Skip to main content

NewFolks may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

Why compression socks during pregnancy are a great idea (and the best ones to get)

Compression socks for pregnancy: When do you need them? What are the best brands?

A pregnant woman having pains and holding her back.
wavebreakmedia / Shutterstock

Pregnancy definitely has its glamorous moments, from the glow to the shiny hair, compliments, and congratulations. While some days you may feel amazing and energized, there are certain periods when you’re just seeking causes behind pregnancy pain, and then looking for ways to find relief. Because the reality is more often composed of nausea, swollen ankles, and fatigue. Pregnancy may not be Instagram-worthy all the time, but that’s why we’re here to help you with those delicate questions about the nitty-gritty—like how to know if you need compression socks for pregnancy.

Woman wearing compression socks
Albina Gavrilovic / Shutterstock

Compression socks for pregnancy can help with swelling

Compression socks for pregnancy come in handy the most during the second trimester when your growing baby’s extra weight puts a strain on your lower half. Your body swells with extra blood flow during pregnancy, and the swelling (medically called edema) can get to the point of discomfort.

Compression socks gently squeeze your ankles and calves to alleviate that discomfort in the places where it can be most pronounced. If your feet and legs are aching from bearing the extra weight of your belly, compression stockings for pregnancy can also help with that. If you can’t be off your feet during pregnancy, these can help with soreness.

A pregnant woman resting on the couch taking a nap.
Africa Studio / Shutterstock

They can help you sleep better

A good night’s sleep can be hard to come by for any pregnant person. Added weight gain, swelling, and a growing baby can make it hard to get comfortable, which is where compression socks come in handy. Providing compression to the legs and feet helps improve blood flow and promote better circulation while helping to alleviate swelling. This allows the wearer to get more comfortable, especially when it comes time to rest and get some much-needed sleep!

JGI/Jamie Grill / Getty Images

Compression socks for pregnancy can help improve circulation

Even if you’re comfortable, there is another benefit to compression socks during pregnancy: improving circulation. Your growing uterus can put pressure on your veins, and your changing hormones can put you at increased risk for blood clots. Pregnancy compression socks can help prevent blood issues like clots, so ask your doctor if they might be recommended for you even if you’re not sore. Improvement in circulation can also help minimize the appearance of varicose veins!

The amount of compression varies by the sock from eight to 50 mmHg of pressure. The average person wants pressure in the middle of that range, about 15 to 30. Compression socks should not feel like they are squeezing you too tightly to the point of discomfort, so get ones with less compression if they do. They’re also not recommended to wear to bed. It’s best to put them on first thing in the morning, even before getting out of bed, so they can prevent the swelling at your ankles before it starts instead of trying to help once it’s begun. Always check with your doctor before self-prescribing anything (even compression socks) since they are not recommended for people with certain diseases. As long as you choose the right size and wear them correctly, compression socks or pregnancy support hose can help make your pregnancy more comfortable. Here are some of our favorites.

Pregnant woman with sore feet
comzeal images / Shutterstock

Best compression socks during pregnancy

MadeMother Maternity Compression Socks

These socks give graduated compression levels throughout the stocking; 25-30 mmHg at the foot and ankle, 15-20 mmHg in the middle of the leg and calf, and 10-15 mmHg under the knee. This means your upper calf isn’t getting squeezed when you want the pressure at your ankle, but you still have compression going above the ankle to help with circulation.

More reasons we like it:

  • Comfy cotton/rayon blend
  • Extra padding at the toes puts comfort first
  • Easy to pull on

Belair Maternity Compression Socks

These nylon/lycra socks with reinforced heels are breathable and stylish. You can choose which one of the four color schemes (rust, aqua, iris, or lemon) you want on the stripes, and they offer you all-day comfort.

More reasons we like it:

  • Soothing, antibacterial micro-weave knit
  • Features a design that prevents varicose veins

Fenglaoda Compression Socks for Women Circulation 20-30 mmHg

Compression stockings aren’t known for making you feel cute, but the designs on these socks let you express plenty more personality than a solid nude color. From sock monkeys to kittens to pink flamingos, you’ll love these adorable socks that provide 20-30mmHg of compression.

More reasons we like it:

  • Moisture-wicking and nonslip design
  • Gradual support that promotes blood flow
  • Extra ankle support for all-day comfort

Blueen Joy Copper Compression Socks

Copper is known for its qualities of increasing circulation and alleviating pain. Such is the case with the Blueen Joy Copper Compression Socks which which offer support where you need it most–your feet and calves. These socks also reduce soreness and swelling during any level of physical activity at work and home.

