help reduce shoulder and neck pain.
Colors include all the basics and you can buy this bra in packs of 2 or 3 with a size range selection running from Medium to XX Large.
Bali Comfort Revolution Strapless Wirefree Bra
For some people, no matter how soft, wide and comfortable bra straps are, they still hurt. If this is you, then perhaps a strapless bra might suit. However, the catch is to offer any support strapless bras usually have underwires. You don’t want to simply swap one problem for another.
So this bra by Bali brand is made without underwires and has soft molded cups which helps the bra stay in place, giving more support and shape.
Made from smooth and soft touch 83% Nylon and 17% Spandex fabric with Cool Comfort wicking technology it helps you stay dry and comfortable when the weather heats up.
In case you need them this bra also comes with several straps for optional styling. It comes in basic Black or Nude color options.
When bras are just completely uncomfortable, or you want an extra layer to wear under a shirt or top a camisole can be a useful addition to your wardrobe.
I must admit a camisole with built in shelf for support is the item I find myself most often wearing. They may not give you that perfect ‘push up’ shape but they offer enough support to be jiggle free and save you adding another tank or cami on top of your bra.
You can also wear a camisole with built in shelf bra on its own when the weather heats up, or to bed for extra support and comfort.
Organic Cotton Shelf Bra Camisole Tank Top
Many women with fibromyalgia find a camisole with built in shelf bra the most comfortable option. And this one from ‘Pact’ is made using 95% organic cotton which gives real softness, breathability and comfort to this cami.
Manufactured without wires, the under breast elastic which helps provide support is covered with fabric to prevent any irritation. Adjustable straps allow you to fit the camisole to suit your own unique shape which is an important feature in a cami, as it offers a little more support too.
This cami is easy care made using pre washed and shrink resistant fabric, just machine wash on cold and tumble dry on low for best results. Pre washed cotton is not only softer but prevents the garment shrinking too.
As well as providing the comfort factor the fabric is also ethically sourced which is becoming increasingly more important for many of us. Standard cotton requires the use of heavy pesticides, however organic cotton such as the type used in this cami does not use any fertilizers, pesticides or bleaches.
Fair Trade certification (GOTS CERTIFIED) means the extra money that Pact pays for their organic cotton goes directly to the farmers and factory workers.
Available in a size range from X Small to X Large and basic colors of White, Black, Nude and Grey this is a great all round everyday camisole.
Putting It All Together
So there you have it our top underwear picks for fibromyalgia sufferers. We hope you find this most comfortable underwear for women post useful.
Before making your selection, decide what the major pain/irritation factors are for you personally. It might be you need wide straps, panties that don’t irritate your stomach, elastic free waistbands, cool fabrics etc., etc.
Taking a minute to work out what your main pain points are will guide you towards making the right underwear choices for your particular fibromyalgia condition.
And remember, if you have found some great underwear options working great for you, please feel free to share with others by leaving a comment below.