A month or so ago, I was assessing my wardrobe to figure out what I was going to wear after the baby arrived. Here are my thoughts on nursing-friendly wear.
While many people don’t buy much “specialized” clothing, in my mind, nursing bras are essential. Especially during the early days when the baby nurses for what feels like every moment of the day and is still small. After 18 months or so, I find that my girls tend to nurse infrequently enough that a regular bra is doable.
My go-to brands are from Motherhood Maternity and Target. Not only are they inexpensive (comparatively), but they fit and work rather well. They also frequently go on sale.
This time around I have purchased the HotMilk brand from Zulily; I have noticed that these have the same size label but are MUCH bigger. They will probably work very well when my milk first comes in and I’m…um…engorged :).
Another basic that I like to have on hand is a nursing tank. They come in handy for shirts with low necklines (which are useful when you want to nurse in a moby wrap or other sling). That being said, all my summer shirts are t-shirts or polos right now so I haven’t bought any for this time. Yet.
While this is another area where many people do not bother to buy special clothing, I find that it’s much easier to nurse a very small baby while practically sleeping with the right sleepwear. My favorite brand is Japanese Weekend and I won’t kid you, it is a SPLURGE. I buy them at Diapers.com (use referral code: happylhomemaker for 20% off your first order of $35+ that includes a case of diapers) and have seen them on Zulily once or twice, too.
I love them because they are season-less. They mostly consist of lightweight pants with sleeveless or 3/4 length sleeves, which is great in the winter when it gets cold and my upper body is not under blankets. They do stretch out after several years of constant use so I wouldn’t count on having them from pregnancy to pregnancy if you nurse for long periods of time. They do work well for maternity as well and I have worn them up until delivery once my regular pajama’s quit fitting. I have also received some nice ones from Motherhood Maternity, as well.
While nursing shirts are not strictly necessary, it is essential to have nursing-friendly shirts or dresses. The dress above, COULD be okay for nursing if you have a nursing cover. You would have to reveal yourself from the top and that’s an awful lot of skin to leave exposed while nursing. If you use a moby wrap or carry around a nursing cover, this could be okay if it was loose enough.
If you do not usually nurse in a moby wrap, then any shirt that is loose enough to pull up would be fine. Any shirt that has piping or other tightness/ties below the breasts is not suitable for nursing by lifting your shirt. I personally prefer to nurse this way as it leaves me the most covered and the least in need of extra coverings to be modest.
Ponchos, Shawls & Scarves
I, personally, am not a fan of the nursing cover ups. After several years of nursing, I am fairly skilled at nursing without covers WITHOUT revealing anything. This is especially true when they are super little and don’t monkey around while nursing.
When they get older, however, I DO like to have some accessories around that can be used to add some extra cover when they get a little more active and curious about everything around them. I have knitted ponchos for both summer and winter and find that wraps and scarves add adequate coverage as well. I have one of these almost everywhere I go.
This post is part of the Prepping for Baby Series — check out the full list of posts!
What do you consider essential nursing clothing?
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