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The new mom's guide to looking good

I am so tired of seeing celebrities getting back in the limelight after having a baby, looking wafer-thin and unscathed. That's just not fair to the rest of us, is it? It really does look like their babies were delivered via the stork! But I do feel that mothers often let go of themselves because it really is hard work raising a child. Remember, moms: You don't have to look like a model, but you must not lose focus on yourself. It can take up to a year for a woman's body to lose that extra weight, and more often than not, her body is altered irretrievably. So, when I say 'looking good', it's okay if you look like a 'mom'. You should be proud of that!

I remember the first few months after Little Dude was born, I looked like something the cat dragged in! That was when the goals were to sleep three hours in a row and eat warm food. Now that he's 14 months old, I have managed to piece together my wardrobe and make-up kit. Though I must admit, there are days when I'm still in my PJs long into the day!

So, I share some tips for the new mom to keep looking presentable in the first year (and beyond), despite the spit-ups and food missiles:
  • Don't ditch the maternity wear: I wore my maternity jeans for the first three months after baby. Nothing else would do. Maternity clothes are best to hide those bulges that can only come postpartum. There is so much to choose from nowadays, that it's tempting to wear anyway!
  • Get quick make-up products: Replace the liquid eyeliner with a soft eye pencil. The lipstick with a coloured lip gloss.The foundation with the pressed powder. Obviously, you don't have time for that seven-step makeup routine anymore, but don't skip it altogether. Apart from easier to use products, get combination items such as a cleanser-cum-toner, moisturiser with sunscreen and all-in-one makeup remover.
  • Change your wardrobe: After the maternity wear no longer works (and people start wondering what's up), get some new clothes. Most probably, you'll need them as your body shape may have changed. Get the type of clothes that flatter your new figure. It will also pep you up to do some shopping for something other than bibs!
  • Don't skimp on a skincare routine: Stick like glue to the most basic skincare routine. Cleanse, mositurise daily. Keep your stuff next to the crib, if you have to. Do what works. You may not have time to regularly hit the beauty salon but at least maintain your skin before it bears the brunt of neglect. For instance, once a week, soak your feet in hot water and exfoliate them. Put on a face mask.
  • Eat well: Don't rush into diets, for at least six months. Your body needs to recover a lot of vitamins and minerals and you must eat healthy and plenty. Especially if you are nursing. The food may get cold often, but you can snack on nuts and fruits. Think of it as an extended pregnancy diet. Don't forget the treats too, if it helps you cope with all the sleep deprivation.
  • Keep moving: Exercise may be the last thing on your mind, but once your doc gives the go ahead, start walking daily. Take the baby out. Walk around the house when making him/her sleep (may not work for everybody, but I think it kept me slim!). A sling will be especially helpful in keeping you mobile with a newborn.
  • Get a groovy diaper bag/large designer bag: The cute diaper bag may not be suitable for all occasions so get one that looks trendy. Or get a big designer (or non-designer) bag that can fit all those essentials. It's bound to make you look like a with-it mom!
  • Wear comfortable heels: You don't have to ditch those heels altogether. Invest in a comfortable pair of heels that you can wear off and on to remind you that you are a woman too! Remember that comfortable is the operative word here and investing in a good brand will pay in that department. And they don't have to be six inches. Kitten heels work perfectly for this purpose and look feminine at the same time.  
  • Get an easy-to-maintain haircut: Not only will it give you a fresh look, it will cut down on your grooming time. Shorter is always better with little hands pulling your hair. 
For moms who get back to work, it's actually easier to get into all these things because they have to. That's why, stay-at-home moms have to make a special effort. This is by no means an exhaustive guide and readers are welcome to share their pointers.

(Pic: By Mttmwiki (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons)
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    6 comments

    Foodie said...

    excellent post. will remember to take a print out for my wife, when we plan :)

    Anjali said...

    Good post, will suggest this article to my sis-in-law.

    Tarana Khan said...

    Thank you!

    [email protected] said...

    14 months of amazing experience put in wonderful 40 lines..!!!

    Aileen said...

    I liked the affirmation to go out and get a good designer bag and not skimp on skincare. Felt a little guilty and silly doing it but it happened to make me feel good and I think it staved off post baby blues a little for me. (Oh and hi there, I saw your intro on bloggy mums which I'm not really active on anymore but was curious as I'd not "met" a mummy blogger in dhubai before - I'm malaysian residing and blogging in hk :)

    Tarana Khan said...

    Thanks for visiting Aileen! I'm new on Bloggy Moms, and just figuring my way out still...There is a small but active community of mum bloggers in Dubai. Would love to visit HK one day!

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