20 Pregnancy Must-Haves for Expecting Parents

By Published On: September 15th, 2023

From gentle face wash to wardrobe essentials to clean nail polish.

Please note that some products listed are linked to affiliate websites and we may collect a small commission on your purchase.

With pregnancy comes a long list of ingredients to avoid, a dramatically different body, and all kinds of new aches and pains. Sure, all of this discomfort and inconvenience is worth it in the end, but that doesn’t mean getting through 40 weeks without drinking your favorite coffee or wearing your perfectly worn-in jeans is a joy ride. In fact, it can all be a lot tougher than you may think.

The good news is that there are plenty of great pregnancy products on the market made specifically to help you feel as much like yourself as possible as you inch your way towards your due date. Will you be eager to get back to wearing your pre-pregnancy clothes and using your favorite skincare (and just generally feeling more like your pre-pregnancy self) after your baby arrives? Absolutely. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any quality backup products for you to use until that day arrives.

Pregnancy Pillow Wedge

The cruel irony of pregnancy is that even before your bundle of sleep deprivation arrives, catching those precious Zs gets tricky. Eliminate one major issue—finding a comfortable position—by making friends with a pregnancy pillow like the Boppy Pregnancy Pillow Wedge. Your baby bump, pelvis, lower back, hips, and knees will surely welcome the support.

Heartburn Relief Tea

A relaxed esophageal sphincter (blame it on the hormones!) means stomach acid can sneak back up into your esophagus, resulting in the uncomfortable burning sensation known as heartburn. Consuming small meals, avoiding spicy, greasy foods and caffeinated beverages, and remaining upright for a while after eating can thwart the scorch. But when proactive measures fall short, this minty, soothing Heartburn Relief Tea from Earth Mama Organics can cool things down.

Hard Candy for Nausea

Preggie Pops will help fight off the morning sickness that plagues many expecting parents during the first trimester … and sometimes into the second ( … and possibly even the third). These drug-free hard candies come in a variety pack with sour lemon, sour raspberry, sour tangerine, and apple flavors, are individually wrapped, and offer natural nausea relief that’s safe for parents-to-be. With nearly 16,000 positive reviews, it’s safe to say Preggie Pops will surely help you through your day.

Maternity Capsule Wardrobe

A combo of what you already own can stay in rotation for your growing belly—open-front cardigans, maxi dresses, and roomy tunics. But you’ll need some solid foundation pieces to make them work. The Maternity 4-Piece Essentials Kit from Old Navy has your maternity capsule wardrobe covered with an extra-long tank, leggings, a short-sleeved dress, and a basic tee, all made with cotton jersey and a pinch of spandex for a soft, stretchy fit.

Pumping and Nursing Bra

Your breasts start changing long before your milk comes in—in fact, many women go up one or two (or more!) cup and band sizes over the course of pregnancy, so a quality nursing and pumping bra is a must-have piece of maternity clothing. Support the girls with a stretchy bra, and consider switching to a nursing/pumping style while you’re at it. We love The Do Anything Bra by Bodily because it’s soft, durable, and available in a wide range of sizes and several colors.

Quality Maternity Jeans

Yes, maternity leggings are a non-negotiable during pregnancy, but a good pair of jeans will help on those days you just want to feel a bit more put together. The elastic over-the-belly panel on the flattering Maternity Ankle Straight Jean from Abercrombie & Fitch means these pull-on pants expand right along with you. They’re cut low in front to leave room for your baby bump and high in the back to cover your rump (which will look A+ in this no-sag denim). Not into distressed or looser-fitting styles? A&F has several maternity pants to choose from in a variety of washes and silhouettes.

Cozy Nightgown

Move over, decade-old sweats and oversized T-shirt. The Stretch Jersey Maternity and Nursing Nighty from Seraphine is a modern-day housedress that’s roomy enough to accommodate your third-trimester curves, cozy enough to nap in, and completely nursing-friendly for when you need easy access postpartum. Oh, and it comes in a two-pack—enough said.

Belly Support Band

A belly band keeps your britches up when they’re too tight to button, provides extra coverage when your shirt is suddenly a little too short, and supports your tummy as it gets bigger (and bigger). Our favorite thing about the Belly Bandit Belly Boost is its innovative WonderWeave material locks in moisture, so your belly butter gets absorbed by your bump instead of your blouse.

Delicious Coffee Alternative

If you’re avoiding caffeine and missing your morning ritual of hitting the brew button, try this Premium French Chicory from Worldwide Botanicals that’s better than decaf and better for your health. It packs prebiotics that support your microbiome and help restore gut health while providing a natural boost of energy that won’t interfere with sleep. Trust us: It will become your go-to beverage that you’ll appreciate all of pregnancy.

