Updated at: 26-05-2022 - By: Sienna Lewis

Normal clothing sizes apply to pregnant women, so you’ll be the same size in both maternity and non-maternity garments. You’ll be a maternity small if you’re ordinarily a small. No matter what number you use to measure your clothing, a maternity 6 or 28 is the same as your regular size 6. Clothing makers keep the sizing the same to make maternity clothing buying less difficult. This does not mean that your waist is still 28 inches throughout pregnancy.

Plus-size maternity clothing also follows the same sizing guidelines. While plus-size apparel sizes can vary from retailer to retailer, it is always a good idea to take your measurements and verify pregnancy size guides before you purchase.

Because your breasts grow during pregnancy, you may need to go up a cup size or two in a standard bra size to accommodate your growing breasts. Have your measurements taken at home and then compare them with the manufacturer’s chart before making any purchases, including maternity bras. Bra extenders can also be purchased to extend the life of your pre-pregnancy bras.

Shopping for pregnancy clothing may be easier than you think, as the sizing of maternity clothing is the same as regular clothing sizing.

Things to Consider When Buying Maternity Clothes

Many factors must be taken into account when determining what size maternity clothing to purchase.

Let’s start with a discussion of your physical make-up. Going up one or two sizes in maternity wear to accommodate your growing baby bump is recommended if you have a larger stomach or hips.

Where to Buy Maternity Clothes You'll Actually Want to Wear - Racked

Pregnant women with larger-than-average breasts and thin waistlines should look for what size maternity trousers that fit snugly over their breasts while allowing enough of room for their expanding stomachs.

Finally, keep a look out for manufacturers who offer their own sizing ranges, as well! It can be difficult to know what size maternity clothing to buy during pregnancy.

To get an idea of what size to buy, I suggest getting your average size in ordinary apparel and then going up one or two sizes depending on your body shape!

Do I really need maternity clothes?

The requirement for maternity clothing varies from person to person, just like the early symptoms of pregnancy. During the first few months of pregnancy, you may be able to wear more comfortable, roomier clothing from your current collection, like as leggings and maxi dresses. In the case of first-time mothers, this may be especially true because they are less likely to start displaying their pregnancy symptoms until far later in the process than women who have had previous pregnancies.

If you’re in the first trimester, there are numerous tried-and-true maternity clothes hacks you might swear by, such as looping a hair tie over your pants button to leave more room for your growing stomach, or sewing your own belly band to wear on top of unzipped pant buttons.

Between 12 and 18 weeks is when you’re most likely to start showing, and by then you’ll be able to wear clothes that are more fitted to your developing shape. In the long run, it’s preferable to buy just a few pregnant core pieces rather than buying enormous and ugly apparel or trying on clothes you already own.

Tips for finding the right maternity clothes sizes

As you begin your hunt for maternity clothing, these tips will make shopping easier (and hopefully less daunting):

  • Pregnancy size charts are available. There is a lot of variation in the sizing of maternity apparel. If you’re planning to buy something online, be sure it will fit by measuring your bust, waist/bump, and hips and comparing them to the brand’s size chart.
  • Confirm the return policies of the maternity retailer. When buying online, this is especially vital because you can’t actually try anything on. There’s nothing wrong with buying a couple different sizes, trying them on at home, and then returning the ones that don’t fit.
  • It’s always a good idea to shop around and see what you like. It’s possible that what worked for a friend will have no effect on you. When it comes to finding fashionable, stylish maternity wear, there are many options to choose from, from everyday wear to office attire to black-tie outfits.
  • For those who can’t commit, you can rent maternity clothing. Maternity clothing subscription services have been increasingly popular in recent years. Pregnant women who aren’t sure what maternity apparel they want can get their hands on pre-owned maternity clothing at a discount. Everything is cleaned in between wears, so don’t worry!
  • Wear whatever makes you happy. One more time, since it bears repeating: whatever looks the greatest on your changing body throughout pregnancy is ultimately what will make you feel your best and most confident during this joyful time. It’s time to have some fun!

Check out our BabyCenter Community for even more maternity fashion advice and inspiration from other expectant mothers.

When to Look for Maternity Clothes

Pregnancy is a unique experience for every woman. When it comes to weight gain and stretch marks, some women notice them right once, while others can wear their regular clothes for longer.

