clothes for nursing; what you need and what you can skip!

One thing that drove me absolutely crazy when I had my baby was trying to buy functional clothes for nursing and for pumping. I would go to google and type in “nursing top” or “nursing dress” and what would come up was maternity clothes with nursing holes… That’s great and all, but I am not pregnant. What’s the deal?

Then there’s the whole nursing bra thing. They aren’t cheap. They  vary when it comes to quality. It’s such a pain in the butt. Then you go and guy a few only to find your size went down. For this frugal mom, it’s no fun.

So I decided to use hindsight to help out the other moms out there who are thinking to themselves about the best way to prepare for nursing throughout the first year. Preparedness is key.

Nursing bras: Your body changes a ton (obviously) when you get pregnant, then when the milk comes in, then again as you wean your baby. The average woman’s breasts change about one cup size throughout the whole thing. If you want to really get ahead of the game, you can look for sales early in your pregnancy. Who says you can’t wear nursing bras while pregnant? Your body will change and you will only need that bra throughout the whole process. I really like these from La Leche League. They are really comfortable and cute. BUT! Now that I have been feeding/pumping for over a year, I have decided to just stick with the normal underwire bra. Truth is that I don’t really need all the fuss. I have been able to discreetly feed without the clipping and unclasping of a nursing bra. The “trick” is that I just slide the underwire up and boom. Normal or not, it’s what I do!

 Nursing tops: So like I said earlier, when I was looking for a “nursing top,” I kept on getting maternity ones popping up. The ones I did see, often, were sort of matronly or just not my style. So I opted not to buy any and instead to wear 2 pieces. I usually wore an undershirt and a layered top. I was able to stay pretty well covered up this way by pulling the top up and the neckline down from the undershirt. It worked for me. I certainly could have bought some of those maternity shirts and they would have looked baggy (but that’s on trend now!)


 Nursing in dresses is where things get tricky. You pretty much need to buy nursing dresses. ASOS has the cutest one’s in my opinion. Yes, they are usually maternity, but I have found that they are still fashionable and cute. Etsy is really where it’s at for nursing clothes. But they USUALLY aren’t cheap. They are an investment. I did find absolute steals… Check out these cute dresses for $29.99

Here are some of the cute ASOS ones! They are inexpensive also, but if you aren’t pregnant, or are losing your weight quickly, they might not be your ideal.

Here is one from that I think looks effortless and comfortable. Throw on a blazer and a pair of pumps and you are good to go! They made nursing dresses for moms who aren’t pregnant. PRAISE JESUS!



The choice I made was to not buy any at all. I literally did not wear a dress for 7 months. They were my go-to pre-baby. Call me crazy, but they were comfy, no crack showing, no loose waist, no worries. But when I became a mama, I thought about clothes differently. When I returned to work, I needed to worry about pumping quickly and often. I opted for a shirt and skirt/pants because I was able to quickly pump without needing to undress. I thought it was easiest and I didn’t really need a new wardrobe. My body had changed, I still needed to find clothes that fitted, but I didn’t look to any specialties.

Had I known then what I know now, I probably would have done just about everything differently. Nursing bras, nursing tops and dresses on Etsy! I hope this helps a new mama with questions. Let me know what you think!



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