The Best Postpartum Clothes To Keep You Comfy But Put Together(ish)

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by Megan Hungerford
Motherhood Maternity/Hatch Collection

Postpartum clothes are some of the many things you’ll want to think about when preparing your postpartum essentials. In fact, you should consider it a baby gear necessity, because you have to take care of yourself, too. Chances are, you’ve already loaded up on diapers of all sizes, found the safest bassinet, the best baby bottles, and you even have all the baby clothes and snuggly blankets washed and ready to go for Baby. Now, take a moment and think about what “new mom clothes” you’ll need, because once baby comes you aren’t going to have a moment to think about it, let alone shop.

“New moms should select items that will provide support, are easy wear and easy care, and versatile,” says Marla Ryan, Brand Executive Vice President at Motherhood Maternity. “As a new mom is growing into her role as a mama and letting her body recover, whether she’s nursing or not, the changes at this stage remain dramatic. Simple nursing solutions to make feeding a breeze, and compression solutions that help with recovery. The goal of our new mom collection is to help women feel like themselves again while embracing their new, amazing, life-giving body.”

RELATED: The Best Maternity Shorts To Keep You (& Your Belly) Cool And Comfy All Summer

Do you have postpartum pajamas that allow for easy access for breastfeeding or pumping (and you’ll want a few pairs ’cause things will get M-E-S-S-Y)? How about postpartum loungewear, like sweatpants or supportive leggings, that are comfy enough for home but cute enough to wear out of the house? You may want to grab some postpartum jeans that are supportive yet stretchy or some work-appropriate pants for your return to the office (bleh). And if you have a special event on the books — be it a wedding, your baby’s christening, or a formal work event — you’ll want some suitable options that are elegant and flattering without feeling restricting on your healing body.

“One of the most important items a woman needs is a well-fitting bra maternity and nursing bra,” adds Ryan. “While pregnant, the sudden growth in breast tissue results in soreness and tenderness and continues throughout pregnancy and in the first few weeks after delivery when milk supply is coming in and establishing to baby’s demand. The breast tissue of a woman who is pregnant or nursing is roughly 35% heavier than the breast tissue of the same size in a non-pregnancy/lactating woman. Milk ducts begin forming early on in pregnancy and with an ill-fitting bra, this can result in clogged ducts or even mastitis, even before you start nursing.”

Your post-baby bod is not going to be the one you had pre-baby, or your pregnancy body, either — which is normal. So turn to the right postpartum clothes to help you feel and look great during this transition. But don’t wait until baby is already here, make sure you have a few things ready to go. Below, see our favorite postpartum clothing picks for any occasion!

Postpartum Pajamas

Treat yourself (or someone else) to the soft luxury of the Bella Maternity 3-piece pajama set from Cosabella. The black cotton modal nursing pajamas plus robe is the perfect put-together loungewear for hospital or home visitors. One new mom reviewed on Amazon, “I bought this to wear in the hospital after my first baby and it was perfect – I can’t recommend this set enough. First, it is so soft and comfortable which is all you will want after delivery. Second, some people told me not to bother because I would just wear a hospital gown the whole time. But for me, once I started nursing, the gown was very irritating on my nipples so this tank was a godsend. After delivery, you might feel like an alien in your own body — so treat yourself (or a pregnant friend!) to these beautiful pajamas!” This set is currently available in small, medium, and large.

Don’t spend your delivery, labor, and recovery in a giant hospital gown sack. Buy your own soft, true-to-size hospital gown with a snap-down and easy access for nursing. One Amazon customer reviewed, “This was perfect. I actually wore it backwards, so that I could nurse and do skin to skin, and then when I got home I wore it the right way to nurse. The material is very soft and comfortable. I felt much more comfortable in the hospital once I showered and put this on. I will be purchasing these for friends and family having babies as well.” A comfier alternative to the standard hospital smocks, this gown is one of the best postpartum clothing pieces for the hospital and those first days back home. It comes in a wide variety of 18 colors.

One of the best things about this Motherhood Maternity nightgown is the fact that at first glance, it looks just like a cute dress. Whether or not you double its purpose is up to you. Made from rayon, polyester, and spandex, you’ll feel phenomenal wearing this to bed. The straps are clips, so you have easy access when it’s time to feed your baby. Available in sizes small to 3X and a few different patterns, it makes sense to buy more than one based on how versatile they are. “It’s so so soft and comfortable!” raved one Amazon customer. “After having the baby, I loved wearing it in the hospital. it’s perfect for late-night feedings. I love the elastic bra for support, easy access for feedings… and so comfortable to wear!”

