Look Pretty in Pictures...Postpartum

umbrella-2Dilemma: You want to take "mom & baby" photos a day or two after the birth, but you still look 3 months pregnant and your face shows that you just went through the marathon of birth (the tired eyes, the washed-out skin, etc.).

What's a girl to do?

Here are a few tips:

  • Wear solid colors. Dark colors are preferable. Try wine or plum or forest green. Or you can always stick with the tried-and-true appeal of black.
  • Get up-close-and-personal. But I don't have to tell you that.  Most brand new moms aren't fans of full-length photos for a little while.
  • Invoke the classic appeal of the 1950's. Try converting your photos to black-and-white or to a vintage hue in PhotoShop or your favorite photo editing software program.
  • Do something interesting. Lay on the grass. Put the baby over your shoulder. Stand in front of a mural. Hold an umbrella.
  • Utilize natural lighting. Flash is not very forgiving so go outside for the photo shoot, preferably either in the early morning or an hour before sunset. At the very least, open the windows and let the light shine in.
  • Wear make-up. Even if you're not the make-up wearing type. A little bit of blush/bronzer, concealer, and lipstick will do wonders. Need recommendations? Try...

make up for ever lift concealerMake Up Forever Lift Concealer ($22) - Brighten up tired eyes and eliminate under-eye circles in seconds with this little power product. It's been a part of my beauty routine ever since it arrived in the mail. The price tag seems a bit steep at $22...until you realize that you only need the tiniest drop each time you apply it. This tube is going to last me forever!

covergirl outlast lipstainCoverGirl Outlast Lipstain ($7-8) - I'm a huge fan of long-lasting lipsticks because I can wear them all day without getting smudges on cups and toddler cheeks and my husband's lips. In fact, I never wear "regular" lipstick anymore. CoverGirl's newest product paints on like a crayon and smells berry delicious. I personally think CoverGirl's Outlast Lipsticks "stay put" longer and are better at keeping my lips moist, but the new lipstain is only 1 step (there's no top coat) so that's an advantage for a busy mom with only one free hand available.

No Sun Intended Bronzing Powder by ArbonneArbonne No Sun Intended Bronzing Powder ($28) - I reviewed this bronzer almost a year ago and it's still just as good as ever (Now that I said that, I can't help but wonder: Do bronzers have an expiration date?...). The warm, glow-y color is perfect for summer.

YOUR TURN: What are your best tips for getting good photos...of yourself? (It sounds weird, I know...)

WIN IT! One winner will receive FOUR shades of Cover Girl Outlast Lipstain lipsticks. To enter, leave any topic-related comment on this post prior to Wednesday, April 15 at midnight (Don’t forget to follow the rules…all generic comments like “Enter me!,” “Love it,” and “Cool stuff!” will be disqualified.).

*UPDATE* The winner is #161 Auriette. Congratulations!

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200 comments on “Look Pretty in Pictures...Postpartum”

  1. I swear, I need something that stays on my lips longer than half an hour. I must snack on my lip stick or something. It leaves darn quick.

  2. You look cute, and very fresh-faced. I'd love to win some lip stains. I'm headed for the postpartum look soon.

  3. I wish I'd had this advice a long time ago. Unfortunately, I left the hospital wearing a red, orange, and pink paisely dress. Ugghhhh...oh well, maybe some Covergirl Outlast Lip Stain will cheer me up!

    themeimlookingfor at yahoo dot com

  4. love nice lipstick shades and think lipstick really brightens up my face, would love to try these new CG products

  5. I've been looking at these in the store, and wanting to try them. I like color on my lips, without them being thick with lipstick, so I bet I would love them!

  6. I have yet to try the Cover Girl Outlast Lipstain lipsticks but I would love to try them. I currently use Max Factor Lipfinity which is also a long wearing lipstick, but it is a two step application, would love to have the same longevity with a one step product. Thanks for a great giveaway.

  7. I always seem to be behind the camera.I am trying to get moe comfotable in front of it.This lipstick is one I have been wanting to try,but with 4 kids I can't justify spending the money to buy it for myself.Thanks!

  8. I've wanted to try these but haven't been to the drugstore since having my baby so winning this would be great! Plus they have such great shades.

  9. Great giveaway. To get goos pictures the lighting has to be good. Get the subject to relax and capture surprises.

  10. I love Covergirl Outlast, I ONLY use 542 Brazen Raisen. I would love the opportunity to try the lipstain.


  11. I would love to try the new shades of stain, I've let my self go as of late and need to think spring and spring shades.

