Save Your Nipples! 3 Tricks to Prevent Chafing

All you runners out there (especially those of you who do not wear sports bras,) this is for you!

Ever go out on a long run but your nipples get chafed on your shirt?

When I first started distance running, I never even considered nipple chafing. Then my chest starting aching and I realized my shirts and singlets were rubbing my nipples raw!

Luckily I figured this out early, because I’ve seen plenty of marathon runners finishing with blood dripping down the front of their shirt. That can’t be comfortable!

But by using the three tips below, you can save your nipples, and you don’t even need messy lubricants like Vaseline!

1. Tape

3m transpore medical tape

My lack of nipple “issues” during my long runs can be attributed to one thing – Transpore medical tape by 3M. This stuff works like magic.

You just apply a small piece of this tape over each nipple before your run. It solves the chafing issue, it doesn’t hurt when removed (unless you put it over chest hair,) and it doesn’t come off unless you want it to (you could leave it on for a week if you wanted.)

Note: Duct tape is not a worthy substitute for Transpore!

You can buy 3M Transpore medical tape online. Click here for a list of stores.

2. Band-aids and wart cushions

Another nifty idea I’ve seen is using Band-aids. One Band-aid over each nipple will protect the nipple from chafing.

Something else that falls into this category are those little wart/corn cushions. They are sticky pads with a little hole in the middle, and they look like they’d go right on your nipple.

Neither of these products will work as well as Transpore tape, but you might already have this stuff in your medicine cabinet, so it will work in a pinch if you don’t have the good tape yet.

3. NipGuards

If you prefer specialty products with cute names, there’s something for you, too! They’re called NipGuards and they are like little cushions that stick over your nipples. They are made specifically for runners.

If for some reason the cheap solutions don’t work for you, you may have to shell out the cash for these – $9 for a 10 pack.

I haven’t used them but it seems they are very well-liked by runners with nipple chafing issues.

You can learn more at

Summary: If you experience nipple chafing or irritation while running, get something to put over your nipples, and that should solve the problem.

*Though I should point out, if you’re not wearing the correct sports bra, you could end up with more than nipple chafing!

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6 Comments so far

  1. Levi on May 3rd, 2009

    I got another interesting tip from Martha (of She mentioned something called breast petals, which are used in Hollywood red carpet settings.

    Here’s an example where you can figure out all the details:

    Not cheap, and probably not something a guy would be willing to purchase, but they might just work! LOL!

  2. Joey on June 15th, 2009

    One word: bodyglide

  3. Andy on February 9th, 2010

    BodyGlide doesn’t work in all cases. I use BodyGlide on my feet and around my chest under the heart rate monitor strap, but it wears down too quick on the teets. Gonna try the NipGuards, and look for the tape mentioned above.

  4. Levi on February 9th, 2010


    Yep, BodyGlide just seems too thin. The tape should withstand an ultramarathon!

  5. raine on September 23rd, 2012

    Finally a solution to chafing. they are body wraps, peel and stick on the skin and run run run some more. no more chafing. You can cut them to fit any part of the body. They are sold cheaper on ebay than on their web site. Check it out and stop the painful chafing.

  1. Chafing whilst running « The Long Slow Run

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