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10 celebrity mamas who embraced formula feeding

Because there's more than one way to feed a baby.

celebrity mamas baby formula
Kim Kardashian/Instagram

For mamas who have complicated feelings about breastfeeding, August can be a challenging time. It starts off with #worldbreastfeedingweek, turns into #breastfeedingmonth, and can leave some mamas feeling like they don't have a place in the conversation everyone seems to be having.

It can be difficult to see a flurry of social media posts in your feeds celebrating something that you wanted to do, tried to do, couldn't do or chose not to do because it wasn't what was best for your particular baby in your particular circumstances. Sometimes feeding a baby formula is the best thing for mom and the baby.

That's why it's important (this month and every month) to remember that while breastfeeding is recommended, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also officially recognizes that a baby's mother "is uniquely qualified to decide whether exclusive breastfeeding, mixed feeding or formula feeding is optimal for her and her infant.

There's more than one way to feed a baby, and these celebrity moms prove it.

Tia Mowry

Mowry planned to breastfeed her oldest son, Cree, for longer than she did, but her body had other plans.

"Wasn't able to breastfeed Cree for long because of low milk supply! However, this time around I have plenty," she captioned a recent photo of herself and baby Cairo.

Mowry believes "lots of teas, water, #fenugreek, and a high protein diet" are helping her out this time around (but researchers don't put as much stock in fenugreek's milk boosting power as Mowry does).

Coco Rocha

Coco Rocha intended on exclusively breastfeeding her first child, Violet, but switched to formula after having low milk supply.

In a 2015 Instagram post, she clapped back at her negative followers who had an issue with her decision. She stood up for all the mama's out there, saying, "This is not a democracy, everyone doesn't get a say."

"Not that this is anyone's business - I loved breastfeeding Ioni for the first 5 months of her life and then one day my milk went dry,'' the supermodel captioned the post. "She's been on formula for a few weeks now and seems to be doing just fine".

Kelly Rowland

After the birth of her son, Titan, back in 2014, Kelly Rowland had the intention to nurse her baby through breastfeeding. But in 2017, the songstress revealed to Parents that she switched to formula.

"I had my heart set on breastfeeding, but I wasn't producing enough milk," Rowland said. "I got down on myself, which I think was mentally limiting my supply."

After the loss of her mother three weeks after Titan was born, Rowland had to focus on what nursing method was best for her mental health.

She switched to formula because that was the right choice for her.

Jana Kramer

Jana Kramer felt guilty and received shade from her followers after choosing to formula feed her second son, Jace, back in 2018. She told Us Weekly that truthfully she had trouble breastfeeding from the first day.

"I guess I'm saying this to, also, the moms out there that feel this way too," Kramer explained. "Let's not feel like we have to defend our decision. Let's just be the best moms that we are."

The country singer shut down the shamers and instead made nursing her own private and personal decision. It was especially not a big deal for Kramer considering that she was formula fed as a child.

 Khloe Kardashian

When baby True was born, Khloe breastfed like her sister Kourtney, but eventually followed in Kim's footsteps and switched to formula.

She revealed the change during a Twitter conversation with a follower who asked if she pumped while at work. "I had to stop breastfeeding," Kardashian responded. "It was really hard for me to stop (emotionally) but it wasn't working for my body. Sadly."

She shared some more details that many mamas who've made the switch can relate to. "I fought and fought to try and continue but then when I actually stopped, I didn't realize what a relief it was for me to not stress and worry anymore," Khloe wrote. "Any sec I had of downtime I was stressing to produce more for the next feeding."

Without that stress, Khloe was able to spend her downtime enjoying her time with True.

Elisa Donovan

It's been 8 years since the birth of Elisa Donovan's daughter and the actress opened up about her struggle with nursing on her blog on People.

Not only was it not working, and excruciatingly painful for me beyond anything imaginable ,I also realized that I hated it" said the former Clueless star. "My guilt was so enormous and so complete, that I l felt like I would be catapulted into a special place in hell reserved for bad mommies who don't breastfeed."

Shortly after making the decision to use the formula, Donovan was reassured by her doctor that she and her daughter were going to be fine.

Emily Maynard Johnson

The mom of four spoke before about the difficulty in breastfeeding multiple kids at once, and feeling ashamed to tell others that she used formula.