Proof that nursing/postpartum jammies can be cute! If it’s chilly where you are, consider getting long sleeves and pants for sleeping so you stay warm as you hop in and out of bed all night. This combo is made with soft material and has a nursing panel for easy breastfeeding or pumping access (meaning you won’t freeze by stripping down every 3 hours). These bestselling PJs are available in a handful of striped and solid colors, and you may want to grab two sets — you’ll want a backup *when* the other one gets spit up/peed/spilled/pooped on.

Like the PJ set from Ekouaer above, but feel like flannel might be a little too warm? You’ll be happy to know that the company also makes a short-sleeved set that’ll keep you comfortable all year long. Available in 40 prints and designs, you’re sure to find a couple that fit your mood. So, what makes these special? They have a discreet side open layer design to help you nurse in a pinch.

Postpartum Jeans

Love your Levi’s? You may not be able to fit into your regular denim just yet, but you can snag a pair of super-stretch pull-on jeans to wear postpartum and help you feel *almost* like yourself again. These bestsellers have a whopping 36,000 Amazon reviews, come in a full range of sizes, three lengths, and eight colors. Even better, most of them are under $30, so go ahead and grab a few.

Postpartum Work Pants

Bootcut more your style? Rekucci’s work pants aren’t technically “postpartum” (maybe you prefer it that way?) but their stretchy pull-on style and tummy-supporting mid-rise make them suitable for workwear when you return to the office post-baby. These are available in sizes 0 to 18 and short, regular, and tall lengths, plus a huge array of colors including grays, khakis, blues, and patterns like pinstripes and checks.

These bow-accented pants are so cute, no one will realize they’re perfect for accommodating a postpartum body! A high-waist cut won’t irritate C-section scars, plus pleating and a bow work together to add extra style. Reviewers rave about how comfortable and gorgeous these pants are (hence, the high 4.4-star rating out of over 5,000 reviews). They come in over 30 shades, and it might be hard not to just buy all of them.

Postpartum Loungewear

When it comes to postpartum, looser clothes are often better. Your body is working really hard and deserves to be pampered with soft clothes. That’s why these workout joggers are perfect. Good to sleep in or to go out and walk the dog in, they also have a high-rise waistband so they won’t put a lot of unnecessary pressure on your belly. Available in 14 fun colors in sizes small to 3X, these will continue to be your favorite pants even years after giving birth.

A must-have for c-sections births or new moms battling Diastasis Recti (where your abdominal muscles separate), the SRC Postpartum Compression Shorts will not only suck it all in but speed up recovery and support weak healing muscles. “These shorts have helped my ‘Mummy Tummy’ shrink back postpartum so fast! I felt so jiggly in the hospital but once I got home and got these on, I felt more secure. As I wear them more and more I feel my stomach firming up! These shorts are a MUST for all postpartum moms. Worth the price!!” raves a new mom on Amazon. Plus, SRC compression shorts are specifically designed for postpartum bodies, giving support to the pelvic and abdominal muscles for added mobility after birth.

One thing that’s tough on postpartum bodies? Having to deal with zippers and buttons once again. While there’s nothing cozier than maternity jeans, these high-waisted jogger pants might be a decent replacement after the baby arrives. These are fantastic for a few reasons. For one, they have pockets — ideal for carrying bottles, pacifiers, or even the television remote if you’re about to start a pumping session. The material of the pants won’t make you warm or sweaty — instead, they’re breathable and lightweight. And quite honestly, even though they’re just joggers, they can pass for standard pants.

These shorts are. The. Comfiest. And, over 10,000 Amazon reviewers agree. While they’re definitely on the lounge-y side, they’re still stylish enough to wear out of the house for those times when, you know, you can’t fathom putting on bottoms with a button. They also maintain their shape and are long enough to provide some coverage so you’re not constantly pulling them down. Overall, a must-have for your summer loungewear wardrobe — postpartum or not.

Postpartum Leggings

We couldn’t agree more with this new mom’s review on Amazon: “Bye-bye muffin top, love handles and postpartum tummy! Like many new moms, I desperately needed a few key pieces to help me feel good in my new body during this transition period. These leggings have been a lifesaver! They are extremely comfortable, but much better, they provide a slimming effect and smooth out little bulges and uneven skin texture. On top of that, the compression helps with my leg circulation and my legs seem less tired when I have these leggings on.” In sum, the high-waisted, moisture-wicking, seamless compression leggings from Mother’s Essentials are just that – essential!

