As you’re preparing for your new baby, it might completely slip your mind that you also need to prepare for the changes your postpartum body will go through, especially if you’re scheduled for a cesarean.
If this is the case, C-section underwear is going to be your new friend!
C-section underwear is specially designed for women who experience a belly birth and provides them with the needed comfort and care to recover as quickly as possible.
C-section panties don’t just help your scar heal, though – they also help your body and muscles get back on track after such a major procedure.
And they also make life with postpartum bleeding a lot easier!
You might be surprised to hear that 1 out of 3 women in the United States have delivered their baby via a cesarean, meaning that there are millions of strong mamas who have had a belly birth.
From old-school favorites such as mesh underwear to specialized C-section undergarments, I’ll make sure we cover all the bases so you can make the best choice possible!
So without further ado, here is some of my favorite C-section underwear that will hopefully make your recovery smooth sailing.
1. Mesh Postpartum Underwear
Disposable postpartum mesh underwear is pretty much a staple of every new mom’s life.
I can only compare them to period underwear – you know, that pair of underwear that is super comfy to wear and you don’t really care if it gets stained?
Most moms will get their first pair of mesh underwear at the hospital after they give birth, either vaginally or via C-section, but you can also stock up on mesh underwear to wear after you leave the hospital.
This mesh underwear by Hansilk is great for C-section recovery as the high waistband won’t irritate your scar, but it can also be used after a vaginal delivery as well, so it’s a great idea to get these whether you’re planning on a C-section or not.
I wore this mesh underwear after having both kids and I’ve got to say that it’s just as comfortable as the ones they give you in the delivery room!
So now you don’t have to worry about stuffing your diaper bag with extra pairs from the hospital…
They’re made out of spandex and polyester and ensure that the maternity pad you’re wearing doesn’t move around.
And even if it does and the underwear gets stained, you can wash it if you don’t feel like throwing it away just yet.
2. Seamless Mesh Knit Underwear
To give you more options to choose from, here’s a different brand of mesh underwear by Brief Transitions.
They are disposable yet also machine washable and you get 5 pairs in one pack (2 more than in the Hansilk pack).
The fabric stretches, which is great for a mom’s changing body. It’s also great for C-section recovery since it won’t be uncomfortable against your scar.
The underwear is full coverage – so you won’t feel naked wearing it around the house!
Unlike the Hansilk underwear, though, these panties come in one size only.
However, moms swear by their stretchiness, which can accommodate most postpartum bellies and bodies!
3. Frida Mom Disposable High Waist C-Section Postpartum Underwear
The Frida Mom disposable C-section recovery underwear is not made out of mesh, but rather out of microfiber and spandex and resembles boy shorts.
Still, it can stretch a ton to accommodate your wonderful postpartum body.
This model is not a one-size-fits-all, but it does come in two different sizes: Petite, which will fit women with waists that are from 23 to 34 inches, and regular, which will fit women with waists from 28 to 42 inches.
To protect your incision scar, the waistband is placed really high up so there’s no need to worry about it rolling down and hurting you.
Even though they’re technically made for C-section moms, a good friend of mine took these undies to the hospital with her even though she was scheduled for a vaginal birth and she absolutely loved them!
4. Wirarpa Women’s High Waisted Cotton Underwear
In the weeks after delivering your baby, as you go through your postpartum recovery process, you’re going to definitely want underwear that’s soft, stretchy, and that won’t irritate your incision area as you go about your daily life.
Sure, it’s not lingerie – I would sooner classify them as granny panties, however, comfort comes first at this point in your life.
These postpartum panties by Wirarpa have a wide double crotch to fit your maternity pad. Plus the material is combed cotton, so you can wash them numerous times and they’ll stay as good as new.
The waistband is high enough to stay above your belly button and C-section incision, and there’s an elastic band on the inside to keep it in place.
I really loved these panties as I could even wear them underneath my yoga pants when I went to my yoga classes or just for a quick run to the store.
You might think that the panty lines would show, but these panties are so discreet you could never tell!
5. Always Discreet Boutique, Incontinence & Postpartum Underwear for Women
Oh, Always. A staple of every woman’s life from the moment she gets her first period until she reaches the menopause.
And now, Always can also follow you through your cesarean recovery journey with their Incontinence & Postpartum Underwear for Women.
Let’s keep it real here – this is just another way of saying “diaper”, but they’re a great alternative to having a big pad in your underwear all day.
And Always have made sure to make the undies look pretty with lace designs.
