Let’s talk about clothes! Figuring out what to wear was hard enough without an ostomy. Then I got an ostomy and as I was healing, my belly was sore and tender, my clothes were uncomfortable, I was scared to wear anything tight for fear that it would burst my pouch, and I was self-conscious that my pouch was totally noticeable even when it was empty…sound familiar? I don’t think my experience with this was unique so I thought I’d share some winter ostomy fashion tips.
Like many people, I want to look cute, feel comfortable, and be dressed appropriately for whatever I’m doing, so I set out to try to figure out how I could make clothes work for me. As I continued healing, my belly became less sore and clothes became more comfortable. Two of my problems were solved solely with time, though if I’d had some key items in my wardrobe and awareness back then I bet I would have been more comfortable sooner.
There are a few key items that are perfect for feeling comfortable and cute in the winter and you probably already have at least a couple of them in your closet.
Long sweaters are perfect because they’re warm and tend to be worn a little bit baggy so there’s lot of room for your pouch to fill up a little without setting off the “OH MY GOSH SHE HAS A BAG” alert. (side note: that alert doesn’t really exist anywhere other than in our heads).
Patterned tops make it hard to see where the bulge is. They’re pretty to look at and often distracting to the eyes. Perfection.
High-waisted Bottoms & High-waisted Leggings:
High-waisted pants are great for keeping your bag snug to your body which also helps keep it slim. You can be extra creative with your pants and get patterned pants (or skirts) if you plan to wear a shorter shirt. The pockets on the front of high waisted pants are also good for adding a little bit of mystery to your front figure. High-waisted leggings share many of the same benefits as high-waisted pants, but you can wear leggings under pants and under dresses and skirts.
Dresses are super versatile because you can wear them over your high-waisted leggings in the winter and with bare legs in the summer! Experiment with different dresses. For days where there’s less opportunity for a bathroom break, the dresses that are fitted up top and flowy from your waist down are perfect choice. If you want to strut your stuff with a fitted dress, you totally can but it works better if you keep in mind a couple things: Does your fitted dress have a pattern or anything to distract the eye from focusing on a potential poop baby? If not, are you going to be spending time in places with easy bathroom access?
Scarves are perfect for keeping your neck warm but they double as a back up eye-distractor for moments when your pouch has filled and you feel like it might be more noticeable. Just wrap your scarf in a way so that one arm hangs long in front of your pouch. You’d think it would pull people’s eyes to your pouch, but it really just adds another layer of fluff so it is more challenging to tell where your body stops and clothes start.
Did I miss something? I’d love to hear your clothing tips too!