Kate applauded for not hiding new-mommy tummy
In contrast, Princess Diana’s caftan-like outfit hid the post-childbirth tummy bump in 1982.
NEW YORK (AP) — As Kate and William showed off the royal baby, what caught the eye of many women was not the new heir to the throne but the duchess of Cambridge's post-childbirth silhouette: that little bump under her pretty polka-dot dress.
"I love that she came out and there was a mommy tummy. It was there! We all saw it!" said Lyss Stern of New York, who remembers turning down offers of a girdle and diet pills after her first child was born nine years ago.
MSN Living: 10 unforgettable, extravagant royal weddings
Stern, whose company Divamoms.com organizes events and product launches, added that Kate was sending "the right message," in stark contrast to Hollywood celebrities who are shown "three weeks after childbirth with a flat stomach and G-string bikini. That's not real."
Even those who make a living getting new moms into shape applauded Kate. "I'm thrilled that she went out there like that, because we never see real mommy tummies," said Helene Byrne, a personal trainer in Oakland, Calif., who specializes in pre- and post-natal exercise. "When you see a magazine or photos of new celebrity moms, they're Photoshopped. They're fake! They're a big lie!"
The Daily Beast even ran a headline saying Kate's "unabashed baby belly busts the last taboo of pregnancy." Indeed, most celebrity new moms don't have their pictures taken until their tummies are flat again. And while the stars usually credit diet and exercise with making their bodies bikini-ready so fast, gossip and plastic surgeons often cite something else: the popular procedure known as a tummy tuck.
People magazine has an entire online archive devoted to "Body After Baby: Celebrity moms show off shockingly svelte figures after giving birth," but the magazine declined to comment Wednesday on the example set by Kate. Meanwhile, the summer's other celebrity mom, Kim Kardashian, has yet to be seen in public. Us Weekly reported that she won't leave the house until she's ready to "debut her post-baby body."
MSN Living: 10 best-dressed first ladies of the world
Nobody can say whether Kate consciously chose to send a message that this is what new mothers really look like, or whether she didn't realize — or didn't care — how obvious her tummy would be. Either way, she unselfconsciously handed the baby off to her husband rather than using the newborn to camouflage her figure from the cameras and crowds when she emerged from the hospital Tuesday. And her form-draping dress was a contrast to the caftan-like outfit that hid Princess Diana's figure when she appeared publicly for the first time after giving birth to Will in 1982.
Nancy Manister, who worked for 20 years as a maternity nurse and now teaches at Fairfield University in Connecticut, even noticed a moment during the photo op when Kate "clasped her hands together underneath the belly, and I thought, 'She's not trying to hide it.'" As for anxious new moms wondering when that bump will go away, Manister says, "It takes six weeks to lose 25 pounds, and a full year" to get your old body back.
Jennifer Moneta, who works in public relations in Dallas, gave birth nine weeks ago and was especially pleased that Kate made the post-partum silhouette "look very natural, as if that is what all moms can and should expect after having a baby." Moneta said that when she left the hospital, "I still looked five months pregnant, even though I only gained 20 pounds during pregnancy. My father even lovingly kidded me about it, saying, 'I didn't realize the baby was still in there.'"
Alison Jimenez, a fashion blogger in Astoria, N.Y., said she was "outraged" by comments from some Kate-watchers asking things like "Is she pregnant again?"
"This woman has just given birth. What was she supposed to do? Struggle into a pair of Spanx?" Jimenez said.
But some new moms do swear by girdles or their modern equivalent. Josephine Giraci, of Lloyd Neck, N.Y., says the best piece of advice she got before her first child was born 11 years ago was to pack a girdle in her maternity bag. She wore it for three months after giving birth: "I slept in it and everything."
One shapewear company, Hourglass Angel, wasted no time Wednesday emailing pitches showing a picture of Kate with the mommy tummy alongside ads for corsets and girdles as a way for women to "regain their body" and "feel even more beautiful."