  12. I've always avoided wearing lipstick for fear it would smear and I'd end up looking like a clown. I think I'm ready to try some of the new products coming out.

  13. That's cool that it is only one step. I did not like the ones where you had to apply a separate topcoat...too much of a pain. These look much better. Thank you :)

  14. I would love to try this.
    You have a lovely family. I just went and looked at your photos. Your little girl is so cute and the baby is really precious. We are getting ready for a new baby boy next month. Thanks for a chance to win.

  15. My tip would probably be to not ever take a picture straight on without a prop or something. It always looks awkward! The lipstains are pretty awesome and would be great for someone like me who doesn't wear lipstick very much.

  16. You look great in the pic. :) The lipstains look awesome- I have a really bad habit of biting/scraping whatever I am using on my lips off. Not sure why, just something I do. Maybe these would last through even that.

  17. I would love to try the lipstains. I have been so busy with the kids that half the time I dont wear any makeup. I sometimes would like for vicky to show up and not just mommmy

  18. Drink plenty of fluids, and use soft, indirect lighting. It both helps your skin look good, and protects the newborn's sensitive eyes.

  19. The natural lighting is great when you're older also,doesn't show the wrinkles as much as flash.
    The lip stains sound like a great product.

  20. I have always wanted to try a bronzer, but was scared because my skin is so light. this one looks wonderful though.

  21. I would absolutely love to win this. I have been wanting to try the Cover Girl Outlast, but have not yet. Thanks for the chance.

  22. Somehow, I managed to lose two lipsticks. I've had both for several years (I don't wear makeup often), so I'm not too indulgent by purchasing a new lipstick, and my husband practically has a fit. And I was buying cheap stuff! So, I would love to win the lipstain and have some choices of color!

  23. Your post is so funny. I hate my postpartum pictures they are just awful. Wish I would of read your blog beforehand.
    Thanks for the giveaway.

  24. My best tip for a good photo is get outdoors and look for bright colored backgrounds. I always seem to look younger and better in outdoor photos. Thanks!
    lisalmg25 at gmail dot com

  25. I love black and white photos. They just have a rich quality to them. Thanks for the wonderful giveaway. I don't really use lipstick very often but as I get older I think I could use a little color.

  26. I've never been a huge fan of lipstick, but I have seen this advertised and thought it looked like a great alternative. Thanks for the chance to win!

  27. I was wondering what the difference between a stick and a stain was. I think I'll try a stain next time I buy lip color.

  28. For really special events I like to get my makeup professionally done...I have found that with someone else highlighting my best features I take better pictures.

  29. I am having Christmas at my house this year which means five teenage nieces. I would like to have these wonderful products for their stockings.

  30. I agree with wearing dark solid colors. Also, take the picture at an angle versus a full frontal...it helps to slim you down! And a little makeup always help perk up the post-partum-I-haven't-slept-in-a-month look =)

  31. Seems like I can never find lip color that I like and that lasts, so I would love to have the opportunity to try it.

  32. You look adorable! So fresh and alive. Swimming in the love and joy and complete high of a new baby.

  33. I had not even heard of the lip stain until my friend suggested it to me. Your picture is really good with the umbrella and the cute little baby in pink.

  34. I love lip stains but have trouble finding them in stores at a reasonable price. I am so happy Cover Girl has them now, but I'm still looking for them in stores. Lip stains work great for me because I prefer my own lip balm and it works great with a lip stain, not so great with traditional lip sticks.

  35. My best self-portrait tip: use a tripod and timer. Having the camera a little further from arm's length is always more flattering :)

    katie brown

  36. Man, I wish I would have used some lip color in my recent birth pics. Man do I look white! It didn't help that it was the middle of winter and I was ghostly white anyway--and adding birth and no sleep doesn't help my situation!lol

  37. Lipstick really does help a lot both in taking photos and taking videos. This is a generous giveaway and I'd love to try these products!

  38. I love the “Tuesday Tours: What’s Happening on the Web” featuring contests and other web happenings. How cool!

  39. I have never tried the lipstain. I love anything that goes on the lips. If I don't have time to put makeup on in the morning I always put lipstick on.

  40. These are awesome tips, and I'll probably use them in... eh, October, maybe November! My sister is due to have her second child then, and if she's interested, I'd like to document that time early in the new baby's life. I'm not exactly a pro at photography, but I try my best! And I figure that I enjoy it and the pictures need taken anyway, so why not?
    On a different note, I've been trying a few different lipsticks, but just the cheap ones, since right now I can't really afford the good stuff. I'm stiiiill looking for the perfect color, though. Such a fine line between what works and what doesn't ;)

  41. Great tips! I'll be sure to forward a link to this to my many friends who are soon to give birth!
    I love lipstains too!!

  42. When we're doing get-together type things, if someone else is taking pictures, I ask them to catch me when I'm not paying attention. I don't enjoy having my picture taken, so I tense up or grimace or something when I'm trying to "pose".

  43. A tip for good pictures... of ME?! Most importantly, I'd need to have the photographer stand about a mile away, and make sure there was no zoom capability on the camera.

  44. All the make-up tips are good, but in the end remember that you are taking a picture for posterity. (No, not making fun of your still slightly larger posterior!) How you look is part of the event. Your body went through some pretty incredible changes to create that really incredible life.

  45. With 3 young children under the age of 10 my makeup routine has to be quick and effective! I enjoy wearing makeup, but really only have the time to apply it once in the morning because when the kids are running around the house or we are out at appointments and running errands I cannot be thinking about how my makeup looks. But the one cosmetic you will find in my handbag is lipstick, I will take a second to touch my lip up because just a little color on your lips can brighten your face right up and make you look perkier than you most like feel, giggle! I would love to wear some lip color that will last for several hours so I don't even have to think about reapplying it! And, it would be nice to be able to take a sip from my water bottle and not have gunky lipstick all around the rim, now how sweet is that?! Thanks so much for the opportunity to enter.

  46. Because I wear glasses I make sure that I look slightly upward to prevent the glare from showing up in pictures.

  47. I make sure that I wear colors that a little subdued so that they don't overwhelm the picture. I also think of something nice that causes me to smile.

    janetfaye (at) gmail (dot) com

  48. Turn your body slightly away from the photographer, then look directly at the camera. Tilt your head down a bit, eyes up and smile. Voila! A great picture.

  49. i love reading about creative picture ideas! I find it hard to be creative when I take pictures since it is so easy to get in a rut. Thank you for sharing. :)

  50. Thanks for these great tips!I like the one of black and white pics and the vintage look. How come I don't look this good when I take a picture. lol I love lipsticks. I haven't ever tryed cover girls lip stain. I bet its good. Also, I have had my bronzer for a long time too. I think its still good. With bronzer a little bit goes along way! thanks

  51. love the photo go girl friend. i have never tryed the lip stains are they permanent or do they come off easily. thanks

  52. You look great in that photo! Using an umbrella as a prop is such a good idea~
    I've always been curious about lipstains, I've never used them before.

  53. I agree with the tip to look upwards at the camera. It always makes for a flattering pic. However, everyone will love the newborn and assume your beautiful no matter what so no worries.

    I have never tried the lipstains due to the fact im afraid to spend the money if i dont end up liking them. Thanks for the chance to try out the lipstains. If i win and like them, i will definitely add them to my makeup collection.

  54. This would be a lovely quicker-picker-upper for me. I must be a lip licker and lip chewer because lipstick never stays on for me. When I even have a chance to throw some on! Thanks for the chance to win.

  55. I'm glad that you pointed out the benefits of wearing a little make up in the pictures, unmade up faces can look so tired and plain. The lipstain sounds wonderful and just what I need.

  56. I love lip stain. You can put it on before you leave the house and you will still have it on 8 hours later without re-applying it. That is fantastic for a day of running errands and even eating out. [email protected]

  57. I have never had lip color actually stay on, even the stuff that's supposed to-so I am more than a little anxious to try this lipstain. Thank you!

  58. I always look tired so I need concealer under the eyes and something on the lips always makes me look more "alive".

  59. For me, I've learned to use a lot more under-eye concealer and eyeliner for photos than I normally would. They help make my eyes look more open. Also, and this one seems pretty obvious, but it's hard for me, I just need to get in the photos. Period. I'm usually so busy taking pics of my kids and the rest of my family that I often miss out on being in them.

  60. My friend keeps telling me to try lip stains because my lipstick seems to disappear quickly!! I' love to try the Cover Girl lipstains. Thanks for a great giveaway!!

  61. My daughter just had her first baby on Monday. I'd love to win this for her - she looks great, but of course she thinks she's looking awful.