In those days and weeks (and months) after birth, it’s nice to have the added support of high-waisted leggings. This pair by SYRINX is ideal for lounging, running errands, or wearing for new baby meet-and-greets. Even better, they come in a huge variety of colors and patterns, including multi-packs of three or seven so you can stock up. While these leggings aren’t specific for postpartum moms, many of the 26,000 + (!) reviewers say they loved wearing these after leaving the hospital. “I used these for postpartum and they are so soft and comfortable for after having a baby!” says an Amazon reviewer.

Snug enough for support but not tight enough to hurt, the 90 Degree By Reflex “Squat Proof” Leggings are moisture-wicking and lightweight with a smooth feel. They offer a little extra coverage in those weeks and months post-birth and are ideal for errands, entertaining guests, or gentle exercises like walking, yoga, or of course, squats (once the doc gives the okay, of course). Even after you’ve recovered, you’ll enjoy wearing these for gym workouts, hikes, or running around town.

Yes, leggings can serve as pants — especially after you’ve had a baby. These No Nonsense leggings won’t even make it obvious, especially since they come with real back pockets. Comfortable and stylish, these leggings are incredibly versatile. ” I can do yoga in these or lounge, but feel like I’m ‘dressed’ and wear them out as well,” one Amazon reviewer said. They come in three colors.

Postpartum Clothes For Weddings & Special Occasions

The dress that goes from snuggling on the couch with Baby to lunch with friends, the one-and-done Smallshow nursing dress is a new mom’s best friend. “Great nursing dress,” reviews one nursing mom on Amazon. “The dress fits great and is very comfortable. [It’s] loose and flattering, skims over the parts I don’t want to show right now, but (it’s) not a shapeless sack. It has a modest neckline and is easy to nurse discreetly in. I love it.” Destined to be a favorite among your postpartum clothes, the ¾ sleeve modal rayon midi dress is also available in short sleeves for those warmer months and in a long sleeve maxi for full coverage.

Let your inner goddess shine with this gorgeous maxi dress. Available in eight soft colors, this flowy dress is made of lightweight polyester. “The bodice isn’t too stretchy and holds everything in place nicely. The high-low hem is flattering and makes wearing boots with it cute. The waistline is a little higher so it could work as a maternity dress as well,” said one happy Amazon customer.

This dress is also from Zattcas, but offers more of a vintage look. With long, semi-sheer lace sleeves, this dress is bound to make a statement. It’s also very friendly for nursing moms. The crossover wrap neckline makes it very convenient to feed without having to fully undress. “I wore this to a vow renewal and it's super comfortable, also if you’re a nursing mama such as myself, it's easily accessible too without showing your nursing bra,” one mom on Amazon said. You can buy it in one of seven colors.

Did we mention we love wrap dresses? This Amazon brand beauty is made of soft jersey and has a flattering wrap silhouette, plus the crossover-top offers easy access for nursing moms. And as if it wasn’t versatile enough — wear it on a dinner date, to church, to work, on vacation, or (yes) to a wedding — it comes in 23 different colors and patterns to suit any occasion. BTW, you’ll keep wearing this pretty dress post-postpartum recovery, too.

Dresses can actually be wonderful post-pregnancy for a few reasons. For one, wrap dresses like this one can let you easily access your chest if you’re currently nursing. But also, they make you feel special. When a dress is in play, the day is just a bit more special. Coming in 34 different colorful and bright patterns, this stunning A-Line is sure to become your “any occasion” dress. Bonus: it also has pockets.

Postpartum Casual Tops

Sitting in the hospital bed recovering (or breastfeeding, or pumping …) can get chilly. Make sure to pack light layers in your birthing bag, like this wear-everywhere wrap sweatshirt. The open front wrap is the perfect postpartum wardrobe addition with pockets to stash your phone and pacifiers and is fully machine-washable for all those spit-ups and other newborn accidents. “Super lux!” reviewed a mom on Amazon. “This open cardigan is super soft and looks more expensive than it is. It’s described as a sweatshirt, but this is not your mother’s sweatshirt material. It flows nicely, it’s not too thick, and does not cling to any lumps or bumps…Win!”

Stay cute and nursing-accessible with the sure-to-be workhorse of your postpartum nursing wardrobe, the Smallshow breastfeeding tee. The pack of three soft, stretchy modal t-shirts come in classic color combinations featuring fun stripes and modern colors (blush anyone?). “I’m currently nursing my fourth baby and was wanting to add to my breastfeeding wardrobe. I purchased the grey, brown, and black set,” reviews one Amazon customer. She adds that it features, “a relaxed fit that is good for my postpartum body, neutral colors that can easily be accessorized or layered, and a great price.”

