Things I Hate Thursday: Maternity Pants

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I think maternity pants must be made by men.

For starters, I have never found one pair of maternity jeans that will stay up. In my pregnancy with Libbie, I suffered through this for 7 months. I had three pairs, at least, and not one would stay up. I swore that the next time I was pregnant, I would buy a decent–even expensive–pair of jeans.

And I did! I bought the much-recommended Secret Fit Belly jeans from Motherhood. BRAND NEW. (OK–with a gift card from my mom. ‘Cause we all know it might kill me to pay $35 for one item of clothing.)

From their first wear, I found them awful. Somehow the inside of the jeans was bumpy and itchy. And they would not stay up.

Now, despite my size, I do not have a lot of junk in the trunk, so to speak. And maybe I bought them too big? Who knows. But it seems the same with all maternity pants. There are three key issues:

1. They won’t stay up, forcing the wearer to constantly readjust.
2. They don’t have pockets. Because apparently pregnant women don’t need those.
3. They are WAY too short.

If you can wear these when you’re pregnant, I don’t want to know.

I have khakis, yoga pants, green cargo pants. They are all insanely short, especially considering that I am only 5’3″ and usually that is not an issue at all. And yes, they are pants, not capris. Is this only my issue or can we all complain together: BEING PREGNANT DOES NOT MIRACULOUSLY MAKE YOU SHORTER!!? In fact, a little extra length might make up for the spreading hips and the-baby-made-me-eat-that thighs.

I pretty much live in pajama pants or the two pair of Old Navy maternity yoga pants I have totally not worn for the last three years, pregnant or not. (Sadly, it appears they don’t make these anymore. Sacrilege!)

Is there an answer? Is it possible to create a pair of maternity pants that might actually stay up despite a burgeoning, whale-like belly? And be long enough? And, for the love of Pete, have pockets, too?

If you’ve found those miracle pants, I’d like to know. I’ll put them on my list of things to buy the next time I am pregnant. (Oh dear. I don’t even want to think about that right now.)

Because Jill told me I could, I am linking this to Things I Love Thursday. ‘Cause I would LOVE to find a pair of pants that magically fit. 

Update after third pregnancy: With baby 3, I bought skinny Secret Belly Motherhood jeans and loved them a lot. To keep them up, I wore a belly band or tucked the panel under my bra. Whatever works, right?

19 thoughts on “Things I Hate Thursday: Maternity Pants

  1. Old Navy has maternity jeans and they fit the best out of any maternity jeans I ever had (3 pregnancies). They feel just like their regular jeans and come in 3 different lengths (short, avg. and tall)! I always wore the under the belly kind with the wide band, but they might even have the over the belly kind, too.

    I'm tall and have always had trouble with the length of my pants, especially when pregnant, but I didn't have any trouble at all with these!! The only drawback is not all stores have the maternity clothes in store. You might have to order them.

  2. UGH! I feel you. The Motherhood Secret Fit ones actually worked for me, but they ran a little large. So maybe you did buy them too big. I always had to wear over the belly pants to keep them up…none of that under belly stuff or they'd just roll down. And don't get me started on maternity underwear. !!

  3. I'm with ya. All my dress maternity pants fit great but my maternity jeans are awful. None from my first pregnancy fit this time because I'm carring a WHOLE lot lower. So I bought two pairs of jeans and one pair of cords from Motherhood and not a single pair of them will stay up. And I have plenty of junk in the trunk to keep em up. But they have no waist, so how can one expect them to stay up? Underbelly or overbelly, it doesn't matter. I spend all day pullin' em up.

    On the other hand, I find them pretty comfy other than the whole not stayin up thing. And I find them all really long. I'm hardly short- a perfectly average 5'6" but had to hem at least 2 inches off of them.

  4. I have had best luck with Old Navy as well, since they also make long length jeans. Cuz I'm not magically shorter! I'm 5'10", pregnant or not.

    I sometimes use my BellaBand as a belt to keep the pants up. It works! Try it if you have it and lemme know.

    If it wasn't so cold out, I'd wear skirts or dresses!

