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Updated January 2023
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
Bottom line
Pros
Cons
Best of the Best
Motherhood Maternity Women’s Indigo Blue Skinny Denim Jean
Motherhood Maternity
Women’s Indigo Blue Skinny Denim Jean
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Most Comfortable
Bottom Line

Stylish and stretchy full-length jeans with a soft over-the-belly panel.

Pros

A pair of medium-wash denim skinny jeans with a flexible and comfortable panel that covers the stomach. Made of cotton, polyester, rayon, and spandex. Pull-on with no zipper. Has a 30-inch inseam and back pockets.

Cons

Pants may occasionally slide down slightly.

Best Bang for the Buck
Motherhood Maternity Women's Super Stretch Work Pants
Motherhood Maternity
Women's Super Stretch Work Pants
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Bargain Pick
Bottom Line

These maternity pants are versatile enough for workwear or casual everyday wear.

Pros

These skinny pants have a 29-inch inseam and a stretch maternity panel that grows with you throughout your pregnancy, giving you a comfortable feel at all times. They're made from a blend of premium fabrics, including nylon, spandex, and rayon. They're available in small to plus-size sizes.

Cons

They're too hot to be worn comfortably during the summer.

Three Seasons Maternity Skinny Jean with Neutral Belly Band
Three Seasons Maternity
Skinny Jean with Neutral Belly Band
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Simple Yet Solid
Bottom Line

Slim-fit jeans with a nude-colored belly panel.

Pros

Dark-wash skinny jeans with back pockets. Made of polyester, rayon, and cotton. Features a full-coverage belly panel in a beige color. Design has fading, whiskering at the top, and contrast stitching. Available in sizes small through XXL.

Cons

May be baggy in certain areas on some women.

Signature by Levi Strauss & Co. Gold Label Women's Maternity Baby Bump Bootcut Jean
Signature by Levi Strauss & Co.
Gold Label Women's Maternity Baby Bump Bootcut Jean
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Discreet Panel
Bottom Line

A pair of maternity jeans with a low panel that makes them similar to traditional jeans.

Pros

Medium-wash bootcut jeans with belt loops and back pockets. Features an elastic band in the front of the waist with material that allows for airflow. Made of cotton, polyester, and elastane. Pull-on and machine-washable.

Cons

Only designed for use in the first trimester of pregnancy.

Levi's Women's Maternity Baby Bump Skinny Jeans
Levi's
Women's Maternity Baby Bump Skinny Jeans
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Most Stylish
Bottom Line

These jeans offer a fit that's both stylish and comfortable.

Pros

These stretch jeans provide a snug fit and don't lose their shape over time. They're tight through the hips and thighs with a skinny leg opening for a flattering look. They have a baby bump panel for expectant mothers in their first trimester and cooling technology in the waistband.

Cons

Those in their third trimester may find them slightly restrictive.

HOW WE TESTED

We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.

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Buying guide for Best maternity jeans

Pregnancy is one of the most beautiful seasons of life, but it isn't without sacrifices. Just when you've accepted the fact that sushi, wine, jacuzzis, and practically all the best cheeses are off limits for the next nine months, you're forced to retire your favorite pair of jeans, as well. The good news? Maxis and muumuus aren't your only option — the right maternity jeans can bridge the gap between a growing bump and a stylish wardrobe.

Unlike regular jeans, maternity jeans are specially designed to accommodate your baby bump. And with an eye toward comfort, most maternity jeans are softer, stretchier, and more breathable than their everyday counterparts.

However, choosing the perfect pair of maternity jeans can be tricky. Just like other denims, maternity jeans come in a wide variety of styles, fits, and colors. On top of that, you'll also need to determine which waist band type is best for you.

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If you're the type who practically lives in jeans, consider purchasing different colors for work and leisure. Dark washes can be ideal for weekdays at the office, while lighter washes offer a more relaxed weekend look.

Key considerations

Waistband type

Maternity jeans come in three waistband styles: full panel, demi panel, and side stretch panels. Figuring out which one would work best for you is the first step toward finding a great pair of maternity jeans. Let's take a look.

Full panel: This style features a wide, stretchy panel of fabric that's pulled up over the belly. Full-panel maternity jeans can be used throughout pregnancy and, thanks to extra warmth and a bit of compression, they may even help ease back and pelvic pain. However, full-panel maternity jeans might not be ideal if you have dry, itchy skin.

Demi panel: Also known as under-the-belly maternity jeans, demi panel models feature a short elasticized waistband that sits under your bump. If you're looking for something a bit more discreet or breathable than full panel maternity jeans, this style is a fantastic alternative.

Side stretch panels: If you just can't stand the thought of being seen in maternity wear, this style is the closest you'll find to regular jeans. Rather than relying on a full waistband, these maternity jeans provide stretch for your baby bump via two inconspicuous elasticated side panels situated at the pockets. If low-rise cuts are your go-to style, you should feel right at home in a pair of side panel maternity jeans.

Size

Unless the manufacturer sizing chart states otherwise, it's best to simply stick with your pre pregnancy jeans size. Sizing up can seem like a good idea when you’re growing by the day, but doing so could leave you with jeans that are loose in all the wrong places. Also, keep in mind that most maternity jeans have a good deal of stretch, making them better able to accommodate the weight gain and swelling that go hand-in-hand with pregnancy.

