Friday, March 19, 2010

Looking Good Minutes After Labor and Childbirth: Why and How

I don't mean to sound vain, but this is something I pride myself on doing after I deliver a baby without medication. Why? Let me count the ways...

First of all, there will invariably be pictures taken of you and your little one after he makes his entrance into the world. We've all seen innumerable photos passed around, emailed, faceboooked, and blogged of mom and baby in their hospital setting. Knowing that scores of people are going to be enjoying these photos, why not try to look your best?

Second, it's just really cool to get compliments from the nursing staff, and sometimes even doctors, about your spry appearance after giving birth. Who among us doesn't like to have our egos massaged a little?

As I look back on my after-birth photos, I have to say that I am pleased with almost all of them and remember being proud to pass them about to family and friends. I remember when I was delivering the now 8-year-old girl, and in the throes of transition, that the nurse told my husband, "Look at her, she still has her lipstick on and everything! She looks like Cindy Crawford!" My husband then replied that I always try to look my best after giving birth, so I always put my lipstick on before we leave for the hospital. I felt rather ridiculous after listening to his comment, and even somewhat embarrassed at the time, but when I looked at the photo of myself after delivering her, the embarrassment melted away and I only felt good about myself, knowing that I didn't let myself go, even while delivering my 6th baby!

Now, there are some tricks to looking good after labor. I am certainly by no means a beauty queen, but with the right products in my hair and the right products on my face, I can make a half-way decent appearance out of myself. And if I can do it, you can, too. Here are some tips you can implement the next time you give birth...

1. The first step is to choose a few good hair products. My favorites are from the Got2B line, which comes in sprays, gels, waxes and mousse...


Because I spend a lot of time in early labor, I have plenty of warning for when the little guy is going to make his appearance, so I always shower, then do my hair, making sure to use the appropriate product for whatever style my hair is at the time.

2. The second step is to choose a line of make-up that doesn't wear off. My favorite is the Revlon Colorstay line. I start with the Colorstay foundation in Ivory...,


...then I apply a Covergirl line of shadow in creams and blues...


This is followed by my favorite Colorstay eyeliner in black...


...and my all-time favorite Colorstay mascara, which comes with a primer, then black topcoat...


I finish off my face with Colorstay lipliner in Nude...


....filled in with Loreal Violet Attitude lipstick...


You can laugh til you cry, outright cry, shower, and sweat and none of this make-up will come off. It is amazing.

3. Wear cute earrings. The earrings I chose where a gold and wood number given to me by my mother-in-law...


They are large enough to make a statement, but not so large that they are uncomfortable to lie on if you are lying on your side.

4. Now that you've done everything you can to look good after labor, there's only two steps left....deliver your baby and have someone take the photograph. But there's a trick to that, too. Here, let me show you what not to do, and what to do...

Look at this first attempt at an after-birth photograph...


This was taken at the same time the above photograph was taken, with my little red camera, but the flash was on, so it accentuated all the weight I have gained in my lower face. Plus, the camera was somewhat at eye-level with me, which also accentuated the extra weight. To top it off, I wasn't smiling.

Now let's take a look at the next attempt...


The flash was off, but the camera was still too low, about level with my face, and my bangs were splayed unattractively on my forehead, revealing my frown wrinkles and the chicken pox scar between my eyebrows. Unacceptable. Oh, and my eyes are closed.

Next attempt...


Now the camera is high enough, but I couldn't seem to open my eyes wide enough. I thought I was opening them to their normal width, but apparently the drugs I had been given during the after-birth procedure hadn't worn off yet, and that is apparent in this photo.

Let's try again....


Ah, there we have it. In this photo, I vehemently tried to open my eyes wider than I normally would, and again, perhaps because of the drugs, they don't look abnormally wide, but normal.

So you see, with a little pre-childbirth effort and planning, you, too, can look great minutes after giving birth! Thanks for listening.



On 365 Days of TV-Free Toddler Time today:
It's Cereal and Pipe Cleaner Time! Click the pic to see.




On life in mexico {and other places} a picture a day today:
{a favorite restaurant}

19 comments:

The Farmer's Wife said...

You do look great! You always look great Jen! That is why I love the C-section! Your make-up never gets messed up....nor does your hair;)

Mom2my10 @ 11th Heaven said...

