Getting Back What You Lost

January 13th, 2011

My daughter and I were at a playgroup this past Saturday. I was asked by one mom (there with her two girls) if I still worked. I explained to her that I’m lucky enough to be a freelance beauty and fashion writer.

Another mom’s head popped up from behind a nearby plastic kitchen set and said, “You should write an article about how moms can still look nice.”

Funny you should mention that, I said. I started my Easy Peasy elevator pitch…or in this case, my Circle Time pitch. This is precisely why I launched this blog a year ago—to help busy women (moms included) not sacrifice themselves (and their style) just because they have a To Do list a mile long. It’s all about quick and easy. As long as you haven’t given up already.

The first mom glared at me through her dirty glasses, tucked her unwashed hair behind her ears, brushed her hands against the front of her gray sweat pants, and said, “Well, my daughters think I’m pretty and that’s all that matters.”

Really? Your husband doesn’t matter? Your friends don’t matter? You don’t matter? Oh. OK. That’s an interesting world you’re showing your girls. One that applauds the unshowered/unkempt/unhealthy mothers who doesn’t take care of themselves because they have “to much to do”? Martyr much?

How about showing them a woman who considers herself to be among the important? A strong woman who holds true to what she was before she was a mother—she was a woman. One who is beautiful inside and outside.

I’m not talking about wearing a ball gown to T ball. Or spending hours at the gym, instead of playing with your child. I just mean maintaining a healthy attitude about yourself. Exercising, keeping your hobbies, eating better than just their leftover snacks. I guarantee you weren’t like this before the kids. You shouldn’t be like this after the kids.

If it was important to you before them, it should be important after them. Just modify. Here are a few ways you can get back what you gave up.

You gave up…Movies
Get…Netflix. Blockbuster. Hulu. We haven’t been to an actual movie more than once in three years. Who needs someone kicking the back of your chair anyway? You can now stream Netflix to your TV via your Wii or Xbox, and even your phone has movie apps. So you have no excuse to not recapture your love of the cinema.

You gave up…Weekly Salon Trips
Get…a monthly “me day.” Schedule once a month to get your hair done, your nails done, a pedi, anything that makes you feel better and more relaxed so that you can tackle the other 29 or 30 days. Don’t want to spend the cash? Block off three hours when no one in the house is allowed to bother you. Take a bath, do your own nails, etc.

You gave up…Contacts
Get…funky glasses. I’m not going to lie to you. There are days where I’m too lazy/busy to put in my contacts. Enter the funky glasses. Now I look like I’m channeling some sexy quirky vibe, instead of really just being ridi busy. Check out Zenni Optical for super cheap glasses ($8 for frames and lens??) in all different shapes/sizes/level of funk.

You gave up…Makeup
Get…I have two words for you—mascara and lipgloss. That’s all you need to look put together. A little blush on the apples of your cheeks and you don’t look pale and worn out, even if you feel that way. If you feel the need for a pony tail every day, then at least invest in some cool hair accessories. Never underestimate the drugstore for cheap hair things.

You gave up…The gym
Get…At-home workouts, On Demand workouts. You make this happen, people. Check this out for some at-home ideas.

You gave up…Date night
Get…out of the house with your honey at least once or twice a month. Shame on you. Don’t have the money for the babysitter or don’t have someone you can rely on? Do a sitter swap among your friends. Rack up hour increments with your friends, as you watch each others kids for free.

You gave up…fashion all together
Get…versatile pieces. Tunics, leggings, riding boots. Cardi, dress, tights, flats. Skinny jeans, t-shirt, boyfriend blazer. Mix and match. It’s like garanimals for grownups. Buying pieces in neutral colors and textures mean you don’t have to put much thought into your dress. And speaking of dresses…they’re just one piece…sweat pants and sweat shirt are two pieces. So it’s actually easier to put on a dress. Just sayin’.

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