Style

From skinnies to bootcuts and everything in between, maternity jeans are available in all your favorite styles. Some manufacturers even offer cutoff denim shorts, so you can still enjoy your go-to summer look. We recommend choosing a style that flatters your body shape. For instance, shorter frames can benefit from the lengthening effect of skinny jeans (preferably in a dark wash), while bootcuts complement curvy shapes beautifully. When in doubt, classic straight legs are always a safe bet.

Features

Color

Maternity jeans come in a multitude of colors to suit just about any look and occasion. Lighter washes exude a laid-back, casual air that's perfect for weekends or warm weather. Darker washes, on the other hand, can be dressed up or down and also tend to have a slimming effect that many ladies find particularly desirable during pregnancy.

Pockets

If you've never seen or worn maternity jeans before, it may come as a surprise that many have faux front pockets rather than real front pockets. If a fully functional set of front pockets is important to you, don't forget to check for this feature before you buy.

Back pockets are fairly common, but placement and style can vary. Wideset pockets with flaps, embroidery, or other highlights can add an illusion of fullness to an otherwise flat and compact backside. For a slimming effect, opt for plain, large back pockets that are spaced closer together.

Detailing

Every denim-loving diva knows that it's the little details that really bring a look together: Contrast stitching produces a polished effect and adds a bit of pop to uniform colors. Embroidery, beads, or sparkles will liven things up and can showcase an outgoing personality. Distressed denim has a casual feel, but can easily be dressed up with a blouse, a blazer, and heels for an edgy, on-trend look. Whatever your style, maternity fashion has certainly come a long way from the drab duds of yesteryear and it's worth taking the time to shop around for something you'll love.

Maternity jean prices

Inexpensive

Maternity jeans priced between $15 and $20 are usually full-panel models made with thinner fabric and lightweight stitching. While jeans within this price range can work for occasional wear, we'd be cautious about putting too much pressure on the seams.

Mid-range

You can find maternity jeans in every style, including side panel designs, for between $20 and $40. Fabric quality and stitch strength typically increase along with the price.

Expensive

If you're after superior quality and comfort, or if you want a designer pair of maternity jeans, you can expect to pay anywhere from $40 to $150 and over.

Tips

  • Don't overlook panel color. Some full-panel maternity jeans have waistbands that are the same color as the jeans themselves, while others have panels in lighter shades like beige. Darker panels will go largely unnoticed if your shirt rides up and are ideal for dark-colored tops. Lighter panels, on the other hand, are a must for thin blouses or light-colored shirts.
  • Make comfort a priority. Maternity jeans are made to be comfortable, so don’t settle for anything less. If your jeans pinch, squeeze, or irritate your skin, you might need to size up or try a different waistband style.
  • Try different waistband styles. Finding the perfect maternity jeans can take some trial and error. If you find that demi panel maternity jeans ride down a little too easily as your bump gets bigger, a full-panel pair might do the trick. Similarly, if full-panel jeans make your belly feel hot and itchy, a demi or side panel option could be a better fit.
  • Never pull maternity jeans up by their elasticized panels. Too much tugging and pulling on the panels can cause them to lose elasticity. When pulling your maternity jeans up, grip the denim rather than the waistband.
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Did you know?
Choosing maternity jeans that more or less resemble your regular cut can help make the transition a little easier. For instance, if you usually wear high-rise jeans, full-panel maternity jeans will have a more familiar feel. If mid- or low-rise jeans are your favorite, a demi panel or side panel design might be a better fit.
STAFF
BestReviews
A pregnant person with long hair wearing a striped shirt and maternity jeans walks barefoot along the beach at the edge of the ocean.
You don't have to reserve demi and side panel maternity jeans just for pregnancy. Most modern versions come in stylish designs, and many people find them so comfortable that they often become well-loved everyday jeans.

FAQ

Q. When should I start wearing maternity jeans?

A. Most women make the switch to maternity jeans when regular jeans start to feel uncomfortable or just don't fit anymore. But that's not to say you can't start sooner. If bloating and nausea in the early weeks of pregnancy have you craving all things comfortable, there's no reason not to pull on a pair of soft and stretchy maternity jeans. We recommend side or demi panel jeans for the first and second trimesters and full-panel varieties for the third.

Q. What's the best way to wash maternity jeans?

A. As with all denims, maternity jeans are usually best washed in cold water and hung up to air dry. Because heat can cause elastic fibers to lose their stretch, keeping water and dryer temperatures as low as possible is especially important when laundering maternity jeans. To avoid damaging your jeans, consult the manufacturer care instructions before washing.

Q. How should maternity jeans fit?

A. Different styles and cuts tend to have different fits, but as a rule of thumb, maternity jeans should be fairly snug to prevent sagging. Remember, these jeans tend to have more stretch than others, so there's really no need to size up in anticipation of weight gain. With that in mind, maternity jeans should never cause discomfort, and if yours are pinching or digging into your skin, it's best to exchange them for a bigger size.

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