These are a great option during the night if you want to avoid inconvenient stains on your bed sheets and you’re afraid that your pad might move in your mesh or cotton underwear.
They’re C-section safe as well as they come up very high on your midsection and won’t hurt your scar.
The core of the pad will change any liquids to gel quickly, so there are no leaks.
They come in several sizes – small/medium, large, and extra-large.
You even have a choice between two colors – peach and purple.
While it’s super understandable if you’re slightly turned off by wearing a diaper, keep in mind that they are really comfortable and easy to change, so they might suit your needs better in the first weeks postpartum than mesh underwear, for example.
6. High Waist Post Pregnancy Shapewear PettiPant
The PettiPant by Belevation is not so much a classic pair of underwear, but more like a pair of cycling shorts!
They provide enough compression to the tummy area which makes them great for C-section recovery, while also being perfect for all moms who would like to slowly get back into their fitness routine.
But you don’t need to go to the gym to wear these shorts – they’re perfect under skirts or dresses as well if you would like to get that tummy support while running errands around town.
Color choice is a little limited, though – the shorts only come in black or beige.
Of course, you’ll still need to wear some type of postpartum panties underneath, but you can rely on these shorts to provide enough support to your tummy muscles.
Why C-section underwear is important for you
Regardless of whether you have a C-section or not, postpartum undergarments should definitely find their way into your underwear drawer.
The fact is, regular panties just won’t cut it when it comes to all the changes that your body goes through after delivering a baby – and this doesn’t get talked about enough if you ask me.
For example, you’ll experience postpartum bleeding (also called lochia) that can last for as long as 6 weeks, which is why you’ll need special maternity pads.
I realized pretty quickly that even the most comfortable underwear I had wasn’t big enough for these maxi pads, so I continued using mesh underwear during the “heavy” days.
But for all of us who have delivered our babies via C-section, postpartum underwear is even more important.
A C-section scar will need special care and attention, and you won’t be able to wear anything that will cause irritation, itchiness, or pain to the area.
Moms who have delivered their baby vaginally can wear bikini undies if they like but with an incision scar right above their pubic bone, C-section moms need high waist underwear instead.
Your underwear will also need to make sure bandages stay in place.
There are even special C-section undies that provide medical-grade compression to your tummy as it adjusts to a post-pregnancy life and as your uterus shrinks back to its regular size.
Compression underwear is also important because it can minimize the swelling of the skin surrounding the scar.
Breathable materials are a must as well since they prevent you from sweating too much and feeling uncomfortable as a result.
Some C-section underwear is designed with silicone panels that reduce scars and this is a feature that many moms are interested in.
Such medical-grade silicone panels can also reduce itchiness and anyone who has ever had surgery knows very well how bad the itching can be, so this is always welcome news!
Comfy clothes are important, too
In addition to wearing undergarments that support your recovery and help you heal, wearing comfortable clothing can make everyday life a little easier to manage.
Going to the bathroom, for example, is a lot easier if you’re just wearing a simple maxi dress you can pull up.
Loose dresses are also less likely to irritate your scar as opposed to sweatpants.
And I don’t know about you, but wearing anything other than yoga pants and tank tops while taking care of my newborn instantly made my mood a hundred times better!
What can I say, I’m a sucker for a cute outfit, even if it gets ruined by spit-up.
If you’re not a fan of dresses, though, then robes could be perfect for you.
You might have one already in your closet, but this is a perfect excuse to get your hands on a soft fleece robe that’s easy to throw on at any hour of the day or night.
Regardless of which style you prefer, wearing cozy clothes that are easy to put on and take off are definitely going to make it easier to move around with an incision scar.
All in all…
Childbirth is one heck of a ride. You might have your birth planned to a T, and have it happen completely differently.
Many of the women in my life never planned for a C-section, but in the end, it was necessary to bring their baby safely into the world.
On the other hand, many women opt for a belly birth right from the beginning, and this is also a perfectly good decision.
However, it’s no secret that recovering from a cesarean as opposed to a vaginal birth is much harder on the mom.
After all, it is a serious medical procedure.
Having the right high-quality undergarments that can support scar healing but also take care of the postpartum bleeding is definitely a must, and those are the criteria I followed when hand-selecting the best C-section underwear for you!
And remember – healing is such a unique process that’s individual to every mother out there. So please give yourself enough time to rest and recover before going back to your life at full speed.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2020, April 20. “Births – Method of Delivery.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
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