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How to Deal with Chafing From Sports Bra When Running

You Asked: Chafing and Running

You're asking and I'm answering . . .

"Dear Fit,
I love to run, but I have a hard time running consistently, because after a run of a decent length (30 minutes or longer), I often find that the skin below my breasts has been chafed by my sports bra. This makes running painful for about the next 4 days. Do you have any suggestions of a good sports bra that might cut down on my chafing? I am, for good or ill, a D cup.
Wanting to Run

I feel your pain and chafing can be the worst! There are many things you can do to help prevent this and to see them just


Chafing is caused by the combination of rubbing and sweating, so wearing good gear that wicks the sweat away is really important. You want to avoid cotton at all costs. I talked to a bra expert at Title Nine sports and she recommended two bras for this situation:

  • They Dynamic Duo ($39): Not only do I love the name of this bra since it is designed to prevent the unflattering uni-boob, but the underwire in this bra is placed between two layers of fabric. The inner layer is great for wicking and this bra is recommended for women with D cups too!
  • Three Reasons Support ($44): If you are looking to avoid underwire, this bra is a great choice. Also lined with wicking fabric, this bra is designed to support D cups for high impact activities like running.

You should avoid cotton shirts and run in a well fitting top made of wicking fabric as well.

Another preventative measure is lubricating the areas that get chafed. This problem is so common there are products out there to help. Body Glide is designed to prevent blisters and chafing and it now includes 25 SPF. You could also check out Runner's Lube. Good old fashion Vaseline has been a stand by for years too.

It is important to treat the chafed sore like an open wound to promote healing. Wash and clean the sore with antiseptic to prevent infection, then cover it with a sterile gauze pad to allow the area to breathe while it heals.

Staying properly hydrated, especially on long runs, is key, too. It is important that the sweat doesn't dry and crystallize, which can increase the odds of chafing occurring.

Sure do hope this helps!


Join The Conversation
rivekkah rivekkah 9 years
body glide rocks!
Swedeybebe Swedeybebe 9 years
I found Sport Shield works better than Body Glide.... it seems to last longer for me. Can be a bit messy though. I use it EVERYWHERE lol!
hollandndozier hollandndozier 9 years
I used to have this exact problem. The culprit is boob sweat which usually collects at the bottom of the sports bra. It has helped me to invest in better sports bras that keep it dry down there. The cotton ones are the worst!
latent latent 9 years
Monistat Anti-Chafing gel.
cvandoorn cvandoorn 9 years
Ouch...sounds so painful. Luckily I don't have this problem. When I wear running shorts however, my thighs rub against each other causing the shorts to ride up. I hate it and feel even more like a fatty...even though my legs are toned.
TidalWave TidalWave 9 years
hm I have never had this problem with my boobs. But I do get dry skin on the inside of my elbow and the outside of my shoulders from running. I just lotion it up a lot before bed.
silly3 silly3 9 years
I had this problem when training for a 15k several years ago, and I have worn "Three Reasons Bra" (aka Moving Comfort's Fiona Bra) for years (I'm a C/D). I put on some preventative Vaseline and it did the trick. Then again, I don't train for such long runs all the time and haven't had chafing since. I also think that a new bra would help, since, for this bra at least, the ribbed area underneath your breasts can start pilling, which seems like it would increase the rubbing. Good luck!
syako syako 9 years
thights? Thighs I mean.
syako syako 9 years
body glide = runners best friend (I also am flat chested jj, but I use it for the inner thights!) :)
jjlyn jjlyn 9 years
this is one of the only reasons i'm glad i'm flat-chested
randomname12345 randomname12345 9 years
Have you been fitted for a bra? Your bra size might be wrong, which is why you might be chafing. If you can, go get a fitting to see what size you are. You'd be surprised. Most people are a lot smaller in the back and bigger in the cup than they think (I was!) But if you know your bra size, I would recommend the Shock Absorber bras. I have big boobs (F/FF) and I use them. They don't chafe and hold me in pretty well. They're a bit pricey, but I think they're worth the money.
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