An absolute must in a breastfeeding mother’s 4th-trimester wardrobe, this nursing popover hoodie zips at the breast for easy, discreet feeding. The Bearsland popover breastfeeding sweatshirt comes in a ton of patterns and colors, keeping mama warm on those chilly nights or brisk days out and about. One nursing mama reviewed on Amazon, “I now own three of these and I will probably continue to buy more!! Amazing quality and super warm and soft. I am constantly getting complimented on it when I am out nursing because it’s so discreet. It’s definitely worth the money!!”

When you’re a mom, you’ll realize more than ever how chilly you are — and, maybe it’s because if you choose to breastfeed, your top is often halfway off. Yep, that’s the part of early motherhood they don’t tell you about. Cardigans like this one are a must in order to feel warm (and, slightly less exposed.) Even better, it can remain as part of your wardrobe even after your baby has grown up. It’s available in 17 colors, so you might want to grab more than one.

Postpartum Underwear & Bras

We guarantee at least one friend who’s had a baby before you will advise you to steal as many of the mesh underwear the hospital gives you. Yup, underwear is going to be an important postpartum wardrobe essential, starting at the hospital. Avoid the itchy hospital stuff and pack your own high-waisted postpartum underwear from Kindred Bravely. “These are soft and comfortable.” reviewed one new mom on Amazon. “After a week in the hospital wearing mesh disposable panties, putting these on made me feel so much more human. The rise is high enough that they don’t bother my C-section incision and they’re a little wider in the gusset than most underwear, so they hold a postpartum pad in place more securely and prevent leaks. In short, these panties are a nice little luxury to make recovery more pleasant.”

If you’re undecided about whether you’d rather wear your panties over or under your post-baby 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, plus they fold down to accommodate your tummy, even if you’ve had a C-section. BTW, you can also wear them throughout your entire pregnancy.

Do not sleep on the opportunity to snag a great sleep bra. They’re soft and comfy (think: PJs for your bust!), they can hold a nursing pad to absorb any overnight leakage, and they offer easy access for all-hours snack sessions. This one has the perfect amount of support (you want to feel secure, but not constricted) and a simple snap hook to let down before you, well, let down. And for the record, even if you don’t plan on nursing (no shame in that, Mama!), you’ll still want a stretchy bra to accommodate any postpartum breast change sizes and that lovely milk leakage. Ryan says this bra is a Motherhood Maternity top seller.

“Post-pregnancy wraps, such as post-pregnancy support belts or post-pregnancy belly wraps, provide compression,” explains Ryan. “Post-pregnancy panties add additional support and comfort as new moms heal.” This Loving Comfort belt comes in sizes small to extra large, and will help alleviate pain in your legs, back, and even abdomen. It’s excellent for C-sections, and something you might want to buy in advance if you haven’t given birth yet.

Postpartum Footwear

After delivery, the nurses are going to have you up and waddling around before you know it. Don’t get stuck wandering the hospital halls barefoot. Treat those tired (and likely swollen) feet right with the warm luxury of UGG Scuffette slippers. “Exactly what you would expect from UGG. Gorgeous slippers, super comfy and warm. These are the ultimate in cozy,” reviewed one Amazon customer. Just as perfect scuffing around the hospital halls as home, these sheepskin slippers are a postpartum wardrobe staple that will be loved for years to come.

Whether you’re a month or two years postpartum, comfortable shoes are key for moms –especially those with little kids. The flexible fabric and memory foam soles of BZees make you feel like you’re walking on air (or waddling, or running, depending on how far along postpartum you are). These slip-on booties mean no tying, which is great whether it still hurts to bend over or if you’re rushing out the door with a tot. And since these are machine washable (!) they’ll last you for years across all the postpartum stages, so they’re worth the investment. Get them in a dozen color combos.

These slip-on sneakers are cute, comfy, lightweight and don’t make you bend over to tie laces. (Who has time for that when you’re trying to keep a tiny human alive?) We’re imagining wearing these for stroller walks around the neighborhood, or with postpartum jeans and a flowy top (one that you can whip yourself out to nurse, when necessary) to feel like you actually put an outfit together. Choose from an array of colors, from black and white to red and purple, or hell, at this price point, get a couple of pairs. Note, these are men’s sizes — but, the shoe is undeniably unisex and a good fit for all feet.

Looking for more advice on pregnancy essentials for you and baby gear for that little one on the way? We’ve got you covered with the best products and advice from moms who’ve been there!