As soon as I saw this image pop up on Fifi & Jules‘ page the other day I knew it would spark some discussion.
A little background for those of you not in the know. Fifi & Jules are the dynamic duo of radio announcers on the Today network. FiFi, on air, late last year announced she was pregnant. She was incredibly excited and overjoyed, as at 36 it was something she was beginning to think may not happen to her. Fast forward a few months and FiFi gave birth to her little missy, Trixie Bell earlier this month, and then published this as the first public image.
For many who know Fifi’s familiar face (and for those of you who don’t just click here) she is almost unrecognisable, but I love this image. More that that I love the fact that a woman with such a public profile has published such a natural image of herself. I love the fact she doesn’t have a scrap of makeup on, her hair isn’t done, and yet there is a glow, warmth and beauty in her face that is both incredible and authentic. I’m sure we can all visualise a number of other female-celebrities-and-their-newborn-babies first photos that are the exact opposite of this one; photos of new mummas preened, and perfect and GHDd looking beyond beautiful.
Fifi’s image was received with a wave of comments and discussions – many rather nasty, but for the most part the sisterhood congratulated her not only on her new baby, but her courage to keep it - and herself, real.
Mamamia (Mia Freedman’s blog – one of my fav’s) went on to publish an article about this very image and in addition to that upload images of real women post-birth. To read the full article click here, and to see a selection of my own post-birth images featured in my very first mummahood on mondays blog post click here.
I blogged earlier in the year (here) that I wanted to do a bit more daring with my beauty and fashion choices whilst still in my 30s and this was the result – my new signature winged eyeliner.
I have a rather big style crush on Lauren Conrad, and whilst she’s a decade younger than me I do love her effortless style – and the winged liner was inspired by her.
So, how do I do it?
3 key points for a basic wing (there are a number of variations and versions):
1. Use a good liquid or gel eyeliner (Inglot, MAC and Motives all do great versions) – the important thing is that you use a good brush. Depending on the thickness and definition required it either needs to be a fine tip, or a contour angled one.
2. Don’t rush it. Initially you will need to allow a good 10 minutes to do it properly, once you’ve perfected it you will only need about 3-5 minutes. A steady hand is also a must.
3. One thing that many women don’t get quite right is the angle of the wing. In general many do the wing too straight rather than up. The idea of the look (as with most eye makeup) is to lift your eyes up – in turn making you look more youthful (it’s called a facelift remember not a faceout). The best way to know where the angle should be is to draw an imaginary line from the outer part of your nose to the corner of your eye and then keep extending in that direction. In fact Rae Morris teaches the technique by using sticky tape to create a template for your angle.
Have fun with it – if you have any major stuff ups just use a good eye makeup remover and a cotton tip and then have another go!
I respect what Dove has done over the past few years with their Campaign for Real Beauty. The campaign was launched in 2004 and “has employed various communications vehicles to challenge beauty stereotypes and invite women to join a discussion about beauty” (source and further information here).
The images of curvy women dressed in white underwear have become iconic and synonymous, not only with the Dove brand, but the shifting perceptions of beauty in first world countries.
And whilst today is technically ’words on wednesday’ I’m instead asking you to take a few moments to not just read, but watch Dove’s latest beauty instalment, “Real Beauty Sketches“.
I found myself moved to tears when I saw it (and for those of you who know me well know that is rather unusual state of affairs), and the sentiment and words of the campaign, “You are more beautiful than you think” are both confronting and profound in equal measure.
I just want to take a moment to honour my husband. The Friday before last my sister got married down in Yallingup and for the better part of that week I was in bridesmaid mode and away from our home.
My hubby continued to work full time, as well as run our household, deal with usual school shenanigans and then - just as a final flourish – he drove down south with our 3 little ones to attend the ceremony.
Now, I won’t bore you with details but let’s just say the 4 hour car trip was one of those trips and getting to the ceremony with all 3 children appropriately preened and presentable turned into an event of epic proportions involving tantrums, inappropriately-placed toilet accidents and geographical challenges.
I took one look at my husband’s face once I had made my way up the aisle and saw the look in his eyes and felt like I needed to apologise and hug him with equal intensity.
