Danielle Brooks is fully embracing her pregnancy curves.
Though the actress is well into her third trimester with her first child, a baby girl, she is not shying away from how her body is changing throughout.
“I’m not Spanxing it up right now, so no thing is one thing,” Brooks, 30, jokes to PEOPLE. “I’m not wearing heels — I have not put on a pair of heels [since] the minute I got my pregnancy-test results.”
As she transitions into motherhood, the Orange Is the New Black star has found that it’s important for pieces to accommodate the woman “versus us trying to fit the clothes.”
“Comfort has been No. 1 for me … and just still feeling sexy and feeling that I don’t want to hide my curves and hide my belly,” Brooks says of her current style. “I want to embrace those things. So that’s been my style lately. It’s comfortable, yet still form-fitting to the body.”
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Brooks recently curated a collection of pieces from Universal Standard — called the Fit Liberty (Mom) collection — that can be worn at any given moment in a woman’s life, regardless of whether she is pregnant, as she found herself wearing popular pieces from the brand such as the Foundation Cami Dress during her pregnancy.
“This is not about maternity clothing,” Universal Standard co-founder and creative director Alex Waldman tells PEOPLE. “This is about having a brand you can wear before, during and after pregnancy. … We really wanted to allow women to shop for the size that they are and then give them the freedom to change without fear, anxiety or any additional financial burden.”
The Fit Liberty program, she explains, allows Universal Standard’s customers “to exchange any clothes that no longer fit for their own size,” in an effort to show women “you don’t have to change your style or who you are as you’re going through your pregnancy.”
“When Danielle became pregnant, it was really lovely to hear from her [about] how much she enjoyed wearing the clothes,” Waldman adds. “And we started to get more and more feedback from our customers as well on that. So we thought it was such a natural way to bring everything together that we asked Danielle to curate the pieces that we have into what was [good for] pregnancy.”
The Julliard graduate revealed she was four months pregnant in July through an Instagram post of her holding up a positive Clearblue digital pregnancy test.
Since she found out she was expecting, Brooks has experienced a wide range of emotions “from excitement to nervousness” to discussing how she will raise her baby girl with her partner to what school she will attend and what religion she will follow.
And as her labor inches closer each day, the star is looking forward to “meeting [her daughter] for the first time” and seeing “her face to see what she looks like.”
“I’m excited to teach her how to be a woman in this world without worrying about judgment and give her the freedom to be the person that she wants to be,” Brooks says. “Then getting to see that person come to life and grow and change their opinions. I’m excited to see this little human!”
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