When To Start Wearing Maternity Clothing

Pregnant women are very fortunate to live with today’s simple click-and-buy online shopping experience, making it easier than ever to get maternity clothes in any style and any size for any and all occasions.


But when is the right time to start wearing maternity clothing? Or should you buy any at all? Perhaps you are on a tight budget and would prefer to stick to the clothing you have, or you have a bit of spare change and decide to buy used clothing.

Maybe you’ve been saving up for the big day where you could go on a shopping spree with other moms-to-be and you just can’t wait for some new threads.

The fit of your clothes is an obvious consideration when deciding on maternity wear, but also the type of fabric should be taken into account as well. Natural fabrics that allow the skin to breathe are critical, according to Dr. Barbara Luke, creator of Barbara Luke Maternity-for-Multiples.

“Pregnancy clothes are a special challenge – they need to be stylish enough for work and evenings out, but practical enough for everyday life,” says Luke. “Last of all is quality and value – you want clothes that will hold up well with frequent washings, keep their color and shape throughout your pregnancy, and be a good value for the cost.”

When To Start Wearing Maternity Clothing

Every pregnancy is different. Some women begin feeling uncomfortable much sooner than others – some as little as eight weeks into their pregnancies. Women with severe morning sickness may find that their jeans are causing major discomfort early on in the first trimester.

Others, especially women who have had children before or are having multiples, find their bellies expanding quicker than a first-time mother.

Whatever the case may be, if your clothes are making you uncomfortable you’re probably ready to ditch your old threads for some nice, stretchy leggings, skirts with elastic waists, or regular maternity pants.

Another option is a belly band, which allows you to wear your regular jeans for an extended period of time by allowing you to secretly wear them unbuttoned.

Speaking of belly bands – some women do not buy maternity clothing at all. And that’s totally fine. Here are ways some women have completely skipped maternity wear.

  1. Using a belly band or a rubber band to expand their jeans.
  2. Wearing their stretchiest clothing.
  3. Buying clothes a size or two larger than their regular clothing.
  4. Stealing their husband’s clothing.
  5. Sticking to dresses.

How to Perfect Your Maternity Wardrobe

Sizing. Maternity clothing is sized the same way as your regular clothes. If you normally wear a size 12, stick with that size in maternity wear. Same goes for clothing that is sized as small, medium, large and so on.

Where to shop. This is where it gets fun. If you’re a budget shopper, check your local consignment stores, resale shops, or the Marketplace on Facebook. If you’re a shop-from-home kind of gal, you can go to any of your favorite store’s websites (think Target, Old Navy,

There are also numerous stores dedicated to maternity clothing, such as Motherhood and Pink Blush Maternity.

Bestselling maternity items. Why reinvent the wheel? Some of the most popular maternity clothes work for all types of pregnant women, so you can get a headstart by following what’s worked for other expecting moms.

Some of the bestselling maternity clothing include this maternity dress from Mother Bee,  Ingrid & Isabel’s Bellaband, the Motherhood Maternity Fit & Flare Dress, this Jessica Simpson Maternity Striped Maxi Dress and these Jamie Over the Bump Maternity Skinny Jeans from Topshop.

Remember – every pregnancy is different. Every woman is different. You do you. If buying clothing that you’ll only use for a few months isn’t your thing, and you can get away with it, great!

If you’re on the opposite end of the spectrum and can’t wait to get your hands on the best-of-the-best in maternity wear, go for it. The most important thing is that you’re comfortable and happy.


Jenny Halteman

Jenny lives in a small town in Northern Michigan with her husband and their two daughters. She enjoys writing about parenting issues in hopes to help others. In her spare time, she enjoys searching for fairies and mermaids with her girls.

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