Celebrity culture is having a major impact on real Mums – and it’s not positive. Constant tabloid coverage of celebrity mothers, along with their drastic, super speedy post pregnancy weight loss on the covers of magazines, is leaving real Mums with unrealistic perceptions of how their bodies should be after a baby.
Recognising that no online community existed to specifically cater for post birth bodies, sisters Nikki and Emma set up babyshape.co.uk, the UKs first online community dedicated to mums struggling with baby weight issues. With one of BabyShape’s founders working in the retail fashion industry, and the other for a leading UK health and fitness club, as well as being Mums, they had seen the effect having a baby can have on normal every day women and the way they felt about their bodies.
Enormous pressure to regain pre baby figures, in a short amount of time, can lead to some women feeling like a failure, if weight refuses to come off at the same pace as their celebrity peers. This can have an impact on post pregnancy health, where low body image after a baby can be one of the triggers for post natal depression.
Many mums even consider drastic cosmetic surgery procedures or the use of slimming pills, while others adopt extreme celebrity diet methods, coupled with strict and exhausting exercise regimes. For regular mums, who don’t have a full time nanny, chef and personal trainer, it is impossible to keep up and take care of their brand new baby at the same time.
For mums new and old, babyshape.co.uk is for anyone with weight to lose, saggy boobs or stretch marks. Completely free, it specifically promotes healthy body images and celebrity mums who have realistic baby weight journeys. It provides social networking, forums and chat features for instant support for all mums struggling with a low body image or having difficulty losing their baby weight and allows them to meet other mums in the same position.
Post birth, mums can find helpful and independent advice on exercise and diets including reviews on products, top tips that have worked for others, as well as real member success stories. BabyShape chronicles a real mum’s struggle with a new baby and her battle with the baby bulge in its heart-warming diary – ‘Emma’s Baby Blog’
Commenting on their decision to set up BabyShape, Nikki Rees said:
‘My sister and I live miles apart, one night after the birth of her daughter, Emma called me in tears as her baby hadn’t slept and she had put on weight even though she had been trying to diet. She felt like she was going to be ‘fat forever’ and that there was no point trying. I really needed to pop over to her house and give her a cuddle, but being over 200 miles away it wasn’t possible and I got off the phone feeling sad that we couldn’t be together when she really needed someone.
I decided to look for somewhere online that might be able to support her, or where she might find people going through the same thing, a place that wouldn’t judge her for her body issues, somewhere she wouldn’t feel like she was the only woman who didn’t immediately get back into size 8 jeans minutes after giving birth. I felt worried about her, as low body image can be one of the triggers for postnatal depression, but I couldn’t find anywhere online that dealt with this specifically.
So that’s how BabyShape happened… We decided to make a place that Emma and I could be together, and together we designed it as place to support all of us mums who struggle with a low postnatal body image. A way that we can tell you, when you are at your low point, that you are NOT alone and you are NOT the only one. Come on in, have a chat, have a laugh, have a cry, with the women who understand you the most.’
For more information visit www.babyshape.co.uk