Welcome to the second trimester, mama!
For most, this means relief from first trimester symptoms and lots of excitement on the horizon. The second trimester is full of fun pregnancy milestones like finding out the gender, your baby shower, and an actual baby bump.
As you enter your second trimester, you’ll probably be sharing the news with more people and doing a lot more celebrating and planning for baby’s arrival.
Here, we’ll take a look at all the second trimester essentials you’ll need to continue a healthy, happy, organized, and comfortable pregnancy!
I think a lot of mamas will agree that the first trimester was about survival. Figuring out how to get through your days and keep your pregnancy a secret dominated most of your pregnancy brain. But now that you’re in the second trimester, and hopefully feeling a lot better, it’s the perfect time to start getting organized!
There’s a lot to plan and keep track of as you prepare for your little one to join your family. A pregnancy planner can help keep all of your notes, paperwork, and planning in one place. They often include things like checklists, to do lists, questionnaires, and important information sections. Here’s one you’ll love!
To help you start thinking about everything you’ll be planning and organizing for the remainder of your pregnancy, here’s a little list:
- Baby registry
- Party planning
- Thank you notes
- Childcare options
- Choosing a pediatrician
- Prenatal appointments
- Pregnancy questions
- Birth plan
- Baby’s nursery
- Non-baby general household organization and stocking
I remember feeling pretty overwhelmed when it came to preparing my home and life for baby, and I know a pregnancy planner would have helped me a lot the first time around. It’s nice to have everything you need to stay on track in one (pretty!) place.
The second trimester is when your baby bump will really pop. It’s time to dress up and flaunt that cute baby bump, mama! Your regular clothes will become less and less accessible, and the need for at least a few key maternity pieces will become essential.
I know that maternity clothes can be pretty expensive, and for many, buying an entire maternity wardrobe isn’t in the budget. I recommend getting a few key pieces that can be dressed up or down for use on the weekends and during the work week by changing out accessories and shoes. Think basics and neutral colors that easily mix and match with each other.
Building a maternity wardrobe
- Thick maternity leggings (easy to dress up and down!)
- A few solid-colored maternity tank tops (put a non-maternity cardigan or scarf with it to change up the look)
- Maternity underwear (I skipped this the first time around and totally regret it! Buy the maternity underwear, it’s so much more comfortable!)
- 2-3 maternity pieces that make you feel good and beautiful. These might be dresses (especially for a summer pregnancy) or some pretty blouses or sweaters
- A maternity bathing suit for summer pregnancies
- A great pair of maternity jeans (easy to dress up and down)
Instead of including shoes with other maternity-wear, I wanted give shoes their own section because supportive shoes are so essential to your pregnancy comfort! As you gain weight and your pregnancy progresses, you’re probably going to see a lot more uncomfortable symptoms pop up. Things like back pain, swollen feet and ankles, tired legs, sore hips, the list can go on and on.
Buying a pair of supportive, wide shoes will really help keep you more comfortable while you’re working, running errands, out on daily walks, or doing any of the other hundreds things you need to accomplish in a day.
I really liked BOBS shoes during my pregnancy because they have a supportive footbed and are nice and wide to accommodate swelling, sometimes even growing (!) feet.
Pregnancy stretch mark cream
The second trimester is the perfect time to start applying a daily stretch mark cream. Your body probably hasn’t changed too much yet (or maybe it has!), but as the weeks go on and your belly grows, stretch marks may start to crop up.
While the jury is out on the effectiveness of stretch mark creams for complete prevention, they certainly can’t hurt. In addition to a daily stretch mark cream, proper hydration and a healthy weight gain will be the best lines of defense against stretch marks.
How to choose a pregnancy stretch mark cream
Picking between an oil, cream, salve, or butter is really personal preference. Different mamas like the feel of different options. But all choice are effective at keep your skin soft, supple, and more elastic to promote greater ease of stretching as your belly grows. They also work to lock in the natural moisture in your skin.
In my first trimester essentials guide, I talked a lot about switching to all natural, non-toxic personal care products to reduce you and baby’s potential exposure to toxins. Be sure to keep this in mind when you choose a stretch mark cream or stretch mark oil, too.
Gender reveal ideas
During your second trimester, you will have your 20-week scan, also known as the anatomy scan. The anatomy scan is recommended for all pregnant women as preventative, routine care. During this scan, your provider will take a look at your baby’s growth and development so far.
By this point in your pregnancy, your baby is remarkably developed. Your provider will take a lookat their brain, heart, stomach, bowels, kidneys, limbs, spine, and face. Pretty crazy that it’s all there, right?!
For many mamas, this scan is especially exciting because it’s a chance to find out the gender! If you want to know, this will be the big day.
