Updated October 2018

The thought of wearing maternity jeans in pregnancy makes some people cringe.

I totally get it.

But I promise: if you have the right pair of maternity jeans, you’ll want to wear them every day! They’ll be as versatile in maternity as they are in normal life (normal, haha).

But first. Here’s my “maternity jeans cheat sheet” to help you find the perfect pair:

  1. Fit and flatter! You have to feel confident in your maternity jeans or all bets are off. You want these pants to hug your curves and make you say, “DAMN girl, you rockin’ this bump!” For many, this means investing in a designer pair of maternity denim. It’s all about what I call “PPW” (price per wear).
  2. Comfort. If you don’t want to wear them, they’re not the right pair. You want them to feel soft, comfy and not have any “pinch points.”
  3. Panel options: There are different designs to offer your desired belly support –
    1. Full Panel: A full panel is a piece of fabric that covers your whole belly and supports your bump as it grows. Maternity jeans with a full panel can get really hot in warm climates and summer weather (but feel great in the winter!), so keep this in mind before buying.
    2. Side Panel: With side panel maternity jeans, the sides of the pants are reinforced with elastic fabric that stretches with your growing waistline. Designer brands usually opt for this design because it’s more discreet than a full panel.
    3. Demi Panel: This is a nice in-between panel size (usually a few inches) that covers the lower part of your belly and is especially good for the beginning stages of pregnancy.
  4. Don’t be afraid to wear skinny jeans while pregnant. After all, your legs will be dwarfed by the size of your belly, so these can still make an amazing pregnancy pant.
  5. Air dry! You can preserve the integrity of your maternity jeans (and most things, for that matter) by hanging them to dry. This also helps extend the life of the elastic in the panels.
  6. Sizing: You should buy your regular, non-pregnancy size when purchasing maternity jeans. These sizes assume the normal weight gain that comes with pregnancy.

But first…

Ingrid & Isabel BellaBand ~ $28

In the early stages of pregnancy, many women can still fit into their non-maternity denim. You can extend the life of your regular jeans by wearing this BellaBand over your unfastened waistband. The Bella Band is also amazing for the postpartum months, either to keep your maternity jeans up as you start losing the baby weight or for fitting back into your regular jeans.

maternity jeans

Best Maternity Jeans

Below are my favorite maternity jeans in an array of styles and ordered by price:

Old Navy Full-Panel Boot-Cut Jeans ~ $39

This bootleg maternity jean comes in a darker wash — and for a fantastic price! With a full panel, this pair is sure to offer support through all stages of pregnancy.

maternity jeans

Old Navy Maternity Never-Fade Premium Full-Panel Rockstar Jeans ~ $45

Black denim is perfect for at least 3 seasons. The panel on this pair of jeans is the same color as the denim, so it blends in nicely. Note: these tend to run a tad small, so it’s best to size up.

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ASOS Design Maternity Ridley High Waist Skinny Jeans ~ $45

“Raw hems” like these are super trendy right now, and yes – preggos can participate too! I love that ASOS offers a number of different lengths (per size).

Gap Inset Panel Denim Shorts ~ $50

These black denim shorts, which feature an insert panel that sits under your bump, are long enough that you’ll feel comfortable going out in them. They also feature a trendy raw hem that looks like a cut-off.

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H&M MAMA Skinny Jeans ~ $50

I love H&M Maternity clothes! If you don’t want to spend a fortune on a comfy pair of maternity jeans, H&M is an awesome choice. They offer a ton of different washes; I’m partial to this pair of grey skinnies (a great fall basic!).

ASOS DESIGN Maternity Recycled Florence Authentic Straight Leg Jeans ~ $51

This looser fit is a comfy alternative to a super skinny jean and features an easy demi panel. This is a great casual look for summer and the “in between” seasons.

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1822 Denim Destructed Maternity Skinny Jeans ~ $59

These skinnies come with a full panel belly band. They’re very highly rated on Nordstrom with a ton of moms raving about their fit, price point, and comfort.

maternity jeans

Gap Maternity Demi Panel Girlfriend Jeans ~ $74, now $60

Gap Maternity “Girlfriend fit” jeans are a great alternative to all the skinny jeans out there (thank heavens because sometimes, you’re just not in the mood!). They offer a nicely fitted style with a bit more give than skinnies, plus a cute rolled cuff.

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Madewell Maternity Skinny Jeans ~ $138

What’s this?? Madewell is offering maternity denim?? YAH, you heard me. If I were hunting for maternity pieces, these would top my list. The wash and distressing is perfect for fall.

AG Jeans Secret Fit Belly Legging Ankle Maternity Jeans ~ $178

AG is my go-to brand for premium denim (and our editors agree!!). I splurged on a pair of these and they served me well during both pregnancies. The fabric is soft and washes incredibly well. This is a great pair of full panel maternity jeans with a beautiful darker wash. I almost want to get pregnant so I can wear them again (haha — kidding!).

maternity jeans

Paige Transcend Verdugo Ultra Skinny Maternity Jeans ~ $189

I bought these super soft skinnies with my second pregnancy and wished I had known about them all along. I love the super dark wash and the fact that the side panels blend right in! Another worthwhile splurge, IMO.

maternity jeans

That’s all for now, ladies. I hope you find some jeans that make you and your bump feel good this fall!

Cheers! Kristen


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