You know what, FW, when I look at my post-c-section photo, I look so drugged up and loopy that I think it is the worst of all of them! Perhaps I should have implemented the holding my eyelids open wide trick!

Brandi @ Frugal Farmhouse said...

I have never been through labor but these are great tips!! I have seen many many birth pictures and you by far look the best! I'll have to pass these on to my mormon mommy friends!

Lynn said...

HA! I love it. But alas, no more babies at our house. So....I will just add this to the folder of advice for my daughters when it's the time comes. ; D

Leslie said...

I really wish some wise mom would have shared that with me before I had my first child (or even my second!). I figured it out a little before my third and so those are the only post-delivery pics I'm half willing to share with anyone. But if I could have another baby (fingers crossed it will happen one of these days!) I'm SO following your tips! Thanks! And you absolutely looks gorgeous!

Jamie H said...

Gee, thanks for giving me these tips after I'm done having kids! I will pass them on to my friends who are about ready to give birth though! They're great!

Mostly Diane said...

This just made me laugh. But I have to admit you look fabulous!!! I'll have to try that the next time around.

Mom2my10 @ 11th Heaven said...

Diane, I'm glad it made you laugh. That was part of the point! :)

Rachel said...

You crack me up! That's a ton of effort - haha, but boy, you do look good! I should probably spend a wee bit more time on my appearance - lol

Jennifer said...

The first time I gave birth, I was way to nervous about the actual birth process so I totally forgot about the after photo! The second one was a pretty good photo but by the third one, I had it down to a science too. I have to say "Thank God for the Color Stay line of makeup products and for digital cameras!" They make events like this much less stressful!

thereallifehome said...

Oh, Jen. You are awesome. I have this post starred in my blog reader so it will be easy to find when our 7th baby is due this October. You can bet I won't be looking bagged and haggered in my after-birth photo!!

RhondaLue said...

Awesome tips. I also always did my makeup before going to the hospital, even in the midst of severe pain but back then they didn't have colorstay and touch ups were needed. lol

Lindsey the Muse-r said...

So, what are your tips for looking good after a c-section when you've been drugged and had a stupid mask on that feels like it's covering up your whole face???
I despise my after photos, even ones taken a day or two later when I don't look so out of it. Before I had twins, I said no photos of me in the hospital, period. But no one listened. I really like your angle tip though. I get "pregnancy face" and I think that would help.
Fun post:)

Jen said...

I have always showered and done my hair and makeup before going to the hospital (even if it was in the middle of the night), but I still can't say I look great in the pictures :( Has something to do with looking so "puffy" after just having a baby. At least I don't think I look so awful that anyone that saw my picture would think childbirth is a terrible experience :)

Oh, and I just have to say hi to Lindsey the Muse-r. Funny meeting you here my real-life friend! Don't you love this blog?

Anonymous said...

Thanks, but I want to look like i worked for that baby! Do we really want anyone to think it was easy?

Mom2my10 @ 11th Heaven said...

Rachel, no more effort than what I do everyday! I'm really one of those people who need make-up and hairspray!

Mom2my10 @ 11th Heaven said...

And Jen, thanks for the sweet compliment on my blog! You made my day!~

Bethany Cox said...

I just really want to warn you about something. I looked up all your makeup in the Environmental Working Groups Cosmetic Safety Database and all of them except your eyeliner and lipliner were rated 7-8 on a danger scale of 1-10, 10 being the most dangerous. your eyeliner and lipliner were ranked 6 which is moderate hazard, but 7-10 is high hazard. the ingredients in your makeup have been linked to:

Cancer
Developmental/reproductive toxicity
Violations, restrictions & warnings
Allergies/immunotoxicity
Other concerns for ingredients used in this product:
Neurotoxicity, Endocrine disruption, Persistence and bioaccumulation, Organ system toxicity (non-reproductive), Multiple, additive exposure sources, Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs), Enhanced skin absorption, Contamination concerns, Occupational hazards, Biochemical or cellular level changes
I know you probably wont stop using these products, but they are all very dangerous. did you know, the average woman swallows 2 lbs of lipstick every year? I wont let you claim ignorance. you have this knowledge now, whether you like it or not. sorry. love ya!

Kristin said...

Jen, you are so funny. As Keane would say, you're donuts.