8 Maternity Fashion Myths — Busted!

These style rules were made to be broken.
save article
profile picture of Heather Levine
Updated March 30, 2017
pregnant woman walking shopping maternity fashion
Image: Getty Images

Myth #1: You can get by with clothes you already own.

Reality: Go ahead, shop from your closet (and your hubby’s) for the first two months but, at some point, maternity clothes will just fit better. Of course there are exceptions. For example, leggings and loose cardigans (worn unbuttoned) will work for most of trimester two.

Myth #2: Expensive maternity clothes are a waste of money.

Reality: We’re all for bargain buys, but since these items are pretty much the only things you’ll wear over the next nine months (read: they’ll take a beating), it’s a smart idea to invest in a few well- made, quality pieces.

Myth #3: You can’t wear sleeveless.

Reality: Self-conscious about your arms? Don’t be. This is the best time to bare them. Your baby bump creates an optical illusion — the bigger your tummy gets, the smaller your arms will look.

Myth #4: A long dress will look like a muumuu.

Reality: If showing a little leg isn’t your thing, you can pull off a strapless or sleeveless maxi dress (yes, even if you’re petite). To avoid a bulky look, choose one in a lightweight fabric.

Myth #5: Empire waists are always flattering.

Reality: Sure, this waistline works for lots of moms-to-be but, for some, loose tops just add extra heft. Form-fitting styles (we love side-ruching) will hug your new curves and actually make you look smaller.

Myth #6: Bold patterns and bright colors are a bad idea.

Reality: You can still wear most prints. Add them in small touches, like a striped cardigan over a solid cami, or a graphic top with plain pants. And subtly work little pops of color into an all-black wardrobe.

Related Video

Myth #7: You must make over your look.

Reality: Don’t ditch your personal style just because you’re pregnant. If you usually wear casual jeans and Ts — or sexy black dresses — you should definitely continue to rock those looks while you’re expecting.

Myth #8: Flats are your only footwear choice.

Reality: Teetering in 4" stilettos is never a good idea (plus, high heels can cause serious back pain), but don’t be afraid to sport a small stacked or kitten heel for a little extra height. Just remember to choose a delicate pair. Chunky heels can make your legs look bigger.

The Bump Expert: Liz Lange, founder of Liz Lange for Target Maternity

save article

Next on Your Reading List

11 Best Maternity Robes for Pregnancy, Delivery and Nursing
By Martina Garvey
Maternity Coats Hero
Maternity Coats and Jackets to Keep You Cozy This Winter
By Martina Garvey
pregnant woman holding a christmas present
These Maternity Cyber Week Sales Are Can’t Miss
By Emma O'Regan-Reidy
best maternity bras for pregnant women and postpartum women
The Best Maternity Bras, According to Pregnant Moms
Medically Reviewed by Kendra Segura, MD
Maternity Holiday Looks For 100 or Less-hero
The Season’s Chicest Maternity Holiday Dresses for $100 or Less
By Elizabeth Nelson
Best Maternity Workout Clothes Hero
The Best Maternity Workout Clothes for Active Moms-to-Be
By Lynsey Eidell
Maternity Loungewear-hero
The Best Maternity Sweatpants and Loungewear to Cozy Up in at Home
By Korin Miller
maternity clothing rental subscriptions, nuuly
Best Maternity Clothes Rental Services
By Holly Pevzner
Best Maternity Jeans-hero
The Best Maternity Jeans to Add to Your Pregnancy Wardrobe
By Martina Garvey
The Best Maternity Leggings to Complete Your Pregnancy Wardrobe
By Martina Garvey
Pregnancy Halloween Costumes Hero
35 Maternity Halloween Costumes That Are Scary Good
By Martina Garvey
pregnant woman wearing beautiful flowy red dress
13 Red Maternity Dresses Perfect for Date Night
By Megan Cahn
Baby Shower Dresses-hero
23 Cute Maternity Dresses for Your Baby Shower
By Martina Garvey
Maternity Dresses For Fall and Winter-hero
24 Fabulous Fall and Winter Maternity Dresses
By Martina Garvey
best maternity underwear
The Best Maternity Underwear for Ultimate Comfort
By Anna Lane
Sexy Maternity Dress Hero
14 Sexy Maternity Dresses, ‘Cause Mama’s Still Got It
By Lynsey Eidell
The Best Places to Shop for Plus-Size Maternity Clothes
By Martina Garvey
How to Get the Maternity Wardrobe You Want Without Spending a Fortune
By Martina Garvey
HATCH Collection's Highly-Anticipated Top Drawer Sale Is Here
HATCH Collection's Highly-Anticipated Top Drawer Sale Is Here
By Wyndi Kappes
maternity pajamas-hero
The Best Maternity Pajamas to Keep You Comfy and Cozy
By Martina Garvey
Article removed.
Article removed.
Name added. View Your List