Root Cover-Up

There’s little research to prove hair dyeing is either safe or harmful during pregnancy, so what’s a parent-to-be to do when the grays start peaking through? Options include using natural dyes, asking your stylist to use a technique where the color doesn’t touch the scalp, or opting out entirely just in case. (Of course, getting your doc’s opinion should be step one.) If you’re mostly OK with going au naturel but want to hide those grays for an important meeting or big event, Color Wow Root Cover-Up provides temporary powder coverage in a variety of shades, so you’re sure to find one to work with your hair.

Clean Nail Polish

Wary of the chemicals wafting around the nail salon? The odor alone is enough to make any morning-sick mama run for the nearest trash bin. Skip the professional mani-pedi and do it yourself instead (or recruit a friend or partner when you can no longer reach your toes). Just be sure to choose at least a 5-free polish, which means there’s no formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate, toluene, camphor, or formaldehyde resin to fret over. We particularly love ella+mila polishes because they’re 17-free and come in a rainbow of hues (including glittery options!).

Stretch Mark Oil

Genetics play a big role in whether you’ll be subject to stretch marks, but just because your parent got them doesn’t mean all hope is lost. Minimize the damage and ease itchiness with the highly-rated Bio-Oil Skincare Oil. Oh, and pro-tip: Those pinkish streaks can take up residence on your breasts, buttocks, and thighs as well, so don’t limit the oil to just your bump.


If this is your first pregnancy, you might be thrilled when your new hormones result in a fuller mane, but when those same hormones lead to stray hairs cropping up in unfortunate places (like chins and nipples)? No thanks. They may be awkward, but with the Rose Gold Mini Slant Tweezers from Tweezerman, they’re not the end of the world. Find them, pluck them, and move on.

Pregnancy-Safe Face and Body Wash

With hormones raging and go-to fixes like salicylic acid off-limits, keeping acne-prone skin under control is no easy task. But before you pull a paper bag over your head, give the gentle Mama’s Got To Glow Face and Body Wash from Honest a go. This pregnancy-safe skin care product relies on citric and lactic acid, Pyrus malus seed oil, and coconut acid to calm breakouts and prepare you to face the day.

Prenatal Vitamins

From folic acid and DHA to a slew of essential vitamins and minerals, a prenatal multivitamin is the best way to ensure your growing baby isn’t missing out on any critical nutrition. If swallowing a pill triggers your gag reflex, try the chewable SmartyPants Prenatal Formula gummies, which come in lemon, orange, and strawberry banana flavors.

Large Water Tumbler

Your bladder may disagree, but hydration is key during your pregnancy. It can prevent constipation, minimize swelling, and even help with fatigue. So drink up! While any quality tumbler or water bottle will do, the Stanley Quencher H2.0 Flowstate Tumbler has become a must-have over the last couple of years—and for good reason. It comes with a reusable straw, features double-wall vacuum insulation, and will keep your drink warm for up to seven hours, cold for up to 11 hours, and iced for up to two days. Plus, this is a product that can be used well after baby arrives, especially if you plan on breastfeeding.

Compression Socks

With slowed circulation, it’s no surprise your feet are more likely to swell up like balloons. Prevent the puff by neither sitting nor standing for long periods, propping up your feet when you can, and sporting compression socks or stockings, which can also deter varicose veins. We are fans of Bombas Everyday Compression Socks because they’re soft, comfortable, supportive, and high quality.

Slip-On Sneakers

You have to see (or feel) to believe how easy it is to slip into these Athens sneakers by Kizik. They offer a hands-free shoe-wearing experience that’s ideal for expectant parents unable to see their feet—much less lace them up. With no tying, pulling, heel crushing, or hands required, these cute and comfy staples will walk with you through your nine-month journey into parenthood.

Supportive Pregnancy Tape

Pregnant bellies are beautiful, but they’re not always comfortable. As you stretch and grow (and grow and stretch), enlist the help of tummytape, maternity tape designed to naturally and safely relieve back discomfort, swollen feet, sciatica, and other pregnancy-related aches and pains. Bonus: It can also be used post-pregnancy for back and abdominal support during recovery.

SPF Mist

While SPF is important no matter the status of having a bun in the oven, pregnant people are particularly prone to sensitivity and should take extra precautions to keep their skin out of harmful rays. Habit’s SPF Mister is a make-up-friendly, easy way to reapply throughout the day to ward off melasma, burning, heat rash, and other skin concerns.