hen you are expecting a child there are many changes to be made and this includes your under garments. At some stage in pregnancy, your regular clothes will begin to create a restricting feeling. This is when you should wear maternity underwear. These specially designed pieces come in a vast array of shapes, sizes and styles for different stages of pregnancy.
One of the earliest changes is when your breasts start to become fuller and feel more tender. At this stage, you should start wearing a maternity bra. This should have extra hooks and eyes, which make it easier to adjust, as well as wide straps to support the extra weight and prevent discomfort. The most comfortable option is non-wired.
When your bump starts to grow, knickers also need to be roomy enough under or over the belly. Seamless styles, such as Emma Jane's Overbump Maternity Brief, provide a comfortable fit and breathability.
Meanwhile, mums-to-be who are planning to breastfeed should buy a nursing bra to wear immediately after birth. The milk coming in during the later months of pregnancy will increase the size of your bust, so this will provide support whilst helping to make breastfeeding easier. According to lingerie brand Anita, who have been designing women’s under garments for 130 years, the earliest date recommended to start looking for nursing bras is the 8th month of pregnancy.
Postpartum shapewear is also a worthy investment for new mums as this can help strengthen stretched tissue and speed up recovery. Maternity wear and baby clothing retailer, JoJo Maman Bébé, has a good range of supportive underwear that is designed to improve your posture and post-pregnancy tummy.
And if you are worried about looking like a granny, there are plenty of maternity underwear pieces that offer all the support but are also sexy in design – the main thing to make sure of is that they are comfortable.
See our top maternity underwear picks for every stage of pregnancy.
JoJo Maman Bébé 3-Pack Maternity Shorts Style Knickers
JoJo Maman Bébé offers gorgeous yet practical maternity wear with quality craftsmanship. There are plenty of lovely and game-changing options to choose from, but we love these delicate short style knickers, which are sure to add a feminine touch to your underwear collection.
We like the fact that the under-the-bump style is made from breathable cotton with only a hint of stretch, so can be worn during and after pregnancy. It is super-comfy and provides a flattering fit. You can also pair this with the brand’s Lace Trim Maternity & Nursing Bra.
£12 | JoJo Maman Bébé | Buy it now
Mothercare Black and White Lace Soft Cup Maternity Bras
From Mothercare’s extensive Blooming Marvellous range, these soft cup maternity bras come in black and white to go with everything. Non-wired and cotton rich, they feature a pretty lace design and a gently shaped centre front that is designed to fit comfortably over your bump. The extra hook-and-eye fastenings mean they can be easily adjusted as you grow. Available in sizes 32DD-40G.
£30 | Mothecare | Buy it now
Emma Jane Seamfree Overbump Maternity Brief
Several Figleaves customers were impressed with the fit and comfort of these over-the-bump maternity briefs from Emma Jane. As well as providing support, the high-waisted design is also seamfree so there will be no VPL to worry about. Crafted from soft and breathable microfiber, these briefs are just the ticket if you are wearing a figure-hugging number. They also come in white.
£9 | Figleaves | Buy it now
Intimate Portal Women Under the Bump Maternity Knickers
If you’re looking for basics, then Intimate Portal has you covered. The brand’s crossover style is the ultimate under-the-bump pair as it won’t put any pressure on your growing belly.
Available in packs of three or five, these knickers are made of cotton material – so you can expect softness and breathability. Our favourite part is that they look just like regular cotton panties. With a low waistline, these can also be worn after delivery or during C-section recovery. Each set features different designs and colours.
From £14.99 | Amazon | Buy it now
New Look Maternity Black Strappy Lace Bralette
New Look’s strappy lace bralette will make a very sexy addition to your maternity collection. The design features floral lace details while the cups are drop-down for easy breastfeeding access. It also has adjustable straps. Choose from black or white.
£9.99 | New Look | Buy it now
Seraphine Blush Lace Maternity & Nursing Bra
Specialising in trend-led pieces for style conscious mums-to-be, Seraphine offers a vast range of maternity lingerie to suit all tastes.
Our top pick? This seamless maternity and nursing bra with drop-cup openings. Lined in 100 per cent cotton material, it has 6 hook and eyes for easy adjustability in all stages of pregnancy and comes in sizes 34B-38E. Matching knickers available.
£29 | Seraphine | Buy it now
JoJo Maman Bébé High Waisted Postnatal Support Pants
After you have given birth, your stomach will feel squishy and need a bit of support. These high-waisted postnatal pants will not only help regain your shape by improving posture, but also provides a smooth silhouette under fitted clothing. The soft and seamless design is complete with poppers at the crotch and comes in three sizes.
£16 | JoJo Maman Bebe | Buy it now
La Redoute Lace Maternity Bra & Briefs
Guaranteed to bring some feminine allure into your wardrobe, this nude and black lace set proves you can still look sexy during pregnancy. We particularly love the lace yoke design on each piece. The nursing bra features padded cups while the briefs are designed to adapt to the shape of your growing tummy.
£34 for bra | La Redoute | Buy it now
£10 for briefs | La Redoute | Buy it now