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Career Dressing: A Professional Pregnancy

29 Mar 2016


Maybe you're not feeling up to the job every day — but with the right professional wardrobe, at least you'll look like you are.

So you're eight months pregnant (or will be soon), 25 pounds heavier (or more) than this time last year, swollen and achy… and required to look professional every day? Hey, with a belly this big, it’s hard enough to shave your own legs or put on your own shoes, let alone dress for success. While the culture at some companies is lenient enough for pregnant women to dress down (think boot-cut pants, a boatneck tee, a flirty skirt with a flippy hem, or a surplice top that shows the appropriate amount of cleavage), many still expect expectant moms to don skirts, blazers, dresses, or even suits or uniforms with the best (and unpregnant) of them. Here’s how to dress for success from now until you leave for maternity leave:

Suits — the business basics. Yes, they’re basic, and for many women they’re not optional at the office. Luckily, (as men figured out ages ago) they’re flattering on any body type, including one that’s growing bigger and bigger as the weeks go by. Plus, they’re super simple to accessorize (buy it once, wear it three times a week). A quality suit can be pricey, so if you have to purchase one, you’ll want to make it work hard for the money. Neutrals are the key. A black wool suit, a gray shift and matching jacket, or a top and bottom in a subtle brown tweed (for winter) are classics that look polished and professional. In the summer, a cotton or linen suit can be just the ticket to cool, comfortable, and professional. Skirts should be fitted, and if possible, hit right above the knee for maximum flattering capability; pants should be narrow (a wide leg will make you look wider than you already are).

Career Dressing: A Professional Pregnancy. In What to Expect [Online]. Available:

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