You don’t have to start wearing maternity clothes at a specific point in your pregnancy. When you begin to feel uneasy in your everyday clothes, it’s time to start shopping for something new. If you’re still unsure, here are some helpful tips:

  • It’s not Thanksgiving, and your pants won’t button: However, if you’re not quite ready to give up your regular pants just yet, you can use a hair tie technique. Put the hair tie in the buttonhole and you’re ready to go. Loop the two ends around the button and fasten them.
  • Because you’re pregnant, your stomach is poking out from under your clothes It’s probably time to start shopping for maternity apparel if your tummy is starting to peek out from under your top.
  • Your bra is too small: The comfort and health of your breasts depend on wearing a bra that is properly fitted. If your bras are too small, you may want to invest in a few nursing or maternity bras.
  • Button-down shirts are no longer an option: These can be worn for a longer period of time if you wear another shirt underneath and leave it open.
  • As soon as I started to feel bloated, I started doing the hair-tie trick with my jeans.

Tried and True Maternity Garments

Is purchasing one of your greatest weaknesses? Don’t worry if you’re dreading the prospect of shopping for clothes you’ll only wear for a few months. There are a few ideas I’d like to share with you.

Pregnant or not, these pieces can be worn for many years to come. There is no doubt that you’ll spend the first few months of motherhood in maternity clothing.

  • It is common for maxi dresses and skirts to provide a good amount of covering because they are roomier and stretchier than most other types. Flowy and adaptable, they’re best suited for the summer months. When your child is born, you may be able to use the top portion of the product as a nursing cover.
  • T-shirts that are looser around the belly: Most maternity t-shirts are going to be looser in the belly area anyway. Investing in a few basic pieces, such as black, white, and grey, will allow you to wear them with a variety of outfits. Often, they’ll feature an empire waist to enhance your expanding baby bump.
  • The coziness of leggings is why we love them so much. Wear them with a dress or a long, flowy tee and you’ll be warm and toasty in no time. There are usually high-waisted leggings available for pregnant women.
  • Maternity overalls or maternity jeans: There are two main alternatives for this category. Elastic panels are inserted into the sides of some, while a belly band is included in others. For me, the elastic sides are preferable because they are more discrete and easier to use after the birth of the child.

How to Find the Right Size Maternity Clothing

When it comes to fitting, most maternity clothing manufacturers retain the pregnant size of their garments the same as their pre-pregnancy size – the only difference is that maternity clothes are designed with particular features that make them adaptive to the growing baby bump.

Your breast, your waist/bump, and your hips should all be measured if you want to find your ideal size. Follow these steps to get it right:

  1. Take a tape measure around the broadest portion of your chest while you relax your arms on the sides of your body.
  2. If you’re expecting a baby, you’ll want to take a measurement around your midsection or baby bump.
  3. The fullest part of your hips, roughly 20 cm below your waist, can be found by standing up straight and taking a measurement.

If you are looking for a maternity sizing chart once you have your measurements, you can use this size chart from Motherhood Maternity for reference:

Size of a letter



Size of the United States

Size of Pants


























More than one





Two times as much as before





More than three times





How to Buy a Bigger Size Instead of Wearing Maternity Clothes

Some ladies don’t want to spend money on maternity gear, so they simply buy larger sizes of their regular clothes and wear them while they’re pregnant. Because you can easily wind up with ill-fitting clothing that makes you seem ugly, this demands a precise balance. If you want to maximize your pre-pregnancy wardrobe and find items that fit regardless of whether they are maternity, you can apply these strategies.

6 Best Maternity Clothes 2021 | BabyCenter

To maximize your current wardrobe for maternity use, you can do the following:

  • Wear shirts with a looser fit. Stretchy tanks and t-shirts, as well as some blouses and tunics, fall within this category.
  • Avoid putting too much strain on your increasing belly by wearing your skirts a few inches higher on your waist.
  • Make sure you’re wearing your slouchiest, flowiest bottoms and shirts.
  • To get more wear out of your jeans, wrap a rubber band or a ponytail ring around the buttonhole and the button on each one.

Non-maternity clothes (and a few tips) that can be lifesavers for those who choose regular clothes over maternity clothes are:

  1. Drawstring or elastic waisted bottoms.
  1. As a result of their elastic content, soft knits are extremely forgiving.
  2. Blazers and cardigans without buttons (for working moms that need a bit of formality).
  3. Regular clothing that is one or two sizes larger than your typical size. These garments are also excellent for altering one’s size following a pregnancy.
  4. Pants that sit lower than your belly button.
  5. Lycra or Spandex-based clothing.
  6. Get your hands on your partner’s wardrobe!
  7. Your pants can grow with you if you make a few holes around the zipper and lace them up with ribbon.
  8. If you want to keep your bottoms from slipping down, get a Bella Band to wear over them. It will cover any undone zippers or buttons.

How Many Dress Sizes Should You go up When Pregnant?

Bridesmaid duties during pregnancy are one of the most challenging concerns to deal with in terms of dress size. There are numerous measures you can take to guarantee that your wedding gown fits you perfectly on the big day, especially if you don’t know how your body will change over time.

