Weight Gain in Pregnancy - Nothing Fits!

Updated on September 11, 2014
J.H. asks from Croton, OH
15 answers

I am 4 months pregnant, and I'm struggling with my slow but steady weight gain. I have gained around 6-7 lbs so far, which isn't that much, until I'm trying to fit into my current clothes. I'm not nearly big enough to wear maternity clothes yet (I barely have a tummy) but my butt, thighs, and waist seem to be bigger because pants are feeling tight. My underwear is recently feeling a little snug but not unbearable yet. And my bras are feeling tight, so I have bought a bra extender which helps some but isn't perfect. It's too early to get maternity clothes and I prefer not to buy a bunch of clothes that I will outgrow soon. Any suggestions on how to stretch my current wardrobe or a few key items that can grow with me? Shirts are OK right now but jeans, yoga pants, skirts, etc are becoming too tight. Also, any bra tips?

I appreciate any suggestions you have!

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So What Happened?

To answer a few questions...

Why I'm putting off maternity clothes: I haven't gained much weight. No one outside of family and friends/boss know I'm pregnant, you can't tell. I look like maybe I ate a big meal. It's not because I'm refusing to adapt to the changes - I just don't want to buy clothes when I know I still have at least 20 lb to go. If I could buy all maternity now and they would grow with me, trust me, I would be grateful!

Maxi dresses are always too long for me - I'm only 5'2 and a C cup, so they tend to be either too small in the bust or too long.

I will try the hair tie trick on my pants, see if that helps with any of them. Unfortunately I gain weight quickly in my thighs so they seem to be growing just as fast, if not faster, than my belly! So a lot of my jeans and shorts feel tight in the legs. Also, thanks for the suggestions on the belly band. I will take a look for those.

I never thought about the resale shops before but that's a good idea. I will take a look at the ones near me and see if anything works.

For bras - the extender works OK because it keeps them from being too tight, but my cup size is just slightly bigger than my current bras, with makes it not a perfect fit. My boobs have (thankfully) not grown much so new bras are not in order yet. But I think finding a stretchy/athletic type might help while I'm in my current "in-between" state.

Thank you for all of the suggestions! Keep them coming if anyone has any more.

Featured Answers



answers from Anchorage on

maternity pants have a lot of stretch, so you should be able to find some that stay up now and will still fit a few months from now. It is not to early, many woman are in maternity wear by 4 months. You just have to find good stuff that will grow with you somewhat.

3 moms found this helpful

More Answers



answers from Santa Barbara on

Do you have any maxi dresses/skirts? They fit me at various stages of weight.

Look for things with elastic vs. zippers.

I wish I had a cheap/free solution for bras.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

My sister, SIL, and a dear friend have all had babies in the past 2.5 months. They've all sworn by the belly band .... http://www.target.com/p/be-maternity-beband/-/A-13742281

SIL is a SAHM so she only used the belly band to accomodate and never purchased maternity wear.

Sister and friend both work in professional environments, so they did buy clothes.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Does hubby have any big tshirts? you could wear them with tights or some cute flowery ones...it's really hard to control how our bodies expand so you might want to check out really cheap racks and just buy things that were marked way down and accessorize if you need to look lovely all the time. And just enjoy those retail shops.Sometimes there are brand new things on their racks.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

There's the old hair tie through the belt loop trip to get away with keeping your pants and holding them closed.

But honestly, invest in 2-3 good pieces of maternity clothes that are versatile. The good ones will give you options that you can wear at every stage of pregnancy, and even post partum. Isabella Oliver was what I went with, and I still wear some of those clothes today - 6 years and a tummy tuck later! It's expensive, but very well made, adjustable for your size at various stages, and will last forever.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Sacramento on

Time to buy some inexpensive new clothes, perhaps just one size up, until you're ready for maternity wear. You'll likely get some use out of these once your pregnancy is over and you're trying to get back to your old weight (it takes a lot longer than you'd imagine).

One trick with current pants is using a rubber band around the button on your pants and looping it through the button hole and back. That will extend your pants a little (although not help with the thigh issue).

