Britt Maren, jet-setting model and mom of 10 month old Dylan gets real with us on motherhood, the importance of self-care, and how her skincare routine has changed post-baby.
On balancing motherhood and career.
Finding balance between motherhood and career can definitely be a challenge. My husband and I are both lucky - neither of us are in a typical 9 to 5 job so we are both able to take an extended time off to spend with Dylan and each other during these early months, and even now.
I work as a model, although I travel less now since having the baby. Especially this past year has been almost a year off of work which has been nice, although I am kind of ready to get back into things. I work in Los Angeles and New York, and get to travel all over the world, which I've done for several years now. I really enjoy getting to work with all sorts of different creative people (photographers and stylists). It's fun and interesting, although a grinding and competitive job.
He works as a chef and owns his own company and so we both control our own hours to a certain extent. Although for me, if I'm not working then I'm not making money so there is that balance of when to go back. I was getting back into the swing of things when the COVID-19 virus pandemic took over, so that kind of extended things even further.
But you have to prioritize your family and yourself and that can be one of the most important but difficult things to remember. So try and focus on just what's best for your family - that looks different for everyone.
On how having a baby has changed how she feels about her body.
Having a baby has definitely changed the way I feel about my body. I think all women - all moms - are superheros. Having a baby is no freaking joke as anyone who has done it knows, and I think even now my husband was in awe and shock of what I went through with my natural birth and what I powered through post-labor and delivery.
Everyone's body is different at the end of the day, mother or not, so there should be no added pressure about jumping back into shape. I have genes on my side - I'm already tall, lanky and skinny, and so my body did bounce back rather quickly, although I also eat a ton of vegetables, taking walks in our neighborhood. I think that comes back to self-care, and making sure you are the priority.
On her path to motherhood.
I had been on the pill for so, so long. Back in the day if you had any sort of period issues it was a quick problem-solve, but knowing that I was putting all those hormones in my body I wanted to get off the pill sooner rather than later. I got off way later than before we were ready to have kids just because I had heard stories about when people get off the pill: while some have no problem ovulating or getting their period back, others (including friends of mine) have had some issues with it. So I wanted to get ahead of it and it took me quite a while to get my cycle back and to be regularly ovulating.
I overthink and overanalyze about everything and that just really does not help when you're trying to conceive. I went to an acupuncturist and was on Chinese herbs - who knows what combination of things ended up helping my case, but once I stopped and took a step back from all the things that I was trying to do to help and took a breather, I ended up getting my period back soon after that.
I think as hard as it is not to think, stress and worry about these things, especially when you see other people going through it so easily, you really need to take care of yourself. And once you are pregnant, taking care of your body and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is paramount. I wasn't too, too strict (I ate sushi a few times, ate runny egg yokes, drank kombucha) but I think it's about finding that right balance for you.
Self-care is so, so important. I don't think it should be viewed as an indulgence or you being selfish by any means. It's super important for your mental well-being and your physical well-being. Even in times like these during the COVID-19 pandemic where people are stressing and there is so much out of our control, self-care is really important. I've personally got a few self-care rituals:
- A face mask and doing a skincare routine: I'm a skincare junkie and love trying and reviewing new products. For me this is a great way to treat myself.
- Baking: I have a really big sweet tooth - for me it's a comforting, soothing ritual and I maintain a blog that I update with recipes.
- Taking walks: This is a great mindless activity while checking out a podcast to get your mind off things.
- A bath and good glass of wine or a negroni: neither my husband or I are big drinkers but sometimes a good negroni is necessary!
On her skincare routine.
My skincare routine differs from day to day, but overall it's still the same. I'm sure many of you know you that as a mom you don't always have the time to devote to your own self-care that you once had. But I try to remember that self-care is a necessity and not an overindulgence so I try to stick to a good cleanser, a targeted treatment like a serum (Vitamin C is really great and Retinol if you're not pregnant and breastfeeding), a good eye cream, oil, and a good moisturizer.
I think getting glowing skin in 5 minutes is ideal. With 3 simple products - a cleanser, an essence, and a moisturizer. If there are days when that's all that's happening, that's still pretty great - that's a big accomplishment. High quality ingredients, baby safe, mama safe, I think those are top of mind in terms of importance. Especially when they've been helping with the weird hormonal stuff that I've been having, or also the hyperpigmentation and just targeted treatments. I can't stress enough, don't forget that SPF!
On what ingredients are no-no's for her sensitive skin.
I try to be cognizant of all the ingredients
that are in all my products. I am definitely a skincare and product junkie and I love to try new things, but when I was pregnant and even now as a nursing mom, I try to stay away from certain ingredients like sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), fluoride in toothpaste which causes perioral dermititis, parabens, certain scents, and fragrances (even some things labeled as natural sometimes are not). If things are cruelty-free and vegan, even better. But a more simple ingredient list is ideal for my sensitive skin.