It is more and more common that women don’t buy maternity wear or even buy much of it. This is due to one of two reasons in my opinion, the first being it is hard to find nice maternity clothes in stores and second it can be expensive to buy maternity wear for the little time you actually wear it for.
Since finding out we are pregnant I have done a lot of research on maternity clothing, when it should be worn, where to buy it from and what you actually need. This can be completely personal to the person, as you might prefer loose jeans and a t-shirt or even nice dresses and pumps. Personally you will find me wearing jeans and t-shirts as that is my usual style.
But there is still the question on what maternity clothes should you buy?
So I decided to do a deep dive and find out some of the staple items you should have in your maternity wardrobe and why but first I wanted to answer some common questions.
Do You Have To Wear Maternity Clothes When Pregnant?
In a nutshell, no you don’t. This depends on you, how you feel, your body and even your budget. One of my sisters didn’t buy any maternity clothes while she was pregnant, instead wore normal leggings and just unbuttoned her jeans to sit more comfortable and even took to wearing dresses to save her from buying anything new.
While she wasn’t on a budget or being frugal she just didn’t see the point, and this may be the case for you. Each pregnant body is different and so you have to go on how you feel.
Is It Too Early To Wear Maternity Clothes?
Experts say you should be looking to wear maternity clothes from 4-5 months onwards, but if you personally don’t feel comfortable in anything but maternity clothes, then wear them. At 2 months pregnant (after IVF and progesterone tablets I was extrememly blosted and uncomfortable) I was wearing my maternity jeans.
There are no right or wrongs when it comes to wearing maternity clothes as it is all down to the person and their body and how they feel. Those who are feeling more bloated and uncomfortable might want to wear the maternity clothes to give them space and make them more comfortable.
Some people might not feel the need to wear maternity clothes at all and that is okay. If you feel more comfortable in maternity clothes for whatever reason then wear them as you have enough to contend with within your first trimester of pregnancy without adding additional unnessecary discomforts too.
Can You Wear Maternity Clothes After Giving Birth?
Yes of course! Maternity wear doesn’t just have to be for during pregnancy it can be for as long as you like afterwards. Most garments are now made to be as versatile as possible so many will have features to make breastfeeding easier and be more comfortable during and after pregnancy along with other features.
It is common for people to wear maternity clothes after giving birth as the ‘bump’ doesn’t go away straight after giving birth so you often need to have comfortable clothing that will support you and your body through the following weeks and months.
What Maternity Clothes Should I Buy?
There are a number of maternity clothes you can find and often some will be things you definitely will want or need and there will be others that you might deem pointless or just not for you.
I decided to create the helpful outline so you can see what types of maternity clothing you might want and need over the coming months. These can all be found in supermarkets, high street stores or online.
1 or 2 Pairs Of Maternity Leggings
One of the most popular clothing items for people who are pregnant is leggings, as they are so flexible, stretchy and comfortable they are often a popular go to item. I personally love wearing leggings anyway whether they are plain black or even sports leggings as they are easy to wear with a number of tops and dresses and can be worn to look nice and dressed up or just relaxed and dressed down.
Maternity Leggings are perfect for anyone looking to have a versatile wardrobe, buy a item of clothing which aren’t too expensive and can easily be worn throughout pregnancy and after. You can find maternity leggings in almost every maternity range from supermarkets to high street stores and even online.
Make sure to have 2 on hand, especially if you know you will wear them a lot so when one pair is in the wash you have a back up pair on hand.
2 – 4 Maternity Bras
Maternity bras can come in a number of forms, whichever you decide you can find a wide variety in stores and online. I have bought 2 so far from Primark and they are comfortable and easy to wear and perfect for breastfeeding when the time comes.
You can find other maternity bras or even just soft cup bras that are easy to wear and better for you. It is said that underwire bras aren’t good for you to wear during pregnancy but it isn’t a fact and so if you prefer to wear bras that give you some more support feel free.
Though while your breasts are growing and swelling during pregnancy you might find maternity bras much more comfortable as they are much softer and more flexible.
2 or 3 Stretch Vests
There was one thing that was recommended to me which was stretchy vests, at the start of my pregnancy I had a couple anyway that have been really comfortable but I plan to buy more that are maternity special for later on in the pregnancy.
You can buy 2 packs or singular ones in different colors in a range of different stores, supermarkets on online. These are great for wearing under shirts, dresses and leggings. Maternity vests have ruffles and gather on the side around the stomach area to allow fabric to stretch over the stomach area.
2 or 3 Dresses
Even if you are not a dress person you might find dresses or tunics useful for when you get to the end of the pregnancy and maternity bands are not comfortable anymore. This can be even more important if you are heavily pregnant within the summer months.
Dresses can be worn as they are with bare legs, tights or leggings, so even if you feel more comfortable being covered up and in trouser like outfits.
You may find that you need more comfortable underwear once you start to get further into your second trimester and into your third trimester. You can find maternity underwear though you don’t need to specifically buy those styles. Try out a couple of pairs of larger underwear that you think might be better and go from there.
Once you find a pair you like buy more to give you a good amount for when you are running low or just want really comfy pants!
1 or 2 Pairs Of Maternity Jeans/Trousers
Depending when you find out you are pregnant and when you are due you might find yourself mostly within the autumn/winter months of the year. If this is the case you probably won’t want to be walkign around in flowy dresses as you might feel a little cold. You can wear tights or leggings underneath but another option is to have a pair of maternity trousers or jeans on hand.
I bought a pair to get me through the colder days (we live in England so this is common even in summer) and towards the end of my pregnancy when we hit the Autumn/Winter months. This way I have an alternative to dresses and leggings if I want. I only bought one pair as I didn’t think I would wear them that much I would need a second pair. I also thought between leggings and a pair of jeans I would be covered.
Overall I based my matenrity clothing choices on what made me feel the most comfortable and what I like to wear normally which is trousers and t-shirts. If you find your normal t-shirts start to feel a little snug get a couple more in the next size up or 2 sizes up to accommodate the bump. Likewise with dresses and other garments you might struggle to find in maternity sections.
Remember there are no rules, rights or wrongs when it comes to dressing your body during and after pregnancy so make sure what you wear suits you, makes you feel good and comfortable and does what it needs to do.