I don't know where you live, but here in the Southeastern United States, it's H-O-T. Like, face-of-the-sun kind of hot. When you're pregnant during the summer months, you'll do almost anything to stay cool (as a three-time survivor of summer pregnancies, I know this firsthand). Blast the air conditioning? Yep. Cold showers? Yep. Sleep nude? Yep. Stand in front of the freezer/fridge? Yep and yep. One thing I never considered was how what I was wearing was helping or hurting my situation. Not all fabrics are equal when it comes to keeping you cool during the heat of summer. Let's take a look.
A Guide to Fabrics that Keep You Cool and Comfortable in Pregnancy
Cotton - Cotton is a natural fiber, which means that it breathes well, it's soft, lightweight, and is good at absorbing moisture so it's a good choice for both dry heat and more humid temperatures. BUT. While cotton does a great job at soaking up sweat, it's not so good at getting rid of it. If you're sweating a lot, your cotton clothing will be heavy and wet against your skin. Moisture against your skin for extended periods of time is uncomfortable and can cause rashes, yeast, and chafing. If you tend to get very hot and sweaty, consider another fabric that's better at wicking away moisture. Or, bring with you a change of clothes if you'll be in the heat for an extended period of time.
Polyester (technical)- Polyester is a synthetic material. When you find it in a high-tech athletic garment, it's a good choice, as this kind of polyester is made with sweating in mind and does a good job at wicking away moisture. The kind of polyester you find in dress clothing and shirts is not the same and is not a good choice for staying cool in warm weather.
Rayon - Rayon is a lightweight blend of natural and synthetic fibers. It's good because it's very light and breathable, which helps keep you cool. The downside is that rayon does not get rid of moisture well.
Merino wool - You probably wouldn't think wool = cool, but merino wool is a great choice for hot temps since it's breathable and wicks moisture well (it works for sheep in the pasture...). I promise it's not like wearing a thick, wool sweater -- merino wool comes in thin, lightweight styles for warm weather.
Linen - If you don't mind the abundance of wrinkles that worn linen is prone to, it's fantastic for staying cool in the heat. Linen is a natural material with a loose weave, which means that it's the ultimate in breathable material and it does a great job at absorbing moisture and drying quickly.
Silk - Silk is thin, lightweight, and breathable -- most people love the feel of silk against the skin. But silk is not at all good with sweat, so it's not an ideal choice for the heat.
Nylon - Nylon, like polyester, is a synthetic material that's good at wicking moisture away from your skin when worn with tighter fitted clothing. A lot of athletic wear is made from a blend that includes nylon. It may not be as soft as cotton, is not as breathable, and can get a little stinky, but it does a good job of drying quickly.
What's in your maternity wear closet this summer? What's your go-to outfit for staying cool?
TagsSummer Pregnancy Maternity Clothes