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Barnes, who had her first child in early 2020, said that she felt prepared for her pregnancy. She went to all of her doctor’s appointments and did her research. She expected her delivery to be challenging and it was. But there was one part of the pregnancy experience that she felt left in the dark about.
“I feel like the one thing no one really prepares you for was postpartum,” Barnes said. “It’s such an emotional rollercoaster, your hormones are raging. I was a full-time working mom before this, how am I ever going to work again?”
She felt that everything had “completely changed” and needed a path forward.
“But I found that giving myself a little bit of attention and self-love,” she said.
Barnes’ postpartum self-care included wearing clothes that made her feel good about herself. Being able to look how she wanted with family time, parenting responsibilities and comfort in mind was a key part of her fashion ethos.
“You want to feel secure, you want to feel comfortable, you want to be able to easily breastfeed, easily pump and let’s be real, we’re pretty much in our pajamas all day long,” she explained.
One of Barnes’ go-to looks was a button-up pajama set. It’s a piece available through her fashion line The Bright Side.
Sunset Beachwood Leisure Pants, $78.20 with code ITKP15
“The button-up front allows for easy breastfeeding, easy pumping and I made it in a linen, heavyweight material so nothing is see-through. You can throw it in the washer,” Barnes said.
Another favorite of hers was a pair of high-waisted jeans from Express.
High Waisted Light Wash Knit Skinny Jeans, $60 (Orig. $80)
“They have amazing stretch in them. They kind of leave you feeling tucked in,” she said. “You can layer it over a belly band and feel kind of secure and it really gives your stomach the support you need.”
The mom recommended a nap dress which she described as a “grownup nightgown.”
I’m The One Maxi Dress, $168
“It’s also something you can wear during the day,” Barnes said. “This one, in particular, is from Free People. It has the ruching in the front, so you don’t have to wear a bra, you can wear a bra, it’s super flexible. It allows easy access for breastfeeding and pumping.”
The Bright Side’s long robe also called to her during her postpartum recovery.
Sand Venice Robe, $227.80 with code ITKP15
“Being able to just get super cozy,” she said. “It’s so important to be comfortable when you’re breastfeeding and with you’re baby. But you can snuggle up in this and also wear it out with jeans and a tank top and kind of still feel comfy yet put together at the same time.”
Barnes left new moms with one important piece of advice.
“Make sure and ask for help,” she said. “Rely on your friends. Rely on your family. Let them do all the nitty-gritty laundry cleanup stuff. Make sure to focus on yourself and the baby.”
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