I’ll just start this one off with a disclaimer- I’m not a fashion expert by any means. And this, quite frankly, is not a post about fashion or looking like the coolest cat out there. This is a post about the reality of one aspect of Mom life- figuring out how to feel good about how you look, confident in your current style, and like you’re rocking the best version of YOU at the present- all in the minimal time that any of us have to actually do any type of (so important!) self-maintenance. I’ve included a few of my current favorites, as well as some great tips from other Moms! I hope you find some ideas to incorporate into your practical mom style!
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My Personal Practical Mom Style
Here are some of my personal favorites when it comes to practical mom style- things that I do on a regular basis (with a couple I’m still working on implementing!).
Mom Style- Clothing Ideas
The Two Shirt Method
This is one of my favorite nursing tips for Mamas. It makes getting out and about so much easier! It’s very simple. First you wear a camisole or nursing tank (if it’s a camisole, you can convert it to a nursing cami by adding a hook and eye!), then you wear your regular shirt on top. Then when you need to nurse baby, simply unhook it and your nursing bra, pull the cami/tank down and your shirt up! If you want to get really fancy and don’t want to deal with an extra set of straps, you can get Undercover Mama Strapless Nursing Tanks that hook to whatever nursing bra you already have!
I love this because it means I can wear my regular shirts and still breastfeed comfortably. The one downside is it can get a little hot in the summer having to have that extra layer.
Nursing Specific Clothes
To keep things to just one layer, I highly recommend checking out some nursing-specific clothes. I didn’t use these much with my first baby, but I am loving the ones I’ve got for my second baby! These shirts/dresses have hidden panels that allow you just lift up one of the layers and nurse easily that way. I was actually pleasantly surprised by how many options there were on Amazon! These are particularly great if you need to wear a dress, since it’s not exactly easy to hike your dress all the way up for easy access. (If any family are reading this, I totally want this dress for my birthday. ;-))
Nursing-Friendly Sports Bras
I included this because I see it asked ALL THE TIME on Mom Facebook groups. It can be a challenge to find a good sports bra that is easily accessible, especially if the girls have grown bigger with pregnancy and nursing! My favorite so far is the Brooks Moving Comfort Fiona Bra. The straps are easy to adjust (Velcro) and it provides awesome support! I’m also trying out the SheFit Bra, but so far I’m finding it more complicated to deal with, and for the price I’d rather go with the Moving Comfort Bra.
(I would love to know what sports bra you all love- comment and tell me!)
Here’s one I’m still working on- I’ve got some fitness goals that when I achieve them, I’m going to reward myself with some new workout pants with POCKETS! Because all moms need pockets- who has a hand to hold your phone when you’ve got kids and all their accessories??? And as our bodies change, it’s often nice to have something with a little more flex to it, am I right? Practical Mom Style right here!
Mom Bling- Accessories
Accessories can definitely be a fun part of practical mom style/self-maintenance. The challenge is that the things we used to wear may not always be the most practical, especially in the early stages of motherhood! So here are a few of my current favorites- let me know what yours are, too!
I wear my silicone teething jewelry every day. It saves my sanity when I’ve got my teething baby with me, and it’s so easy to clean and bring with me anywhere. In fact, I love it so much that I wrote a whole post on it and I set up an affiliate with Mama Bear’s Baby Beads so I could get a coupon code for you all- you can use the code MAMASHARK15 for 15% off your purchase!
Studs or Ear Crawlers
I’m currently in the stage where I can’t really wear any sort of dangling earrings unless I’d like to get my earlobes ripped out. Which isn’t really on my list of fun things to do, so I am instead rocking a lot of studs and ear crawlers. I didn’t know ear crawlers were a thing until recently (maybe I was living under a rock), so I’m excited to have another jewelry option!
And in case you are PAST the earring-ripping stage, I can’t leave this section without mentioning these gorgeous earrings (and other jewelry) from With Love Bomi!
Armed with Truth
One of my all-time favorite accessories are these temporary tattoos from Armed with Truth. I wore these for my maternity pictures and during labor. They are great reminders, and they stay on really well! And I love being able to change them up, too. I love them so much that they let me give you all a code- 20% off your order with the code MAMASHARK20!
Practical Mom Style: Mom-to-Mom Self-Maintenance Tips
I polled other Mamas to see what YOU ALL do to feel beautiful in practical ways, and I love all the fun and creative answers I got from you all! I’ve posted them below for you– and I’ve also put a box at the end of this post so you can submit your own. I would love to hear from YOU, too!
