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Maternity Clothing Staples That Will Last All Three Trimesters

Trying to find clothing that will carry you through your entire pregnancy (plus postpartum if you’re lucky) can be a challenge, but so worth it. These are the wardrobe staples every mom-to-be should have her in closet.
pregnant woman wearing maternity wardrobe staples
Updated: December 1, 2022

Shopping is fun but tedious. And shopping while you’re pregnant is that, plus it’s exhausting. Trying to find clothing that will carry you through your entire pregnancy (plus postpartum if you’re lucky) can be a challenge, but so worth it.

"When starting your maternity wardrobe it's important to build it from the ground up," says Stephanie Manganelli, Co-Founder of Stowaway Collection Maternity. "It's important to find maternity pieces that can grow with you from first trimester through birth and to the dreaded fourth trimester to extend your investment, no matter what dollar amount that may be.

More: 7 Maternity Dresses (+1 Jumpsuit) Perfect for Holiday Parties

She continues, "We recommend looking for pieces that showcase your bump since they look more flattering (especially in those bump pics). Dresses and tops with ruching at the side seams are great because of the extra fabric hidden in the creases that extends as you grow. Bottoms that sit below the waist can be utilized even after you give birth without having the extra fabric around your midsection. No matter what your pregnancy style may be, make sure you feel comfortable and beautiful in the clothes you're purchasing. You'll radiate confidence!"

Here are the top staples we recommend every mama-to-be stock her closet with: 

Maternity Jeans: Full Belly Panel


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The best part about skinny jeans? The stretchy denim will make them comfortable no matter what. Look for options with a full belly panel; the soft ribbing will make your growing belly more comfortable.

Shop the Look

If you’re looking for a good pair of maternity jeans, H&M’s MAMA collection is for you. If you want to have a few pairs on hand, they come in eight different washes, ranging from light to dark blue denim, plus black and gray. 

Get it here.

Maternity Jeans: Side Panels


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Have you heard about side panel jeans? They have the stretchy panels in the hips, so they sit under your belly instead. These jeans look more like regular jeans.

Shop the Look

Target’s Isabel Maternity by Ingrid & Isabel is here for you. These bootcut jeans (if you’re not a fan of skinny) have a fully functional button fly and a great dark denim wash. 

Get it here.

Maternity Pants


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If you’re not a jeans person but you want a good pair of pants, there are lots of different options out there. These are perfect if you work in a place where you can’t wear jeans.

Shop the Look

Stowaway Collection has so many good options, but one of our favorites is the Drawstring Tuxedo Maternity Pant. The drawstring elastic waist sits below the belly making this pant the perfect piece to transition from barely pregnant, to very pregnant, to "I had a baby but still don't want to wear pants". And they stop above the ankle, which is great if your ankles swell.

Get it here.

Maternity Leggings


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Maternity leggings are a crucial part of a pregnant person’s wardrobe. Leggings are one of the most versatile staples you can have. You can dress them up or down, and if you’re forced to wear pants, they’re the most comfortable alternative. No matter what stage in pregnancy you are, leggings will never let you down, and they’ll be there for you postpartum. "Everyone needs one pair of go-to leggings to throw on every morning that can go from day to night and remain just as comfortable," says celeb stylist and FamilyEducation Expert Jeni Elizabeth Bianco.

Shop the Look

These simple black leggings from ASOS Maternity are high waisted, and go “over the bump.” Best of all, they’re affordable, so they won’t break the bank, and you can stock up! 

Get it here.

Maternity Tee Shirt


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A good tee shirt is already a wardrobe staple. Having a good maternity tee shirt will come in handy no matter what time of year. Tee shirts are great for layering. They’re also great for wearing with anything from jeans to leggings.

Shop the Look

These v-neck tees from Old Navy are the perfect basic tee shirt for layering. With ruched sides, the tee will support you as your bump grows.

Get it here.

Maternity Dresses: Everyday Option


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Maternity dresses are another great wardrobe staple. Dresses are breathable, and perfect for those days when you just don’t want to wear a lot of clothes. Just grab it, throw it on and go. Can’t get much better than that. Every mom-to-be should have an everyday option in her wardrobe.

Shop the Look

If you’re looking for a good everyday dress, this chambray dress from Old Navy can be worn all throughout your pregnancy. It comes with a tie, which gives you the option to define your waist, or leave off the tie for a looser shift dress feel. 

Get it here.

Maternity Dresses: Dressed Up Option


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If you’re looking for a slightly nicer dress, or something that you can wear if you work in an office, consider wrap dresses or shirt dresses.

Shop the Look

This tie-waist wrap dress from Motherhood Maternity is a dream. It’s a little more form fitting, and has a v-neck plus elbow-length sleeves. It comes in several colors and prints, so you can grab a couple and switch it up as you see fit. And because it’s a wrap dress, it will give you extra room to grow!

Get it here.


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For a dressier look, consider a more form-fitting bodycon style dresses with lots of stretch. "Find a stunning body con maternity t-shirt dress that can be dressed up or down. This piece will make you feel va-va-voom even on your sluggish pregnancy days," Manganelli adds.

Shop the Look

The Uptown Maternity Dress from Stowaway Collection hugs in all the right places giving you sexy confidence in a desk to dinner dress. Wear to work with nude pumps or white sneakers for brunch with the girls.

Get it here.

Maternity Bra


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A good maternity bra is also a must have. As your belly is growing, your breasts are growing too. And they can get heavy, swollen, and just feel uncomfortable. Finding a maternity bra, especially one that will grow with you, is immensely helpful.

Shop the Look

This On Gossamer bra sold by A Pea in the Pod goes from maternity to nursing bra, so you don’t have to find both. It’s lightly lined, but doesn’t have an underwire, so no digging. It has medium support, so on those days where your breasts feel heavy, they won’t also feel saggy. And it comes in two colors.

Get it here.

Which of these will find their way into your closet?

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Sa'iyda Shabazz

About Sa'iyda

Sa'iyda Shabazz is a writer and mother to one. She can often be found in her apartment… Read more

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