While the word “swimwear” strikes fear into most mums – and let’s not even mention “bikini” – TV presenter and mother-of-two Tam Wrigley says to rock that body on the beach this summer, it’s all about having body confidence.
Tam says it’s important to embrace your body, no matter what shape or size you are.
“Being body confident isn’t about being a size 6 glamazon, it’s more about your state of mind,” she says. “As mums, we have to be real about what is achievable,” she says. “Some women are lucky that they have great genes while others have to work hard at it, and others are so time-poor it’s not a priority.
“But all bodies deserve to be celebrated; they’re amazing, and we should do everything we can to nurture and support them, including stopping the self-sabotage.
“We need to change our mindset when it comes to our bodies and how we look at ourselves. If you are an Instagrammer like me, it can be harsh and we can be quick to compare ourselves to the 20+ year old, half naked women who post every second shot in their bikini.
“But they have yet to live the lives we have and live to tell the story. Celebrating our bodies in our own unique brilliance is something we should be doing daily. When it comes to being photographed, there are some quick and instant ways to instil body confidence.
“Standing or sitting up straight is one, and slightly tilt your head down while looking at the camera. Also, don’t be afraid to pamper yourself – especially at this time of year. Research from the Australian Institute of Family Studies shows that mothers work an average of 77 hours a week: 20 hours is paid work, 30 hours is household work and 27 hours is child care – and that’s before you add the stress and labour of Christmas and all its extra cooking, buying presents, catering for extended family and the like.
“So if you can squeeze time for a massage, facial, swim or whatever floats your boat, do it. It will work wonders.”
Two years ago Tam celebrated turning 40 by getting out of her comfort zone and going half naked for the 21 Days of Real Beauty movement, orchestrated by Megan Gill from Megan Gill Photography.
She reveals how she “wanted to celebrate my body and femininity”.
“I wanted other 40+ women to really look at their bodies and celebrate their vessel,” she tells Kidspot. “This body of mine has housed babies, walked four decades, got us through rough times and good ones.
“So, I stepped into a stunning, yet very revealing Judy Copley gown and joined the movement of real beauty, proving that post children, I’m still rocking this body at 40 and have no limitations.” Instagram link to video if needed
Tam’s five top tips to being body confident are:
Exercise – whether it’s hitting the gym, walking the dogs and kids, or following an exercise video or app at home, once you start seeing results, it will spur you on more.
Positive thinking – learning to love yourself and your body will instantly improve confidence.
Banish self-criticism –stop it! There is no place for self-criticism or comparing yourself unfavourably to other people. Not only does it ruin any positive thinking, but can become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Show gratitude – whether you do this through mindfulness, meditation or a gratitude diary, being grateful for your body and the wonders it does will help you learnt to love it more.
Rejig your wardrobe – some new, well-fitting clothes can do wonders for your mind, body and confidence. Pamper yourself by using one of the in-store personal shoppers, and having your bra fitted properly. Another bonus is that the sales are on shortly too, so you don’t have to spend a fortune either.
Tam says another sure-fire way to look good on the beach is to embrace this season’s trending new Instagram pose – the ‘Triangle’.
Popular with the likes of Miley Cyrus, Amber Gill, Tammy Hembrow and Elle Morris, it involves raising one arm up, either with your hand on your hip or head, so it elongates the arm and body, giving the Triangle shape on one side.
“We’ve had ‘the leg’ a la Victoria Beckham and Angelina Jolie, and Liz Hurley’s signature pose of looking down the lens with chin tilted slightly down, and now the Triangle,” laughs Tam.
“There are a few variations of the triangle, but the most popular pose is the one arm up on your hip, which is really flattering, and you can do this both standing up and lying down. The best thing about the Triangle is that it works for everyone, giving body confidence.”
“It’s also important to dress for your body shape too, and make sure you’ve got some trusty wardrobe staples,” she says.
Tam’s five key elements that every mum should have in their wardrobe
1) White collared shirt
2) Black tailored jacket
3) A great fitting LBD (little black dress)
4) Denim jeans
5) Good pair of heels