06 March 2008

Nicole not a fan of her improved bust

Any woman that has been pregnant is familiar with 'pregnancy boobs'; the much enhanced cleavage that is so often a blessing for a man in a pregnant woman's life but not always so welcome for the woman who feels like her chest is growing almost as fast as her baby bump.

Nicole Richie and Christina Aguilera have received quite a bit of attention for their post-baby breasts. In fact, as soon as Christina and Nicole made their post-baby debuts, the media interest centred right around their new bust friends.

Nicole has opened up about her post-baby breasts:

"He (Joel) likes it! It doesn't really fit with my wardrobe, it's not who I am. I am not someone who is used to wearing a bra or having to wear a bra, I really don't like it.
"I like wearing vintage hippy see-through shirts that aren't slutty on me because there is nothing to look at. Now I have boobs so I can't really wear it because it sends out a different message."

An honest and interesting comment. For someone like Nicole who has had much smaller breasts pre-pregnancy it is easy to see why having a cultural gaze focused on her much larger breasts as a mother is uncomfortable. This is also fascinating because for most women that I've spoken to in my study, breasts become extremely un-erotic post-birth, meaning that some women feel like their breasts feel like tools to feed a baby and not necessarily the sexual objects they were pre-pregnancy. Breasts are for the baby and not for the partner. However, to the public spectator, calling on sexualised images of women in pop culture, large breasts = sexy. Clearly a sort of bodily contradiction for post-baby mums who have fantastic cleavage but aren't feeling like having the world stare at their boobs.

Nicole's body does clearly look different but not being able to wear her normal clothes is less an issue of fashion and more a realisation that her identity has changed. She is a mother and her body has changed as well to support a baby.

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The Baby Bump Project by Meredith Nash is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.