This question comes up often! I think maternity clothes remind us of those beached whale days that we desperately want to forget.
Let’s look at the practical side of this matter. Chances are you don’t fit well into your pre-pregnancy clothing. No matter how much we diet and exercise, no matter how much weight we lose after giving birth, most of our bodies will not go back to the exact same shape they once were. This means that not all of your pre-pregnancy clothing will look the way you are accustomed to it looking on you. At some point in time, you will need to update your wardrobe. You will lose a good chunk of your pregnancy weight in the first few weeks after giving birth, the rest of the weight loss depends on many factors. So what are your goals?
From the perspective of saving money, if you are actively working on body changes, it makes sense to wear your maternity clothes until you have reached your post-partum body shape/ size goals. This way you don’t need to invest into several temporary wardrobes. There is the argument however that in order to make goal a reality, you need to feel good about those goals and everything surrounding them. In this case, you would need to update to a temporary wardrobe that makes you feel good.
Here is what I did- I sorted my maternity clothes into 3 categories: want to keep wearing, want to keep for possible future pregnancies, and makes me gag. Maternity jeans went straight into the keep wearing category. I invested into some stylish maternity jeans some of which were work appropriate. I am still wearing them. They are super comfortable and now finally at four months post-partum starting to feel loose. I also kept all of my long tank tops. Sure, they really look extra-long now but they make for fantastic loungewear and I don’t fret when baby boy spits up all over them.
I kept a couple of nice tops for possible future pregnancies. These are items that I loved wearing, they made me feel amazing about myself and my body. I have nothing but the fondest memories of wearing these items but I can’t wear them now because they are clearly meant for a rounder and bigger belly. These tops are patiently waiting out their hiatus in storage.
Last but not least are my makes me gag items. These are things that remind me of getting nauseous on super-hot summer days. I sold the items still in good shape to a local maternity consignment store. The others were either donated or thrown out depending on the shape they were in.
There is no rule for when you should stop wearing your maternity clothes and nobody has the right to judge you for your choices. Do what feels best to you!
For the record, at 4 months post-partum I have not updated my post baby wardrobe beyond the basics. I have 10 more pounds to loose before I get back to my pre- pregnancy weight and I can already tell that my body shape changed. My goal is to get to my desired size in time to update my entire wardrobe for late spring/ summer. In the meantime I am putting together outfits by blending old clothing with pregnancy/ nursing wear and a couple of new basic staples for this transitional period.