Over the course of the next nine months, your expanding belly will amaze you in its ability to carry life and its inability to fit in every piece of clothing you wore just weeks before. Thankfully, these days, there’s no shortage of cute maternity clothes available for purchase. But before you go and spend your savings on trendy styles that show off your new baby bump, you may want to consider investing in staple pieces that will work with your body as it changes throughout the pregnancy process. Here are the best maternity clothes to get you through all three trimesters. Think of everything else as an extra expense.
While these don’t technically qualify as “maternity,” I have to confess that I’ve worn them throughout my entire pregnancy so far. And I’m not the only mom-to-be raving about how kind the stretchy, high-rise pant is on the ever-expanding belly. The fabric is super lightweight and butter-soft, too. Seriously, buy yourself at least two pairs of these for pregnancy and postpartum, because you’ll never want to change out of them.
When those Lululemons start feel snug, you’ll need some heavy-duty maternity leggings that were designed to be worn over an 8+ month bump. These are comfortable, durable and as stretchy as you’d dream them to be. They also come in five sizes, so you can really find one tailored to your specific needs as opposed to a one-size-fits all deal.
Ask any new mom about what maternity items you should get and she’ll likely suggest that you invest in items that double as nursing gear so you can wear them post-pregnancy, too. This super-soft sweater stretches with your belly and unsnaps at the shoulder for breastfeeding. Trust me, it’ll be a lifesaver when you’re nursing every two hours. Because whatever season you’re delivering, you’ll want something warm and accessible to wear around the house.
A flattering wrap dress is great for everything from work meetings to cocktail parties. Though this is not necessarily a maternity dress, you can definitely rock this dress in all three trimesters. The self-tie waist and front pleating will showcase your bump in the most elegant of ways.
While most of your chunky sweaters and baggy t-shirts will still fit throughout your pregnancy, your fitted tank tops probably won’t hold up through half of those nine months. That’s why this maternity tank by Belly Bandit comes in clutch — the forgiving fabric stretches and then recovers, so it’ll last through your fourth trimester (aka postpartum).
It’s no secret that your boobs grow faster than your belly when pregnant, so instead of buying new bras five times throughout the process, invest in a comfy bralette like this one, which stretches beyond a cup size. With no back closures or wires and adjustable straps, it’s as comfortable as can be while providing lightweight support.
Believe it or not, there will come a time (and likely sooner than you think) when even your comfiest pair of pajama pants will feel tight on your expanding belly. That’s when you’ll want to start living in these super-soft drawstring PJs with a loose waistline to accommodate your growing baby bump.
It’s true that you don’t need a ton of maternity jeans, but you should invest in at least one good pair. This way you’re not wearing leggings every single day, but are equally comfortable when you give them a rest (not to mention a good washing). This pair by 7 For All Mankind was designed with the stylish mom-to-be in mind. The stretch denim is light yet durable and comes in a variety of washes so you can choose what works best for your wardrobe.
Alternatively, the Bellaband lets you rock your fave pair of denim unbuttoned throughout pregnancy — and no one has to know. Whether it’s in the early stages and you’re simply feeling bloated or when you’re well into your third trimester, the seamless knit construction transforms your everyday jean to maternity (for a fraction of the cost of buying a new pair).
Three of my mom-to-be friends own this pair of shoes, and they even joke that they won’t let me into “the new mom’s club” until I get myself a pair. While they are technically a running shoe, you certainly don’t have to run in them to get your money’s worth. The slip-on sneaker is stretchy and breathable with a cushioned sole, making it ideal for tired, swollen feet.
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