Pregnancy changes everything, and that includes your wardrobe! While you may be able to stay in your pre-pregnancy clothes until about week 16 or so most moms-to-be find they need to make their first maternity-clothes shopping trip at some point in the early second trimester, when all but the stretchiest-waisted pants, bras and skirts get just too confining. Fortunately there’s a lot of great maternity wear out there, and by picking some basic pieces you can get your wardrobe without spending a whole lot. What you’ll want to shop for:
- Simple t-shirts in basic colors that can be dressed up with a necklace and skirt for a classy occasion or paired with jeans every day.
- Jeans. Even if colored denim is in style, a classic pair of blue denim ankle-length or capri jeans is a must: they go with everything and almost anywhere, and even if you work in an office you’ll want at least one pair for your time off-duty. Make sure they have pockets, smooth seams and a snug maternity panel that will keep them from sagging.
- Bikini-style underwear that can go under a growing bump is a good buy, because you’ll be able to wear it postpartum, too. To help prevent all-to-common pregnancy yeast infections and UTIS, go for all-cotton and avoid thongs.
- Nursing bras are basically just softer and roomier regular bras with a “booby hatch” twist. It’s good to buy a few in late pregnancy because they’re made to accommodate changing chest sizes and will have space for a nursing pad, helpful if you’re leaky. Also, if you find a brand with a size and fit that works if you want more you can order online or send someone else to the store if you need to restock after the baby’s born.
- Pants or shorts with a panel. For a little while skirts and the stretchier pants in your wardrobe will do, but at some point in the second trimester you’ll need at least a few pairs of actual maternity pants. The full-panel kind will be useful for longer– if you don’t need it yet you can fold it down. Because you’ll wear pants for such a short time, just buy a couple of pairs in neutral tones so no one will notice you’re wearing the same pair a few times a week. Make sure they have pockets!
- When it comes to dresses, empire-waist and wrap styles are better than clingy styles because you’ll get more wear out of them, and some you may even be able to wear postpartum.
- Something to sleep in. If your partner’s t-shirts aren’t big enough you’ll want at least one maternity nightgown or set of PJs that you can also take to the hospital and wear postpartum.