By Beth Noordmans
From the moment you found out you were pregnant, your daydreams were consumed with how amazing it will be to finally hold your little angel in your arms. But, as you near the end of your pregnancy, you also begin to fantasize about what it will be like to have your body (mostly) back. Now that your daydream is finally a reality and you have that sweet face staring up at you, you also realize it may take your body a little while longer to live up to your fantasy. Now, it is all about finding a new normal and enjoying your amazing miracle.
For the first couple of weeks all is fine because you are able to blame just about anything on hormones, lack of sleep and feeling overwhelmed. But as the weeks go on you begin to wonder, “What happened to ME? I still do not feel like myself? I still feel like a frumpy, hot mess!” You begin to long for a bit of style and the confidence that feeling put-together brings to all the other tasks of life. But now, you have no idea where to start – this new little person has taken over every aspect of your life! Your pre-pregnancy clothes may not fit, and even if they did, they certainly are not compatible with your new mom-life. And you definitely don’t have the time or the energy to devote to developing your “new” style. So what’s a new mom to do?
I’ve been this new mom, three times! Here are three things I did to feel like myself again; to feel confident in my new role as mom.
1. Take a Shower
I know, this sounds ridiculously simple, but it makes all the difference. You cannot be confident in how you look when you feel dirty. Make it a priority to shower as often as you did before your baby was born. For me, I showered daily and always in the morning. After having a baby, however, I discovered that taking a shower before bed fit better into my new normal. That way, I was guaranteed a shower because my husband would be home to care for the baby or I could even wait until the baby was asleep. Showering at night became a habit, one that my body soon learned was a welcome sign that sleep was not far behind. This actually helped me relax more and sleep better, plus who doesn’t sleep better when they are clean?
2. Get Ready Every Day
Even if you have no plans to leave the house, get dressed each day in clean clothes. They can be comfortable clothes, but clean clothes that fit your current body well and that you like – even if it is yoga pants and t-shirts, just make sure they are clean. Wearing clean clothes will make you feel so much better. Simplify your hair and makeup routine, but do it every day. A quick face wash, a swipe of blush, lip gloss and mascara helped me look and feel more awake and ready for the day. Even a simple ponytail or up-twist will make you feel more put together. I love putting my hair up with a Lilla Rose Flexi-Clip. They are a fun and pretty accessory that actually makes my life easier!
3. Remember Your Baby is Your Best Accessory
The honest truth is that no one will really remember your outfit as long as you look clean, dressed and have a smile on your face. Because of this, you only need a few outfits to help you feel confident while you are transitioning into your new normal. You can always add more variety and personal style as you grow into your role as “Mom”. Choose simple, classic outfits that work well for mom-life and that fit your body NOW. Dress your baby in clean, cute clothes (even sleepers and onesies are super cute, easy to find and affordable). Everyone will remark on how beautiful or handsome your baby is and they will say you look great because you’re dressed, your clothes fit and you have a smile on your face!
Remember, you don’t need a whole new wardrobe, just a few outfits that fit your new body NOW. Shopping from the comfort of your home has never been easier. Since many websites offer free shipping and free returns (Target, Old Navy, Nordstrom, Zappos, Amazon, etc), order multiple sizes and return what does not work. Do not feel like you have to spend tons of money either. This is not the time to purchase “investment” pieces that you want to last for years. Now is the time to purchase affordable pieces that make you feel comfortable and help you get closer to feeling like you again.
To help you pull some looks together, here are my four favorite outfit additions for life with a baby.
1. The Poncho
Choose a pair of stretchy mid-rise or high-rise dark wash jeans, your favorite tank and layer a lightweight poncho on top. The poncho hides any lumps and bumps and doubles as a stylish cover if you are nursing! This is especially helpful in the early months when Baby likes to nurse every couple of hours.
2. The Shirt Dress
A dress is a quick and easy outfit on its own, but can also be layered over leggings to provide more coverage and comfort. Choose a shirt dress with buttons for easy nursing access.
3. T-Shirt with a Twist
A T-shirt and jeans are everyday comfortable! Find one that is soft, stretchy and boasts a fun detail like a twist or knot front. This draping detail is great for providing a little tummy camouflage. Choose a wrap front style for even easier nursing access.
4. The Cardigan
Layering a cardigan over a fun or basic tee instantly elevates the outfit. Cardigans also offer back coverage when pulling up your tee to nurse. Keeping your tops relaxed and a bit loose can help you hide your mid-section, but balance this with a slimmer bottom to keep things from looking frumpy.
So what are some of your favorite new mom styles? Feel free to share below!
I’m a homeschooling, naturally-minded mom of three. I don’t have a natural knack for fashion or style but have discovered ways to dress my body for my life that makes me feel confident so that I can focus on the more important things. Feel free to check out my blog, Turn2theSimple.