If you’re spending your summer pregnant, staying cool is a top priority—not to mention the comfort that can be found in floating weightless in a swimming pool.
So when the temperatures start to rise, get yourself and your bump to the pool sporting one of the best maternity bathing suits in our guide.
How to Make the Best of a Maternity Bathing Suit
Here in the Midwest, the summers can get so hot and during my third pregnancy, when my then-toddler daughters wanted to play outside, I knew the last place I wanted to be was the playground under the August sun. Instead, we spent a ton of time at the pool and using toddler pools and water tables at home. And, as embarrassing as this is to admit, I wore a T-shirt and bikini bottoms instead of actual maternity swimwear every single time.
Finding a good maternity bathing swimsuit can make each trip to the pool or beach much more pleasant, but the hunt was more difficult than I expected. After I waited too long, I had a hard time finding a maternity swimsuit I actually liked in my size. Don’t be like me — shop early and follow these tips for what to look for in a maternity bathing suit:
- Know your measurements. Sizing for most maternity brands will be true to your pre-pregnancy size. Even so, I highly recommend grabbing a soft measuring tape to measure the widest part of your hips and the fullest part of your breasts. Compare these numbers against the brands’ size guide before you hit “buy.” Since sizes can vary from brand to brand, an accurate measurement is the best way to get a good fit.
- Size up for the long haul. For longevity with your maternity bathing suit, consider sizing up just a bit if you’re buying in your first or second trimester. As you progress in your pregnancy, you want a little room for your growing bump! You can also shop for suit bottoms that rest under the belly, as this will give you more flexibility than a suit that goes over your bump.
- Two words: bathroom break. If you’re debating between a one-piece and a two piece, consider that a two-piece may be the most convenient option for pulling a suit off and on for frequent bathroom trips. Buying a two-piece also gives you a little more flexibility with sizing, allowing you to size up to accommodate your growing bump while sticking true to your pre-pregnancy size on the bottom half if that’s what works for you.
Do You Really Need a Maternity Bathing Suit?
Good question! That totally depends on you and your body, but it’s not just your bump to take into consideration—you’ll probably experience body changes in other places too, like your hips, butt, or breasts that may warrant maternity swimwear during your pregnancy.
If you’re feeling down about spending on a maternity swimsuit that might only get a few months of wear, you’ll be glad to know we’ve got a few options on our list that work for after-pregnancy too. And of course, you can always pass down your suit to another mama-to-be or donate it to a secondhand shop. Ready to hit the beach? Here are the best maternity bathing suits for you and your bump for summer 2021.
The Best Maternity Bathing Suits
Features we love
- Halter top
- Nylon/Spandex blend
- Available in sizes small to extra large
- Full coverage bottom
Motherhood Maternity is well known for the quality of its products and this one-piece maternity suit is comfortable enough for pool time spent splashing with your kids and darling enough for a romantic babymoon with your partner.
With 78 reviews on their website, this suit holds a 5-star rating. More the one mom-to-be mentioned the extra room in the belly, saying it didn’t squeeze and they felt they had room to grow. One down-side worth noting: moms with a larger cup size said they wanted more support from the top of the suit.
“I love how this bathing suit fits,” writes Jody. “It’s comfortable for the belly, it does not squeeze, and I love that it gives room for growth. I feel just as confident pregnant wearing as is when I was not pregnant and wore my bathing suit.”
Cute and comfortable sum up this suit! The ruffle adds interest to an otherwise simple, black suit. If the cheeky-suit trend isn’t for you, you’ll be glad to know this suit offers full coverage for the backside. This suit is also available in a blue-grey color. The bust has padded cups, providing a little extra support and coverage.
Although this suit has straight sizing, we featured it because it is available in plus sizes. The largest size, a 3X, is equivalent to a 22 or 24 in US sizing. It’s important to know that caring for this suit requires handwashing and hanging it to dry. If it gets wrinkled, it can be ironed on low heat and you can also drop it off at the dry cleaners.
- Black or grey
- Hand wash or dry clean only
- Padded bust
The double lining, full-coverage in the butt, and padding in the bust make for plenty of coverage and support for an active mom. One downside worth noting is that buyers report it runs small, with a 2X working best for sizes 16 and 18.
