There's the magazine cover photo of the new celebrity mom glowing as she looks down at the beautiful, sleeping baby in her arms—and then there's real life.
In real life, postpartum mothers are just as likely to be wearing diapers as their babies are, and bumps need months to deflate.
That's why we're so grateful for the way celebrities are ditching damaging narratives about postpartum perfection and embracing the messy authenticity of new motherhood. Thanks to these modern mamas, the rest of us are seeing our own experiences reflected in pop culture, and that lets us know we're not alone.
Here's to all the celebrity mamas keeping it real in mesh panties, hospital gowns + girdles (because we're doing the same).
Amy Schumer was straight up about pregnancy during her entire pregnancy. She let us know when, where and how much she was puking and didn't sugar coat a thing. And she didn't let us down when sharing her postpartum experience either.
"Milf alert 1'clock," she captioned a photo that is the perfect snapshot of postpartum recovery. Someone else is holding her beautiful newborn while Amy is in the hospital bathroom, sitting on the toilet while hooked up to an IV pole. You cannot get more real than that.
Baby gate in the background, check. Random baby socks on the couch, check. Ali Wong is serving some authentic #momlife in this photo she took while teaching her friend how to pump hands free. Every mom needs a friend like Wong because pumping comes with a learning curve (but it's nice when it can come with some laughter, too).
She posted a picture of herself in jogging gear and captioned it "Just stretching it out in my rubber corset. The joy of postpartum."
Jess is joking (kind of) but there's some serious science behind her workout underwear. Research suggests that postpartum wraps (what Jess calls a "rubber corset") can help moms get back on their feet and walk farther after a C-section.
Chrissy Teigen's mesh underwear photo is iconic. After Miles was born in May 2018 she let the world know that even the queen of Twitter wears disposable panties after having a baby.
Is there anything more real than a mama wearing mesh underwear while walking around topless because she's constantly breastfeeding a newborn?
Bachelor alum Bekah Martinez also showed love for mesh postpartum panties on Instagram after the birth of her daughter in February 2019. "I've never felt so much respect and love for my body, diaper and all", she captioned a selfie shared to her Stories.
We are used to seeing Gabrille Union looking glam on red carpets but when little Kaavia James came into the world Union learned what so many new moms do: For some of us, showers are the first thing to go. It's okay to be "greazzzy" when you're busy bonding with your little one.
Hilary Duff kept it real about her home birth and also about her decision to stop breastfeeding.
"I am a working mom of two. My goal was to get my little girl to six months and then decide if I (and her of course) wanted to keep going. Let me tell you. Pumping at work sucks," Duff wrote on Instagram.
Breastfeeding and pumping are not easy and Duff was tired of taking fenugreek and "smell[ing] like maple syrup and rubber gloves." So it was time for her to do what was right for her, and that's the kind of real-life decision moms have to make every day.
Hilaria Baldwin had documented her postpartum experience through bump selfies, proving that even when you are a yoga pro, postpartum fitness is a journey and bumps don't deflate overnight.
Hunter McGrady gave birth less than two weeks ago (and generously shared her experience with the Foley Bulb with us all, because solidarity is important). In a new Instagram post, she opens up about how she's dealing with all the changes to her "new" body.
"I'm just a girl, standing in front of a mirror, 12 days postpartum, with breast milk stains, and depends diapers, pure exhaustion, asking herself to learn to love this new body," she writes in the caption. "To give herself grace, to feel the gummy-ness of her new tummy, and the loose skin and remembering that this body not only created life, but housed it for 9 months, went 45 hours into labor, and is now feeding it daily all with one vessel. I feel so grateful for this body today. Leaky breasts, bloody diapers (on my end) new stretch marks, gummy tummy and all."
Gummy Tummy Army, rise up! We've got you, Hunter.
Cheers to keeping it real, mamas!