Charlie O’Brien is a radio presenter for Heart and gets up at 3.45am to host a breakfast show. She is also a lifestyle and popular culture blogger and runs her own blog realgirlramblings.com. Charlie is expecting her first baby with fiancé – radio and TV presenter Jk (Jason King) who also works for Heart. They live in South East London with their very lazy lab, Isla.
I’m discovering that looking good in pregnancy DOESN’T necessarily come easily. I had ridiculous, misguided illusions of being all glowing-looking for 9 months with thick glossy hair and a cute little bump that would just magically appear at 12 weeks. A bit like the lady on my pregnancy vitamins packet?! Wrong! From being a small size 8, I felt bloated and lumpy literally from Day 1. I’ve also been ridiculously tired, a big part of which I put down to getting up before 4am five days a week to host a radio show. Under-eye concealer has become my best friend. I did also have a tricky start to my pregnancy and had to be on a lot of medication, which added to the general feelings of grottiness.
Add to that the bizarre changes in my skin (adult acne anyone?) and the tough time finding things to wear, and I am probably the complete antithesis of the romantic preconception I had about pregnancy!
So at 21 weeks I’ve decided to take the bull by the horns and do something about it. I’ve booked in for a facial this week and next weekend I’m off for a delicious spa break with the girls. I was also quite literally over the moon to stumble across Seraphine whilst googling ‘nice maternity clothes’! I’m so excited to try some of the dresses, so I don’t have to be in the same one pair of maternity jeans for the next 4 months! When you work on the radio, you can literally wear your pyjamas to work if you want, it’s not very glam. But I think every woman wants to look her best from time to time, especially during this very magical, but sometimes tough time.
Life has actually been a bit of a rollercoaster recently because as well as expecting our first child together, my partner Jk also proposed to me last week! We were on a cliff top in Cornwall so I was wearing trainers and a hoodie at the time! But we’re going to go for some posh cocktails (non alcoholic for me of course) at the hotel where we had our first date, so I’m looking forward to dressing up for the first time in ages and feeling good about the way I look. Although I expect we’ll be home by 10pm in front of the TV with a hot chocolate …
I do think us ladies have a tendency to neglect our own needs a bit in pregnancy. We’re so focused on making sure baby has the right vitamins, we’re eating the right foods, and doing everything by the book that we forget about ourselves. So if you’re feeling the same as me – do something lovely for yourself. Book a manicure, order a pretty maternity dress or just have a bubble bath. After all, we might not have much spare time in a few months!
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5 style tips for new mums – by What to Expect editor Kim Conte