“I don’t need maternity underwear,” you think to yourself as you shimmy a pair of pre-preggo panties over your widening hips. At a certain point, those seams will start digging into your growing belly or the undies will start rolling down your bump and you’ll have to hike them back up every five seconds. And those tags and anything itchy! Things that never bothered you before becoming pregnant are now a full-blown source of frustration.
Lucky for all of us, maternity underwear in 2023 is practical, comfy, and — dare we say? — cute! There are options, too: plus-size, full-coverage, bikini, and maternity thongs (gasp!), as well as over- and under-the-belly undies that you can even wear postpartum.
Now speaking of over and under, this is where the conversation gets personal. Do you want something low that hits under the belly, that feels like your pre-pregnancy undies? Or does something higher, that smoothes across the belly up to the bra sound so much more comforting? It’s a serious debate, according to our friends at Peanut— an app that connects like-minded women throughout fertility, pregnancy, and motherhood. 51% said over-the-belly is the way to go, while 49% said under is the only choice. From the under-belly team, we heard, “I hate anything at this moment that goes over my belly. Can’t stand it.” but from the over-belly team, especially after giving birth, mamas said, “Over! I had a C-section and couldn’t imagine under!”
But no matter which pair you choose, it’s time to accept that maternity panties are a pregnancy essential, right up there with a decent-looking delivery gown and bump-friendly leggings (because you’ve earned the right to wear pants without a button). Yes, you might have to retire your teeny-tiny underthings for a little while, but just think, you’ll save them from being stretched out.
Best Maternity Underwear According to Amazon Reviewers
See? Intimate Portal’s lace panties are pretty … a little bit cheeky, even! (Not into lace? They have plain styles, too.) In short, they’re proof that maternity undies don’t have to be matronly. The under-the-belly design means no pressure on your growing bump, and they’ll even be comfy post-birth, especially if you have a healing c-section incision that you don’t want to irritate. Furthermore, these are made with soft Standard 100 by Oeko-Tex certified cotton, so they’re tested to be free of harmful dyes and chemicals. The final notable feature is the inner liner, which is light-colored so you’ll see if there’s anything unusual down there.
One Reviewer Wrote: “This underwear feels great; it’s a simple black cotton with a white lining on the inside. It sits perfectly under my pregnancy bump so I don’t need to worry about constantly trying to adjust it. Some of my current underwear is firm waistbands that I’m constantly having to pull down to sit as low as possible, but these are perfect! Would definitely recommend for anyone who needs underwear that covers their whole butt and sits very low in front.” — Erik M Gordon
Best Size Range: Regular & Plus Size Maternity Underwear
If you’re undecided about whether you’d rather wear your panties over or under your bump —or you want the ability to choose depending on your preferences that day — this trio from Motherhood Maternity can be worn either way (and let’s face it, you have enough choices to make right now). They’re made with 5% spandex for extra stretch to accommodate your tummy through each trimester, and since they fold down, you can wear them throughout your postpartum recovery.
One Reviewer Wrote: “I absolutely love these! They are so comfy and loose but still fit and have the right amount of support. I have hated wearing underwear so far during my pregnancy because they just feel pressured around my pelvis area but these are absolute heaven. I highly recommend!” – Jasmin
Best Undies for Over OR Under-The-Belly
The multi-tasking tops of these Playtex panties have plenty of material to pull over your bump or fold under it. Thanks to ultra-stretchy fabric, you can wear them throughout your pregnancy as well as postpartum, and the full-coverage fit means extra security when you need it most. Available in sizes Small to XX-Large, you can (and should) grab multiple packs.
One Reviewer Wrote: “I hesitated [to buy] maternity underwear…because I didn’t really think it was needed. These may be my Best Buy during pregnancy! So comfortable and are great for my third-trimester body. They’ll also be useful immediately postpartum. Soft, full coverage, and very stretchy. All things you need while pregnant and healing.” — Mel
Best High-Waisted Maternity Brief
One of Hatch’s most popular cuts, these high-waist briefs offer support and smoothing for a pregnant mom’s peace of mind. Made with a blend of modal, nylon, and elastane, these seamless briefs offer comfort and stretch without losing their shape. A double layer in the front gives plenty of belly support, while in the back, there’s a single layer. These undies are also perfect for keeping everything in place postpartum, even if you’ve had a c-section.
