18/05/2012 13:56 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 06:12 BST

Bump And Heels? Not A Great Idea When Pregnant

Bump and heels? What should go out of fashion when you are pregnant? Getty/WENN

What do Amanda Holden, Victoria Beckham and Chantelle Houghton have in common?
Posh would no doubt hate being bracketed with Alex Reid's other half – but they do share a penchant for teetering around in skyscraper heels while pregnant.

But what should really go in, or out, of fashion when you're expecting?

High heels

Simply put, they're not a great idea!


During pregnancy, as the bump grows, our posture changes significantly as the body's centre of gravity shifts. Without getting too scientific, this results in an increasing arching of the lower back which frequently causes pain – and wearing heels just makes it worse.


Far from looking model-esque, pregnant women in heels are liable to walk with their bottoms sticking out and leaning backwards. Apart from the stress this puts on all sorts of muscles it's not a good look! When you factor in oedema or swelling of the feet and ankles, it's no wonder you're better off reaching for your Converses.

Dr Joanna Helcke, a pregnancy and postnatal fitness expert and founder of, says: "While I wouldn't wish to sound militantly opposed to wearing any heels in pregnancy, the best advice is to keep them for special occasions and wear your sensible shoes to work!

"Platform and wedge heels aren't any better because pregnant women tend to lose their balance to a certain degree and will frequently feel more clumsy than usual."

Flip flops

These might be comfortable but the vast majority provide no support whatsoever for your feet – a big no no during pregnancy.

As you start putting weight on your poor feet have to put up with ever more pressure bearing down on them. Wearing a flimsy pair of flip flops could contribute to your feet rolling inwards and the arches collapsing, which could in turn lead to joint pain in the knees and hips.

Dr Helcke explains: "Pregnant women are particularly vulnerable to niggling aches and pains because of the hormone relaxin which makes ligaments more elastic and joints less stable.

"They should do everything possible to avoid aggravating the situation. If the weather's hot a pair of Birkenstocks would be a far better choice because of the support they provide with moulded insoles."

Sandals, ballet pumps, Ugg boots

The bad news is none of these shoes give any support for our foot arches either. And given that feet tend to 'spread' outwards when extra weight is placed on them, put these on and you're likely to get pain all up your legs.

Dr Helcke reveals: "When walking behind women, pregnant or not, wearing these sorts of footwear, it's quite noticeable that they're frequently worn down on the inside. This affects posture and leg alignment.

"Pregnancy places so many extra strains on the body that anything you can do to ease matters, like wearing supportive shoes, is a no-brainer. Every little helps!"

Heavy bags

Yes they might be glamorous, and useful for lugging around snacks, but shoulder bags aren't great for pregnancy. A backpack is a far better option, because it evenly distributes weight across the shoulders.

Dr Helcke advises: "Carrying heavy loads on one side of the body simply serves to create and perpetuate muscular imbalances.

"My advice would be to play the pregnancy card and get others to do any heavy lifting."

After all, you've got enough to carry with a baby on board!


As you get bigger it's no surprise you might want to concentrate on your hair rather than fretting over clothes that no longer fit. But with the number of old wives' tales about products you shouldn't touch with a bargepole whilst pregnant it's a wonder we slap anything on at all...


Some women steer clear while expecting, but according to the experts this is actually fine to use.

"Perfume evaporates really quickly so it's perfectly fine," says Nargis Ara, a Consultant Medical Information Pharmacist who specialises in pregnancy. "Just don't apply it too close to your mouth."

Hair dye:

In general getting your hair coloured is fine because dye isn't really absorbed through the skin, and certainly not in any kind of amount to harm your baby. What you should watch out for is any substance with a strong smell, such as ammonia – so opt for a natural based product.

"Chemical fumes can be a problem," Nargis explains. "If you wanted to be really careful you'd just avoid getting your hair dyed in the first trimester.

"The most important thing with trying any new product is to have a skin patch test to make sure you won't have an allergic reaction. Bad news during pregnancy."

Spa treatments:

Having a massage whilst you're expecting can be really beneficial, but should you be worried about spa products? In a word, no.

"Massage oils are great when you're pregnant because most are naturally based," Nargis says. "Plus they smell nice and calm you down! With any spa treatment just let the staff know you're expecting – especially in the first three months when it's not obvious."

That way you and your bump can just relax and enjoy.

Marvel at Victoria Beckham's pregnancy in planes and heels: