Anyone who’s ever shopped for maternity clothes (like the best maternity jeans) knows it’s kind of like shopping for the right bathing suit—not a fun pursuit. The good news is that designers and retailers have taken note, and everything from maternity leggings to maternity dresses to maternity denim has come a long, long way from the tent-like garments our moms complained about.
Our top picks
That’s not to say the best maternity jeans don’t have to check a lot of boxes, though. They need to feel comfy, fit well, and look cute—a trifecta that can be hard to find even with regular or petite jeans—all while offering enough stretch and support for a growing bump.
Enter panels. Maternity pants can be constructed a few different ways: With side panels (often V-shaped elastic sewn into both sides of the waistband), an under-the-bump panel, or an over-the-bump panel that’s typically large enough to pull all the way up and over your bump throughout your entire pregnancy.
If you know where to look, you can find pregnancy jeans that work for every trimester and come in a variety of washes and cuts, whether you swear by straight jeans with an over-the-belly panel or love a roomier wide leg with side panels to wear with a blazer.
Not only that, but some pairs of maternity jeans are especially versatile and can last from your first trimester through postpartum months, making them feel like a more worthwhile investment. Scroll on for the best maternity jeans—well-worn, loved, and endorsed by real moms—whatever your denim preference or stage of pregnancy.
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