Are you one of the millions of women enduring a working pregnancy?
It is tough! And I can relate to the pain you’re feeling.
You can feel it in your bones and belly as well as your closet. We thought there was “nothing to wear” before.
Oh how naïve we were…
You know you need to stock up on the essentials, but it’s hard to tell the future. What do you need when? How do you keep it office appropriate? When do you get the job done?
I get it. You’re busy! I was, and I constantly found myself looking sloppy because I couldn’t tell when my baby bump would affect which items I wore. Well I figured it out, took some notes, and got it together for you. Enjoy!
*full disclosure – this post contains some affiliate links. this won’t affect you, but it helps me out. mama has to put food on the table somehow!
KEEP IN MIND – these new investments will be useful POSTPARTUM
THINK SEASONS AHEAD & THANK ME LATER 😉
the first trimester
At this point your pregnancy is still a secret. You’re trying to determine when you will notify your work folk so you gotta keep it under wraps (no pun intended). You need some belly bands, bigger BRAS, & flowy tops ASAP!
If you don’t have a Target nearby then I’m sorry… But don’t worry! because their shipping policies are solid, and you can score a couple cheap and versatile belly bands right here.
What’s a belly band?
It’s an awesome elastic pants holder-upper and it disguises the fact that you can’t get your zipper up (or button clasped..).
Basically, you need one, or two, or three.
It gives you the layered-look, but it goes to work more than a regular under-shirt would. It holds your stuff up and is thick enough to disguise ugly textures from ill-fitted clothes.
The best part? They can be reused while you are struggling to fit back into those pre-baby jeans in the flabby postpartum days.
Since those clandestine early pregnancy days are not the time to proudly display your miniature baby bump (you’re lucky to not mistake it for beer bloat).
You want things that are flowy, but discreet. Nothing obviously built for a big ol’ belly. So keep those regular pants going with a belly band and throw a new, less form fitted style into your closet.
the second trimester
This is around the time of your pregnancy exposure, and the beginning of cute bump pics! Time to stock up on those cutesy outfits you’ve fantasized about.
Although you might be feeling great, out of the morning sickness stage and all, I wouldn’t bank on that utopian phase. Unless you’re planning to spend more $ in a couple months, you should try to start buying things based on your idea of a worst-case scenario.
What I mean is be careful with the materials you buy and think about the seasons you’re going to see over the next 6 months.
Your pregnancy might not be entirely obvious in the beginning of the 2nd trimester, but now is the time to get some bottoms to work with. God forbid you wake up one day and POP!
which isn’t exactly how it happens, btw… but you will definitely notice the belly bands don’t cut it at some point!
the third trimester
Alrighty mama! At this point you can still work your second trimester goodies, but things are starting to fill out. Totally cute! Most days…
But on the days when you are really feeling that water weight, you need a dress and a kimono to keep it all together.
Dresses are prime because of they’re easy-bathroom-access and sweet sihouettes. But a kimono is a cheap and trendy way to keep your ego in check when you’re feeling reaaallllyyy pregnant. Those days were the worst. Being stuck in an office in front of people only beat my ego to a pulp instead of killing it…
The kimonos saved me by being cute and distracting everyone away from my mom arms…. yay
A working pregnancy has [limited] downtime, so you should enjoy it! I definitely don’t recommend wearing a pencil skirt on the weekend… but you’ll need some loungewear in it’s place.
Layering tanks and mom shorts are absolutely essential. I still sleep in all of my pregnancy tanks haha. And I always fantasized about finding the right pair of overalls, because let’s face it, they’re adorable on a bump (and almost nothing else).
if you’re stuck behind a desk…
This was me! My pre-pregnant wardrobe was stocked with pencil skirts and oxford shirts. I Love It. That is just my everyday style, if I’m being honest. #BlazerGang
All of those essentials are knocked out almost immediately. The belly can’t stay hidden (or fit) in a pencil skirt, and the boobs just…. buttons aren’t the best.
But the bright side has to be the lack of walking around and forcing a smile. Even still, we need things that are neutral and easily combined with the minimal items we invest in.
Luckily blazers don’t need to be buttoned (yay!) but it had me feeling very Tommy Boy some days.
if you’re stuck in front of a crowd
Ahh the presenter. May god have mercy on your soul. JK! That talk is only necessary postpartum, when the milk leak sagas begin!
Not to worry you, but you will need to find some comfortable and appropriate clothes (no oxford shirts again… those buttons can’t hang) that also work at the head of a meeting.
A pregnant woman is endearing, no matter how crappy you feel. I have seen some high level ladies strutting pregnancy in the classiest, cutest, most sophisticated ways and it made me seriously envious! #howdotheydoit
if you’re service based…
Being client-facing, you need clothes that are not only comfortable but also presentable. Patrons and leaders will be the first to notice you’re wearing the same salsa-stained pants you wore yesterday, and they won’t always be courteous when they hear it’s the only thing that fits.
Nurses, teachers, servers, etc. You guys work HARD and you will realize your pants are going into hibernation crazy fast. And right after that will be your shirts and bras. Those puppies don’t stand a chance with pregnant boobs.
I imagine a nurse can just put those scrubs to work in a bigger size, but that doesn’t help your feet or knees. Since you probably aren’t getting an at-work foot massage, go for these bad boys.