If having a presentable lady garden is on your checklist for the delivery room (hey, it’s gonna be the centre of attention for a fair few hours, right?) then a Mama-Wax from Strip (the waxing joint loved by celebs including Victoria Beckham) might be a better solution than jiggling precariously in front of a mirror with a LadyShave…
Thanks to ChannelMum for bringing this debate to light…
- 94% of mums-to-be verbally abused over their pregnant body shape
- Average mum ‘bump shamed’ ten times during pregnancy – but one in 20 report over 50 attacks
- 45% of women think bump shaming should be made illegal, rising to 53% of young mums under 30
- Strangers are the biggest source of negative comments, followed by friends and work colleagues
- But one in 10 criticised by her own mother and five per cent by mother-in-law
- 17% of mums considered dieting while pregnant to battle their body shape, and 7% went ahead against medical advice
Mums-to-be are facing a barrage of abuse with 94 per cent verbally attacked for their body shape while pregnant, a worrying new report reveals.
The study from video parenting site ChannelMum.com found the average mum suffers ten verbal slurs while pregnant – known as ‘bump shaming’. But a quarter report a far higher number of negative comments, with one in 20 shamed for her shape more than 50 times.
While the majority of mums (62%) were attacked as ‘too fat’, a third (32%) were told their bump was ‘too small’, leading to fears for their baby’s health.
Shockingly, strangers are the biggest source of the verbal smears with 53 per cent of mums suffering cruel criticism from people they don’t know.
A further 43 per cent are bump shamed by friends, 40 per cent by work colleagues and 30 per cent by family members.
One in 10 was even criticised by her own mother and five per cent by her mother-in-law – along with one in 20 put down by her own partner.
The problem has become so bad that 17 per cent of mums considered dieting while pregnant to control their burgeoning body, while seven per cent went ahead and started slimming against medical advice.
The study of 1,321 mums found just a third (36%) were comfortable with their pregnant bodies,while 64 per cent described themselves as ‘embarrassed or ashamed or uncomfortable’
More than three quarters of mums-to-be (77%) admitted constantly comparing their bodies to other mothers – including friends, family and mums on social media – while pregnant. And two thirds (65%) carry on the body comparisons for up to five years after giving birth.
One in nine even revealed they compared their bumps to slim pregnant celebs to see if they could stay thinner, along with one in 11 (9%) who tried to lose weight faster than star mothers after giving birth.
The pressure is so bad that 45 per cent of women now think bump shaming should be made illegal, rising to 53 per cent of young mums under 30.
And the shaming isn’t restricted to pregnant women, as the study showed 60% of mums get negative comments on their post baby body too.
Once again, the biggest source of nasty slurs were from strangers, with 40 per cent of mums attacked. A further third (34%) were abused by their family, 30 per cent by friends and 14 per cent by work colleagues. One in nine suffered cruel comments from her partner, 13 per cent from her mother in law and seven per cent from her mother.
On average, new mums get four nasty comments on their post baby body, with five per cent criticised ten times or more.
The body perfection pressure means 20 per cent of mums never feel comfortable with their post baby body, even five years after giving birth. And for mums who do accept their post baby body, it takes an average of 18 months to get their shape back or accept the changes motherhood makes.
The study also showed the celebrities which make mums feel best about their bump and post baby body are Giovanna Fletcher, voted for by 37 per cent of mums, followed by Holly Willoughby (25%) and Adele (11%). But the star mums which make normal mothers feel most inadequate is the Duchess of Cambridge (21%) followed by Victoria Beckham (18%) and Kim Kardashian (16%).
Siobhan Freegard, founder of ChannelMum.com said: “Pregnant women’s bodies are not public property. Most of us would never dream of commenting on a stranger’s body – so why do it when a woman is pregnant and at her most vulnerable?
