Trying to keep your pregnancy a secret can feel impossible, especially in those first few months when you’re dealing with exhaustion and morning sickness, all while trying to sneak off to doctor’s appointments and hide your growing bump.
Whether you’re trying to hit that 12-week mark or simply avoid the unwanted questions, we understand. The news is personal and should only be shared if and when you’re ready to share it. Until then, it’s time to get creative with hide-your-pregnancy products, because unfortunately your body will change and eventually, people will start to notice.
So here are some tips for finding hide-your-pregnancy accessories that can help keep your secret an actual secret:
Scarves are a great option for the newly pregnant woman. They hide and distract—and best of all, act as wardrobe staples. Patterns and colors are recommended, but basic colors work too. You can find great scares at major stores like Macy’s or Kohl’s, but we recommend these great options from The Loft: Windowpane Blanket Scarf or this Checkered Blanket Scarf. Scarves are great because they come in various sizes, lengths, shapes, fabrics, and patterns making them suitable for any month of the year.
2. Layers upon layers
The more layers, the better. Pregnancy affects more than just your belly and you may not know how to dress for your new shape, but we promise you this: The more layers you add, the less noticeable the changes will be. Adding layers to your wardrobe that you can wear throughout your pregnancy is key. We prefer bulky oversized sweaters, fringe-style sweaters, button-up sweaters, or ponchos. Here are some of our favorites from H&M: Knit Cardigan, Fine Knit Sweater, Knit Poncho, and Rhinestone-Button Cardigan. We also recommend tunics, which are great for early (and late) pregnancy. This Pullover Poplin Tunic for Women from Old Navy is highly rated.
3. Loose-fitting dresses
Dresses are a great option for pregnant women. They leave room for growth, especially when you buy loose, flowy dresses. An A-line dress (like this Floral Pleated Flare Dress from Ann Taylor), a shift dress (like this Jewel-embellished long-sleeve shift dress from JCrew), or a sweater dress (like The Cashmere Turtleneck Dress from Everlane) are ideal. We also love this Sheer-Sleeve Ruffled Wrap Dress in Finch Floral from Madewell, which can be adjusted as you grow (and even make breastfeeding easier down the line). Express also has some great sweater dresses. Just make sure you avoid formfitting dress styles until you’re ready to share the news.
4. Draped shirts
Draped tops can help hide your body no matter the season and can be found in casual or business style. You can find sleeveless or full-sleeve tops from a variety of stores; just make sure the shirt isn’t see-through or somebody at work might catch a glimpse. We recommend this Central Drapey Shirt in Baby's Breath from Madewell, this Printed Top With Darts from Zara, this Camila Mock-Neck Sleeveless Blouse from Modern Citizen, or this Tiered Ruffle Top from Gap. With a draped shirt, you can tuck it, tie it, or let it hang. What’s great about these tops is that you can add them to skirts or pants and wear them during and after pregnancy with sweaters or blazers.
5. Belt extenders and belly belts
Belly belts and pants extenders are great for early pregnant women who are just starting to have trouble fitting into their clothes. Pants extenders extend the use of your clothes. The Blanqi Everyday™ Maternity Built-in Support Bellyband works with for any outfit and can get you through all nine months of your pregnancy. The Bellaband® from Ingrid and Isabel is great, too. It can be worn with non-maternity and maternity clothes. Not only does a pregnancy band or belt help hide a belly, it also gives you much-needed support and best of all, can be hidden under your clothing. The JILL&JOEY Maternity Belt is perfect for women who want a breathable and comfortable pain reliever as they get further along in their pregnancy.
6. Fun, bold jewelry
It might seem strange, but jewelry is a great hide-your-pregnancy accessory and can help distract your coworkers from changes to your body. It can also be a great conversation starter if you don’t typically wear it—or if you wear minimal amounts. JCrew offers some great options. Here are a few we love: Mixed Crystal Circle Statement Earrings and Pavé Tassel Earrings. You should look for bright, bold, statement pieces. Express has some great options, like the Resin Hexagon Post Back Drop Earrings.
One of the best ways to hide your growing belly and changing shape is with patterned clothes, like flowers, plaid, or other distracting prints, but skip the stripes. This Print Pleated Drapey Tank from Banana Republic is great for work and for layering. The Print Peplum Wrap Top is also great for wearing throughout the pregnancy and can be adjusted as you grow. This INC Colorblocked Sweater from Macy’s is great, too.
As you’re shopping for hide-your-pregnancy products, remember that your body will change, so make sure you buy basics that will last (and can be re-worn post-baby). And even though know one knows yet, enjoy this time.