Essentials for pregnancy – 10 things a pregnant woman needs
Congratulations! No matter if you just peed on that little stick this morning and a second line showed up or if you have been carrying your sweet baby for a couple of months already: You are pregnant! Your body is going through a lot of changes and adjustments these days and you are becoming a mommy! Growing a little human inside of you is no walk in the park. Find 10 pregnancy essentials to make your journey as a mommy-to-be easier and more comfortable.
I am now 28 weeks pregnant with my second baby and put some items together for you that I find extremely useful to have as a pregnant lady. Perhaps it can be a bit of an inspiration for you too, to make your pregnancy an even more beautiful experience.
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1. Nursing pillow
My number one must-have for pregnancy (and after!) is a nice, long, flexible nursing pillow. It ensures better sleep for me as it serves as a support in whatever way I adjust it to my body’s position. Especially over time when the belly just gets bigger and bigger it is truly a help to sleep comfortably on the left side.
After the birth of my firstborn it also served me well to get comfortable when laying down despite my c-section scar which hurt for quite some time postpartum.
And obviously I also used it for those countless nursing sessions with my son. With the pillow on my lap and him on top of it, I always felt very comfortable and well supported by my arms and shoulders.
Prepare yourself for breastfeeding your newborn baby now.
Another way I used the pillow, was for my son’s tummy times. He loved to be a bit supported by his chest when having to lift his head and starting to look around.
As you can see, there are so many ways to use a nursing pillow even after your pregnancy. It is definitely worth the investment and I can guarantee you, you will enjoy it a lot!
2. Maternity jeans and a couple cute dresses
Personally, I find a pair or two of maternity jeans another one of those absolute pregnancy essentials. They adapt to my changing shape and still make me feel like I am wearing actual clothes other than just the casual, comfy stretch pants. Most of these maternity jeans have a wide, elastic waistband that supports the belly well. The stretchy jeans material is particularly practical. It is supportive, adaptable to any shape and suitable for almost any weather.
Even after birth, I was still very happy to have my maternity jeans by the way. Unlike all those typical Instagram posts, baby bumps often regress very slowly. I found it very nice to still have a pair of jeans to wear without worrying about fitting back in my pre-pregnancy clothes already.
During pregnancy I also love to have a couple cute dresses to wear comfortably over some maternity leggings. The dresses don’t even have to be special maternity wear, but normal sized, flowy dresses work very well too.
If you don’t want to get pregnancy clothes at all, here you find some great ideas on how to dress during pregnancy without maternity clothes.
3. Comfortable bra
When the breasts grow and hurt during pregnancy (because the tissue is preparing for breastfeeding your baby soon), most of my pre-pregnancy bras don’t fit me very well anymore. That’s why I recommend a new, comfortable bra as a next on my list of pregnancy essentials. Personally, I find it should not have any stirrups or annoying seams and should not feel constricting.
It is better just to get one or two of those though. When your milk comes in a few days after birth, your breasts might change their volume again by at least one bra size. Then it will be time for you to shop for new, comfortable breastfeeding bras.
Personally, I can recommend the Bravado maternity bra.
4. Comfortable shoes
Comfortable shoes like for e.g. from `Birkenstock` are another must-have during pregnancy for me. On the one hand my feet carry more and more weight over the course of the pregnancy and they might swell a bit more than usual and on the other hand, the ligaments actually become softer in the last trimester, making the feet less stable.
Good shoes are also essential to prevent bad posture and back pain. I actually recently just read, that it would be best to go barefoot as often as possible. But obviously you don’t necessary want to walk without shoes outside.
Oh, and when you do your shoe shopping, make sure that the shoes are easy to put on and off. Tying shoelaces can become a bit tricky in the last trimester.
5. Belly oil or stretch mark cream
Another one of the pregnancy essentials for me is a nice belly oil or a stretch mark cream. According to science, stretch marks are mostly hereditary. But it can still help to love a little extra on your skin during those nine months of growing a baby in your belly. The stretching of the skin also makes it tend to dry out, so I find it important to moisturize it daily with an oil or a cream. Skincare is important for every mom-to-be.
