Comfortable, cute maternity clothes are one thing, but soft, stretchy underwear that aren’t total granny panties are a real luxury during pregnancy and postpartum.
So where can you find the best underwear for your pregnancy and postpartum? The reviews are in!
FANCY: HANKY PANKY
Women seem to love Hanky Panky, and they have a full range of styles and patterns for maternity, postpartum, and every other life stage! Women loved that these panties could transition from being their every day choice before or between pregnancies to an option that stretched with them gracefully through the whole 40 weeks of pregnancy–and beyond! Prices range from $28-$50+ depending on the style, so while they’re not cheap, they do have sexy on their side! Pregnancy favorites included the high rise “retro” style, original style, and boy shorts.
For those who like their undies to be a reflection of their preference for a natural lifestyle, PACT is the way to go. They’re sweatshop free and “an impetus for the best kind of change”–and make a super soft boy shorts option that is sits below the belly and is plenty stretchy enough to accommodate widening hips and growing belly. Although they don’t make too many exotic color options, black would be perfect for postpartum (ahem, heaviest period of your life), and I expect these boy shorts would hold one of those giant maternity pads really well. They’re also pretty affordable at $22.99 for a 2-pack. You can find them at most of Chicago’s Whole Foods‘ locations and Amazon, or if you really want something cute and colorful, you can buy some limited edition ones directly from the PACT website.
AFFORDABLE: HANES BOY SHORTS
Hanes makes a comfy boyshort that has just enough stretch to grow (and shrink) with your changing body through pregnancy and postpartum. While these underwear aren’t specifically maternity, sizing up is an option, and the ladies say they stretch pretty well too. Best part? They retail for $10.99 for 3 pairs so you won’t feel bad ditching them if you use them during the postpartum period or returning to something a little more luxurious when you can see your underwear beneath your belly again! And, if you’re a Target enthusiast, you can find these at pretty much any Target, plus a lot of other locations too.
STRICTLY MATERNITY: STORQ AND ROSIE POPE
The three options mentioned above aren’t officially maternity options, but rest assured, such a thing exists! Storq is a fairly new brand that makes maternity basics in neutral colors. They claim, “accommodating boobs, bellies, and butts is our biz. So for those times when you’re simply not feeling thongs or g-strings, we’ve got your backside completely covered.” Enough said. And they’re black (again, that postpartum bleeding…) At $34 for 2 pairs, they’re also not bad on the price spectrum especially if you’ll wear them for a whole 9 months, and then some.
Rosie Pope also has a luxurious line of several styles of maternity panties, from a sexy maternity thong to a lace-trimmed hipster style–fulfilling the brand’s promise of “comfy, cute, and trendy.” For how fancy these undies look, they’re only $12/pair and come in a variety of solid colors (and one black and white polka dot!). They can be found online at Nordstrom, and maybe even at some of the Chicago Nordstrom locations.
THE CHICAGO DOULAS’ FAVORITE: PATAGONIA
Okay, I admit I am not fully representing the agency here…this is totally my personal favorite. I became a Patagonia underwear addict when I bought the bikini style a year or two ago (not pregnant). I was amazed at how well they fit (a perfect amount of stretch), didn’t leave panty lines, and breathe really well in the Midwest heat. So when I discovered that they continued to fit me perfectly through pregnancy, I was really sold. I’ve also come to find out I like the hipster style as well. You can order these or find them locally at Patagonia or REI. At $22/pair, they’re a little pricier than some options but certainly not the most expensive, particularly considering how long they last and Patagonia’s commitment to sustainability (by the way, they are synthetic–but are made of recycled polyester!)
JUST FOR POSTPARTUM: KNIT MATERNITY UNDERWEAR
I would be remiss if I did not mention the stretchy underwear that every hospital gives out and every home birth midwife requires in their birth kit. Women either love these undies or hate them, and they’re either one size fits all or one size fits no one (what kind of person are you?) The women who like them rave about how soft and stretchy they are, and of course you don’t hesitate to throw them out when they get ruined. The haters? Well maybe they prefer something a little cuter or the fit isn’t quite right. Some women also just wear Depends the first couple days. For real.
Some other great options:
- For the Yogis and Runners: Lululemon ($18)
- Comfy clothes for the whole family: Bonds ($16.95)
- Victoria’s Secret lovers: anything from the Lacie line stretches well and sits below the belly ($12.50 or 3/$35)