Mother and Baby

The best maternity underwear for pregnancy and beyond

Section: Fashion
Best pregnancy underwear

When you're pregnant, it can be difficult to find clothes that are comfortable and flattering - and it can be even harder to find comfortable underwear. 

It either becomes an expensive habit, having to buy a new pair of pants the bigger your bump gets, or you struggle to find anything that you like, and you end up stretching out your old briefs for nine months.

What is different about maternity underwear?

As your body changes, it's going to be uncomfortable staying in your pre-pregnancy underwear, unless you're one of the lucky ones. Maternity underwear is designed with extra stretch and support to help feel comfortable as your bump grows, giving you room to breathe. If you can still fit in your pre-pregnancy pants or briefs that's great, but they will stretch like crazy as your bump gets bigger and then you'll still have to buy new ones after your baby arrives.

Do I need to buy maternity underwear?

Investing in a pair of good maternity briefs will keep you comfortable, and some shapewear styles will have extra support for your bump. When it comes to bras, you have a plethora of options, whether you go for a nursing bra or a maternity sleep bra, there is plenty to choose from. 

We've found the best maternity underwear that you'll love during your pregnancy - and which you can still feel good in, after your baby has arrived. 

The best bras for during and after pregnancy

You've probably heard of Medela for its award-winning breast pumps, but did you know they also made maternity bras? This seamless sleep bra will make sleeping easier (although it can't help with a waking baby, unfortunately). 

  • Size: S, M and L
  • No clips or hooks 
  • Crossover front design
  • Adapts to breast shape changes during pregnancy
  • Material: 92% Nylon, 8% Elastane

One reviewer said, "The best sleep bra you can find, and with an affordable price tag at that. Ever since I knew about my pregnancy, I tried to put aside money for my child. I struggled with cheap bras and existing ones. To be honest, every women's body changes so much during pregnancy that most of us won't be able to use our regular clothes for a long time - I'm still not back in them yet four months after birth and not sure I ever will be. So I decided to buy these because sleeping without a bra was uncomfortable, especially when feeding, your other breast is leaking all over the place and my existing bras were never meant to sleep in."

If you want to be comfy and practical but also a bit sexy, choose this lace bra from ASOS. It has drop-down magnetic clips and adjustable straps, easy for breastfeeding on the go but will still leave you feeling gorgeous at the same time. 

  • Size: 32C to 38G (Cup size runs half a size smaller)
  • Plunge style 
  • Moulded cups 
  • Flexi-underwire support
  • Drop-down magnetic clip
  • Material: 90% Nylon, 10% Elastane

One reviewer said, "This bra is surprisingly comfortable and makes a nice change from all the other nursing bras which feel frumpy. There is no “mono-boob” with this bra! The clasps take a bit of getting used to as they are really strong magnets but I’d rather that than them falling randomly."

With stunning lace and a plunge-cut, who knew nursing bras could be so sexy? 

  • Size: 32B - 38G
  • Flexi-wire for support, lift and shape.
  • Easy-feed drop-down lace cups
  • 5 hook and eye
  • Material: 74% Nylon, 14% Elastane, 7% Cotton, 5% Polyester

Review: "At last a bra that's flattering, supportive and fits perfectly. I've lost count of the number of bras I've purchased throughout my four pregnancies. I was reluctant to try another but I'm so glad I did. I bought one and was so impressed I purchased another two within the same week. The quality is lovely, and I'm certain I could wear them beyond my breastfeeding journey. Maternity bras need to be comfortable. You'll be wearing them 24hrs a day. Thank you CAKE!"

We know that any sleep, no matter how little, is important. This soft, non-wired nursing bra is perfect for feeling secure during the night, with a wrap-over front and no fasteners. The seamless, soft material makes it extra comfortable, so you won't feel like you're wearing a nursing bra while you sleep.

  • Size: S-XL (True to size)
  • Soft, non-wired
  • Four colours
  • No fasteners 
  • Crossover front design
  • Adapts to breast shape changes during pregnancy
  • Material: Polyamide 91%, Elastane 9%

One reviewer said, "These are the first maternity bras I have found which fit and still have room for more growth. Usually, you find they are tight around the body, but these fit nicely and do not leave marks on your skin. They are also a very nice material so it doesn't feel like you are restricted and your skin can breathe."

Cute and practical - now that's something we like a LOT. Comfy maternity bras that are suitable for breastfeeding are often not that pretty to look at, but these cotton bras are very cute, while still supportive and practical. 

  • Size: 34B-48D
  • Three-pack of three colours
  • Non-wired
  • Hook-and-eye fastening
  • Adjustable straps
  • Non-padded, seam-free moulded cups
  • Material: 48% Polyester, 45% Polyamide, 7% Elastane

One reviewer said,  "I bought these for the first time and was a little apprehensive because of the very reasonable price, but I was thrilled with the fit, I can honestly say these are wonderful and for the price that's truly rare. The only reason I didn't say five stars is the awful scratchy labels and the material used for the hook and eye fastening is also very scratchy that spoils the comfortably fit, I have cut off the labels and sewn little material patches over the nylon hook and eye material and now they're fine."

This sleep bra is so comfy you'll want to wear it for your yoga classes too. We've chosen this based on its huge numbers of Amazon ratings - over 4,500 customers have rated it an average of 4.4 stars out of 5. 