Dr. Robert Atlas, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore, explained that the "bulge that women have after they deliver" is mostly loose skin and fat. He said breast-feeding can help new mothers lose the weight "due to extra metabolic processing," but he doesn't recommend girdles as a way to lose baby weight, though women who have cesarean sections do wear a binder-like accessory around their midsections to support abdominal muscles.
As he spoke, he was with a patient, Melissa Baker, of Ellicott City, Md., who gave birth just a week ago. Asked what she thought of Kate, Baker said, simply, "I liked that she didn't look perfect."
Photo 1: Britain's Prince William, right, and Duchess Kate pose for photographers outside St. Mary's Hospital in London on July 23.(AP Photo/Sang Tan, File)
Photo 2: In this June 22, 1982, file photo, Britain's Prince Charles and Princess Diana take home their newborn son, Prince William, as they leave St. Mary's Hospital in London. Princess Diana’s caftan-like outfit hid the post-childbirth tummy bump that is normal for any new mom. (AP Photo/John Redman, File)
News, stories, tips and laughs for moms & dads
From Ryan Gosling earrings to portable speakers, there's something here for kids of all ages.
When it comes to holiday giving, it's the thought that counts, which is why homemade gifts from kids are so treasured by their mothers. Children might not have money to spend on an expensive piece of jewelry or designer handbag, but they do have the time to DIY something special for their number one fan. If you're in charge of helping the little ones think of presents, check out the above list of homemade gifts for mom. From a custom vase to Instagram coasters to Warhol-inspired wall art, we have something for every taste and skill level.
At our household, we have a large, diverse collection of toys. While I’m not as uptight as my husband on what enters our kids’ toy chest, my husband must approve all toy acquisitions mostly because of aesthetics (appearance is important). In our search for functional and stylish toys, the sustainable ones often have the best design, and appeal to the visual and tactile senses or improve fine motor skills such as dexterity and hand coordination. Here are a few of our family favorites that intrigue and hold our little ones’ attention—and look good, too.
Worried that a violent video game might sneak its way into your shopping cart during the holidays? Before you make it to the register, make sure you're armed with all the information you need regarding your child's games. Just because your well-meaning thirteen-year-old promises you that the game he's about to buy with the gift card from Uncle Mike is totally chill, doesn't mean it's good for kids. Do your research ahead of time to avoid any game store drama. And have a chat with your offspring before the big day; let them know that you're going to have to green light their choices before they get their hearts set on any particular item. At the end of the day, you're just being a good parent. Some of the games on the market now may look OK at first glance, but are actually quite objectionable. Trust us: We've done our homework and we're here to give you the ultimate low-down. Check out this slideshow for all the games to steer clear of this season. Don't say we didn't warn you.
Two sociologists have found that parents who have daughters are more inclined to support the GOP and turn a cold shoulder to Democrats.
The experts at Nameberry.com predict what will be big in baby-naming next year
Famed event-planner David Stark shared tips for making chic holiday decorations using items you already have around the house. Take a look!
Sociologist Karen Z. Kramer found that over the past decade more than 550,000 men were stay-at-home fathers, which is about 3.5 percent of the married with kids population.
Ben Miller celebrates his wife's birthday and the anniversary of the day their premature son Ward Miles came home for good with a video documenting his first year.
Adopting an animal is a major commitment. Yet all too often people put more effort into researching what kind of car to get than the type of pet that would best fit their lifestyle.
’Tis the season to send out holiday greeting cards to all your friends and family. But, as our friends at Awkward Family Pet Photos know, not all holiday snapshots are the same. Some are just plain kooky — especially when pets are included. So with good tidings and great cheer, here are 10 wacky holiday animal portraits that are sure to make you laugh out loud and get you in the holiday spirit. And possibly make you think twice about dressing up the family cat this year.
King of the jungle? Nah, it's just a labradoodle!