Health & Wellbeing Pregnancy

What To Wear To An Ultrasound (And What To Avoid)

Whether it’s your first baby or you are already a seasoned mother, seeing you baby for the very first time during an ultrasound is a very special moment for moms-to-be and husbands or partners.

If a positive pregnancy test and intense food cravings weren’t enough to make your pregnancy feel real, then actually seeing your baby (and potentially watching them move) will definitely do the trick!

If this is your first ever ultrasound or prenatal appointment, you’ll no doubt be wondering exactly what you should wear.

For external or abdominal ultrasounds, where the probe is moved over your skin, it’s advisable to wear a 2-piece outfit that is comfortable and loose-fitting.

If you are having an internal, pelvic or transvaginal ultrasound, then you should be prepared to remove all clothing on the lower half of your body.

What To Wear To Ultrasound

Many new moms-to-be are understandably unsure about how to dress for their first prenatal or ultrasound appointment.

When it comes to dressing for an ultrasound, what you’re looking for is an outfit that allows you to easily expose or reveal the area between your breasts and abdomen, so the specialist can freely  move the transducer around your body.

Here are 3 tips when deciding what to wear to an ultrasound:

Comfortable & Loose-Fitting

The best type of clothing to dress in for an ultrasound are clothes that are comfortable and fairly loose in terms of fit.

For the top half of your outfit, I found that items such as t-shirts, shirts, blouses and sweatshirts.

These types of clothes will allow you to adjust or move the clothing upwards so that the specialist can access the area around your belly and abdomen.


I mentioned above that it’s a good idea to wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing on your top half, such as a shirt, t-shirt, blouse or sweatshirt.

These types of clothes should result in you wearing a 2-piece outfit, which is ideal for an ultrasound because it gives the healthcare worker access to your tummy without you having to take off any clothes on your lower half.

So clothing that works well for the bottom half of your outfit include sweatpants, leggings or a skirt.

Easy To Take Off & Put Back On

If you are having an internal or pelvic ultrasound (more on this later), then you may be asked to remove what you are wearing on the lower half of your body and be given a gown to put on during the ultrasound.

In this case it is a good idea to be dressed in clothes that are easy to take off and put back on again in order to save time and make things easier for yourself.

So again, comfortable fitting pants, sweatpants, jeans or a skirt all work well as an outfit to wear to a pelvic ultrasound.

Woman Inspecting Clothes In A Shop

What To Avoid Wearing To An Ultrasound

I found that it’s also helpful to think about what not to wear to an ultrasound or prenatal appointment, so you don’t end up wearing clothes that will make your life more difficult or make you feel unnecessarily uncomfortable.

Some things you may want to avoid when dressing for an ultrasound include:

  • Clothes that are too tight or very fitted
  • Skinny or tight jeans or tight pants
  • Jumpsuits
  • Dresses
  • Rompers
  • Boots or other shoes that are hard to take off and put on
  • If you have a belly button piercing, it’s worth removing this in advance as you may be asked to remove this during the ultrasound.
  • The jelly used during ultrasounds can stain your clothing, which is something I found really frustrating! So you may also want to avoid anything that’s difficult to clean or any expensive clothing that you don’t want to take chances with.
  • Additionally, darker colors and black especially can become stained or show visible marks when in contact with ultrasound scanning gels, so you might want to opt for lighter colored clothing instead.

Do You Keep Your Clothes On or Off During An Ultrasound?

The amount of clothing you will need to take off during an ultrasound will generally depend on the type of ultrasound.

External Or Abdominal Ultrasound Scan

For an external or abdominal ultrasound (where the probe is moved over your skin), the technologist will need access to your belly area.

So depending on what you are wearing, you may or may not need to take off any clothes for an abdominal ultrasound.

If you wear loose clothing that can easily be lifted up, and pants that either naturally sit low or can be adjusted downwards like jeans or sweatpants, then you may not need to remove any clothes during an external ultrasound.

However, if you are in something like a jumpsuit, then yes, you will need to remove your clothes so that the doctor, radiographer or sonographer can access the area around your belly.

Internal, Pelvic Or Transvaginal Ultrasound Scan

If you are having a pelvic or transvaginal ultrasound (usually for scans below 10 weeks) then the healthcare worker will need to insert a small ultrasound probe into your vagina.

This might sound scary, but while internal examinations may cause you a little discomfort, they don’t usually cause any pain, and are also fairly short in duration.

When dressing for an internal or pelvic ultrasound, you should wear clothing that is comfortable, loose-fitting and easily to take off and put back on.

Because you may be asked to remove all clothing on your lower half for a pelvic ultrasound, you will find that something like a two-piece outfit (for example pants with a shirt), along with shoes that are easy to take off, works well.

What To Wear To Pelvic Ultrasound

For pelvic or vaginal ultrasounds you should dress in clothing that is comfortable and loose-fitting, and that is easy to take off and put back on again.

If you are having a pelvic ultrasound, you should be prepared to remove all clothing (and any jewelry) in the area that is going to be examined.

This means that you may need to take off all the clothing that you are wearing on your lower half, including your pants, underwear and shoes.

In Conclusion

  • The best type of clothing to wear during an ultrasound or prenatal appointment are clothes that are comfortable, loose-fitting and easy to take off and put back on again.
  • If you are having an external or abdominal ultrasound (where the probe goes over your tummy), then a 2 piece outfit works well, as it will allow you to keep your pants on while lifting up your t-shirt, shirt or sweatshirt.
  • If you are having an internal or pelvic ultrasound (where the probe is inserted into your body), then you will probably be asked to remove all clothing on your lower half.
  • It’s not uncommon for moms-to-be to complain about the jelly or lubricant used during abdominal ultrasounds to stain clothing. So you may wish to show up in lighter colored clothing or clothes that are inexpensive and that you’re less eager to protect or throw away should they get stained.

Related: Your Complete Guide To A Happy & Healthy Pregnancy

Tori is mama to 3 year old Isabella and co-founder of Rockinbaby. She has a BSc in Psychology, is a certified yoga teacher and is a working mom. In her free time Tori loves cooking delicious foods and baked treats, entertaining and working out. Learn more about Tori here.

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