“Great swimsuit,” writes Tayler on the PinkBlush website. “I’m normally a 16/18 and ordered a 2x. Fit perfectly. Not tight on my belly. Fit great on the butt.”
The only thing that beats sunscreen when you’re under the hot sun is covering up. With a lightweight, long-sleeved rash guard you can get the protection you need while staying cool at the same time.
The suit is made from Spandex and nylon and it is machine washable, so you won’t need to spend your precious summer free time handwashing your suit. One downside of this suit is that it is only a top, so you’ll need to shop for a matching bottom. We also noticed the sizing is limited—the top is only available in extra small, small, and medium. That being said, reviewers noted that the suit does run large so you just might be able to size down.
- Long-sleeved rash guard
- Black and white stripes
- Available in sizes small to medium
“Awesome,” writes Lillian. “Great fit, super cute, and kept me burn-free during a river rafting trip under intense sun.”
This skirted swimsuit bottom sits below your bump, so it can be worn early in pregnancy and will continue to fit you well as your bump grows.
For additional sun protection, pair it with the black and white striped rash guard in this article or the polka-dot, twist-front maternity top. On the Motherhood Maternity website, this swimsuit bottom has 45 reviews and a 5-star rating. More than one reviewer noted the fit was comfortable and they felt they had room to grow. One mom specifically noted that it stayed put, there was no annoying riding up falling down to deal with.
Based on the reviews, this swimsuit bottom is well-loved, but there was one downside pointed out more than once. It has a low rise, so if you prefer it to sit on your belly or you tend to carry low, this isn’t the swimsuit bottom for you.
- Handwash only
- Available in sizes small, medium, and large
“I would have preferred a higher or full panel,” writes one reviewer. “However I find this quite comfortable and it gives the perfect amount of coverage. I really like the look. Very comfortable fabric that doesn’t overstretch and get too baggy when wet.”
While the body changes drastically throughout pregnancy, I loved my bump and felt empowered to enjoy my figure and wear whatever felt good. This sweet bikini shows off your growing baby and allows you to get plenty of sun while staying cool this summer. This suit has earned five stars on the PinkBlush site from expecting moms who loved that this suit would get plenty of wear during their pregnancy and after their baby was born.
Like a lot of swimsuits, this bikini needs to be hand washed and hung to dry. It is available in sizes small, medium, and large. The suit also comes in different colors, including basic black if that’s your thing.
- Nylon and spandex with a polyester lining
- Handwash and line dry only
“Perfect for maternity or non-maternity,” writes one reviewer. “There isn’t anything that makes this specifically maternity. I bought it as maternity simply for the top coverage! I will be able to wear it again next year as a normal non-maternity swimsuit.”
If I ever planned on being pregnant in the summer again (I don’t), this is the suit I would choose. Personally, I love the extra coverage the high waist provides since I am definitely team full belly coverage during my pregnancies. Although the top is practical and sporty, the double, thin strap is a sweet detail that caught my eye.
The care of this bathing suit is oh-so-simple. Throw it in the wash and then hang it dry. One potential drawback of this suit is that it probably won’t work after the baby arrives if it fits well in the third trimester because of the high rise of the bottoms.
- Machine washable
- Nylon and spandex
- Adjustable straps
“I am 15 weeks,” writes Nicole. “This top fits my 32g chest really well and is comfortable. The bottoms are much higher than expected but think will work well as I’m farther along.”
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you wear a regular bathing suit while pregnant?
Every pregnant body is different, so you might be able to wear a regular bathing suit while you’re pregnant. That being said, it is normal to experience changes in your boobs, hips, and of course, your bump, so you might need a special suit just for your pregnancy.
Is it OK to wear a two-piece while pregnant?
The only rule for buying a swimsuit while you’re pregnant is to buy what’s comfortable. As long as you feel good in a two-piece, you can totally wear one while pregnant!
What is the best bathing suit to hide a tummy?
A one-piece swimsuit, a tankini, or a high-waisted bikini are the best suits for complete coverage while pregnant or postpartum.
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