Thank you, husband. Thank you for making the supreme effort to bring our children to the ceremony so they could witness their aunty get married and see their mummy as a lilac princess (not to mention thank you nan for all your support and help also; we certainly couldn’t have done it without you).
I only need to look at this image, as candidly captured moments after the ceremony by the amazing lasses from Merge Photography, to know it was absolutely worth it.
I’ve spent a long time trying to figuring out what to eat for breakfast.
Yes, that probably sounds mildly pathetic, but mornings in our household are full – and my focus is often on feeding our tribe and it’s difficult for me to know what to eat that is both quick and nutritious.
I readily admit to eating a muesli bar en route to the school drop off to simply have something in my stomach, and I also confess to eating hot cross buns a lot from as soon as they hit the shops (and that’s like December 26th onwards, right?). I may or may not have consumed a number of vanilla slices for breakfast during our south west holiday stays, too.
When and where I can though I have a new firm favourite that is reasonably nutritious and certainly delicious.
Raspberries (I buy the frozen ones, assemble the dish with the frozen ones and then set aside whilst they thaw)
And muesli (Carnham’s fruit free is also my favourite – I like lots of crunch and a home-made bircher is also divine).
The 2 days a week when my hubby is generous enough to do the school run I make this and then try and sit and leisurely enjoy it. Master 3 generally joins me with his own spoon (and naffles most of the berries and slobbers everywhere), but even still it’s one of those still and lovely moments.
Well, some of you may have noticed that I was MIA last week and that 3 blog posts weren’t published.
Sorry about that. Duty called in the bridesmaid and makeup artist sense at my youngest sister’s wedding down south – where I spent a good half last of last week preparing for the wedding and then the time since it recovering (me oh my when did I become an old lady?)
But here I am back in the bladdle (blog saddle), and what better way to commemorate this moment then with some words from the good doctor himself.
I long ago gave up the idea of balance. My life isn’t balanced in the sense of everything being neat and symmetrical and even in any given moment. I’m way more of a juggler than a trapeze artist. Giving up this idea of balance was difficult for a perfectionist, but it was essential for me to survive in this season of life.
So, I’m a juggler – I have multiple balls in the air at any given time. I drop them - lots – and some balls roll under couches and fridges never to be seen again, but for the most part most balls stay up there.
That is until I catch them all (often clumsily) place them into a box and then crawl into a spa for about a week (one should not under any circumstance attempt to juggle in a spa).
And so here’s a few lessons from said juggler:
1. Whilst your hands may appear to be moving frantically your head and heart need a degree of peace and stillness for the process to work
2. Good juggling involves looking upwards constantly
3. Adding or subtracting a ball requires establishing a new rhythm
4. Sometimes the balls are soft and round and simple, and at other times they are large cumbersome burning sticks (or a combination of both)
5. Wearing some sort of sparkly circus outfit (or the like) whilst juggling may prove a welcome distraction for self and spectators.
Now I know the past couple of weeks I have blogged about some of my favourite Motives products (foundation here and their brow kit here), and to round out the Motives triple whammy here is yet another another thing I’m loving about the Motives brand: streamlined online ordering simplicity (woah!)
The Motives brand is gaining traction in Australia for all the reasons I’ve mentioned in earlier posts. Not only are they delivering great products of a high quality, but they continue to have an ingredient awareness. Add to that 2 weeks ago they also made some permanent price reductions on signature products simply to remain competitive.
This week Australian consultants were rewarded with their very own mini Motives websites making the ordering process far more streamlined. The websites feature the entire cosmetic and skincare range available in Australia, and the new site is a breeze to navigate.
For those of you that are existing customers you can use your current login, for those of you that have considered ordering online but haven’t yet got around to it, now may be the time to jump on board the Milla Motives train.
The next 4 weeks really are 4 of the most full I can ever remember and I am quite simply doing my best to put one foot in front of the other and keep on juggling.
Now don’t get me wrong there are lots of lovely things happening in this season ( my sister’s wedding and a trip to Sydney, for example), but with so much loveliness it can all feel a little like drowning in chocolate (good momentarily, but then it starts to get really sticky and you become desperate for some time alone in the shower).
So, I will attempt to take one day at a time, and a few simple principles will keep me going: