Post Pregnancy Pressures, Like We Needed Any More! – By Honest Mum

Floating near the top of the ‘Things to make mums feel bad’ file, slightly behind the ‘How you gave birth to your baby (sunroof C section or standard delivery?)’ and ‘Did you breastfeed or not? comes the ever popular, highly discriminating category: Baby Weight. Yes, in addition to the pressures of how much weight you’ve put on during pregnancy (not referring to health pressures, but cosmetic): ‘big everywhere/ just a bump/ too pregnant/ not up the duff looking enough’, comes all the ‘well meaning’ concern of how soon or will you ever (SHOCK HORROR) lose the baby weight you’ve put on, creating life. Sad but true. Dolly Parton got it right when she sang, “Sometimes it’s hard to be a woman” and to think, she wasn’t even referring to her womb.

I get it, we’re ‘totes’, to (waters) breaking point, saturated with images of skinny, mostly supermodel mums leaving the hospital or ‘post hiding after birth period’, cradling newborns in their size 6 J Brand jeans and 4 inch Louboutins. Brilliant. Have you ever stood next to a supermodel or any model for that matter? I’ve directed fashion films and let me tell you, these women are otherworldly with their never ending limbs and naturally lithe bodies. Cotton wool eating aside (really)-it’s the way they were made. They’re not your average woman, and that’s why we’re not all models (worth noting this small detail next time you flick through Vogue and wonder why you’re struggling for a mirror image) yet we’re expected to compare ourselves, pregnant or not, with these super, hyper-beautiful human beings. Girlfriend, please. Yes, I have mates who are naturally slim and their baby weight (with not everyone gaining a lot in the first place) literally disappeared the moment their babies appeared, like some kind of weight loss Faustian pact and that’s fantastic-I’m not envious at all *cough, but every woman is different and according to a family friend and Consultant Nutritionist, if you had to work hard to stay slim before your baby, you’ll most definitely need to afterwards. That I can vouch for personally…

My first pregnancy was tough, I had constant vomiting until 7 months and later the pregnancy liver condition obstetric cholestasis which led to an induction and crash c section. Not the unicorns and rainbows start to motherhood I’d hoped for, then. I put on what is regarded as a healthy 2 and a half stone during pregnancy, but gained another from immobility post surgery and in my struggle to simply survive the sleepless nights, colic and becoming a mother with little help, as we were far from family. Second time round, now close to my folks and sans sickness and OC, along with a tranquil elective, I found I started to lose weight from the start. I felt happy and strong from the get go and perhaps this made some difference. Let me stress though, weight loss wasn’t my priority and in my case, post section, I was left with an expansive, empty stomach, (as often is the case with standard vaginal births), but propped up by a discreet line of stitches which take time to heal. You cannot exercise until the Dr approves at your 6 week check and this often means gentle exercise to begin with. I was only allowed to run after 3 months. It took me 14 months after the birth of my first son to lose my weight (I even lost more, making it to an athletic, curvy UK size 10) and second time, it doesn’t appear to be taking as long as I’ve felt well and able to exercise and diet from 3 months. I do want to lose the weight and resume my normal figure but the healthy way. I love that saying, ‘nine months on, nine months off’ and have attached a poster stating it, to my treadmill. There will always be pressure from the media and our peers but often the worst comes from ourselves. Well this time, I’ve vowed to not be too tough on myself. We can’t stop supermodels from bouncing back into shape to make us feel better but we can be kinder to ourselves. We can realise weight loss (if we want to lose it in the first place) takes time and energy- two highly elusive things when children arrive. It’s OK. Luckily, we don’t have the Paps waiting in bushes outside our homes desperate to take an unflattering picture of us or a Victoria’s Secret catwalk show to model in a month after our babies arrive (most probably-no not you Heidi if you’re reading this) so let’s just take a moment to appreciate what our bodies have done. Our cervix did good. Now go give it a high five and show it some respect. Who wants to look like Miranda Kerr anyway! Erm, not I!

Vicki is a former Magazine Editor and award winning screenwriter and director.  You can read more of her musings on motherhood at her popular blog: www.honestmum.com

You can follow her on Twitter @Honestmummy

What’s your maternity style? – Jocette Coote

Describe your pregnancy style?

Rock chic mummy!

 

What is your fail-safe outfit?

A black ballerina dress with leggings. Classic and comfortable.

 

How has your beauty & fitness regime changed since you became pregnant?

I walk and swim now, no more running.

 

What is your favourite piece from Seraphine?

The knitted cape that Sienna Miller wore. Beautiful design and I plan to wear it after the baby has been born too!

 

What is the one tip you want to share with other pregnant women?

Enjoy it! And rest when you need it!

 

 

Spring has sprung at Séraphine

We know it’s been a freezing and snowy winter, but that hasn’t stopped us from preparing your spring maternity wardrobe!

This season to showcase our new season designs, the Séraphine team packed their bags and headed to the sunny sea side of Cote d’Azur. The perfect setting for a collection inspired by the colours of the Mediterranean sea and it’s sandy beaches. The Séraphine team was delighted to be hosted by the GrandHôtel du CapFerrat for our photoshoot. The five star palace is located in the heart of the Cote d’Azur in St Jean Cap Ferrat and the magnificent building boasts a 17 acre garden and infinity pool overlooking the ocean.

The stunning location was perfect for our palette of corals and cobalt blue hues. Bright tones are stealing the show for our dresses and we also give a pop of colour to our denim collection and signature tops. Séraphine is renowned for our quality knitwear and this season’s classic waterfall shapes are made in luxury linen warns for the perfect summer cover-up. For our range of signature maxi dress and skirts, adored by Hollywood celebrities, we have picked contrasting prints with a bohemian vibe that suits the pregnant shape so well. Our swimwear range gets a twist with our multi-way swimsuits and seventies babydoll styles, inspired by French style icon Brigitte Bardot.

The collection has been designed to see you fashionably through the spring and summer months. Enjoy!

View our spring/summer 2013 brochure online and keep up to date with the latest Séraphine news on our Facebook and Twitter @SeraphineLtd

Second Time Around – by Linda Mngwali

There is something different about my second pregnancy, not only am I sharing this experience with my partner, but also my six year old son. My son seems more excited than I am. Can’t wait for the baby to be born! He wants it to come now! I remember telling him I was pregnant when I was three months but he wouldn’t believe me – “Mummy, where is the baby? You don’t have a fat tummy!” At that point I wasn’t showing much at all. He believes me now.

Before our son was born, it was just my partner and I. I was very happy the moment we found out that we were having a baby boy and decided to call him Prince. A name that suited him to a capital T! We were eager to find out the sex the first time but with my second pregnancy there’s definitely a difference.

With my first I was nervous about the whole pregnancy experience. Being a first timer, I didn’t know a lot about dealing with a newborn and secondly I didn’t have any morning sickness feeling. Now with my second pregnancy I certainly feel a difference – I know what to expect once the baby is born, the feeding, sleepless nights, the crying – what to look for when they cry and so forth.

In my first trimester of this pregnancy I had a bit of heartburn, which was new and uncomfortable. Tried almost everything that my GP recommended but none of the medication worked. Soon found out my only cure was drinking very cold water, and by very cold I mean minus temperatures. Surprise surprise it was the only thing that did the trick! It hasn’t been a walk in the park like the first time. It was so easy. No sickness of a sort! However the heartburn has finally ended thank goodness! Now I can enjoy the next stages of my pregnancy.

Another big difference is my maternity wardrobe. My fashion has also changed a lot compared to my first pregnancy.

I’m more fashion conscious now, maybe because there is a lot more maternity clothes available so I have no excuse! When I was pregnant with my first I wasn’t so stylish. Friends had advised me that there was no need to buy maternity clothes as you only wear them for a short while and all you need is loose fitting pieces. Wrong!

My thinking process has changed with my second pregnancy. I want to make the most of this time and to look fabulous whilst pregnant, because you are only in this for a short period and your body has changed dramatically. This is the period when you have amazing skin, hair glows, nails and your curves changes to suit the growth of the baby. Loving the new me!!!

So to fit with my new body changes I want more vibrant pieces. Maternity clothes that make me stand out! Pregnancy doesn’t mean I should not pay attention to fashion and what I put in!

The first time I didn’t pay too much attention to the outfits I wore. Now there are so many brands and great maternity clothes out there which are passionate about embracing the different changes to women’s bodies (and amazing changes may I say!) I feel more passionate about my pregnancy style.

Working in the maternity fashion industry I can see amazing pieces for pregnant women. I take great pleasure in wearing clothes from Seraphine as I know how much thought goes into the design process. Not only am I selling these to my clients, but I can also recommend the right pieces with confidence as I’m also wearing them myself! – The beauty about the clothing is that they are comfortable, good quality, very durable and very transitional as you can wear them during and after without breaking the bank!

My concerns when I had my first son was why buy all those pieces when I’m only going to wear them only for nine months, so I didn’t spend much on my maternity wardrobe on my first child! With this pregnancy I so want to look great plus feel beautiful during my journey!

Seraphine makes clothes that you can wear for pregnancy and beyond. I’m excited to be sharing this with all my wonderful mothers to be!!!

Enjoy your pregnancy!!!!!!

A Make-up Artist’s Pregnancy Beauty Advice

We were sneaky on our latest photoshoot and managed to pull aside our talented make-up artist, who kindly shared her top 3 pregnancy beauty tips! So here’s a little treat for you today:

1)     Sunscreen – high factor (50) is essential as pregnancy causes pigmentation on the face which is much more likely to fade afterwards if a high factor is used.

2)     Kiehl’s Centella Recovery Skin Salve – great for sensitive or irritated skin as a daily treatment or a heavy layer once a week.

3)     Try using multiuse products to prepare for time saving make-up application! Bobby Brown pot rouge lips and cheeks – a dab on the apples of the cheeks blended with the fingers and a dab on the lips will bring life to the face and a healthy flush

ULTIMATE BEAUTY SECRET

*BUDGET*

Shu Vemura Eyelash Curlers – A few seconds on each eye and the eyes are immediately opened and flattered

*SPLURGE*

Sisley radiant immediate lift – Use this and say goodbye to tired eyes

Seraphine Videos : click on the playlist to watch more

Watch all the latest videos from the Seraphine studios for behind the scenes action and expert styling advice for you and your bump!

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