Why I'll be wearing makeup when I have my baby

My hospital bag is packed.

It has clothes for me and our impending arrival, snacks for what could be a long wait for the baby to arrive and then heat packs for pain – but let’s not go there.

I’ve also packed toiletries and that includes makeup because I’ll have some on when I give birth.

It’s a personal yet surprisingly controversial decision, but not as uncommon as you may think.

I love makeup. I love putting it on. I love how it makes me feel. So why not wear it during birth?

I’ve also got an appointment to have my eyebrows done a week before I’m due and my wax is booked in for around the same time. They know though, that if I don’t show up and don’t cancel, I have a good reason why!

I also recently had my hair cut. It’s all pampering in preparation for the big day and who knows how long it’ll be before I can go out and get these treatments done again.

Now I’m not talking a full face of makeup, hoping the baby holds off long enough for me to contour and highlight kind of look.

I’m just thinking a bit of foundation, concealer, some bronzer and a little mascara (waterproof for sure). I’ve been doing my makeup for that long, I can make this happen in about 15 minutes.

I am not blessed with flawless skin. I have pigmentation under the eyes and don’t usually leave the house unless there’s a bit of cover-up under there.

So, I don’t really want that on show, especially when that first photo is taken.

And there we have it – those magic words. The first photo.

It’s not about wanting to splash that photo all over Facebook or Instagram but having that memory you can never repeat.

The first photo of me and my baby. The family shot with my husband and our brand new son or daughter (we’re keeping the sex a surprise).

It’ll be those photos we look back on forever and is it that bad for me to want to think I look nice in it? Perhaps it’ll be one we choose to frame and have on display.

After everything I’ll be going through to have the baby – again we won’t go there – am I not entitled to a bit of colour on the cheeks?

I’ve read a lot about this and spoken to mothers who say they wish they’d worn some makeup because of those first photos. The words ‘I looked like death’ came up a lot. Some say they touched up between contractions.

I fully appreciate that everything can happen so fast there might not be those 15 makeup minutes, but I will be prepared for application.

We are our own worst critics and I think this is something we can do to feel like ourselves, feel good about ourselves and want to show off that first photo.

This post first appeared on Her Canberra.