  62. You look great! I wish I this was written a few months ago! Im still going to keep it in mind though, great tips!

  63. I agree with all of your advice about those post-partum photos. You look fabulous in the picture above! I was barely able to function for a long time (like 3 months) after my son's birth. I had a much easier time after my daughter was born - she slept all the time so I wasn't as crazed. I bought myself one of the Covergirl Lip Stains and it is okay, but it comes off way too quickly - I agree with you that the Covergirl Outlast Lipsticks stay on better.

  64. Good picture taking tips. I have one; To make your skin under chin flat when smiling for the picture stick your tongue in the top of your mouth and push up. This will rid rid of sagging skin, double skin.

  65. I am giving birth in about 3 weeks, and want to look great for my postpartum pics. I am taking a baggy of make-up to touch up my face. This giveaway is great because we all need a little make up after delivering a baby.

  66. Why not wait a few weeks or a month before going for a nice professional portrait. Mom will be more rested and baby more alert.

  67. Hello, Metropolitan Mama readers.

    I'm a user of Cover Girl's Outlast lipstick (the 8 hour Outlast, the all day is drying) and absolutely love it. But, on the weekends when I'm out running errands I need something light. I have seen ads for their Lipstain and have been meaning to try it.

    Cool Beans, it I could try four Stains courtesy of Metropolitan Mama's contest.

    FYI For those who use CG's Outlast, if you're like me you need to purchase extra tubes of their topcoat. Instead, try Neutrogena's Lip Balm. It does not strip the color and works just as well as the CG topcoat.

  68. I have never tried lipstain. I have a hard time keeping lipstick on so maybe the stain would last longer.

  69. I heard that another tip is to avoid, if possible, taking photos in midday and try for morning or evening instead because the light at midday is too harsh and will wash people out/cause lots of squinting.

  70. Covergirl Outlast is fantastic. I wear a matte dark brown and a rust on my upper lip with a pearly rose on the bottom lip and a matte coral in center where the lips come together. For depth. Then the gloss on top. Lasts and lasts and lasts.

    For those tired eyes? Put some of your blusher in the eyelid crease. Makes you look healthy and awake.

  71. I never let myself be photographed by a photographer who is bending down/squat position and shooting up, it's horribly unflattering! I also tilt slightly sideways if it's a full length shot. I have not tried these lipstains yet but I've heard wonderful things about them. (Regarding your bronzer, if it's dry, cakey or has changed color, you should chuck it!)

  72. I just saw a commercial for the new lipstains and was thinking that i needed to look into them! I hate the look of lipstick on my coffee cup.

  73. It sounds odd, but I learned this from America's Next Top Model: If you have a double chin (like me) when you take photo's, close your mouth, suck your tongue to the roof of your mouth & smile. This helps eliminate the "double chin". :)

  74. I love the tip: Do something interesting. (grass) I recently saw a family photo with the family lying in the grass and it was one of my favorite photos.

  75. I am very pale in the winter months and unless I use my Arbonne under eye concealer and my mineral foundation, I look like I am sick in pictures. Also, it helps to get a little color on the lips and checks so the lipstain would be great. THanks for the opportunity

  76. I've been meaning to try these lipstains so I'd love to win. Your photo holding your baby daughter is beautiful! And I have to add that big sister is beautiful too!

  77. I really need some lipstick. It's been forever since I've had some and I think it's time to step out of the all-natural look!

  78. If you're happy and relaxed, the camera will show it. If not, ask friends to leave their cameras at the door!

  79. The lipstain sounds like the perfect lip color, I would love to try it!

    As far as self-taken pictures, I'm the queen of it. Self-timer is key key key as is, I agree, natural-looking makeup. Just enough to cover up the dark circles and splotches and of course, make this a picture you will want to treasure of you and your new baby for ever and ever.

    ParkingGoddessFTW at gmail dot com

  80. I don't really like regular lipstick but lip stain sounds up my alley. I usually use lip pencils because I think they last longer.
    Thanks for all the photo tips. I know they will be put to use.

  81. I love lipstick that doesn't come off I don't use any other kind any more. Once you start using them you're hooked and won't change. Haven't tried these, hope to win some so I can try them.

  82. I've been wanting to try this lipstain. I've seen great reviews about it on bellasugar. I'm intrigued by it because i hate lipstick taste and lip gloss is too sticky for me so i think this would be perfect!


    [email protected]

  83. I always have the problem of lipstick "disappering" and smudging off in 1-2 hours. I would put CoverGirl's Outlast to the test!

  84. I am eager to try a lipstain again. I had tried one many years age, when they first came out (although it wasn't made by Cover Girl), and although the color certainly stayed on, it was anything but moist. My lips felt like the Sahara. I would like to see if these work--I hope so!

