Bare that belly: Pregnancy and swimwear

If you’re pregnant, do you select a special one-piece maternity swimsuit this summer, cover — yet stay comfortable — with a tankini, or do you flaunt your belly with a cute and daring two-piece?

Pregnant swimwear - Lisa

We asked moms what they felt most comfortable in while they were growing a baby.

Summer is here and you’re pregnant — what to wear to the pool or the beach? Happily, there are several options and styles for pregnant moms, from normal beachwear (a size or so up) to special maternity swimsuits. We asked a few moms what they liked to wear during their summer pregnancies, and they let us in on their poolside secrets.

Bikini moms

Many moms felt most comfortable wearing a bare-it-all bikini. Some shopped up a size, or had to choose separates of different sizes to accommodate breast or hip growth, but confidence for pregnant moms was reported to be high for many.

“I feel much more confident pregnant,” explained Dani, mom of two. “Probably because it is what it is, there is absolutely nothing I can do about it, and that is pretty much accepted by most other people as well, I think. It’s fun to show it off too, since pregnancy isn’t forever.”

Erika from Minnesota agreed. “I feel the most confident in my skin when I’m pregnant and have no reservations about baring my belly,” she shared.

The great thing about bikinis is that you don’t have to shop at specialty maternity stores or try to pick one out online — just go to your favorite store and try them on to your heart’s content until you find one that works.


Pregnant swimwear - Brooke

Specially-made maternity tankinis are another popular choice. You can get ones that come with a bikini bottom, a swim skirt or even boy shorts — whatever makes you the most comfortable. Audrey, who will be nine months pregnant in August, shared that she has this Liz Lange Maternity Tankini Swim Top (Target, $25) ready to pair with this skirted bottom (Target, $20) for the summer. “I am already pretty large and I love the way it fits with room for expansion, and the skirt portion gives me a little more bum coverage,” she told us.


One-piece maternity swimwear is another option, although it’s a less popular one. Moms cite concerns about the belly area looking too floppy in the early stages or being too tight in the third trimester. However, those who wore them said that those things really weren’t an issue. “I worked as a swim lesson instructor while pregnant, so I had to wear a black one piece,” explained Noelani, mother of two. “Hard to find, but a maternity one piece is not as uncomfortable as it sounds. I worked up until he was born.” We really love this Halter Maternity One Piece Swimsuit in gingham (Motherhood Maternity, $40).


Still other moms liked wraps that were worn over their suit bottoms, no matter what style of swimwear they chose. Dianne, expecting her third child, likes to wear a sarong when out of the pool, just to keep her behind out of sight until she hops in the pool. “Not only am I pregnant, but my butt is pregnant too,” she joked.

Whatever you choose, be sure to drink plenty of water and don’t forget the sunscreen — and most of all, have fun!

More on your summer pregnancy

Staying comfortable during a summer pregnancy
Important travel tips for pregnant women
Down by the ocean