Planning for your gender reveal
Before your anatomy scan, you and your partner should decide if you want to find out the gender and where you want to find out. You could have the technician tell you during your scan, or you can ask them to write it down and put the results in the envelope.
You can then find out the gender news privately at home or use the secret envelope to plan a more involved gender reveal party.
If you would like to have a gender reveal party, gender reveal ideas are definitely a second trimester essential! Here’s a brainstorm list to get you started:
- Pop the balloon – a balloon filled with pink or blue confetti
- Gender reveal cake – cut into a delicious cake to find out if it’s a boy or a girl
- Break the pinata – smash your way to pink or blue themed candies
- Gender reveal powder poppers – a fun and colorful way to share the news
- Gender reveal baseball
- Gender reveal confetti poppers
And here are some fun and clever theme ideas:
- What will it “bee”? With a bumblebee theme
- Twinkle, twinkle little star, how I wonder what you are?
- “Waddle” it be? With a duck theme
- What’s the scoop? He or She? With an ice cream theme
- You “donut” want to miss this! Donut themed gender reveal
Baby shower must haves
Your baby shower is a fun time to celebrate baby, spend time with loved ones before the baby arrives, and receive a lot of your baby essentials! Traditionally, a female family member or friend will “host” your shower for you and take care of all the details, but I still wanted to include it on the second trimester essential list just in case.
More and more mamas are throwing their own showers or are involved in the planning process. Here’s a list of essentials you might need to make your baby shower planning and partying a bit more streamlined:
- Coordinated paper goods and cutlery
- Food and drinks
- Baby shower cake or other desserts
- Baby shower decorations
- Baby shower invitations
- Guest book for people to sign in and put their address (this is a great place for someone to write down gift details later during the party for easier thank you notes)
- Thank you notes
Baby registry guide
Before your baby shower, creating a baby registry is an absolute must! Your loved ones will be so excited to get you the things you want and need to take care of your little bundle of joy. Taking the time to create a well-researched and thoughtful registry is essential to getting the products you want and feel good about.
With an emphasis on choosing natural, organic, and nontoxic products whenever possible, creating a detailed registry ahead of time is even more important! For all the details on creating the safest and most complete registry, head over to my baby registry essentials checklist. But here’s a list to get you started:
- Nursery essentials: crib or bassinet, rocker, monitor, sound machine, dimmable nightlight
- Diapering essentials: diapers, wipes, cream, diaper trash can
- Health and safety items: nail clippers, thermometer, baby brush, suction bulb, infant fever reducer
- Feeding essentials: glass or silicone bottles, breast pump, burp cloths, bottle drying rack, bibs, highchair, sippy cups, baby food storage containers
- Bathing essentials: baby tub, wash cloths, organic baby soap, hooded towel, baby lotion
- Clothing: zip-up pajamas, short and long-sleeved onesies, cotton pants, fleece booties, soft-soled baby shoes, swaddles, sleep sacks
- Playtime items: baby books, wooden toys and teether, soft rattles, floor mirror, bouncer, toy storage and organization baskets, mobile
I know that getting any kind of exercise in during the first trimester may have felt impossible. But it’s never too let to get moving during pregnancy! I’m putting this on my list of second trimester essentials because there are so many benefits.
Prenatal fitness will help prepare your body for birth, may reduce your labor time, and will keep your weigh gain in the optimal range for your body. It’s also a great way to reduce stress and improve sleep.
For some, this might mean adding a brisk walk to your day, incorporating yoga or swimming. If you are interested in a true prenatal exercise program, I say go for it! It’s a great way to meet other pregnant mamas or you can invest in an online option that is super accessible and easy to fit into your day.
If there’s one thing I wish I’d invested in sooner during pregnancy, it was a pregnancy pillow. It will make such a difference in your nighttime sleep, mama. And as your pregnancy progresses, sleep will only get more and more frustrating.
A pregnancy pillow helps support your hips, back, and growing belly to keep you on your side and more comfortable during the night. PharMeDoc makes an organic cotton option.
In the first trimester, I recommended starting a pregnancy journal or taking weekly bump photos as a fun way to document this special time. Ultrasounds are another super special part of pregnancy. The first glimpses of your little baby are like no other!
Getting a special frame for your ultrasound is a must. You can put it in your room or baby’s nursery. Someday, when your baby turns into a curious toddler and preschooler, they will love seeing how they looked in your belly.
Get your second trimester essentials, mama
As you can see, the second trimester is going to be a lot of fun, mama! This list will help you track and celebrate all of the exciting milestones that this trimester has to offer.
As your pregnancy progresses, and you near the third trimester, don’t miss out on my third trimester guide. Things will probably start to get a little uncomfortable again, and I’ve got everything you need to bring you to your due date.