Pregnancy never fails to remind me what an amazing thing the female body is – it stretches and grows, produces life and food, and then can return back to its original size and shape.
That was a joke.
True, there are some people who seem to melt back into their pre-pregnancy bodies, but for most women it takes a specialized concoction of exercise, diet, Spanx, padded bras, and will power. And even with those, it still usually requires a healthy dose of self-acceptance at your post-baby shape and size. As amazing as pregnancy is, it can do a number on your body.
With each pregnancy, my diastasis has gotten worse, and so with the arrival of my third child a few weeks ago, I was eager to try out any possible gizmo or gadget to help my midsection return to some semblance of a stomach.
Meet the Belly Bandit.
What is the Belly Bandit? According to their website, the Belly Bandit is “an abdominal compression binder designed to help you get your body back to its former fabulousness post childbirth.” It claims to help reduce uterine swelling and bloating, provide back support, and possibly even decrease stretch marks. Plus with Kourtney Kardashian as the spokesperson and lots of satisfied customers, it’s hard not to wonder if this wrap actually works.
You use it by wrapping it around your midsection, attaching the Velcro and going about your daily life. The website recommends wearing the Belly Bandit for 6-8 weeks, day and night.
Initially I was skeptical. All I was really looking for the Belly Bandit to do was to smooth out my midsection (even if just temporarily) and make me feel better wearing my normal clothes. But after wearing the Belly Bandit (they sent me the cute Couture version in the picture above to try out) every day for the last 2 weeks, I have to say that I’m already pretty impressed.
Here’s me two days after delivery and after wearing the Belly Bandit for just 7 days.
The compression has definitely made my midsection start to shrink quicker than my past two pregnancies without the Belly Bandit, and the back support during breastfeeding and general day-to-day activities has made my posture better and my back less sore. Plus, I haven’t been as self-conscious about that especially-loose belly bulge these last few weeks.
I wish I could say it decreased stretch marks, but well…two out of three claims isn’t bad.
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