By the way, the baby also gets something good out of that. The sense of touch is the first one out of our five senses to develop. When an embryo is only 12 weeks old, he or she can already feel touch. When you cream your body, be aware that your little one feels your hands (obviously only very gently through the skin, tissue and amniotic fluid).
Personally, I can recommend the products from Motherlove.
6. Birthing ball
During my pregnancy I have loved having a birthing ball. Sometimes sitting on a normal chair just doesn’t feel comfortable anymore, especially towards the end of the pregnancy. The ball is also ideal for pelvic floor and other gymnastic exercises which can help prepare the body for birth.
And then even after giving birth, I can still use the ball. On the one hand for postpartum exercises and on the other hand to easily rock my baby to sleep. So, here again, a purchase that we can still use very well even after the pregnancy is over.
7. Pregnancy guide book or app
Pregnancy week after pregnancy week, the little baby is growing and developing. Accordingly, as a mom-to-be I love to use the time to learn about it, follow along and be aware of that miracle going on in my belly. Depending on your personality and your individual preferences you can find a whole lot of different books or apps on that topic. There are advisory books, that keep you up to date on your child’s development steps every week, or which introduce you to the tasks of motherhood in an entertaining way. Or guides which have an answer to every question. Or books which try to simply distract you from waiting for the `Grand finale` with some creative tasks like fun photography. Find something that is suitable for you personally and learn something new about your baby every day.
And if your personality is anything like mine and you are already thinking ahead: You might also be looking for information, tips and inspiration for the first few weeks after bringing your baby home. Read my post about it here.
Get your free printable first trimester checklist here:
8. Pregnancy diary or album
I find a pregnancy diary or album or some sort of a memory box a beautiful thing to have for during pregnancy. When the belly grows and grows, and the pregnancy progresses, there are more and more memories, ultrasound pictures and photos of the baby bump coming together. It is great to write down how you feel from time to time or maybe even address a little letter to your baby. Trust me, even if you think you will still remember everything later anyways, there are so many details that new moms forget over time. Your days will be filled with all new motherhood experiences and the baby will take most of your attention. Then over time, memories will fade, and you will be super happy about this beautiful diary or album. You will easily be able to look back on the memories you created that way.
You may also want to start writing down some birth affirmations to help preparing for a positive birth experience for you and your baby.
I found this journal one particularly cute and helpful with practical inspiration of what all to write down.
9. Music box
Another one of the pregnancy essentials for me is a cute music box. As soon as the baby in the belly can perceive external noises, it also begins to react to music. Many mothers have experienced that babies will already get used to the melody during pregnancy. And then they can fall asleep with it easily after being born since it is a familiar sound. I think it is definitely worth a try if you are expecting your first child. In my experience it really worked with my firstborn.
Just make sure, you never put the music box directly on your stomach. At least one blanket should be in between. Direct sound might be too much for the developing hearing and can worst case lead to permanent damage.
10. Cuddly toy
Similar to the music box, you can also invest into a cute, cuddly toy during pregnancy. Take it for yourself at first and lie in bed with it night after night throughout the pregnancy. That way the soft toy will take on your individual smell. Over time it will get so distinctive that your baby will be able to recognize it as ‘mommy’s smell’ and it will be comforting to your little one when laying in its own bed after birth.
You can find super cute little cuddly toys like these on amazon.
Those were my personal top ten pregnancy essentials
I have loved to have them during my own pregnancies. I am aware that there is much more out there, but personally, I like to keep things simple. Hopefully, you have still been inspired by a thing or two and will be able to enjoy your own pregnancy to the fullest.
Have you started to think about what to wear after giving birth in the hospital if you plan to do so? Check out this list with 8 must-haves for your postpartum hospital stay outfits as a new mom.
To read more about getting ready for your baby click here.
Suffering from pregnancy nausea? Check out these tips on how to beat morning sickness.