When preparing for a new baby, your budget will inevitably change. Pregnancy and raising a family come with additional costs that you likely never had before.
Although there are some seriously cute, splurge-worthy maternity brands out there, you may understandably prefer not to drop a lot of money on maternity clothes that will be in your style rotation for just a handful of months. And even if you plan to have multiple kids, there’s no guarantee the seasons will line up.
The good news? These days, more retailers than ever offer inexpensive maternity clothes — and you can find affordable pregnancy styles at many of the same brands you probably loved to shop at before you were expecting.
A few things to keep in mind to save money on your maternity wardrobe:
- Look for multifunctional clothes. When your bump first starts to show, it might be tempting to stock up on lots of brand-new maternity clothes for your growing belly. But first, it’s smart to evaluate how often you’ll truly be able to wear each item throughout your pregnancy — and even better if you can still get some use out of it when you’re postpartum. For example, is that sweater loose enough in the belly to work when you’re 35 weeks pregnant? Could the buttons on that top offer easy access for breastfeeding once baby arrives? Is the fabric soft enough not to irritate a potential C-section scar?
- Opt for versatile styles. Because you don’t yet know how your body will change during the next nine months, something that fits perfectly in the first trimester might become ultra-tight and unwearable by the third. Loose, flowy styles or those made of soft, stretchy materials will usually last you throughout pregnancy so you can get maximum wear out of each item you buy. Likewise, items with side ruching or stretchy panels can help extend the usable lifespan.
- Invest in key pieces. If you decide to spend a little more on maternity clothes, do so on staple pieces that you can rewear again and again, such as maternity denim or a basic black dress that can be worn in different seasons.
- Don’t size up. When first shopping for maternity clothes, you may be confused about what size to get. Just because your body is growing doesn’t mean you need to size up. Yes, you’ll have to go bigger if you’re passing standard clothes for maternity clothes — but if you’re shopping true maternity lines, your standard size should be just fine.