Top Ten Summer Maternity Must-Haves

by Jovanna Acevedo Quesada

Summer Maternity Top TenHaving a well-stocked maternity wardrobe is essential for any time of year. It's especially important as the weather gets warmer.

Summertime and pregnancy doesn't mean you have to be miserable.

Before the heat sets in, it's time to search for maternity clothes that help beat the heat.

These top ten summer maternity must-haves will have you feeling trendy and cool in no time!

Essential Summer Maternity Clothes

1. A Bathing Suit

Trimesters aside, nothing is more amazing to a woman in wait then a dip in a pool (or other body of water). It frees those muscles and allows for the weight to be lifted off of your already aching hips, legs, shoulders and belly. A good suit should last you the entire pregnancy, so long as you're not terribly concerned over the burgeoning belly. Seek a suit that has a decent amount of coverage for all parts (bottom and breasts especially!) and sport that gorgeous figure.

2. Capris and Shorts

Capris: Perfect mix between shorts and pants, cool enough to chill in, hot enough to wow in. You can make the best of both worlds with these beauties. They also generously hide the parts you are not so proud of in the process. Yes, pregnancy makes more than just your belly grow!

Shorts: When you're at home, you deserve to be ultimately comfy. Belly fitting, underbelly, or otherwise, a good pair of shorts – or several -- will make you the happiest pregnant woman in town or at least when you're at home!

3. Flip-flops

Actually, this item can count for all seasons. At some point your feet will swell. In some cases, women's feet will actually gain a full size! Flip Flops are amazing inventions. They have plenty of room and nothing but comfort to offer you. Get a sturdy pair with actual cushioning! The $.99 cent pair at your local drug store may be tempting, but will not offer enough support. As your bump grows, your balance goes and you might need to opt for a pair of cool sandals.

4. Yoga Pants

The magic of underbelly! Yoga pants offer stability and stretch that even "maternity specific" clothing hasn't mastered. Yoga pants are not just for workouts, walks and trips to the store. You're covered and decent enough to roll out in complete and cool comfort, thanks to the better quality of fabric offered these days. We recommend getting several pairs of your favorites.

5. Summer Dresses

Breezy dresses are cool, flowing and adorable. The best part is they are usually cheap to buy or even cheaper to make! The non-existent waistline gives you a sense of freedom from the pressure marks, and allows your beautiful bump to shine. Patterns, colors and fabrics can be as unique and amazing as the mom wearing them.

6. A Light Sweater

Everyone says that they were 400 degrees hotter during pregnancy, which is actually true for many women. Your baby-in-the-womb gives off plenty of heat. But when your blood sugars shift (which happens multiple times daily) you may have a chill that you can't shake or maybe you are sitting directly beneath that dastardly vent at work. Either way, while pregnancy has a "hot reputation," cooler moments do happen.

7. Undergarments

Did you know that your breasts can gain as much as five pounds during pregnancy? In case you don't already know what that is like, picture hanging a watermelon around your neck. Ouch! Now more than ever it's important to get the right equipment!

Maternity bras: The smoother and softer the cup is, the more comfortable your growing and tender breasts will feel. Thicker straps distribute the extra weight evenly for less shoulder and upper back strain.

Bottoms up: Being pregnant doesn't have to mean starting every day by pulling on a pair of billowy grandma bloomers. Bikini style? That's great, or whatever you find comfortable. Since during pregnancy you're likely to have extra vaginal discharge as as well as some degree of incontinence, you'll want to choose fabrics that are easy to wash and dry quickly.

Colette Bouchez shares more must-have shopping information in Your Perfectly Pampered Pregnancy: Lingerie Shopping for the Mother-to-Be!.

8. Hats

Your hair undergoes changes that you never expect…and often will change between pregnancies as well. A hat is not only a great way to tame unruly hair, but gives you extra UV protection that your skin can always use. Even if it just a visor, the shade on your cheeks will help avoid unsightly darkening and sunburn.

9. Bags

Every woman needs a nice bag. Heck, I think it should be part of our Social Security allowances! A good bag will allow you to carry your needs with you, which may or may not include sunscreen, a snack, chap stick maybe an extra pad or two for that awesome leaking that started.

10. Tank Tops

Hands down, this is the pregnant girl's best friend. It doesn't matter if they are high cut, low cut, long or short. Whether worn alone, with a another tank, tee, sweater, or vest, it goes with everything. If you get a good one, you can even forgo a bra.

Everyone has to find their own sense of style during pregnancy but the beauty is a few key pieces can make a reasonable wardrobe for those hotter months! Got more ideas? Share them!