More reasons we like it:

  • Elastic band that stretches all the way around
  • Copper-infused, temperature control material
  • Neutral colors and prints that complement most outfits

Kindred Bravely Maternity Compression Socks 2-pack

Created from bamboo fibers and other durable materials, the compression socks for pregnancy offer a super-soft texture and excellent support that starts at the ankle and gradually decreases along the calf. This quality improves circulation while alleviating soreness and swelling.

More reasons we like it:

  • Bamboo-infused fabric that decreases odor
  • Cushioned heels that provide added comfort
  • Soft elastic cuff that doesn’t roll or impede circulation

Compression socks can help alleviate swelling and discomfort, as well as improve your circulation during pregnancy. If you’ve been looking for just the right pair, try one of these great options.

Editors' Recommendations

Sarah Prager
Sarah is a writer and mom who lives in Massachusetts. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, National…
What is a baby sprinkle (and how to plan a great one)
Why you should at least have a baby sprinkle even if you already have a child
Cake for a baby shower.

We all know the standard pregnancy celebrations. We've seen gender reveal photoshoots all over social media and have been invited or know someone who has gone to at least one baby shower. But what about when someone is having a second baby? Or is having the first girl after two back-to-back boys? Well, that's where having a baby sprinkle comes in handy. Whether it's been a few years since the last little one or you're having one of the opposite gender and only need a few items, here's why a baby sprinkle is the perfect way to welcome this new addition.
What is a baby sprinkle?

If you don't know anything about pregnancy parties, think of it in scientific terms. What is a shower versus a sprinkle when it rains? Not as much water for one as the other, right? Take that and apply it to a baby shower versus a baby sprinkle. Think of a baby sprinkle as that grocery trip where you only need the fillers, and you're not restocking the whole kitchen.
If you already have a baby
If you are parents to one child (or two or three), you probably have most of the stuff you need from the last child. But if there were items you wish you would have grabbed for the first one or you have a list of needs for this next baby, a sprinkle is the perfect forum to get those goods.
If it's been a few years since you've had a baby
Even if you already have a child, maybe this next one is a few years further away than you wanted or planned. A baby sprinkle is the best way to get those items you may have donated, lost, or broke with the first kiddo.
If you have only one gender but find out you are having the other
Have all boys? You will want a sprinkle to get some girl items. Have only girls? You might use a sprinkle to get at least one item that isn't pink. Not that certain colors are meant for boys or girls, but maybe you had a Minnie Mouse-themed nursery, and you'd like your first boy to have a new theme for their nursery.
Let's sprinkle the details
A baby sprinkle isn't going to be exactly like your baby shower. It's more of a low-key event, should be less stressful, and is less formal.

Read more
What it means if you lose weight during pregnancy – and when to worry
What causes a pregnant woman to lose weight?
A pregnant woman holding her belly in a bathroom

Weight gain is a very real, very normal, and very expected part of pregnancy. Most people are prepared to see the scale going up as their pregnancy progresses, but sometimes they may notice it going down, which can cause some anxiety. Pregnancy requires extra calories and extra nutrition to feed a growing baby, which is why it can be very concerning when a pregnant person notices they are losing weight.

Weight loss during pregnancy may be more common than you think. It isn't necessarily cause for alarm unless it's a consistent pattern throughout the pregnancy and not just a short-lived dip on the scale. Many factors can cause a pregnant person to lose weight, but that doesn't mean it can't be concerning when it happens. You should always consult your doctor if you're concerned about your weight gain or loss during pregnancy, but if you've found yourself asking, "Why am I losing weight while pregnant?" here are a few possible explanations.
It's not uncommon

Read more
The top cowboy and Western baby names that are riding high
Here’s some inspiration when naming baby if you’re a fan of all things Western
Baby boy wearing a blue knitted cap

There's so much to be excited about when it comes to having a baby, but parents-to-be often spend quite a bit of time agonizing over the perfect name. There is a lot of pressure to choose the ideal name for your little one, which may be why Western baby names are riding back to the forefront.

Namerology creator Lauren Wattenberg is all about names and predicts cowboy baby names will definitely be something to climb in the saddle for in the coming years. Wattenberg feels shows like the popular Western drama Yellowstone have brought cowboy names in from the range. Of course, Western baby names have never really ridden into the sunset. Dakota is a gender-neutral Western baby name that became prevalent in the 90s.

Read more