Recent choices have led me to wonder if I’m walking a fine line lately between sexy and slutty. Not too long ago, my sister texted me a picture of a clothing boutique’s window display showcasing mannequins with minidresses on – alongside two baby strollers. Seeing it, I squealed with delight, and thought it was a fun and long-overdue display of the “new, sexy mom”…until my sis commented on the “slutty dresses” and questioned how and why any designer would create such a contradictory scene for a storefront window.
Whoa. Reality check. As arguably appropriate as her opinion seemed, it was also strange for me to hear this from her (considering that my sister’s past activities involve wearing miniskirts to church).
Are my values all screwy? Am I one of those insecure women, trying to hold on to my youth by occasionally shopping at a sassy boutique to purchase some of the same styles I wore for nights out on the town in my twenties? Do I look like a tramp stomping around in my platformed wedges while pushing my stroller around town? What do those young salesgirls think of me when I ask to try on on flirty dresses with stilettos, while my own baby crawls on the dressing room floor? How did I get here, and why haven’t I grown up? Afterall, I’m a MOM now.
I thought of my various friends and acquaintances, the ones I knew before we all had kids. We all used to dress relatively the same. Now we don’t. I feel as though I missed the memo instructing me to dress a bit more down-to-earth after becoming a mother. The women I know are still attractive, accomplished, fun… but they’ve seemingly gotten past the thrill of playful dress-up, and have noticeably taken the height of their heels down a notch. Why?
I’ll be the first to admit that it is exhausting to stay glam amidst a flurry of diapers and Desitin… but as I mentioned in a recent blog post, it’s also worth it. Of course my hair isn’t always coiffed. Of course I don’t always have a made-up face. Of course I put on sneakers in weak moments. But I always catch myself. The thing that scared me most about becoming a mom was the thought of not looking like, feeling like or acting like myself after my baby was born. I wasn’t particularly conservative before baby, and I don’t foresee myself being particularly conservate after baby (if anything, I feel even more liberated).
Keep in mind: I’m not interested in being confused for someone who solicits men on Hollywood Blvd, but I do enjoy my fitted dresses and skinny jeans. I try to take care of myself, I adore and enjoy fashion, and I feel good when I’m dressed up in a way that works with what I’ve got. I don’t want to forget that feeling. (And you can bet – as a normally VERY small-busted gal – that I wore some of the most plunging necklines of my life during pregnancy just to take advantage of the first-time cleavage!) Sure, my hubby seems to like my silly philosophy, but frankly I’m not doing it for him. I’m doing it for myself. I know I’m not alone in this.
I suppose there’s always the question of whether or not seeing Mommy in a strapless, fitted dress (for date night with Dad) will set a good example for my baby girl, but I’ve always been a believer that one of the most powerful things in this world for a woman to be is sexy on the outside and whip-smart, moral and caring on the inside. Yes, it is possible to be all of these things… and yes, I hope my little girl will be. (NOTE: When I say ‘sexy on the outside,’ I’m not talking about those women blessed with model-worthy looks… I just mean working the hell outta whatever ya got.)
I remember my own mom making the effort to look foxy while simultaneously teaching my sister and I what was right and wrong behavior (and practicing it!)… and we turned out to be upstanding, responsible adults (minus a few questionable-but-harmless trips to Vegas). Celebrity moms I’ve interviewed in the past (Kate Hudson, Brooke Burke, Isla Fisher, Jessica Alba) rock the minis and heels when appropriate… why can’t you and I?
So, I’ve decided that I’m ignoring the pressure to modify my wardrobe just because I’m a Mom. Granted, my hemlines aren’t quite as short as they were in my twenties, but I am not opposed to showing a bit o’ thigh here and there. And that goes for pushing my stroller around in tight black leggings and thigh-high heeled boots. I vote to bring sexy back…. or, would this be slutty? Oh no… maybe I’m just confused. Somebody help, and set me straight!