Best Maternity Belts & Belly Bands For A Comfortable Pregnancy (2018 Guide)
If I could pick only two items that completely transformed my pregnancy and maternity look, I’d crown the maternity belt and belly band the winners.
I really didn't want to spend money on a new maternity wardrobe, so when I heard how I could stay in all of my favorite pants longer with a belly band, I was all about it.
Another lifesaver of mine during my pregnancy was my maternity belt, which provided great back support once my belly started to grow.
Now, don’t confuse the two, as they are actually different products!
If you're expecting a baby (or know someone who is), you need to pick up one of the bands I’m dishing on today, to save you lots of money, keep you looking and feeling fabulous, and in your own clothes for as long as possible!
This is a pretty long guide, so you can use this table of contents to jump from section to section.
Differences Between a Belly Band and a Maternity Belt
Ok, so a belly band (also called a maternity band) is an accessory purely designed to provide you with proper coverage.
Around your second trimester, you will hit a point (some sooner than later) when your favorite jeans and work pants just won’t button anymore.
Pretty soon, they won’t zip much either!
>>Read: Choosing the best maternity leggings
How to Wear a Belly Band
A belly band comes to the rescue by allowing you to wear your pants, but leave them unbuttoned and/or unzipped.
It provides a thin, but sturdy layer of coverage that you simply slide up over your pants and the closure areas.
It will add some light support, but if you are running into back aches and pains (or even sciatic issues), a maternity belt is your better bet.
A maternity belt is a bit different and used for a different purpose.
Maternity belts aren't as light-weight or streamlined, since it’s designed to take on the majority of your belly weight.
How to Wear a Maternity Belt
It’s usually worn over top of your clothes, but many women often wear them underneath and allow the support belt to double as a belly band, so they can also fit into their favorite pants without them falling down.
It lifts and supports your tummy, taking a lot of pressure off of your back, which is most likely aching if you need one of these bad boys.
These bands are also great if you want to work out throughout your pregnancy or if you're on your feet often.
They usually hook or Velcro one end to the other and are adjustable as your waist line grows (and shrinks back).
Many women opt to wear belts even after their pregnancy for added maternity support if they have had a Cesarean section.
Why You Need a Maternity Belt
As I said before, at some point in your pregnancy your back is going to hurt and you're going to have pelvic pain.
I don’t know of one person that hasn’t had a complaint, especially toward the end of their pregnancy. After all, just think about all of the extra weight you're carrying around!
>>Read: Choosing the best prenatal vitamins
And, your body begins to produce hormones that help loosen and relax your muscles, which is bad news for the ligaments that have to work hard to support your belly.
A belt helps lift your belly, therefore adjusting your posture. In some cases, it has even been said to help with the readjustment of your baby’s position.
This is amazing because some babies sit on certain nerves, and it can make getting comfortable or remaining mobile nearly impossible.
A support belt can help all of these things and more!
Most mommies-to-be agree that it takes wearing the belt for a few days (regularly) to really notice a difference.
If you need to wear a belt, you’ll feel a lot less pressure come off of your lower back and you’ll be walking with pep in your step again in no time!
Finding the Right Size
Some bands and belts are one size fits all, while other belts and bands recommend a size on their package based on your weight.
Others still have you measure your hips to pick the best size.
If this is the case, you'll need some measuring tape.
Measure around your hips and pull it upward when you reach the center of your hip bones. You should match your size to your hip measurement and not your stomach measurement.
When you receive the support belt and try it on, you shouldn't even be able to notice that you are wearing one.
>>Read: Choosing the best stretch mark creams
It should not scratch, slide off, or squeeze you uncomfortably. It should be snug, but never painfully tight.
How Many Will Be Enough?
Based on my experience, you're going to need more than one belt during your pregnancy.
If you plan on exercising, you can designate one primarily for your sweat sessions, and have another one as a spare when you wash your main belt or band.
I made it a point to wash my non-exercise maternity belt once a week. This way, I never had to go without one.
I also had a belt that I designated for sleep purposes, and also day to day, work purposes.
All in all, I had four belts and bands!
>>Read: Choosing the best compression stockings for pregnancy
None of them went to waste and they provided plenty of maternity support for all of my movements and activities.
Because they alleviated my aches and pains, I never wanted to be without one.
Four belts was the magic number for me, but you may be able to function with just two, based on your pain level, activity level, and lifestyle needs.
5 Features To Look For
Some belts and bands are much better than others.
All four of the belts that I purchased had the following traits in common:
#1. Durability. Your band is going to be worn daily: sometimes you’ll sweat in it, other times you’ll stretch it to its maximum limit. You need something that is easy to clean and that also retains its shape and elasticity when washed and stretched.
#2. Comfortable. Your band should feel soft as velvet and never feel itchy or rigid. Each band that I wore felt like my second skin, and yours should feel comfortable enough to wear on your bare belly or even while you sleep.
