What to wear and when
When it comes to maternity clothes, there’s a lot you can buy – but what’s worth investing in and what isn’t necessary? When do you need to cross over to maternity clothing so that you don’t stretch out your everyday wear? What’s worth spending money on to ensure you are comfortable?
When it comes to your pregnancy, you may find that you’ll need more clothes and other items over time as you grow, but a lot of the time you may find that you own quite a few items within your wardrobe already that can be used as maternity clothes - like loose jumpers, longer tops and cardigans. If you are like me, you may even steal some business shirts from your partners wardrobe to wear with leggings in your third trimester! When shopping remember, the weather and changing seasons during your pregnancy and being comfortable is of the utmost importance!
So, what will you need and when? We’ve broken this down by trimester below.
For most expectant mothers you won’t be showing too much in the first trimester and most women can get away with their normal wardrobe. Towards the end of the first trimester, you may be starting to feel bloated and be more comfortable in looser fitting clothes for comfort. This will also help if you aren’t sharing the news of your pregnancy until the second trimester.
Even though you might not need to make room for your bump yet – you may find that your breasts are already getting bigger and tender in the first trimester. Breasts prepare for lactation from the first trimester and most women will see changes to the breasts by around 16 weeks. If this is a symptom for you, now is the time to invest in Maternity Bra’s or switching to sports bras. Particularly for women with larger breasts, a maternity bra can be more comfortable than everyday bras – and if you do find that you need them, try to get maternity bras that double as breastfeeding bras (unclip at the top of the cup) as this can double up for needs postpartum if you intend to breastfeed.
Around the 4 to 5 month mark, you may find you need to start wearing larger clothes, and most expectant mothers switch to maternity clothes by 6 months.
You might be comfortable in looser tops, but some stretchy leggings and a pair of maternity jeans will go far. Tops with ruching on the sides to show off your bump are a welcome addition as are empire waist dresses (coming in under your bust) as these will grow with you.
Now is also the time to invest in some quality, comfortable maternity underwear. As your belly grows, even if the rest of you isn’t (lucky you!) you may find that you stretch out your current underwear, and with the changes in your body it pays to be as comfortable as possible. Maternity underwear is made to sit under your growing belly and stretchy, soft fabrics will suit your growing bump. If you want to save your money for the big baby purchases coming up, Kmart have a great range of maternity underwear that you may even keep wearing post pregnancy!
Now that you’ve got the best maternity underwear, maternity bras from your first trimester and comfortable clothes from your second, you’re nearly set for the third trimester. As your belly grows you may find yourself living in your leggings – so it may pay to purchase a few pairs. Your baby bump may also cause you some ligament pain, and this is where pregnancy support bands can help. Support bands help to ease the pressure and back pain felt in pregnancy.
As your pregnancy progresses your feet might swell, so it’s time to pull out your comfortable flats and possibly invest in some comfortable padded sandals.
Another pregnancy symptom that may be changing at this time is your discharge. A panty liner or pad placed in your maternity underwear may be all you need, but if you feel like you need extra support at the end of your pregnancy, now is the time to invest in some disposable postpartum underwear. Our Partum Panties wrap around your waist and protect and support your abdomen.
As your pregnancy nears its end, it’s time to think about what you want to wear while giving birth and have this ready to go. Think about your birth plan and what you may need to get ready, be it a birthing gown, an old t-shirt or a bikini top.
You’ve given birth and are busy looking after your little bundle of love, but you need to look after yourself too - and that means making sure that you are comfortable. Disposable postpartum underwear is well worth investing in for the days post birth to help with your blood flow, as is wearing a postpartum recovery support band or a postpartum compression tank top and when your blood loss has decreased some postnatal support underwear.
If you are breastfeeding the maternity bras that you bought in your first trimester can still be used, as well as breastfeeding t-shirts (we love the range from Goldmiilk) and you may find yourself still in your maternity clothes for a little while yet. You can expect your uterus to take around 6 weeks to contract fully.
The most important thing for your pregnancy and postpartum wardrobe is that you feel comfortable and confident.