  • Size: XS 28B-XXL 42F​ (True to size)
  • Six colours
  • No clips or hooks 
  • Crossover front design
  • Easy pull-on
  • Designed for fluctuating breast sizes
  • Material: 92% Bamboo rayon, 8% Spandex

One reviewer said, "I bought these bras after a recommendation from a friend. The sleep bra I was using just wasn't doing the job of containing the boobs! I am 34E and bought medium busty. At first, I thought the bra seemed small, but it's not tight or uncomfortable and does the job of containing them. It also stretches slightly over time, so now I'm happy with the sizing. The material is lovely and soft and washes well. I would buy this bra again."

You don't have to sacrifice a lacey bra when you're pregnant. Seraphine have you covered when it comes to comfort and style together.

  • Size: 32B - 38F
  • No under-wiring
  • Contrast lace trim
  • Easy nursing access
  • Fully adjustable
  • Material:  87% Polyamide, 13% Elastane Lace: 90% Nylon, 10% Elastane

Review: "I love this. I ordered the bra and matching briefs as a Christmas gift to myself and am thrilled. It's the nicest nursing bra I have had in over 3 years of feeding and I plan to order the navy too as soon as my size is available."

The best briefs for during and after pregnancy

Made from soft bamboo viscose, these maternity briefs will have you living in absolute comfort. The material is super soft, helps regulate temperature faster than cotton and even offers antibacterial properties. These are a must for a comfortable mum and bump. 

  • Size: S, M, L and XL (8-18)
  • Pack of three
  • Seamless
  • Comfortable under bump fit
  • Material: 76% Viscose (Bamboo) 16% Nylon 8% Elastane

These super-soft briefs are a sleek choice and rest comfortably over your bump. They also sit high on your back to keep you securely covered. 

  • Size: S, M, L and XL (8-18)
  • Twin pack, pink and black
  • Seamless
  • Comfortable over bump fit
  • Soft microfibre
  • Zero VPL
  • Material: 80% Cotton, 20% Nylon

These simple briefs are essential for your maternity wardrobe. The mid-rise design sits below your bump but with high coverage, you will still feel comfortable. We love that they will last throughout pregnancy and can be used postpartum.

  • Size: XS, S M, L and XL (6-22)
  • Five pack
  • All black, black/grey marl, white/powder pink
  • Seamless
  • Under bump fit, high back
  • Material: Cotton 95%, Elastane 5%

Made from soft cotton, this underwear is designed to fit snug under your bump during pregnancy and after. The lace detail makes a nice to change to the usual maternity underwear, whilst also being practical. 

  • Size: S, M, L (8-18)
  • Three pack
  • Designed to fit during and after pregnancy
  • Super comfortable
  • Soft stretch cotton
  • Lace trim
  • Material: 95% Cotton, 5% Elastane

One reviewer said, "These fit lovely and are very comfy. I'm usually a 14 and I bought M. As my bump gets bigger, I may need L at some point. They also fit well under my bump."

These absorbent undies are perfect for handling pregnancy leaks and are designed especially for expectant mums. It helps protect you from the unexpected, helping to stay clean, dry, comfy and fresh. They sit just under the hips and the V-shaped dip means that you won't be having to buy new underwear as your bump gets bigger. A sustainable option instead of using pads and liners, they're eco-friendly. 

  • Sizes: 10-18 (Size up)
  • One pair, black
  • Designed especially for expecting mums, brief sits comfily under a baby bump
  • Absorbent
  • Breathable Modifier Technology™ 
  • Material: 95% Bamboo Viscose 5% Spandex. Gusset - Merino Wool, Polyester, Polyamide

One reviewer said, "I've not worn any other type of underwear for my whole pregnancy! Great shape, great material, great fit, great absorbency, great comfort and great look... Just perfection! Can't speak highly enough! Go up a size from your normal fit, and you'll be one happy mama-to-be."

Who said mamas-to-be can't be sexy? Not us! These lacy briefs from Cake Maternity are perfect for that blend between comfy and a little bit cheeky.

  • Sizes: S-XL (10-16)
  • One pair, black
  • Lace back detail
  • Fully lined cotton front
  • Sits under the bump
  • No VPL
  • Matches Truffle Lace Nursing Bra
  • Material: 53% Nylon, 19% Polyester, 17% Cotton, 11% Elastane

Review: "Super comfy, especially for a lacy underwear."

Where is the best place to buy maternity clothes?

If you're looking to expand your maternity wardrobe beyond underwear, Mother&Baby has got you covered. Read more about where to find clothes to dress your growing bump in our guide - top 32 stores to buy maternity clothes in the UK or online.

We haven't forgotten tall or petite mums either, check out our guide to find the best maternity clothes for tall women, and the best jeans for petite mums, as well as where to buy plus-size maternity clothes

What to read next

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The best maternity leggings you can wear all day, every day

Your guide to creating a capsule wardrobe

The best maternity sleep bras

 

 
  • Author: Samantha Ball Samantha Ball
  • Job Title: Freelance writer

Samantha is a mum of one, in a house full of boys. Her hobbies are long hikes, coffee tasting, and being a bit of an *obsessive* cleaner.

She also runs a blog Student Mum Diaries about what it’s like to be a student mum. 

 

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