#3. Pressure-relieving. Your bump should be easily supported and positioned when wearing your band. Any pain you felt prior to wearing one should be diminished and you should also feel like your belly isn’t sagging. You should also notice that you’re running to the bathroom less, because your bump is slightly off your bladder. The whole point of wearing a belt is to get the proper support and shape, and not feel as though you’re toting around a bowling ball in the front of your form.
#4. Adjustable closure. Your band should grow with you. Many women still utilize the belt postpartum as well, so it’s essential that your belt or band is fully adjustable to accommodate your growing or shrinking waistline.
>>Read: Choosing the best postpartum belly wrap
#5. Easy to clean. Make sure your belt or band is able to be tossed into the washing machine. It may be difficult to keep up with hand-washing your belt, so always opt for cleaning convenience. Most bands are meant to be placed flat and air dry, but if you can find a band that can be tossed in the dryer as well (without sacrificing fit), go for it!
Best Maternity Belts
The Gabrialla Maternity Belt (click here to check the price on Amazon) is definitely my favorite maternity belt, and it really allowed me to function much more effectively toward my last trimester.
An avid runner, I was able to run up until about 5 months pregnant without needing any kind of support. But, once my third trimester hit, I was having a hard time remaining comfortable on my jogs and started to experience a lot of back pain.
It was my doctor that actually recommended I wear a maternity belt. This belt was very comfortable (it has a touch of lycra in it) and it was very firm.
It hoisted my belly up, and I experienced less back pain not only when I was working out, but on my feel all day at work (I just added it under my clothes).
I also wore this for a bit when I was cleared to exercise post-partum, because I was still having some sensitivity due to my C-section, and this belt helped to hold me tightly together.
I also noticed that it was helpful to wear one when working out until my core regained strength from everything it went through.
I was so glad I had one of these to get my through my final weeks and days.
Similar to the Gabrialla belt, the Azmed Maternity Belt (click here to check the price on Amazon) is ultra-breathable.
This is very important because you always feel hot when you’re pregnant. And, summer months are unbearable. So, something that is light, airy, and supportive is your main priority. That’s just what this belt is.
This belt is great because it is beneficial if you suffer from hip and pelvic pain due to muscle and tendon stretching.
It takes pressure off your spine, and corrects your posture, so you won’t be slumped over toward the end of your pregnancy when it feels like there’s a bowling ball in your shirt!
I like the feel of this band a lot because it is gentler than many on the market. And, it’s very soft. It fits up to 46 inches, which is plenty comparable for a baby bump.
And, out of all of the belts you can choose from, it really does have a sleek and streamlined design so you’ll barely notice it under your clothing.
Many moms also use it to hold their pants up without having to fully fasten them.
Much like the other belt, its high quality and can withstand lots of stretching, hours of wear, and even washing and drying as needed.
Bracco’s maternity belt (click here to check the price on Amazon) will help pick you up, when you’re feeling down, literally!
The belt features a wrap design which is soft, yet supportive. A thick Velcro strap will help your growing belly remain in a position that agrees with you, yet sits discretely underneath your clothing.
The Velcro is strong, so you don’t have to worry about it coming undone throughout your day or your physical activity. During pregnancy, moms experience many aches and pains, but back pain can be unbearable.
Bracco’s maternity belt lifts, support, and cradles, so it will reduce the likelihood of uterine prolapse.
It also will help posture by strengthening the muscles (during and even after pregnancy). It fits a variety of bodies, and can accommodate a hip circumference of up to 46 inches.
Expecting moms who exercise feel the belt helps them stay active longer, and moms who have just delivered are still wearing their band to ease the pressure they feel, and keep their bellies feeling supported and strong after a C-section.
The belt can be adjusted based on posture changes that happen throughout the day or as aches and pains arise. The most ab support a mom can get, Bracco’s maternity belt will be your BFF throughout your pregnancy.
#4. NeoTech Care
Neotech Care’s maternity belt (click here to check the price on Amazon) is the “mother” of all maternity products!
Why? It helps you feel better in an instance with its unique, strong, and comfortable design. Moms love this because the belt grows with them, throughout their entire pregnancy.
As a belly grows, lots of lower back pain can form, resulting in less mobility, an increase in mood swings, and a decrease in sleep. This belt is designed with multiple layers, so it’s not only soft, it’s firm, strong, and it has a lot of compression properties.
It can even be worn during warm, summer months because it is well-ventilated. The belt includes an abdominal lift attachment to hold the belt in place and to keep you feeling nice and comfortable!
Its four elastic side panels don’t just add support, but allow for compression, which many moms love and need after a delivery. Not sure what size to order? It has an easy to follow sizing guide, which you can also run by your doctor to see which one they suggest you select, based on the way you are measuring.