  85. I would actually love to win this. I can't remember the last time I bought new makeup other than occassional eyeliner and mascara.

  86. I love the prop like the umbrella takes your eyes away from the tired mom look. Gives you something extra in the pic! I love lip stains and would love to try this!

  87. I agree that natural lighting is always preferable over a flash. I haven't used a flash in months.

    I have naturally super pale lips. A coworker once told me that natural color of my lips was "dead." Anyway, I'd love to try a lip stain!

  88. I would wear a solid dark color and a nice chunky necklace to brighten up the look. Keep the makeup natural but make sure to wear lipstick as that always brightens your face.

  89. If I can throw in a contradictory tip, medium-bright colors can also make you look lively and not at all like you're tired from birth... just have to choose the right one for your coloring! But then again, I'm always an advocate of wearing bright colors during a great time in your life :)

  90. I don't feel I photograph well in general, so I try certain tricks. No close-ups, flattering shirt necks, no full-length shots, be sure to have makeup on, face camera straight-on with neck up a bit to stretch those extra chins, etc. :) Who thought it'd be so hard to get a decent photo?


  92. I would love to give the lip stain a try! I've always just worn regular lipstick... maybe it's too much?!?!?

  93. I have never tried lip stain - but would really like to, thank you!
    And BTW - your pictures look super :)

  94. I love lip stain. Lip stuff is the only makeup I really use. Everything else bothers me too much, though I know I could really use it.

  95. When I was in the hospital and even at home the first days, A SHOWER was all the upkeep I needed to feel like a real person again. I had makeup, but I never put it on. I was/am a first time mom, and I learned alot by living 'la-vida-loca' those first days.

    These are super tips!! I didn't realize how much I would hate how I looked in post-baby photos!

    If, abigIf, I have another baby, I will def. keep your advice in mind.

    Your pic is beautiful. I am jealous of how amazing and perky and well-slept you look.

    Great post. The CG lipstains (I have tried) and I was surprised at how much I liked them, and what a great mommy tool they can be.

    Thanks for the entry!

  96. I have no real suggestions. I made sure and washed my hair as soon as possible, for me that made all the difference in the world.

  97. I could definitely use some help feeling more like I did before my pregnancy. Thanks for the chance.

  98. I look terrible in the pics taken of me post-baby... even weeks later. It's hard to get back into a 'look pretty' morning routine - I was happy to just shower! ha, ha. Great tips though, as I feel like I can still use them 2 months later. :)

  99. You look great, Stephanie! It's funny, but one of my favorite pics of myself was taken minutes postpartum, the first time I held my little girl. It wasn't anything revealing, Just a close up of my face & my new baby. I usually hate photos of myself, but that one shows so clearly how I was feeling, and holds so much emotion for me, I love it! Also,I felt like I didn't look bad for what I'd just gone through! ;)

  100. That really is a beautiful picture. If only I looked that good in all my babies' photos! As for photo tips from my own experience, I think I tend to look best if I'm looking slightly upward from a slightly downward-tilting face. It makes the angles work better for me. And of course, like Summer said, good posture is key. I really have to work hard on that one. ;)

    And ugh, makeup. I finally figured out, after all these years, that I like mineral makeup pretty well, and it looks good on me. But lipstick has continued to be the evil part in the makeup process, as I've still never tried something that I truly loved. Or at least that I felt comfortable with. I've never tried these lip stains, but I'm loving the idea.

  101. You look great! The umbrella adds a unique look. When you are up to a photo shoot,we bought a Canon Rebel XSi and I would love to take a few pics of you and your pretty little girls!!

  102. Well you certainly know what you're talking about as you look great in that picture! I have a hard time with picture of myself because my double chin really comes out in them. I agree on natural lighting and for double chins I keep my face level while sticking my head out just a little while keeping my neck in place Don't forget good posture!

  103. Uh, only photograph from shoulders up... I love lip stains and my favorite (Nars Colorwash) seems to have been discontinued. Oh no!

  104. Uh, only photography from shoulders up... I love lip stains and my favorite (Nars Colorwash) seems to have been discontinued. Oh no!

  105. My best friend was just telling me I need to try the lip stain, I would love to win it instead. :) She said it feels like you're coloring your lips like a page in a coloring book and that it smells amazing. My best tips for taking good self portraits are to wear lipstick (this is my tip for almost everything isn't it?) and make sure you're taking them from a flattering angle.

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