A headline caught my attention at the end of last week, it read ‘You Should Be Wearing Maternity Clothes Right Now’ – I was intrigued. The article went on to tell me that even if I’m not pregnant, or have never been pregnant; that if I’ve put on weight I should be wearing maternity clothes. I couldn’t believe what I was reading! The suggestion that we all go out and invest in maternity clothing when we’ve put on weight is a little ludicrous in my mind.
The sentiment of the article was totally on point – love who you are now – I am ALL for that as I wrote in my Style Resolutions article a couple of weeks back, but you need to know that wearing maternity clothing when you’ve put on a few pounds is not going to help you love the way you are now.
Maternity clothing is made differently, it’s tailored for a big belly so as well as having excess fabric around the tummy, it’s often longer at the front and waistbands tend to sit above or below a bump for comfort which either highlights a bump or exposes it. Maternity clothing is comfortable and flattering for pregnant women, but is not a flattering option for someone who isn’t pregnant and is carrying weight around their middle.
But don’t worry, there ARE some fantastic pieces out there that ARE flattering and I’m sharing the cream of the crop here, along with a few tips on what to look for, what to avoid, and why.
- Thin clingy fabrics are best avoided as they can be very unforgiving. If you want to wear tight, clingy styles, choose a thicker more structured fabric that will streamline.
- Pleated skirts are difficult to wear as they add volume around the middle, especially high waist styles.
- Low rise pants and jeans will either sit under your tummy or cut across it, neither of which will be comfortable or flattering. They are the biggest culprit of muffin tops.
- Loose flowing tops or tunics that cover everything up and hang from the bust will hide your tummy, but they’ll also hide everything else making you look bigger than you are, if you want to wear loose tops, choose a style that will highlight some of your assets…good shoulders, slim arms, a great neck.
- Avoid skirts and pants with detailing like buttons, zips and pockets across the front as these will add bulk to your middle and draw attention to your tummy.
- Skirts with peplums will highlight a tummy so are best avoided.
Most flattering options:
Highlight your assets! If you have a great set of pins, show them off. Slim arms? Wear sleeveless tops and dresses. A great bust? Show some cleavage! Good shoulders? There are a ton of cold shoulder styles around again this season! What ever you do, try to avoid covering up in tent like shapes which will make you look bigger than you are. Below are my top 10 things to look for, along with 9 super flattering options available in the UK and the USA, right now.
- Layering is your friend, it’s a great way to alter your proportions and highlight some areas while disguising others. Wearing a tailored jacket long cardigan or long line vest open over your outfit will lengthen your figure and make your torso appear narrower by drawing the eye in.
- Empire line styles are always a great choice, they flatter everyone as they highlight our narrowest point just under the bust.
- Look for tops and dresses with ruching down the sides and across the middle, they are fantastic at disguising a tummy.
- I’ve mentioned this many times before, but color blocking is a fantastic way to highlight and disguise.
- Choose pants (trousers) and skirts with a flat front, and if you’re looking for an elasticated waist there are a few great on trend pieces currently available.
- Tops and dresses that have some form of draping at the front are a fantastic way to disguise a tummy.
- Asymmetrical tops are one of my favorite ways to hide a tummy, they are fantastic at breaking up the line across the middle or hips!
- Look for detailing that will emphasize your waist without highlighting your tummy.
- Choose high waist pants and jeans! Not only will they be far more comfortable but they will lengthen your legs and flatter your tummy far more than the low rise styles that will sit under your tummy.
- If you’re wearing a cardigan or shirt, try leaving the bottom two buttons undone, this will break up the line across your tummy and prevents them from pulling across your hips.
Available in the USA
Available in the UK