Wear it around the house or even to work, as it blends in well underneath your day to day work wear!
#5. Babo Care
Babo Care’s abdominal binder (click here to check the price on Amazon) is all you’ll care about wearing once you hit your second trimester.
It’s designed to be worn daily, during your regular activities, from work, to exercise, and when you’re out running errands. The belt is super strong, and it helps hold your tummy in place.
Although it adds supreme support to your belly, waist, hips, and pelvic bone, you’ll still be able to bend, sit, and walk with ease. Many moms to be wear it underneath their clothes because it has a seamless design, it’s soft, and it is designed with breathable fabric (so no yucky sweat marks).
But, many also choose to wear it outside their clothes as well, especially when going for a jog, walk, or enjoying a fitness class. The belt stretches with you, so you don’t have to worry about choosing the “right” size.
Moms also prefer wearing it post-pregnancy for added comfort and support. In addition to support and pain relief, the belt also helps to correct poor posture that often forms due to weak abdominal muscles throughout pregnancy.
Why put yourself through pain and frustration? An abdominal binder is the way to go.
Best Belly Bands
The Ingrid & Isabel Bellaband (click here to check the price on Amazon) is awesome because it is super stretchy, so it will grow with your belly.
It’s soft, which is very important, since you are already uncomfortable enough. The last thing you need is something that itches or irritates you while your fetus is!
It’s made of mostly nylon and a touch of cotton, so it’s able to be washed with ease. While you could toss it in the dryer if on low heat, I always let mine air dry.
A great feature of this specific band is that it has a stay-put silicone strip, so I never felt like it was going to fall down (even when I applied cocoa butter to my belly).
In the beginning of my pregnancy, I was able to wear it full-length, but toward the end when I needed much more support, I doubled it up.
Regardless of how I wore it, I always had a seamless look underneath my tops. It never looked bulky, obvious, or felt awkward.
I also felt the band was constructed very well, as it was very durable. I was even able to wear it after my son was born for a few weeks until my belly went down and I was able to button my pants again!
The price varies by size, so be sure to check out the different sizing & pricing options on Amazon. Either way, it's money well spent in my book. I picked one up in black and white, to match my undershirts that I wore under my work tops.
This band gave me lots of confidence and saved me a lot of money on maternity gear!
Belevation’s belly band (click here to check the price on Amazon) provides an amazing amount of support, all while being soft and super stretchy.
Its seamless design is perfect for moms who don’t want to wear something they need to be Velcro-ed into. It’s breathable, mesh design will also keep you feeling cool, especially during hot summer months, during athletic activities, and even as you sleep (pregnant women totally heat up over night!).
The band is very durable, so it can withstand all day wear, seven days a week, and multiple washings. You can even wear it post-pregnancy for added support and compression, which is helpful if you’ve had a C-section.
It stretches to fit you throughout your pregnancy, but it’s best to select a size using the brand’s size chart (S, M, L, XL). Moms to be notice an instant relief of pain and aches due to this engineered support panel, which provides a gentle lift.
Some moms wear it on top of their jeans that are getting too tight to button, in order to not only reap the benefits of the band itself, but stay in their favorite clothes longer!
An awesome layering piece, it’s ideal for moms who want to achieve a smooth and sleeker silhouette underneath dresses and other more form fitting maternity wear.
#3. La Reve
La Reve’s maternity band (click here to check the price on Amazon) can be worn during every stage of your pregnancy, and then beyond! Now, that’s an investment.
Moms to be love this maternity band because its long and firm enough to be worn stretched out, or folded in half if they want to conceal the zippers or buttons, allowing them to stay in their regular clothes, longer.
The band helps create a smoother silhouette for an expecting mommy, yet it provides them with lots of support to help correct their posture once a belly becomes sizable and heavy.
The band is light weight and seamless, and also is designed with a stay-put, silicone strip. So, you don’t have to worry about it sliding up, or slipping down.
It’s durable, so it can withstand repeated washings, and it maintains its shape and form, which is essential for a flattering, comfortable, and supportive fit. Moms to be who exercise adore this band because it helps them feel tight and pulled in when enduring a light jog, and it helps alleviate minor aches and pains in the lower back, hips, and even rear.
Moms also love the band because it helps reduce pressure and itchiness caused by seams (even on maternity wear) as their belly gets bigger and begins to press on pretty much everything!
It’s just an extra layer to keep you comfortable and cool throughout your day.
A maternity belt and belly band are essential items to have on hand during your pregnancy.
They will not only save you lots of money, but they’ll make you feel much better when you start to get aches and pains.
They will allow you to stay in your clothes longer and even work out during your pregnancy.
So, if you’re expecting be sure to put one on your registry and consider the three I reviewed above because they are highly rated, ultra-comfortable, and very effective.