When I was first pregnant, everyone had an opinion about what I should buy — strollers, baby bottles, crib sheets — but when it came to maternity clothes, only a few tips trickled in.
"Uh, buy what makes you feel comfortable . . ." "Maybe go a size up?" "Oh, don't waste your money."
Not a single mom gave me the one piece of advice that could have saved me a lot of frustration — and plenty of wasted dollars.
What ended up happening was that I purchased a few key maternity pieces, mostly maxi dresses. I wisely thought that they'd be great to have handy in those first postpartum months when I still wasn't fitting into my prebaby skinny jeans (newsflash: nearly three years later, I'm still not, but that's not the point). When I got nothing but encouragement from mom friends, I thought it was a prudent move.
When my second pregnancy rolled around, I did something different, something I now demand of all my pregnant moms-to-be, particularly those on a budget.
Then I had the baby and realized that I somehow still had a closet filled with impossible outfit combinations. Because while my maternity clothes fit my still-pudgy bod, they didn't fit my new lifestyle, which involved breastfeeding a baby 10 times a day. No one had steered me away from high-neckline, empire-waist dresses or all those stretchy crew-neck tees. I somehow had even fewer options of what I could wear than when I was nine-months pregnant.
Because I didn't want to spend even more money on what I felt were temporary pieces, I spent the next year wearing the same Target nursing tank and a borrowed-from-my-husband button-down before they both nearly disintegrated from overuse.
When my second pregnancy rolled around, I did something different, something I now demand of all my pregnant moms-to-be, particularly those on a budget:
Try to only buy maternity clothes that double as nursing clothes.
Seems simple enough, but you'd be surprised how hard it is to find garments that encompass both needs. You'll often be able to find a comfortable, stretchy maternity tee that is impossible to breastfeed in, or you'll be able to find a dress with a low enough neckline that is too slim around the midsection to be worn anywhere close to the third trimester.
That's where ASOS came in. The online retailer not only has a maternity line, but it also has a separate "maternity nursing" collection. It's filled with silhouettes perfectly suited for a baby bump with hideaway breast openings, zippered necklines, and discreet double-layer flaps to make nursing effortless — or at least as effortless as it can be. And for women like me who are glacially slow at dropping the baby weight, having loose-fitting, slouchier clothes is an added perk.
So, before you make the same maternity mistake I did, preview these popular ASOS pieces that truly do double duty.