What to Wear for Your Birth

Yesterday I had the pleasure of having lunch with one of my clients and the rest of her birth team as we celebrated her little one’s birthday. Of course when you get a bunch of birth workers together, they’re going to talk about… you guessed it! Birth.

During the conversation, one of the midwives told me that one of the most frequent questions her clients ask her is, “what do I wear during labor”? There’s a surprising number of considerations when it comes to planning this (especially if you’re getting a photographer!): so I thought I’d compile a few tips.

First Priority: Comfort!

This one is obvious, but I’ll say it anyway. You’re going to want to choose something that isn’t constrictive, and isn’t difficult to put on and take off, and won’t inhibit free movement. Something with a nice-feeling fabric, that won’t inhibit movement. This could be a loose-fitting dress, a night gown, or just a tank top.

Bring Backups

Your labor may last for a long time, may involve climbing in and out of the birth tub, sweating, getting in and out of the shower, and a multitude of other positions. So it’s probably a good idea to bring a few backup items so that you can change into something dry when you get wet or uncomfortable.

Don’t Wear a Sports Bra

Sports bras may seem like a comfortable option, but since they often don’t clasp in back they can be very difficult to take off in the middle of labor. Some people opt for bikini tops, since they easily tie and untie, but lack the prohibitive structure of underwired bras. But I’ve also noticed lately that a lot more companies are making bras with comfort as a priority, so do a little research ahead of time and you can likely find one that combines all the comfort of a sports bra with the functionality of a regular one.

Consider What You Want Your Photos to Look Like

Every mom’s comfort level is different when it comes to sharing photos, and that’s something you’ll want to decide ahead of time. Some mom’s feel the most comfortable laboring naked, which still results in beautiful photos, but may decrease the number you feel comfortable sharing with friends and family. Labor is beautiful, and you look amazing doing what only you can do, of course. It’s totally your decision, it’s just a good idea to consider it ahead of time. I always recommend wearing black for this type of photo, as it’s classy, and neutral, but let your personality be your guide.

For you non-first-time moms, what did you wear during your labor and would you do it that way again?

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