"I didn't want to tell anybody that I quit,'' said Johnson. "I was trying to hide the formula"

Back in 2017, the star shared with People that after the birth of her fourth child, Gatlin, she stopped breastfeeding after developing a condition.

"I breastfed Ricki, I breastfed Jennings for a while and then Gibson, it's so hard with other kids running around"the former Bachelorette star said.

"And then I got mastitis (a painful infection of the breast tissue) which is like the worst, worse than childbirth I feel like."

 Jessica Alba

The Honest Company founder started off breastfeeding all three of her children before eventually turning to formula to feed each of them. In July, she told Motherly breastfeeding her new son Hayes has been especially challenging due to milk supply issues.

"I felt like I had the most milk with Honor and then it got less with Haven and even less with Hayes. And so that was just tough for me," she explained.

Demanding work schedules were a factor in Alba not being able to breastfeed any of her kids for as long as she would have liked, but she did what worked for her family, and she wants other mamas to recognize that in themselves, too.

In her book, The Honest Life: Living Naturally and True to You, Alba writes: "Whatever you do, trust that you're doing the best that you can for your baby."

👏👏👏

Kim Kardashian

The mom of three has been open about how breastfeeding became difficult as she was transitioning from being a mom of one to a mom of multiple kids. It can be difficult when your attention and time are divided, and in 2016 Kim shared how she stopped breastfeeding her second child, Saint, pretty early as she worried her oldest, North, was feeling left out.

It just goes to show there are a lot of reasons why a mother may stop breastfeeding, and no reason should be judged.

Whitney Port

It's been almost a year since Whitney Port posted an emotional 8-minute YouTube video about the pain she felt while breastfeeding her young son, Sonny.

"I just hit a breaking point," the star explains through tears, "and [I] said, 'I can't do this. It feels as though someone is slicing my nipples with glass.'"

The physical pain she experienced was challenging for Port, and so was the emotional pain, because reality wasn't lining up with Port's expectations. "I tried and tried and suffered from that self-imposed guilt from quitting that so many of us new moms suffer from," Port later wrote on her blog.

"For some reason, I told myself I wanted to make it to 6 months, but 5 months came and I really couldn't do it anymore. I was sacrificing too much of myself and it was only at the expense of me. It was at the encouragement of my husband that I finally decided to stop torturing myself and find an alternative route that would nourish Sonny just as beautifully," wrote Port.

Mamas, though it may feel like everybody around you is exclusively breastfeeding, remember that is not always reality, as these celebrity mothers show.

Whether you exclusively breastfeed, exclusively pump, supplement with formula or feed only formula, you are feeding your baby in the best way you can. That's what matters.

[A version of this post was originally published August 9, 2018. It has been updated.]

These new arrivals from the Motherly Shop are *so* good you need them all

Noodle and Boo, Mushie and Plan Toys—everything you need, mama.

Motherhood is hard work—finding great products and brands to make the journey easier doesn't have to be. Each week, we stock the Motherly Shop with brilliant new products we know you'll need and love from brands and makers that really care.

So, what's new this week?

Noodle and Boo: Holistic baby skin care

Through working with chemists who specialize in natural and holistic skin care, Noodle and Boo has developed exclusive formulas that nourish, replenish and protect especially delicate, eczema-prone and sensitive skin—including laundry detergent. Their signature, obsession-worthy scent—which is subtly sweet, pure and fresh—is the closest thing to bottling up "baby smell" we've ever found.

Mushie: Kids' dinnerware that actually looks great

We're totally crushing on Mushie's minimalist dinnerware for kids. Their innovative baby and toddler products leverage Swedish design to marry both form and function while putting safety front and center. Everything is created in soft, muted colors from BPA-free materials.

Plan Toys: Open-ended toys that last

Corralling and cleaning up the toys becomes less stressful when you bring home fewer, better, more beautiful ones. Plan Toys checks all the boxes. Made from re-purposed rubber wood, they're better for the planet as well.

Not sure where to start? Here's what we're adding to our cart:

Mushie silicone baby bib

Mushie silicone baby bib

There's no going back to cloth bibs after falling in love with this Swedish design. The pocket catches whatever misses their mouths and the BPA-free silicone is waterproof and easy to wipe down between uses.

