By now, you have likely heard of postpartum belly bands. The promise to help you whip your post-partum body back into shape is a proposition that is hard to resist. But with various types of belly bands and garments on the market, many moms are left wondering what the big differences are. So they typically end up buying the most heavily marketed brand, or the cheapest one; neither of which ends up being a good fit for them (literally and figuratively). That is why we decided to come up with the top questions to ask yourself when shopping for a post-pregnancy belly band or support garment. So here we go …
Does the garment cover all the areas impacted by your pregnancy (not just your waist like a typical belly band)? Look for a support garment that supports the belly, waist, back, hips, buttocks and thighs. This will eliminate the need to buy multiple garments for the affected areas.
Is the band or garment tailored for your delivery type (e.g. vaginal delivery vs. C-section delivery)? Support for a C-section is very different than support for a vaginal delivery.
Is the band/garment breathable and lightweight? This is a huge comfort benefit over bulky elastic or foam belly bands. We all sweat and some more than others, especially depending on where you live.
Does the garment support a body in motion? Remember, the garment should be supportive and tight, but not restrictive. Corset-like garments, bands or belts with no give may cutoff circulation and potentially cause discomfort and/or hinder your recovery. Look for a material that supports and gives, without restriction. A good test: if you can’t comfortably bend over it in, then it’s not the right product. Plus, how the heck can you pick up your new baby if you can’t even bend over?
Can you wear it under clothing? Most bulky belly bands can be easily spotted under clothes so unless you plan on never going out, you won’t wear it. Look for a garment that is undetectable under all clothing types so you can wear it inside and outside of the home.
Do you constantly have to adjust the band as it keeps riding up? You are (or will be) busy enough tending to your little one. Look for a garment or band that you can put on and forget about it until it is time to take it off.
Does the garment provide graded levels of support in the key areas? Belly bands provide the same level of support throughout. However, a post-partum mom needs varying levels of support on the different parts of her body and based on where she is at in the healing process. For example, imagine how painful it would be to have course, restrictive fabric or elastic rubbing up against a fresh C-section or episiotomy tear.