Let's talk second trimester! For a lot of mamas it's a magical point in your pregnancy. You're done with the morning sickness that comes in the first few months and you're not super uncomfortable like at the end of pregnancy. It's a great time to enjoy your growing bump and get so excited about the adorable tiny one that's about to join your life! I've found a few favorite products and tips that make my second trimester go a bit smoother so I'm really excited to share those with you today.
Your second trimester is actually a perfect time to get those done. Of course you want to be showing in the pictures, but I've found in the second trimester I'm still small enough that it's easier to find clothes I love for a photo shoot and I'm not feeling super swollen in my face or ankles like at the very end of pregnancy!
I haven't gotten mine done YET with this pregnancy, but I plan to really soon!!
Taking a warm bath with bath salts is such a nice way to pamper yourself and relax at the end (or beginning or middle, whenever you need it!) of the day. Just make sure the water isn't too hot and you're good to enjoy some YOU time in the tub!
My two favorites this pregnancy are super affordable (YAY!!) and do the trick better than any other combo I've tried. I love these bath salts combined with this bubble bath. It's SUPER relaxing and feels like heaven and doesn't cost a fortune to be taking frequent baths, which can get expensive if you've become addicted to Lush Bath Bombs (guilty) at $7-8 a pop. Both these salts and bubble bath are less than $5 a piece for huge containers so you really can relax and indulge several times a week without going bankrupt.
Stretch mark prevention oil
I recommend this stretch mark prevention oil to ALL my expecting mama friends, and it makes a great gift if someone you know is pregnant! This is a body oil that helps prevent stretch marks. It's also amazing for keeping your skin hydrated and avoiding the itchy tummy that sometimes happens as baby grows!
This is my #1 most popular item on my Best Baby Registry List Ever – also a great read if you're getting ready to have a baby!
Favorite Prenatal Vitamins
Prenatals are SOOOO important for your baby's development. I love that these ones can be taken on an empty stomach, they're organic, and they have ginger to help with morning sickness.
This pregnancy I've been taking Care Of prenatals. They have a really fun quiz on their site to see what else you might need in your life, and then you get them in little (recyclable and biodegradable!) daily packets, so they're SUPER easy to travel with or pop into your purse if you're running out the door (me – always). Care of prenatal vitamins are another brand that DON'T make me feel more sick – which is always a huge, huge win.
Keeping your stress level as low as possible is ideal, and one of the ways I do that is with a diffuser and some of my favorite, soothing essential oils. The ceramic finish on this diffuser makes it a really lovely decor piece in your house and it's such a gentle, subtle stream of mist and oils. So calming and a major game-changer for sleepless nights.
I also love THIS super affordable diffuser that we featured on the blog at the beginning of the year. $25 and it runs for 8 hours? You can't beat that!
The second trimester is WAY easier to dress than your first, because you have that super cute bump to show off! The first trimester can feel like such a drag because you not only feel like yuck the whole time, you also look like you're kinda pregnant or maybe just putting on a few extra pounds. At least that's always how I feel! So I'm usually pretty excited to make it into the second trimester when it's obvious that YES, I'm pregnant.
Some of my faves are these maternity leggings, these maternity tops, this maternity dress and this dress, and then pair a dress or maternity tee with a cute kimono like this one or this one, or a cardigan like this one or this one.
A comfy nursing bra is surprisingly handy during pregnancy too! I've found that they are much softer than normal bras, so they stay comfortable as everything is growing and changing during your second trimester, plus of course they are awesome after the baby comes if you're planning on nursing. This one pictured above is another really comfortable one that my sister recommended to me!
Here are a few things I've experienced in the second trimester that you might be up against too, or want to prepare yourself for so that you're not totally shocked when they happen or confused or google and misdiagnose yourself (totally something I would do).
Congestion – I always get fairly congested during the second and into the third trimester. Some kind of lovely side effect of more blood flowing through your system and hormones rising. I just always sound like I have a cold, even when I don't. Fun!
Bleeding gums – my gums get super super sensitive during the second trimester too, and will often bleed when I floss or go to the dentist for a cleaning. In past pregnancies I've skipped going to the dentist – BIG no no according to my current dentist! He told me if anything you should get your teeth cleaned more regularly. So I'm going a couple times during this pregnancy. Also this toothbrush has been a miracle worker for me! Neil got it for me from our dentist as a Christmas gift. It's definitely one of those “nice to have” not “NEED to have” things, but I do feel like I got a professional dental cleaning every single time I brush! And I swear it's helped with my gum issues this pregnancy.
Restless leg – oh man, if you haven't experienced this yet and you do eventually, I am so sorry. It's the most uncomfortable awful feeling!! It's exactly what it sounds like – your legs feel restless, to the point of making you absolutely a crazy person. I've found that getting up out of bed and stretching, like pointing my toes and then flexing my toes, and walking around, helps a lot! I also swear by eating a banana before bed. It really helps me!
Braxton hicks contractions – these often start coming around during the second trimester for me. I don't remember them happening as early with Anabelle (my first), but with the second, third and this fourth baby they've shown up right around the 20 week mark. In fact, my due date was the EXACT same day with Lyla (my second) as this fourth baby – May 7 – and I remember the week of Christmas having to go get checked when I was home for the holidays by my doctor in SLC because I felt like I was contracting that early. Turns out they were just Braxton Hicks! The same thing happened this year at Christmas time, except this time I knew it was just false labor so I took it as an excuse to sit on the couch for a couple hours, drink a bunch of yummy pebble ice water and do nothing.
One easy way to tell is if they change based upon your position, if they aren't frequent and if they're irregular. Your belly will become hard and it will feel like a real contraction, but it's not. For me, these happen when I'm worn out and haven't hydrated well enough or rested enough. So SIT DOWN, drink a bunch of water, and try to rest if this happens!
Oh baby, baby
Here's hoping your second trimester is filled with a little more relaxation, a lot less morning sickness, and tons of preparing for that sweet baby to come!