It's difficult to let go of a favorite bra. Like a good friend, it offers you comfort and support when you need it most. Plus, finding one bra you actually like is such a long process, it's easy to hold onto those that fit you well for a little too long.

If you're anything like me, bras are on regular duty until the underwire pops out, and even then they might get a few more uses. (Tip: put duct tape over the wire to prevent scratches.) Putting up with almost any other garment for so long would be almost unthinkable.

But there are a few reasons why we hold on. For starters, bras are really expensive. In 2016, the worldwide market for bras was valued at over $16 billion, with North America and Europe making up nearly 70 percent of that total. Plus, shopping for bras can be an ordeal, too. Even if you try to get professional advice, it's possible to get a different size every time you go to a bra fitting. The whole thing can be majorly frustrating, and make you want to get every second of usefulness out of the bras that already line your lingerie drawer.

However, bras do have a shelf life. To find out whether your most beloved boulder holder needs to go, review these tips.

Words by Lindsay Mack at Insider

[Photo via @triumphlingerie]