To Bellaband or not to Bellaband? That is the question of newly pregnant women everywhere. In a short (possibly made up) history, I believe maternity bands have only been in existence for approximately 6 years. The first year it sounds like it was around was in 2007, when the “Baby Be Mine” Maternity Belly Band won a “Parenting Media Award” for favorite maternity accessory.
Since then, maternity bands have been considered a staple (if not the solution) of/to maternity wardrobes across the US.
Here’s the thing about belly bands: You either love them or your hate them. You either think it’s the best (approximately) $25 you ever spent or a waste of money (particularly at a time when you might be concerned about money going out the door). My two cents? If you’re a small to medium or petite woman and the thought of packing away your beautiful clothes stresses you out, then indulge yourself and spring for the elastic. The band I hear about the most from friends (particularly because it comes in a variety of colors and styles) is theBella Band by Ingrid and Isabel. It will carry you through your entire first trimester (particularly when your waist is expanding even if your belly is not) through possibly the end of your second trimester. It might even just provide you with a little extra comfort beyond holding up your pants because just when everything starts hanging out, a little “support” goes a long way.
As for the rest of pregnant women world-wide, I would suggest skipping the band and instead, springing for a pair of actual, full-blown maternity pants. Particularly if you’re not pregnant during the summer, you could spend your money on a pair of versatile, comfortable, basic-color, maternity pants that will not only carry you through your first and second trimester, but possibly your entire pregnancy.
Personally, at the onset of my first pregnancy, I purchased some Bellabands (in three colors actually: white, black, brown). But I decided to return them almost as soon as I purchased a pair of maternity pants. I had heard from some friends that depending on the way your belly grows (some bellies go outward and round, while others can go down and out, aka “torpedo belly”) – the maternity band can be uncomfortable (either flip down or roll). Pregnancy’s uncomfortable enough as it is and the maternity pants I picked up were really comfortable so the one thought I had was, “I know I will need pants and use these them a lot, particularly towards the end of my pregnancy, so I’d rather spend my money on a pair of pants that I can wear for an entire maternity trip than a small piece of elastic that may or may not be comfortable for only a few months.”
So, all that being said, it all circles back to you Mama – to belly band or not to belly band? (Please take my poll!)