$13

Mushie kids' square dinnerware plate set

Mushie kids' square dinnerware plate set

We're totally crushing on the soft muted colors that flow with our table aesthetics and the thoughtful high-sided design that helps babies and toddler who are learning to feed themselves.

$15

Noodle and Boo nursery essentials kit

Noodle and Boo nursery essentials kit

Stocked with everything a new mama needs to care for her little one's delicate skin, Noodle and Boo's nursery essentials gift set is the perfect way to create a holistic and natural skin care routine from day one.

$45

Plan Toys doctor set 

Plan Toys doctor set

Ideal for quiet time and imaginative role play, we love the gorgeous planet-friendly doctor kit from Plan Toys. The rubber wood stethoscope, blood pressure cuff, thermometer, syringe and reflex hammer pack up neat and tidy into the red cotton case should they need to dash off on a rescue mission.

$30

Noodle and Boo instant hand sanitizer

Noodle and Boo instant hand sanitizer

Since we're buying and using hand sanitizer by the truckload these days, we're thrilled Noodle and Boo has made one we can feel good about using on little ones who cram their hands in their mouths 24/7. Not only does it kill 99.9% of germs, but it also leaves hands moisturized as well.

$10

Plan Toys natural wooden blocks set

Plan Toys natural wooden blocks set

A toy box isn't complete without a set of blocks—and this set is one of our new favorites. The sustainable, re-purposed wood is eco-friendly, comes at a relatively affordable price point and are certain to last well beyond multiple kids, hand-me-downs and even generations.

$30

Noodle and Boo family fun pack cleansing set

Noodle and Boo family fun pack cleansing set

Because their products were developed for delicate and eczema-prone skin, Noodle and Boo's full line of skin care has become a favorite among those with sensitive skin of all ages. This set is the perfect way to pamper the entire family.

$48

Mushie kids' round dinnerware bowl set

Mushie kids' round dinnerware bowl set

No need to sacrifice safety or design with the sustainable dinnerware from Mushie. Their minimalist, functional dishes are perfect for serving up meals and snacks to your tablemates who might hurl it to the floor at any point. They're made in Denmark from BPA-free polypropylene plastic mamas can feel good about and dishwasher and microwave-safe as well.

$14

Plan Toys geo stacking blocks

Plan Toys geo stacking blocks

The best engaging, open-ended toys are the ones that are left out and available, inviting little (and big!) ones to play. These beautiful gem-like blocks make for addicting coffee table play for the entire family.

$30

Plan Toys wooden green dollhouse

Plan Toys wooden green dollhouse

Energy-efficient design isn't just for grown-up real estate. This green dollhouse includes a wind turbine, a solar cell panel, electric inverter, recycling bins, a rain barrel, a biofacade and a blind that can adjust the amount of sunlight and air circulation along with minimalist furniture we'd totally love to have in our own houses.

$250

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

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Why do all of my good parenting or baby-focused inventions come after they've already been invented by someone else? Sigh.

Like the Puj hug hooded baby towel, aka the handiest, softest cotton towel ever created.

Safely removing a wet, slippery baby from the bath can be totally nerve-wracking, and trying to hold onto a towel at the same time without soaking it in the process seems to require an extra arm altogether. It's no wonder so much water ends up on the floor, the countertops, or you(!) after bathing your little one. Their splashing and kicking in the water is beyond adorable, of course, but the clean up after? Not as much.

It sounds simple: Wash your child, sing them a song or two, let them play with some toys, then take them out, place a towel around them, and dry them off. Should be easy, peasy, lemon squeezy, right?

But it hasn't been. It's been more—as one of my favorite memes says—difficult, difficult, lemon difficult. Because until this towel hit the bathtime scene, there was no easy-peasy way to pick up your squirming wet baby without drenching yourself and/or everything around you.

Plus, there is nothing cuter than a baby in a plush hooded towel, right? Well, except when it's paired with a dry, mess-free floor, maybe.

Check out our favorites to make bathtime so much easier:

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20 baby names to set your child up for success

What do Jacqueline, Morgan, Madison and Parker all have in common?

They say picking a baby name is an art, not a science. But when it comes to figuring out which baby names have been linked to successful futures, there has actually been some scientific work on the subject.

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