Stay Trendy During Pregnancy Without Maternity Clothes

Being pregnant can really take a toll on your self confidence. You're huge and bloated, and that glow they speak of seems to only be viewable by others and not yourself. There are so many emotions and hormones that are running through your body, that things are always worse in your head then they actually are. Pregnant women are beautiful but its hard to convince yourself when you're 9 months pregnant that this is true.

The biggest problem with maintaining your pre-pregnancy swag is clothing. They've come a long way in maternity wear, but the styles that you actually want to wear are usually pretty pricey, and the clothes that are affordable, are usually awkwardly sized, and not so hot. I purchased about $200 dollars worth of clothing from Motherhood Maternity and I hated almost all of it. That's what you get for shopping online. My purchase was mostly made up of pants, and then a few shirts. I don't even wear the shirts. It was a complete waste of money. The sizing is completely off, a size small is way too large, and the sleeves are baggy and wide. The pants however were great. There were so many great styles to choose from, from a bright blue jean to a wet look legging, this is one area where Motherhood Maternity gets it right. However, again, the sizing is way off. Although people say I'm "so thin" I'm actually not. I'm an average size for my height and wore a size 8 pant before pregnancy. Turns out all their pants were HUGE! I wear an extra small pant according to this store. God help any woman who usually wears a size 0 through 6 because you will be shit out of luck.

To make up for the fact that maternity clothing SUCKS, and the fact that I find it a waste of money to purchase tons of clothes that you wont wear again, and that you hate, I turned to my own closet, and cheap stores like H&M and Forever 21. The style of clothing these days is somewhat baggier. Tunics, and flowy shirts, maxi dresses, and T-shirts. All these things most of us have in our closet and are wearable during most of your pregnancy. Because they don't hug your every curve, they hide your weight gain pretty well for the first couple of months. Of course grab yourself some maternity pants but the key is the basics. A couple of black and white shirts that area made of a stretchy fabric, will go a long way. They don't need to be maternity, as long as they stretch and are longer in length, they should last you pretty far into gestation. Hit up Target for goodness sakes. Next vests, buttons up shirts, cardigans, and scarves, are HUGE. They can be mixed and matched with a black shirt or black maxi dress and some jewellery, and create so many different looks. They don't need to be buttoned or done up, so you don't need to worry about them fitting your belly, and as long as they weren't skin tight to begin with, they should still fit pretty well. Here are some samples of looks I wore in my pregnancy, all photos were taken at 37 weeks, and the only items that are maternity are the pants. Now I realize that this might not work for some women, as our bodies all handle pregnancy differently, this worked for me. And before you turn and say "you haven't gained any weight, and your belly is small this is ridiculous!" I have, and my belly measures right on track. I just hide my belly and weight gain well with my clothing choices. As of week 38 I have gained 40 lbs, and my stomach measures 37 inches. Which is exactly what the doctor recommends.

As you can see, I wear the shiza out of my black Vince maxi dress, which is not maternity and was purchased way before I got pregnant! Just throw on some button ups and some jewelery, or mix in a scarf and you're good to go! All of these items were in my closet before getting pregger!

Tunics and baggy shirts also look great. I guess the T-shirt is an acquired taste as I tend to dress a little rock and roll at times, but I like it! Everything so far minus the Alexander McQueen scarf and the Free People tunic were purchased at H&M or Forever 21.

Shirts with ruching make your belly look so much bigger! This picture was taken the same day as the others but you can see how your belly can look bigger and smaller depending on your clothing choices. This shirt looks maternity but its not! A little ruching goes a long way!

The pictures below were taken before 37 weeks but its still the same idea. And there's that maxi dress again!

A blouse can look very pretty over a maxi if you tie it up. I dont recommend using an expensive silk blouse for this as it can stretch the fabric at the knot, but this shirt from H&M works great!

The photo below looks like it was taken the minute I peed on the stick but its just the angle, I actually have quite a belly at this point!

Alright guys, hope those samples of outfits helps you out when maternity shopping. Everything in these photos, besides the pants, I owned before pregnancy, so dig in those closets of yours! You will find some items that work. If you need to go shopping, get a black maxi! Even in the winter they work, I've been pregnant all fall and winter and I rocked them while still looking in season. Remember purchase the basics and layer with non maternity items!

Make sure to share these ideas through the sharing options below with your pregnant girlfriends!