Some precautions you should take include:

  1. Get creative with your measurements. In the beginning, waist measurements are of no use. Measure your breast and hips, then add a few inches to each measurements to allow for growth in the future.
  2. Consider the date and time. Usually, you will order a bridesmaid dress about 5 to 6 months before the actual wedding date. Wait as long as you possibly can before taking your final measurements and making final alterations in order to make sure that your dress fits the best that it can.
  3. Consider the timing before making your decision. The average time between ordering a bridesmaid dress and the wedding day is roughly five to six months. Take your final measurements and final modifications as long as you possibly can before the big day to ensure that your dress fits perfectly.
  4. Consider the fact that you’ll be pregnant when you wear the dress.
    • It’s probably okay to wear the same outfit as everyone else if you’re less than four months pregnant. It is possible to order your gown a size or two bigger than your actual size and have it altered closer to the big day. In most cases, dresses can be adjusted down to a maximum of two sizes without having to alter the dress itself.
    • If you have the freedom to pick your own style, we recommend an empire waist dress or a chiffon dress. Pregnant women can easily wear one of these outfits.
    • It is highly suggested that you get a pregnancy bridesmaid dress if you are expecting more than 5 months. To avoid looking like everyone else at the party, you should wear a color that is similar to what everyone else is wearing.

Maternity Essentials

Because maternity clothing can be pricey, it’s a good idea to have a list of the essentials before you start shopping. What size pregnant clothes should you buy? But you should also know what maternity garments are essentials in any pregnancy wardrobe. Using this method, you’ll be able to fulfill all of your style needs while saving money. Listed below are some of the most important maternity items to have on hand, regardless of the time of year.



Generally speaking

-long maxi dresses.

Stretchy T-shirts, as opposed to regular ones

+ pre-baby clothes



-a black cocktail dress

a bloated blazer


+ pre-baby clothes

-pants with an elastic waistband

a thin jacket

-tops that are elastic or have side ruching

-maternity skirts and summer dresses


-maternity, side-ruched, and stretchy dresses

Pregnant women should wear maternity shorts.

A belly band-friendly shorts option.

-loose-fitting tanks and tees

-pregnant swimwear


+ pre-baby clothes


lightweight long-sleeve sweaters

Tights that are maternity-friendly and stretchy

skirts for pregnancy wear

dresses with empire waists


-wearing tops under jackets

-dresses made from sweaters

pants or joggers that have a low or pregnancy waistline

-tights or leggings with a lining

-a thick, wide coat for the winter

Pregnant women sometimes ignore the need of comfortable shoes, but this is a mistake. Pregnant women should wear certain shoes designed to accommodate their enlarged feet while yet giving support.

Try the TOMS Women’s Espadrilles for a closed-toe, light, and comfy flat shoe. Skechers Performance Women’s Go Walk shoe is a no-lace, lightweight, and supportive shoe. The Franco Sarto Sela Mule is a great option if you’re looking for a shoe that will accommodate pregnant feet while also looking professional.


How do I know what size maternity clothes to buy?

There is no difference in sizing between maternity and non-maternity clothing, which means that you’ll fit into both. You’ll be a maternity small if you’re ordinarily a small. No matter what number you use to measure your clothing, a maternity 6 or 28 is the same as your regular size 6.

When you buy maternity clothes do you buy your normal size?

Instead of going up a few sizes when you buy your maternity clothes (usually during the second trimester, but this varies from woman to woman), go with your pre-pregnancy size when you go shopping. Adjustable maternity clothing provides more room where you need it most.

What size should I buy when pregnant?

In most circumstances, your postpartum size will be similar to your pre-pregnancy size, if not identical (2). If you normally wore a medium, you should continue to do so during your pregnancy. Pants are the same way. Women who were pre-pregnant size 10 would continue to be so while pregnant.

Should you size up pregnant?

Maternity clothing is based on a normal pregnancy weight increase range because every pregnancy is different. If you want a looser fit or if you have a large bust, you may want to order a larger size.

At what month do you start wearing maternity clothes?

Most women don’t start showing until approximately 16 weeks of pregnancy, but you may begin to feel your abdomen expanding around 14 weeks. Most women will be wearing maternity or at least loose-fitting clothing by the 20th week of their pregnancy.

Can I buy bigger clothes instead of maternity?

A final word of advice? During your whole pregnancy, wear clothes that are one or two sizes larger than your present size. When your body hasn’t yet returned to its pre-baby size, these outfits might be terrific transitional goods. As your belly grows, you should wear low-rise jeans.

When should I start buying things for my unborn baby?

Many new parents choose to wait until they know the sex of their baby before purchasing baby gear. Most women find out between 18 and 21 weeks into their pregnancy, however it can happen as early as 12 weeks for some. To begin shopping for your kid, you do not, of course, need to know their gender.