One Reviewer Wrote: “I love these undies! They are so comfortable and provide great support. They are great for pregnancy, postpartum, and beyond. The stretchy ribbed material holds the belly in a comfortable, not confining way, you just feel supported and like it’s keeping everything in place. These are a must-have whether you’re having a c-section or regular birth. I’ve had two c-sections within eighteen months of each other followed by a hernia repair from my surgeries not healing properly with lots of scar tissue and nerve damage in my lower abdomen. I need to wear undies that support me but don’t feel too tight and not let my pants rub up against my scars. These are the best I’ve found.”
Best Undies for Stocking Your Panty Drawer
Looking to stock up? Suekaphin’s Under-Bump Briefs come in a whopping back of eight! That means a panty for every day of the week (plus one), and all for a real bargain of a price. But despite their affordability, these skivvies don’t skimp on features: A 95% cotton / 5% spandex blend offers breathability and stretch, a full-coverage bottom means no riding up, and they come in sets with cute colors and patterns as well as essential neutral hues. There’s even a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Some reviewers suggest sizing up, but the majority say they’re happy with their purchase.
One Reviewer Wrote: “Absolutely love them! If you are pregnant get them yesterday!! Honestly even if you’re not pregnant get them they’re so comfy and soft [that] they don’t roll down on your belly and they look absolutely amazing. On top of all of that you get such a large variety and color for such a reasonable price.” — Greengiant
Best Bump Shapewear for Dresses & Skirts
This affordable maternity shapewear pick is an Amazon bestseller. And while the thought of “maternity shapewear” seems a little ridiculous, think of it more as “super full-coverage maternity panties that smooth lumps and bumps and offer amazing support.” A must-have if your job requires a professional dress code or you’re dressing for a special occasion, this undergarment is made with nylon, spandex, and cotton for breathable stretch. Plus, if your new preggo self is more prone to wardrobe malfunctions, you can feel extra confident while wearing skirts and dresses since this shapewear goes to mid-thigh.
One Reviewer Wrote: “I was not expecting much from these, just hoping for something comfortable to wear under dresses. I ordered one and will be ordering more. Initially, they look tiny but they fit like a glove in the size I expected. They not only smooth the bump and softer-than-normal waist and booty, they [also] support the baby bump in such a cozy way.” — R. K. Marquez
Best Thong for Pregnancy & Beyond
They’re not technically for maternity wear, but Hanky Panky”s legendary low-rise thongs are ideal for preggos just the same. The front dips into a V so they sit under the belly and a stretchy lace waistband won’t show underneath pants and will expand along with your bump. And did we mention that one size fits most pant sizes 2-12? That means you can keep wearing these panties before, during, and after being pregnant. Buyers rave that these panties hold up wear after wear, are no-pinch, no-show, and totally worth the price.
One Reviewer Wrote: “This is all I wear. They wear well, are very comfortable and wash well. I put them in the machine on [the] delicate cycle and hang to dry. They last forever and no panty lines.” — PattyCake
Best 100% Cotton Maternity Underwear
Looking for something subtly cute that you can wear during your entire pregnancy? Moms can’t stop raving over this set from Angelhood. With over 5,600 five-star reviews, parents are especially happy that they hold pads nicely — which, after giving birth, is pretty essential. While these are a hit, it’s important to know that they might not be the best choice for C-section moms until after they’ve healed up. But prior to the big day, they’re a comfortable choice made with premium materials.
One Reviewer Wrote: “Great maternity panties, good coverage, and thickness where they need to be. No pressure on baby bump and I wish I would [have] bought these sooner! I was wearing regular panties up until 35 weeks and then bought these what a relief on the belly!” — Amazon Customer
The Best Seamless Over-The-Bump Panties
There’s something really nice about securing your growing bump. If you’ve been veering towards over-the-bump fit maternity jeans, you might feel right at home with these over-the-bump undies. Made from stretchy material, these are especially good for pregnancy during chillier months. These are seamless, making them perfect to wear under dresses. With an impressive 4.5 out of five-star rating on Amazon, you won’t be disappointed. Five pairs come per pack.
One Reviewer Wrote: “I love [this] underwear so much, they fit my bump perfectly and fit so comfortably under my clothes. I also love that they help give my bump more of a round shape under my clothing keeping everything looking nice and [uniform]. These panties come up over my 7-month belly and lie directly under my breast and up my back to my bra line which I love especially when wearing dresses or fitted shirts! No complaints.” — Shopaholic
There are a ton of decisions to make throughout pregnancy and parenthood, but we’re here to help. Check out our mom-approved pregnancy essentials and baby gear picks to make life a little bit easier!
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