As you know, I had baby #3 on December 7th. Belly Bandit sent me their Bamboo version to review. I won’t keep you in suspense, I love my Belly Bandit. So much so that I bought another bamboo Belly Bandit, and also a Mother Tucker Compression Nursing Tank. It’s no secret that I’m
cheap frugal, and Belly Bandit products are really not inexpensive. So I think it says a lot that I spent the money on them!
If you’ve never heard of a Belly Bandit, they are basically abdominal binders that support your core muscles and help flatten your belly postpartum. Abdominal binding has a long history, and in my opinion it works! The original Belly Bandit retails for $45.95, and the Bamboo is considerably higher at $65.95. The fabric is silky soft, naturally microbial etc. All the same reasons why I love it in diapers.
There I am above in my first “belly pic” at 4 weeks, and at 40 weeks! I started wearing the Belly Bandit about 2 hours after my son was born. I chose the size when I was around 8 months along, using their sizing tips. Wearing the Belly Bandit was instant relief for me since I felt “held together” instead of having that floppy, jello “hey, where’d my abs go?” feeling.
I didn’t take a photo immediately postpartum, but I think we all know what that looks like. Pregnant, only slightly smaller and squishier. 😉 I did take a photo at 2 days postpartum, and I’m also showing you what the small Belly Bandit looked on me then, and also what it looked like under clothes. It is a wee bit bulky, but I don’t think it’s terribly noticeable under looser fitting clothes, and I don’t know many brand new moms who are wearing tight clothing!
By 5 days postpartum (above) I had the small all the way closed. It did start to crease a bit at the waist, but nothing terrible. The rep at Belly Bandit thought maybe I needed the XS to start, but I’m not sure I would have gotten it closed that first day! It’s pretty common to need more than one size as you shrink, but your first size will usually last more than 5 days, so don’t let that scare you! I do wish there was a bit more Velcro on the band so it would last a little longer.
I waffled for a week about ordering another one, since they really are a little pricey for someone on a tight budget. In the end, I did order, and I went ahead and splurged on the Bamboo! I continued to use the small on and off while I waited for the XS to arrive. Above is what it looked like after 2.5 weeks of use. It really started to crease quite a bit and worked it’s way up into the small of my back (the front stayed flat.) Belly Bandit says it is normal for this to happen, kind of like a band aid conforming to your body. It doesn’t affect the functioning of the band!
My only complaint is that my package shipped via Fed Ex smart post, so it took seemingly forever (about 10 days, which does seem like forever when you’re waiting for something!) I really don’t understand the whole smart post thing. I guess it’s cheaper somehow? It was about 20 minutes away from me nearly a week before it got to me, then went to another state before it came back here. Weird. But it did get here!
As I said, in addition to the XS Belly Bandit, I also ordered the Mother Tucker Compression Nursing Tank. This made my hubby do a double take, since it’s one teeny, tiny line away from something very different than mother “tucker.” LOL
I was kind of worried about the sizing. As is typical for me, my band size falls into a small, but my cup size would fall into a Large or XL (if they had it.) I went with a small.
The helpful hint made me laugh. I love the use of humor on product packaging! They are right though. Stepping into it was snug enough, I can’t imagine trying to get it over my head!!
The cups just slide to the side to nurse, there are no clips or contraptions. It’s supportive without anything uncomfortable digging in, and the straps are adjustable. Since I’m petite, I’m used to things not adjusting quite as tightly as I need, but I was able to make it work anyway.
The nursing tank has a wide band on the bottom that keeps it from rolling up, and it really does work.
I can’t believe I’m doing this (LOL) but above is a pic of me at 3 weeks postpartum. I intentionally chose a shirt that was unflatteringly snug. I look less pudgy in clothes that fit better, but that wouldn’t make for a good before/after shot, now would it? 😉
Here I am in the XS Belly Bandit. This one almost immediately started creasing at my lower back. I think that’s because my waist is smaller than my hips. That may sound like a big “duh” statement, but think about your body shape immediately postpartum. I was able to prevent this a bit by closing it kind of at an angle…tighter up top and looser down towards my hips. I didn’t initially wear the Belly Bandit to bed because with my foggy brain I missed that part of the instructions. The bamboo was very comfortable at night, and wearing it to bed really helped my comfort since it supported my back and waist. The more I wear it, the bigger difference I see when I take it off. After just a few days of wearing the XS, I look far thinner than I do in my “before” shot above.
Above, I’m wearing the Mother Tucker nursing tank! I was worried about how it would feel since it sure was tight trying to wrestle myself into it! I was really surprised that once I got it on, I really couldn’t even tell I was wearing it. It was very comfortable, but really smoothed the lumps and bumps. The no-roll band comes down low on my hips, so it also serves as a tummy cover if my shirt lifts, which I love. I could really use some extra cup space though. I wouldn’t wear the tank under a snug fitting shirt since I end up with a quad-boob look if I don’t keep tucking myself back in, LOL. I do wish they would make a small-plus (medium-plus, large-plus etc.) option for those of us who get disproportionately large in the milk-factory area while nursing. 🙂
The Mother Tucker is expensive at $79.95, but it’s not too much more than a decent nursing bra in my size. Unfortunately I can’t buy my nursing bras at a local store thanks to the unusual size, so I have to spend a fortune to order them online. I do wish I could get a second one so I didn’t have to be without it on laundry day, but there’s no way I can squeak another one out of our budget!
I love, love love Belly Bandit products. They have made a huge difference in how I look (everyone who has seen me has said I look great!) as well as how I feel. Not just physically, but emotionally. Gaining 40 pounds that are nicely hidden by maternity clothes, then having to face the flab and “real” clothes isn’t exactly easy, you know? Belly Bandit sure does ease the sting!
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FTC compliance: I received one Belly Bandit at no charge for review purposes. The other two items were purchased by me at normal retail prices. I was not compensated for this post and all opinions are my own.