For bras, I just bought myself a few stretchy maternity athletic bras. They stretched and grew as I did.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Rochester on

Belly bands that you can buy at Target or maternity stores. I think they were a lot cheaper at Target. I wore them over my pre-pregnancy, unbuttoned pants up until about my 4th month. I also wore them over maternity pants when they were too big. I wore them after my babies were born until I was back to my pre-pregnancy size. They were actually really nice when I was nursing too. I could pull my shirt up without worrying about my belly hanging out. They were definitely worth the cost.

I would put off buying nursing bras until late in your pregnancy. I bought some right away and was only able to wear them for about a month. I was never that size again. When bra extenders don't work anymore you could buy some of the "sleep bras". They are like an athletic bra.

Look for maternity clothes at used clothing stores. They are usually in pretty good shape if not like new. They don't get worn for very long so they don't get worn out too quickly. You can also buy clothing a size or two bigger than your pre-pregnancy size. I did that a little bit with my 2nd pregnancy. When I needed a nice skirt for a job interview when I was 8 months pregnant I bought one about 4 sizes bigger than my pre-pregnancy size for less than $1 at Salvation Army.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I got 3 pairs of maternity paints - brown, black, and jeans. Shirts I just shopped at Ross Dress for Less or whatever. Bras - did the same. No point in spending a huge amount when they change so much. Nursing bras - get a couple when you're ready. Hand washing will help them last longer.



answers from McAllen on

I had fun wearing my husband's undershorts.

I tend to buy certain clothes a little larger because I don't always want a snug fit. Those clothes grew with me during my pregnancy. Maybe you can get your pants in a larger size and just expect to add looser pants to your post-partum wardrobe.

Also, start wearing more dresses--maxi or other loose fits that can grow (and shrink) with you.

I didn't buy maternity clothes until about six or seven months because I was tiny, and I thought the same as you about wasting money on something I wouldn't wear long. But I got tired of pulling down my shirt all day. (I still wear the tank tops today.) When I put on my first pair of maternity jeans--OHH!--I wished that I had discovered them sooner, if only so I could justify wearing them longer. I wasn't uncomfortable before, but the belly and back support gave me wonderful comfort that I had no idea that I was lacking! And you know how elusive comfort can be during pregnancy. I also wore those pants for several weeks after I had my baby.

They make maternity clothes to grow with you, so you wouldn't have to buy something new with every spurt. Just buy pieces that fit you in a way that would allow you to continue to wear them. And don't buy the most expensive things out there. There are reasonably-priced maternity clothes out there. I got mine from Target, and a friend shared some dressy pieces. You can go to a thrift shop.

Oh, another thing that helped me was my maternity footless tights/leggings. I wore those with everything that I thought looked good with them. They helped to pull some of my looks together, especially during cooler months.


answers from Norfolk on

By month 3, I needed maternity clothes.
Sorry but it's not too early.
Get something stretchy and adjustable.
Knit pants are your friend!
So are big tee shirts and tunic tops.
Get some bras that will offer good support (my bust busted out all over - I got stretch marks there and other places).
Check out consignment stores.
It's only the first of many changes.



answers from New York on

They sell bra extenders. It is basically a 4" long thing which has extra hooks to make it wider. This doesn't help with the cup size though. You might get some inexpensive interim bras at JC Penny, or just make due with meternity camisoles with buit in shelf bras.

F. B.


answers from Reading on

Not quite understanding why you're putting off buying maternity clothes. You know you're going to need them. Things are tight now. Safety pins can snug them up if they're still a bit too loose. But why are you waiting?



answers from Pittsburgh on

I suggest a second hand store. The lower rise pants of the previous few seasons in a size bigger than normal might last you a while. I would wear them with a men's A shirt under my regular shirt. The low rise pants sit below your belly, and A shirts are cut really long so the tucked in so nothing hangs out. I also occasional wore a belly band with the low rise pants.



answers from Kansas City on

I bought a belly band at Target and it helped stretch my non maternity pants out a few more weeks.



answers from Baton Rouge on

Sweat pants and scrubs with draw string waists. I used those a lot.
I didn't buy many maternity clothes and what I did buy, I bought on clearance - a couple of pairs of overalls. I didn't care that they weren't stylish. I wasn't going to pay a small fortune for clothes I would never use again. (I already knew that my daughter was going to be an only child. I hated being pregnant).
If you have friends who have had multiple babies and kept their maternity clothes, ask if you can borrow them.

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