Modern Day Mom Jeans

The sartorial mom missteps that will one day embarrass our children.

Modern Day Mom Jeans
Ask any young woman out there her number one fear about being a mother, and we’re pretty sure she’ll respond: Mom Jeans. Oh sure, there are worries of responsibilities and commitments and major life changes; but let’s just admit that, at a youthful time in our lives, we were all very concerned that becoming a mother meant donning those high-waisted, stonewashed Levis that make your butt look like a smashed paper heart. I know you’ve seen the SNL sketch. Now that you’re a mom, you think you’re awesome because you don’t wear mom jeans. You wear regular jeans, among other cool-mom things. But even if you managed to bypass that one sartorial misstep, I’m pretty sure your kids will look back at you and roll their eyes at the silly little things that make you an embarrassing parent. And yes, I’m right there with you.
  1. Joke’s on you—mom jeans are cool again. You’re so proud of yourself for squeezing into those ankle skinnies three-months postpartum. But I’m sorry to report that all the fashionable hipsters of Williamsburg are clad in exactly what you call “mom jeans.” Which begs the question: are skinny jeans the new mom jeans?
  1. Jogger pants are just pajamas in the wild. Don’t get me wrong. I applaud whoever decided that cropped, cuffed sweatpants can officially pass as daily wear. (And by daily wear, I mean daily public wear, because you better believe if I’m at home, I’m only wearing sweatpants. Embarrassing, ugly sweatpants. Just ask my husband.) But when your 16-year-old daughter sees a photo of you sporting joggers, it won’t matter what you insist-- she’s just going to want to know why you couldn’t bother to get dressed in the morning.
  1. Even your chic black Nikes are still sneakers. When I was a teenager, my parents wore tennis shoes everywhere. I made a conscious effort to find comfortable shoes that were specifically not trainers, thinking that it was ridiculous to lace-up for anything other than a sporting event (in which I was participating). While I see the sneaker craze as another genius move in the world of fashion, I’m convinced that it was instigated by a mother. God bless my feet during daily errands and chasing toddlers on the playground, they being dressed in comfortable bits of rubber and leather meant for quick movements. But as the trend calendar goes, I’m betting my new commitment to tennis shoes will be uncool in a few years—just in time for my Nikes to embarrass my kids.
  1. “Nerd chic” might not be a thing. I have several pairs of glasses: big, thick frames in bright colors and tortoise shells patterns. What they have in common is that they all take up half my face. I probaby picked this up from the pre-mom version of Zooey Deschanel)--me and all the other moms who realized glasses are the perfect mom-wear. Not only do I not have to bother with contacts in the morning, but the extra large frames seem to magically cover my under eyes, and the light reflecting off the lenses absolutely distracts from the bluish bags I’ve been sporting since my first baby arrived in 2011. When I was in high school, it wasn’t at all cool to wear glasses. If you had to, you were wise to reach for the frames that were barely there. I’m sure in the future my daughters will inform me that “nerd chic” was a mom farse, and that my big glasses are wholly nerd and not at all chic.
  1. They’ll want to know why you didn’t free the nipple. Do you have a pretty nursing cover? Did you search and search to find the one that wasn’t too showy and that wouldn’t clash with any outfit you might choose? Does it have a subtle, elegant pattern to it in a perfectly neutral color? But enough style to it that it’s “you”? Did you spring for the one with the bendy wire up top to be sure to gaze at nursing baby? Well, when today’s hashtags for causes become actual reality, that pretty nursing cover of yours is going to be a moot point. Your daughters will be astounded that you didn’t just “free the nipple” and possibly even question your feminism.
  1. And why did you have to post it all on Instagram, Mom? You know how it’s so embarrassing to have your own mother on Facebook right now, posting her favorite recipes and political memes? I’m betting that when our babies are teenagers, they’ll be way too cool for Instagram. Sure, she’ll be mortified you’re even considering making her pose for this square shot but worse? The fact that YOU pose for them. In your mom clothes. “Don’t even TRY for the vacation selfie, Mom,” she’ll say. And what’s worse? All the embarrassing things mentioned above? They’ll be at your children’s fingertips via this overused little app. They won’t have to dig out old photo albums or grandma’s shoebox of pictures for material. Oh no. They’ll just whip out their phones and rub all of your “mom jeans” moments right in your face.
Of course, these are all one mom’s opinionated predictions. Maybe we’re raising such self-actualized children, they’ve no need to judge us or be embarrassed of their parents. And even if my predictions run true, I figure it pays to live in the present. Obviously they look ridiculous now, but I was super-fly in my butterfly clips and acrylic nails for senior prom, amirite? So let’s go on living our mom lives, comfortable in our joggers and trainers and nerd glasses, blissfully oblivious of future implications. If there’s anything this list proves, it’s that trends and fashions cycle in and out and back around again. So keep a tally of what ends up coming back to haunt you. Odds are, you can hold it over your kids’ heads eventually too. Image source.

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