Owning a women’s clothing boutique, I’ve heard it all when it comes to women commenting on their bodies. But the one that gets to me most? When ladies emerge from the fitting room, slightly slumped over, make some type of twisted face and ask, ” Does this make me look like a MOM?” Wait. Like a who? Like me? Like you? Say what now?
You, me, your neighbors, your doctor, Beyoncé . . . all moms. All different. All amazing. So why, when it comes to fashion, are we using “look like a mom” as a put-down?
Maybe we’re picturing the 90’s mom with feathered hair and blue eyeshadow? Maybe we’re referring to the classic 2000-whatever Mom Prototype with her leggings, a dirty top knot, and her Uggs? Maybe we’re even thinking of our own moms and their fashion no-no’s.
It makes me think the same thing each time, what’s a Mom Look and why are so many fitting room renegades using this exact phrase in a real bummer of a way? I know that women, in general, tend to be critical of our appearance (no newsflash here), and even more so of those post-baby curves that some of us struggle to get used to. But of all the common customer musings, this one always strikes a chord with me and makes those little baby hairs I lost from pregnancy (you too?) stand up.
I know moms who are fashionable, fit in workouts so they can still rock their super skinny jeans, and take the extra minutes in a day getting their look together. I also know moms who prefer to squeeze in another cup of coffee instead of perusing their closet and can’t remember the last time they wore anything besides a sneaker. I fall somewhere in between these two myself, I get it. That balance of dressed up and dressed period, that’s real life.
Maybe we’re afraid that by not looking like our pre-mom self, we now look like an old and frumpy version of yourself. That’s fake news! There are so many choices in between what you wore dancing in college and your time-of-the-month sweatpants. Being a mom has changed my style and I’m sure it’s hit yours, too. No longer just guided by my desire to be fashionable, I now pair that idea with another favorite F word: function (function, what were YOU thinking). Does it make me feel cute and can I chase little people? Yep, then it’s a win. I haven’t given up on style, but I need to wear clothing that fits my new life and I’m still having fun with it. Moms all parent differently, speak differently and for sure dress differently. The expression “looking like a mom” just doesn’t accurately express us.
So, let’s cut that outdated stereotype of looking like a mom right out of our mind. It’s an unfair and untrue generalization. “Looking like a mom” should mean being confident, a warrior, and a bad mama jama provider of life and goldfish crackers. It doesn’t mean you’re unfashionable, or outdated or (gasp) . . . old! Let’s stop perpetuating this annoying phrase that when broken down translates to “look like a bum”. We all look like moms, we ARE moms, and that’s not a bad thing. We’re loving, funny, successful, sexy hot mamas and if I’m in that category I’m okay with that! Let’s be kind to ourselves, our sisters and friends and think of “looking like a mom” as the highest compliment of all.
Have you used the phrase, “I look like a mom before”? What does it mean to you? What’s your favorite classic “Mom Look”?