Quantity hair products! My faves are: Dove Dry Shampoo, Living Proof Full Dry Volume Blast, and Kenra Working Spray. Once I wash and dry my hair, I use the working spray to set the style for the day. Then, when I don’t have time to wash and dry my hair, I use the dry shampoo and the volume blast to bring my hair back to life! –Brittni W.
Capsule Wardrobe! I even do them for my kids. That way we can all quickly grab outfits. The kids can mix and match and this gives me time to do hair and makeup for myself. Pst…it also helps with laundry since multiple outfits can be made even if some things are dirty. For me, I can mix and match and come up with new looks when things are feeling stale. –Lehia M
Fake lashes are my thing. You don’t need much more make up when you have your lashes on. Earrings help too. Draw attention away from the stain on my shirt. –Krista
I have two products that I cannot live without: Curel Ultra Healing lotion and Mary Kay’s acne treatment gel. These two products help keep me feeling and looking good when I don’t have time or money to spend on other stuff.
Curel is amazing! It works great on your dry hands and feet but can be used for many other things. My son was allergic to baby lotion but he can use this. Once, when I ran out of face moisturizer and did not have time or money to get more for a week, I used Curel on my face.
It was heavier than my regular creamed but kept my face soft and beautiful for a week. I also had an allergic reaction breakout on my feet that nothing seemed to cure until out of desperation one night I grabbed my ever-faithful Curel and rubbed it on the rash. It was gone in the morning. It also works really well on chapped lips. If you only invest in one beauty product, this one is a must try! 🙂
Mary Kay’s acne treatment gel also has multiple uses. (I prefer products that are multi-use.) It is the fastest acting acne treatment I have ever used, but it also works on cold sores and those weird little cyst things that sometimes come up behind your ears or on your neck (the over 35 crowd knows what I mean). I have put it on ingrown hairs on my husbands face and it heals those too.
I am not one for wearing makeup everyday. With so much going on, I do not feel there is time for that. However, there are many occasions that require one to look nice. In that case, I take a tip from an elderly lady I once knew.
She told me that if you do not have time to do anything else, use three things: powder foundation, mascara, and lipstick. It takes 5-10 minutes and you look as put together as someone who uses 10 products and spends an hour in front of the mirror. Trust me. With a two-year-old in my house, 5-10 minutes is about all I have for something like makeup. -Sabra from www.notmymomsworld.com
I purchased a whole wardrobe of cute button up shirts to make it easy for pumping! I wear it with a pair of high waisted jeans and a cardigan and it’s easy and cute! For my hair and makeup, I usually just do one or the other.
If I neglect both, I look a little homeless. I’ll do my hair one day and just wear a bit of concealer and the next I’ll have a cute pony but add in some eyeshadow and mascara. It helps not having to do my hair and makeup every morning, and it allows for a few extra minutes of sleep (which every mama is in need of)! -Brittany | Growing Our Family Podcast
I de-cluttered my wardrobes to something comfy and that I love so that it’s quicker to pick out a style and I’ll feel good in it! –Mama Bear Finance
I lay my clothes out the night before, and I take showers after my daughter goes to bed. -Tamra from http://www.nurturingtamra.com
Ponytail or pixie cut – neither need much work; lipstick always in purse does the trick for unexpected intros, keep wipes on hand, body spritzer, nail clippers in car, always a small brush in purse . -Lisa J
Jean’s and branded takkies (sneakers) always works for me. I use Himalaya scrub for my face. I’m a simple mom. -Anonymous
A cute pair of earrings and some mascara changes me from run down to ready to go! –Katie M
I keep lip balm accessible throughout my world (in both doors of minivan, in diaper bag, in kitchen, etc.). I keep a deodorant in my diaper bag. I basically wear black yoga pants whenever I go out. Occasionally, I will do my nails when my kiddos are asleep. I use the quick dry kind. That’s it! I’ve never gone out makeup less before kids. Now it’s just a way of life, lol. And I’m ok with that! -Annie from https://pancakesandsnuggles.com
One Final Thought:
We all want to look nice- it elevates our confidences and increases our self-esteem when we feel like we look good- and there’s nothing wrong with that. But at the same time, we all know self-maintenance goes much deeper than that.
So while I hope this gives you some great ideas for developing your practical mom style and feeling good about yourself, even more important is doing the things that take care of you physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually! You are worth it, Mama!