Telling a pregnant woman she’s “glowing” is so common it’s a bit of cliche now. However, not every woman glows. Making a new life comes with a lot of uncomfortable symptoms. “The worst experience of my life,” singer Kelly Clarkson called it and she’s far from alone in that sentiment. The bloating, discomfort, and morning sickness can make for a rough nine months, to say the least. There are a few things you can do to help the discomfort, though. Making sure you have stylish, yet comfortable maternity clothes is at the top of list. Here’s how to look and feel as good as possible at every stage of pregnancy.
Go with the flow
Most pregnant women have no desire to wear tight, form-fitting clothing when they’re pregnant. They already feel cramped enough with the whole “fetus inside the womb” thing that’s happening. But while form-fitting clothes are out, sometimes even jeans and sweaters can feel a bit too confining. Pregnancy is a great time to seek out and buy maternity dresses. Maternity dresses provide the coverage you need without making you feel like you’re wearing a full body cast.
If you aren’t sure what kind of dress to wear, then you should know that maxi dresses work well for almost all seasons. In the summer, you can wear short-sleeved maxi dresses, then convert to long or three-quarter sleeved dresses when the weather gets cold. Ruched dresses are also flattering for most pregnant women. If you feel like showing off the extra cleavage that pregnancy has given you, then you can look for V-neck dresses. But if that’s not your style, stick with sweetheart necklines and related styles.
Remember that the fabric should be as forgiving as possible. Bodycon dresses are a tough look to pull off when you’re pregnant, and that’s fine. A-line dresses and empire waist dresses are flattering and comfortable, so look for those instead.
Remember to wear comfortable shoes
Before getting pregnant, some women tell themselves that nothing is going to change about the way they dress. They’re still going to wear the same basic styles, including on their feet. It may be hard to give up the idea of wearing high heels to work, but foot and leg pain can make walking feel impossible some days. Some swelling is normal, but be wary of symptoms like blurred vision and severe headaches, as those may be signs of pre-eclampsia, a dangerous pregnancy complication.
Before you go shoe shopping, thing about your kind of job. If you’re a teacher, you’re already on your feet a lot, so you need shoes that will help you get around with limping or crying. Pregnancy changes your body’s relationship to gravity, so the pumps that worked perfectly last year may make you feel constantly off-balance in your second or third trimester. If you have a desk job, you have a little more leeway with footwear, but you still need to try and elevate your feet as much as possible. Doing so improves the circulation in your body.
Shoes should be easy to put on, for starters. You’re not going to want to do a lot of bending and kneeling just to get your shoes on properly. Pregnancy can also make your feet bigger, and in some cases, the feet don’t snap back to their normal size once you’ve delivered the baby. One study found that 60 to 70 percent of women ended up with longer feet and shorter arches after giving birth. Don’t feel bad if you need to go up a size or two, especially if that happens near the end of your pregnancy. Your body is expanding to make room for the baby, so it makes sense that your feet would grow as well. It’s not going to feel great, but it’s a natural part of the process.