For more information visit: http://www.channelmum.com/bodypositivity
The Varidesk Soho was designed for laptop users and pops up and down at the squeeze of a handle. It comes in a choice of white or black. We tested…
Editor writes: Victoria Beckham apparently does it – and at five months pregnant I’m loving it too. No, not ordering steamed spinach from a fancy restaurant, but the new trend of standing up whilst at one’s desk.
Apparently, working like this for a year works off the equivalent in calories of running a marathon. Yep, just by standing up. It’s surprisingly comfy – in fact, when you’ve got pregnancy back aches and cramps it is bloody comfy indeed!
The idea with the Varidesk is that you can work either standing up or sitting – and the Soho model is so simple to switch between the two options and holds even my oversized laptop with ease. On handy other use that Varidesk may not have realised is that by leaving it in the upright position it prevents sticky fingered children accidentally deleting files by sneaking onto your laptop in the hope of finding ‘Happy Mrs Chicken’ or suchlike.
Another perk is that you can put your (in my case decaf) latte underneath the desk, thus avoiding that dreaded trip to the Apple store crying over spilled milk – as it were… (BTW, if you do spill on the Varidesk, just wipe it with soap and water.)
I’ve been using this desk daily for a few weeks now and I’d totally recommend it. It actually makes you think about your posture in general (I’m the worst culprit for slouching over the phone) and I’m sure has countless RSI benefits. The Varidesk website suggests you build yourself up gradually to the standing up all day option – but when you’re pregnant the choice of whether to stand or sit as the most comfy option is made by the small one inside you (or the size of the lunch you just engulfed!)
Buy the Soho Varidesk online here. RRP £150
Some people swear by Palmer’s or just plain coconut oil. Some people say it’s all in the genes anyway. Some go for the prevention method of slathering on creams the second they see two lines on the test and others take the ‘make do and mend’ approach to reduce the damage.
Whichever theory stretch mark theory you subscribe to, we’ve rounded up a few of our fave creams…
Mustela’s Stretch Mark Prevention Cream from their chic Maternite range is light, easily absorbed (no running around in the nude trying to get the kids in the bathroom whilst waiting for it to soak in, then!), hypoallergenic and hardly smells of anything (‘just of clean babies,’ said our tester). The main ingredient comes from the Larch tree, plus there’s some beeswax and shea butter in the mix too…
Bloom and Blossom’s Stretch Mark Cream is super rich and thick – a little goes a long way and the base is almond oil so it has a delicate scent. Loved by Victoria Beckham, Kate Winslet and the Duchess of Cambridge, this brand pops up in celeb magazines almost as often as they do and the chic black and white pot looks great on your night stand…
Salcura’s Stretch Mark Cream takes consuming one’s greens to a new level, as active ingredients here are rose hip and green beans…But it actually smells like fresh cucumber. Can be used in conjunction with their Gotu Kola and Wild Rose Stretch Mark Oil which is a light, dry oil (our only criticism here is the dropper only holds a lil bit and we wanna use a lot, cos it’s lovely…)
Epsom salts might once have been Granny’s bathroom solace, but they really have had a bit of a rebrand of late thanks to celebs such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Victoria Beckham swearing their allegiance to the white crystals as a cure for bloating and the secret to a flatter stomach…
The traditional ones from The Epsom Salt Company are great (and cheap) and you can order them with a glass jar, which is pretty helpful if you don’t want a sticky mess in the bathroom cabinet. The salts profess to help with everything from hangovers to shiny hair – just lob them in the bath and have a good old soak.
Unless you really want a lifetime of picking rotting petals out of the plughole, we’d advise against bath salts with floral acoutrements, but if you are craving that ‘bathing in the garden pond’ vibe, Jo Malone has just launched a limited edition bath salt in the Pear and Freesia range which comes in dinky sachets.
If you have a junior eczema sufferer, we recommend you try the Kids Dead Sea Salts from Westlab. Safe for use on babies as young as three months, the salts promote natural skin healing and prevent itching.
SM tester writes: “my three year old has developed dry, itchy skin but hates having anything put on it. These Westlab salts were great as we told him they were ‘magic crystals’ – he even told me off for sprinkling them too liberally as he wanted to ‘make the magic last longer…’ We could definitely see the results after regular bathing and it’s nice to know you’re using something gentle and natural to solve the problem – rather than something prescribed and chemically…”
If the classic mugshot (or white fluffy rug shot) achieved by your child’s school photographer doesn’t make enough of a statement for the bedroom wall (or the annual family Christmas card) it might be time to call in the uber-professionals.
Not content with simply waving a teddy and snapping your offspring, London based photographic studio Mud & Glitter offer a consultation with their Creative Director, plus hair and make up – not to mention they have Erin Petson as artist-in-residence to create beautiful backdrops (Erin’s past clients include Victoria Beckham and Stella McCartney to name but two).
Stylish Northerners might like to check out Clare Bowes Photo, who produced over 150 celebrity photoshoots in her role at Heat Magazine before relocating to Gosforth. Preferring ‘child-led’ shoots, she creates enchanting portraits that let one’s child’s character shine.
Or if you simply want a few tips on taking more engaging snaps yourself, iPhonePhotographyschool suggests using ‘burst mode’ to capture action shots…
Fancy burning off a few calories but can’t find anyone to watch the bambino whilst you hit the gym? Baby jogging might seem like the answer, but having the wrong kit can lead to frustration, boredom (and detours to the corner shop for a Magnum…)
The Which Report suggests serious joggers should opt for a full on jogging device – complete with wheels of varying size dependent on your own stride. ‘These pushchairs feature three rust-resistant alloy wheels, distinctive frame designs, 20in, 16in or 12in wheels, shock absorbers, suspension and a fixed front wheel.The large wheels make the ride smoother, and give better control and shock absorption in off-road conditions. These pushchairs are designed for running on pavements, rough and sandy surfaces….‘ they say.
Out and About’s Nipper Sport has won lots of awards in the Women’s Running category and is the sort of thing you’d feel a bit silly pushing if you WEREN’T jogging, so if you need some motivation then this might be your buggy.
Less hardcore joggers might prefer something a bit more versatile and compact. Phil and Ted’s are a brand loved by town-and-country-housers wanting a buggy as comfortable in the fields of Somerset as it is on Bond St and we love the Dot v2, pictured below in bang-on-trend Apple.
If you’re more of a yomper than a runner, but still want a buggy that will go the extra mile (as it were) we can’t fault the Quinny Buzz Xtra, Light but robust, smooth steering and a unique gas spring to aide folding and unfolding, this one is the king of the urban jungle – or if you fancy giving hiking a try (Victoria Beckham is a fan) then this is a good bet on a gradient too.
One of our SM team said the other day ‘Is it just me or does everyone seem to be having boys at the moment..?’
I’m sure the big pendulum maintaining ‘the grand scheme of things’ is still dressed more or less to the 50/50 centre – but we do seem to be buying more blue baby shower gift baskets these days… hmmmm.
Rewind a few years (4 to be precise) when uber-SM Victoria Beckham finally delivered a daughter – there was much talk at dinner parties of the 1940s Shettles Method for ‘choosing’ the gender of one’s children. Essentially this suggests that diet, sexual position and timing of sex had a quantifiable effect in terms of gender prediction. And this leads us to wonder (and banter) – if there is any truth in his theory – whether ‘modern women’ are just more likely to conceive boys.
Shettles’ basic principles included:
For a girl; have sex in the missionary position (or another shallow penetration one) and female orgasms are a huge no-no. One Big-O and the vagina releases ‘sperm friendly’ fluid which would allow the Y (male) sperm to swim faster to the egg. So if you’ve tried out something from Cosmo or lived out your Mr Grey fantasy you’ll be having a son.
Avoid caffeine: no lattes or perk-me-up energy drinks (with or without vodka!) for girlmaking – Starbucks junkies will be making boys.
Keep the vagina acidic for a girl and alkaline for a boy (yep, we weren’t sure how you measure this either, apparently you can get a kit in Boots or on Amazon). Berries, kale, almonds, tofu are all alkaline – as too are steak and chips. Dairy and wheat are acidic so if you’ve cut these out you’ll be growing a little gent, says the theory. Food for thought, maybe…
Editor’s tip: if none of the above sounds like you, but you still ended up with a blue baby boo then maybe it’s because you married a billionaire. A study by Forbes showed more male heirs born to those who inherited fortune *yet not to self made billionaires, randomly…
Admittedly The Beckham Clan get a lot of practice traversing airports, but Queen Victoria demonstrates her enviable skills as she carries a reasonably substantial toddler in her platform wedges. Impressed too are we at the lack of sliding on the floor, climbing on the carousel or go-karting with the trollies from her three boys – and not a Trunki in sight!
Get the look: inject a bit of sunshine yellow into your travel wardrobe with Boden’s A line skirt in Jaffa Apples
Lords a Leaping, take note. Here’s the Christmas Lust List:
- Bouquets from The Wild Flower Company: part of the British Flower Collective, these posies of seasonal blooms and grasses add panache to a rustic kitchen or a channel your inner Eliza Doolittle to add romantic w whim to an urban apartment. Order them for fortnightly, monthly or one off delivery (check out their Pregnancy packages also!)
- Helicopter Flying Lessons from Regal Helicopters: begin your pilot training of just take a pleasure flight over England’s green plesantness…Take the controls and indulge some serious childhood fantasies!
- The Pacapod Toy Pod: for little ones who like to be self sufficient, this cute rucksack is comfortable for them to carry and just the right size for the essentials (or as one of our Mums said ‘it’s like portion control: Dolly can come, trainset needs to stay at home!’) We’d suggest stuffing them seasonally with Lindt Bears or a set of personalised Thank You notecards from Tinyprints.
- The Victoria Beckham nail polish duo from Nails Inc: In Victoria’s world her perfect talons are luxe bone ‘Bamboo White’ or vibrant ‘Judo Red’. Made with stretch to fit technology (‘non gloopiness’ to you and me) and available in a limited edition venetian glass bottle.
- A Man-Lair from Tetra Shed: whoever said sheds weren’t sexy haven’t seen this customisable pod which can be turned into anything from a home office to amazing playhouse to a spare room – or even stacked together to create an entire home! Coverable extras include zinc or copper finishes, underfloor heating and built in speakers – design your dream with their 3D visualiser.
- Holiday PJs from The Gap: keep starry eyed kids cosy on Xmas morn with these lovely festive flannels…
- Disney Frozen Princess Ice and Inline skates: got the dress? Now you need the super nifty ice skates, which easily transform into inlines when the terrain melts or, you know, all the other kids are doing it…
- The Carved Angel Xmas Pudding: made to the traditional Victorial recipe and wrapped in a snowy white cloth, this pudding is sumptuously rich but vegetarian friendly. Try it with Crabbie’s Green Ginger wine for a winter warmer.
- Magic Sakura Tree: there’s still something thrilling about this classic toy-cum-science experiment: adding the water and watching in realtime as the cute pink blossom starts to grow. Then Instagram the hell out of it…
- Tea Party Biscuits from Little Ella James: a timeless classic for little ladies who lunch. And then snack. Great for teaching counting and stacking, tea party ettiquette and sharing.
- A Night in the 210th Suite at MyHotels: 210th is an elegant adult range and they have partnered with boutique MyHotels to create a sophisticated and sexy suite – complete with 25 erotic ‘assignments’ in little envelopes for you and your partner to complete, bath bubbles and massage oils from their collection and your own personal ‘box of tricks’.
- R2D2 Woodburning Stove: cleverly constructed from an old gas bottle, this sees takes upcycling into a new dimension. Powerful enough to heat a room or summerhouse, R2 is made to order and makes an unusual – and very cool – focal point. Call 07955479449 for enquiries and orders.