  5. I don't remember a length problem and I'm 5'8". But maternity jeans are awful. I think the underbelly wide band ones are the worst and in general the over-the-belly, drawstring ones sort of stay up, but I have only ever had one pair of maternity jeans that fit and stayed up well. They were passed down to me and after the third pregnancy in which I wore them, they wore out. And now I have no idea who made them and I have never seen anything like them in stores. Sigh.

  6. I think my maternity jeans were Old Navy also. I did have a problem with some maternity dress pants that I wore to work a lot. I even took to safety-pinning them to my bra to keep them from falling down! I swore that next time, I'll either get a Bella Band, or those little syspender clippies to hook them to my bra. Crazy!

  7. Amen, girl! I hate maternity pants. It makes me not even want to get up in the mornings and get dressed. I pretty much wear pajama bottoms (not maternity) that miraculously stay up even if maternity pants dont.
    This time around I also tried leggins and long tunics. Same deal. They are too tight and still ride down. I've still got three months to go and then I'll be back to regular pants. I'm counting down the days.

  8. I am 32 weeks pregnant (and a lurker here), but I also find that my maternity jeans and pants fall down. So I bought a package of those things that you put on the corner of sheets to keep them on the mattress … and I clip it to the outsides of the top of my jeans, and the strap goes over my belly. It works like a charm.

    My OB said I should market that.

  9. I remember being frustrated that the pants I wanted were always too long. And I'm not a terribly short person. But the pants I found in stores seemed to be for Amazon women (the pregnant kind).

    Honestly, I preferred dresses toward the end of my pregnancy.

  10. My pants never stayed up while I was pregnant. Although, I did really like the secret belly pants because, while they did fall, at least they didn't show my belly all the time. And I liked that a lot, especially with my second pregnancy. I did buy another pair of jeans, post baby, at a garage sale and let me friend borrow them. She swore by them. They are GAP maternity jeans. Not sure how the fit, or how much they cost in stores. But apparently they are super great.

  11. I don't even try the maternity jeans anymore! You never know if the pants will start slipping off your hips until you're out in public with a toddler pulling on your legs.

    I just bought some Liz Claiborne plus pants with drawstring waist, along with a matching black top, cardigan, and skirt (similar to that Chico's fabric.)

    They stretch as well as most maternity panels, but I think I'll get more wear from them during that transition time post-baby.

  12. Ha! This post was so true and made me laugh. I got lucky at Target a few times and I paid WAY TOO MUCH for a full-price pair of maternity jeans at Gap. It was worth it though because I wore them through, oh I don't know, ….5 months postpartum. I should never admit that!

  13. I totally agree! Either I was always pulling them up, or if they did fit at the beginning of the day, looked like baggy misfits by the end. Also almost none of the shirts were long enough to hid the belly elastic part of the pants.

  14. I so hear you. I have a completely flat bottom, so wearing pants when I have no waistline means that I hitch them up every 10 seconds. I ended up wearing normal stretch leggings or skirts for the length of all my pregnancies, or just borrowed one of my husband's belts to hold them up. And my maternity jeans had fake pockets. It looked like a pocket, but it wasn't. Super annoying! I'm only 4'11", so no matter what I buy, it's a given that it will be cuffed, rolled, or hemmed to within an inch of its life.

  15. I have to agree, not much is worse than constantly tugging up your pants all day! As much as it about killed me to spring for them, Gap maternity pants were the only ones that would stay up for me. I had the best luck with the below the belly fit. They had khakis that also fit me for work and lasted through an entire pregnancy (from 3-11 months, since it was a month before I got back into regular jeans:). I'm 5'4" with no legs, and their short fit was perfect. With my last baby, the belly band saved me those few days when my Gaps pants weren't quite fitting right, and they worked to keep the old navy jeans that were constantly falling down in place. They can go below or above your belly. And they kept me from flashing my coworkers with my belly at the end-it just looked like a t-shirt and was about $10 at Target-pretty cheap considering it allowed me to wear 3 other pairs of pants that wouldn't stay up without it!

  16. I have wondered about the pockets–jeans NEED pockets, especially when you're pregnant! I've actually enjoyed most of my pregnant pants while I'm pregnant, but I really begin to hate them after the baby is born…especially the ones without pockets!


  17. I love my old navy full panel jeans! They have pockets and stay up better than my other pants. But be warned, they do run big… I normally wear a 22, but the 18 fits me perfectly! =)

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