For the first four months or so of this weird and wonderful process the bub is pretty small (see this fruit and veg themed week on week size guide), meaning The Belly is likely to be as it was pre Bub incubation. But it’s not long into month four or five before he or she goes on a growth spurt and there is no longer any need for the ‘baby on board’ badge on the train. It’s quite obvious.
Now there are a whole host of new things for the other half of the house to consider and do from here on in, which are covered elsewhere on this blog. This post is focused on the need to moisturise The Belly as it grows.
There is an obvious reason: that belly is expanding at a rate of knots, but the skin isn’t and so it’s open season for stretch marks. But this isn’t a shallow man thing. Far from it. There could be an Alien-style birth and scarring, and it wouldn’t matter one bit. For the lady in question, though, stretch marks, or the potential for them, can be a big source of anxiety.
And anxiety is never good, particularly when mixed with pregnancy and all of that.
So moisturise that belly! There are loads of specific products out there – creams, butters, oils. And loads of advice on when to pop it on.
The Debut Dad advice is this: start by doing it just before bed, with a buttery, waxy one. We’ve been using Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Tummy Butter for Stretch Marks
Wax ones stay on for longer, and night time is growth time, apparently, so peak stretch time. She should be wearing your bigger t shirts in bed by now anyway so you can push through the ‘but I don’t want to get it on my clothes’ challenge.
And when the belly starts feeling really tight, it’s worth using an oil or cream one in the morning, too, because they soak in really quickly and won’t grease up her day wear. This or this are pretty good.
The added bonus of doing it yourself is that, as the bump grows, you get to see and feel the kicking much more, without having to stare at it during Bake Off, or Orange is the New Black and missing important life moments on TV.
And, most importantly of all, you get to track the progress of the belly button popping out – which, when it finally does, is hilarious. Arguably the main reason for doing this at all…