What should I wear at 12 weeks pregnant?

This time, cotton with some stretch is your best bet. In terms of versatility, nothing beats a T-shirt dress since it can grow with you as your hormones do. Wear your stretch dress with simple shoes and a denim jacket for a laid-back weekend style (because, let’s face it, you’ll get cold).

What should I wear at 4 months pregnant?

For the most of the first trimester, most women are able to return to their pre-pregnancy attire (3 months). To ensure your comfort, you may want to wear a larger bra size or wear looser-fitting clothing during this time. In the fourth or fifth month of pregnancy, you may begin to wear larger clothing.

What happens if you accidentally sleep on your back while pregnant?

Pregnant women should avoid sleeping or resting on their backs because it puts pressure on the uterus’s major blood veins, limiting the amount of oxygen the baby gets.

Is it OK to wear leggings while pregnant?

Wearing tights while pregnant is perfectly OK. Maternity tights may be preferable to regular tights if you have a bump. Pregnant women can choose from a variety of contoured panels that support and cradle their bumps. Synthetic materials, which are used in the majority of tights, can cause you to perspire.

Which brand makes the best pregnancy clothes?

Levee Maternity and Bella Band are two of my favorites when it comes to high-quality pregnant clothes. High-quality products are still available at moderate costs from both companies, which have been in business for a long time. The one you like the most.

19 Best Maternity Fashion Items on Amazon | The Everymom

Wicker is a great new brand to check out if you’re searching for something fresh and exciting. All of their clothing is created in the United States, which helps to keep jobs here in the country. The company also gives one percent of all revenues to help reduce miscarriages and stillbirths.

What will I look like during my second trimester?

You may notice an increase in the rate of growth in your abdomen at this stage, but don’t be alarmed; this only indicates that the baby is developing as well! This can be a different story for second-trimester symptoms. They could be less frequent, or could continue from the beginning. Hang in there, mama, you’re probably still feeling some nausea if not much better by now! Here are some tips that can help you if you’re suffering from morning sickness!

When should I start using a pregnancy pillow?

The sooner you start using a pregnant cushion, the better it is for you and your baby.

What do I need to bring to my first prenatal appointment?

Bring the following items to your first prenatal appointment with us: Proof of health insurance and photo identification; a list of any medications they are taking or have taken since becoming pregnant (including dosage); Medical history of the present pregnancy, including any operations or procedures that have been undertaken.

Health concerns like asthma or allergies should be mentioned along with any previous pregnancies and the complications that may have occurred during those pregnancies, as well as any family medical history that might point to a genetic condition like cystic fibrosis or sickle cell anemia. Please bring a list of all medications, illnesses, substances or chemicals that you have been exposed to after becoming pregnant.

How do I know what size bump pants will fit?

It’s important to measure your hips and waist before purchasing any maternity wear to ensure that they fit your developing belly!

What are some maternity clothes I can buy?

Pregnant women have many options when it comes to apparel, so the options aren’t as limited as you may imagine. However, we recommend that you choose goods that will suit your belly and avoid wasting money on products that you’ll only wear for a few months!.

How do I feel about being pregnant?

The loss of a pregnancy is a typical occurrence in our society, therefore being pregnant can cause a range of feelings, from joy to despair. If you’re feeling down after learning the news of your impending arrival, it’s critical that you seek out someone to share your feelings with. Anyone shouldn’t have to go through this by themselves.

When can I resign after maternity leave?

If you’ve used up all of your paid and unpaid maternity leave, you have the right to resign from your work after giving birth to a child. Make sure there are no concerns with your current employer before moving further!

What should I do to prepare for pregnancy?

Because pregnancy can occur even when individuals don’t expect it, it’s critical to maintain a healthy lifestyle as much as possible throughout one’s life. Pregnancy-related issues such as high blood pressure and pre-eclampsia can be reduced by regular exercise, which has been demonstrated to benefit both the mother and the unborn child.

It’s possible that your doctor will also advise you to take prenatal vitamins. Pregnancy can increase the risk to a baby, thus some medications shouldn’t be taken while pregnant.

Can I reduce my hours after maternity leave?

The fact that you can take a year off from work after giving birth as long as you make up those lost hours within 12 weeks is vital to remember.

Prior you make any decisions on maternity leave, please verify with HR or management to ensure that this answer is still applicable to your specific situation.

In Conclusion…

When it comes to fashion, maternity wear is just like the rest of your outfits. Finding the perfect fit or making plans to wear a dress months in advance can be difficult, but it is fully doable with a little perseverance and creativity. Comfort is the most important element to look for in pregnancy clothes. As a matter of fact, you’re establishing a new life!

Where Can I Find Maternity Clothes in My Size? The Size That’s Right for You Is Out There!