Newsflash: Pregnancy is surprisingly stressful. Here are our top pregnancy products and ideas to keep moms-to-be looking and feeling relaxed and beautiful.
The body has a funny way of preparing for the late nights and early mornings of parenthood, and it's called pregnancy insomnia. There is a good chance that you'll battle with nighttime indigestion, nausea, heartburn and frequent trips to the bathroom during your pregnancy, which has a way of making eyes look weary and tired. We suggest finding a good eye cream, like Ava Anderson's Eye Cream (Ava Anderson, $20), to soothe your tired eyes — which will also come in handy when the baby arrives.
One good book. Just one.
Google search can be a great tool for pregnant women who want to know what's happening inside their bodies, but the sheer wealth of information available online and in bookstores is enough to overwhelm new moms. We suggest purchasing just one good pregnancy book to guide you through the months, rather than filling your mind with too much information. Check out perennial best-seller What to Expect when You're Expecting for lots of good information in one place.
As your body morphs and stretches into an unrecognizable shape, and then bounces back into its previous form in the months after the baby arrives, you'll begin to understand just how important transitional undergarments are. HourglassAngel features maternity bras for your growing girls, belly bands for your bump and compression tanks for the post-pregnancy transition back into your normal size.
Prenatal vitamin and
Forget playing classical music to your baby while in the womb: If you want to do one thing daily to help your little one grow big, strong and smart, make sure you're taking a prenatal vitamin every day. Many doctors also recommend that pregnant women consider taking a DHA supplement in addition to the prenatal vitamin as a way to boost brain and eye development.
You could spend a lifetime of savings on Groupons for prenatal yoga (which will probably just go on your to-do list, until they are remembered just prior to the baby's first birthday), or you could purchase one or two good DVDs to have on hand for your prenatal fitness routine. Knocked Up Fitness offers DVDs and an online community of other pregnant women who want to stay in shape too.
There are an abundance of pregnancy pillows to alleviate discomfort during sleep, but our suggestion is to find one that won't boot your partner out of the bed with its ginormous girth. The BellyRest pillow (Amazon, $50) is small as far as pregnancy pillows go, but hugs the hips and back in all the right spots to limit pain at bedtime.
Coconut oil moisturizer
Even for ladies who aren't pregnant, coconut oil just plain rocks. The product smells fresh and light, and it does a fabulous job of moisturizing skin without leaving any greasy residue. While the product doesn't do anything to prevent stretch marks (and sorry, ladies — no such product exists), coconut oil does a good job of reducing itches from dry, stretched skin. Check out Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil Moisturizer,
No matter what your first trimester aspirations are, pregnancy and high heels unfortunately do not pair well. It's wise to find at least one really good pair of comfortable shoes to wear to work so that you won't spend the day cursing at yourself. Aetrex has a variety of insanely comfortable shoes for work and play that won't leave your toes screaming at the end of the day.
Many pregnant women complain of feeling foggy in the head throughout most of the pregnancy. We can blame "baby brain" on the hormonal and biochemical changes of pregnancy, but it's possible to feel one step ahead of those crazy feelings by writing down appointments and reminders in a day planner when a thought comes into — and inevitably leaves — your mind.
Having a baby changes everything. Enjoy the nine months you spend percolating the life inside of you by relaxing as much as possible and soaking up time with your partner. A babymoon is a great way to do this. Set aside time with your husband to vacation, sleep in and talk about anything and everything besides the baby.
More on surviving as a new mom
How to document your baby's first six months
Showers optional! What I wish someone had told me about being a new mom
The best new-mom advice I ever heard