For millions of women around the world living with uterine fibroids, symptoms associated with this condition, including pelvic pain, heavy menstrual flows, and abdominal bloating, significantly impacts their daily lives, including fashion choices.
Pelvic pain can make tight or restrictive clothing uncomfortable, while heavy menstrual flows can create concerns about leakage and potentially visible stains. That’s not to mention that the abdominal bloating triggered by fibroids can leave women feeling self-conscious about their appearance.
But it’s crucial to remember that fashion is not a luxury reserved only for those without health challenges. Every woman, regardless of her health condition, deserves to feel positive, empowered, and beautiful in her own skin.
Dressing for your fibroids often means embracing styles and fabrics that are easier on your body. Comfort is key, but you can still be a sharp dresser. This blog dives into practical tips for dressing in a way that accommodates the realities of uterine fibroids, while continuing to use fashion as a medium for self-expression and feeling confident when interacting with the wider world.
Being diagnosed with UF doesn’t mean you need to limit your style
While adapting your clothing choices to your bodies’ needs and your fibroid symptoms is important, it is equally vital for women not to abandon their personal style. Dressing well has a significant impact on self-esteem and self-confidence, and can provide the boost you need for facing the world when your condition is proving to be especially challenging.
When you can continue to dress fashionably despite experiencing fibroid symptoms, it can uplift your mood and strengthen your resolve to continue living your life, despite the difficulties posed by UF. Feeling good about your appearance can positively influence your interactions with others and improve your overall mental and emotional state. Fashion can serve as a tool for focusing on something other than your condition.
By choosing carefully curated outfits that you feel good wearing, you can divert focus from any insecurities associated with their fibroid symptoms. This helps shift the narrative away from physical discomfort and instead highlights your personal style and creativity.
Now, on to some practical fashion tips for dressing up while living with fibroids.
Embrace elastic waistbands for fibroid bloat
Fibroid bloat is real, and a common symptom reported by women living with the condition. Sometimes referred to as fibroid belly, this term refers to the intense abdominal swelling that many women with fibroids experience. Whether you’re experiencing fluctuations on a day-to-day basis or in a more staggered format according to your menstrual, your lower abdomen may swell or protrude, making it difficult to fit into your regular size trousers.
When you’re feeling fibroid bloat, leggings, skirts, and other garments with flexible waists are your friend. Clothes with elastic waistbands or drawstrings can offer flexibility and adjustability, ensuring a comfortable fit throughout the day. As much as it pains us to say, you may want to consider taking your jeans out of rotation. The feeling of tight denim cutting into your lower belly is likely to be painful, uncomfortable, and lead to you not feeling your best.
Beyond embracing elastic waists, incorporating loose-fitting tops is a smart move. Flowy blouses, tunics, or oversized shirts can help conceal any bloating or swelling associated with uterine fibroids, while providing you with freedom of movement and physical comfort. Additionally, tops with empire waistlines or ruching can create a flattering silhouette, drawing attention away from your belly.
This is what to wear this summer if you’re experiencing a heavy menstrual flow and pelvic pain
Selecting comfortable fabrics is crucial. Try opting for breathable materials like cotton, linen, or modal, as they allow for better air circulation and reduce irritation in the pelvic area. These fabrics are soft and gentle on the skin, which is critical when you’re feeling bloated or cramping. Avoid synthetic fabrics like polyester or nylon, as they can trap heat and moisture, potentially exacerbating discomfort.
For women with heavy menstrual flows, choosing clothing that offers sufficient coverage and ease of movement is essential. A-line dresses and skirts are excellent options, as they provide a relaxed fit around the hips and thighs, reducing pressure on the pelvic area. Pair them with comfortable leggings or opaque tights for added support.
Colour choice can also serve a crucial role in smart dressing for women living with uterine fibroids. Dark or patterned bottoms may help camouflage any potential stains caused by a heavy flow. Pair them with lighter or patterned tops to create a visually balanced outfit.
Investing in a few essential, versatile pieces in neutral colours like black, navy, or grey creates a solid foundation for building multiple outfits, while minimizing the appearance of leaks.
Examples of comfortable, yet fashionable, outfits while experiencing fibroid symptoms could look like:
- A colourfully-patterned loose-fitting, oversized shirt, paired with elastic-waist leggings
- An A-line dress in a solid colour, worn with a pair of sneakers to keep it casual
- Dark-coloured, loose trousers, a simple T-shirt, and heels to elevate your look
You deserve to feel your best, even when your UF symptoms are flaring up
Living with uterine fibroids may mean taking the physical realities around your body into consideration and changing the way that you dress. But making adjustments doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your personal style. Feeling good about yourself and retaining a sense of identity and self-worth is quite important for navigating the emotional and psychological difficulties posed by fibroids.
Adjusting the way you dress is not a sign of giving up or succumbing to the challenges caused by your condition. Rather, this is an act of self-care and empowerment. By choosing fabrics that prioritize comfort, such as breathable materials like linen and cotton, and opting for loose-fitting or flowy silhouettes, you can treat your body kindly while continuing to embrace your personal style.