Last week I had the pleasure to sit down with style influencer and creator of Mattieologie.com, Mattie James. Mummy to a toddler, Mattie provided excellent advice on prioritizing work and family life in order to maintain your individuality and be the best mommy you can be. Please enjoy the enlightening interview below. Stay chic Mummy’s XOXOXO
Who and/ or what is your style inspiration?
My life. It’s cool to look at other influencers or celebrities to be temporarily inspired. But as far as my day to day life, that really determines what I am going to wear for the day. You know, I think my style is actively feminine. I am now running after a toddler, or usually I have a lot of meetings or may have to go to a shoot or what now. So I definitely have a lot going on in my life. But I still love the aspect of being feminine and completely girly. And I think that is because of the life I live. I still have to take pictures twice a week and being photo shoot ready a couple of times out of the week is a requirement in my life. But at the same time, I love being a mom and just throwing on some jeans and taking a trip to Target, wearing some flats and just being a normal mom. Maybe it’s because I am a Gemini, but I like the dichotomy of being uber casual and in mommy mode, and I love transitioning and turning into a more glam version of myself. But really it’s my life though that inspires me. My mom has always had great style and has always represented that even though you are a mom and you are the CEO of your home and you’re a wife, that’s not a justification or a reason to let yourself go or not dress up anymore. Having that example has been really instrumental in what I exude now.
What has been the most significant change in your style since becoming a mom?
I wear a lot more flats. It’s just really really hard to do anything with a baby wearing heels. I think really what happened is that my wardrobe became noticeably more functional. When you’re dressing for yourself you don’t think about not wearing silk and different things like that. Now I try to avoid really really light clothing, just because you may have a sticky hand print on you in one moment. I’m a lot more mindful of those things. I still have my pieces that I like. I still wear white and what not, but it’s definitely for when I’m going out with my husband or going out with friends. But yeah, my wardrobe has definitely gotten more functional.
What are your beauty must haves?
Honestly I think moisturizers. I love makeup, but it really is important that I moisturize and my skin feels good so that when I do put on makeup it looks good as well. Right now, I think my favorite oil is the Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil. It’s just remarkable to be honest. It is pricey, but it is worth it. Nothing has made my skin feel better. I top that with coconut oil. I mouthwash with coconut oil, I use it in my hair, I use it on my skin. I love olive oil, I love grapeseed oils. I really love oils; whether it’s for cleansing or moisturizing. I love that they’re multipurpose. You really start appreciating things that are multipurpose once you become a mother and have less time. So I really believe in oils.
Here are just a few stats about Mattie James. 6,700 youtube subscribers, 22,000 instagram followers, 7,800 facebook likes, 8, 900 pinterest followers, and 12,000 twitter followers. You have amassed a great amount of success as a blogger in a relatively short amount of time. If at all, how has motherhood impacted your success?
I think it’s made me more productive. Motherhood has forced me to learn to use my time more wisely. It’s forced me to be more productive for sure. I think as an extension of my brand, being a mother has opened me up to other brand opportunities and I think actually added a level of connection with my readers who are moms. Now they have another olive branch, as far as connecting with me. I think that’s what a lot of people don’t realize. The level which your readers connect with you really determines how much they trust you; which is the whole point. So I definitely think it made me more valuable as a content creator for sure. Not only to brands, but to my readers for sure.
“That’s the special sauce of my motherhood; I’m me, and I am making it fit into my life. Make sure you take time for yourself because me taking time for myself makes me excited to be around my baby.”
As a mom, our beauty routine is generally cut in half, as we must tend to our children. What time saving beauty and fashion tips can you offer moms?
I think the skin care; taking great care of your skin. Drinking a lot of water, eating green vegetables with each meal. If you don’t have much to cover up then it’s easier and quicker to go through your makeup routine. I definitely make sure I’m washing my face and cleansing in the morning and at night. Even if I’m not wearing makeup, to make sure I am maintaining the integrity of my skin. And I make sure I am using products that make my skin stand out and look great. That’s why I use oils. Regardless of your skin type there is some type of oil that is compatible with your skin. So with some people it’s grapeseed oil, for some people its coconut oil with a little bit of tea tree oil; whatever have you. Honestly I think a really great skin care routine will trim down your beauty routine, as far as makeup. And then I think also knowing what look you’re going for and positioning yourself for the appropriate time. For my everyday makeup I may take about ten minutes, but when I know I am filming stuff for YouTube I need to make sure I have camera ready makeup; which takes 35-40 minutes. So I just make sure the baby is fed and put on one of her favorite shows on Netflix and she’s good to go. Then I can get into my routine. Or I can let hubbz know, “Hey, I gotta go get this face on. She’s fed, her diaper is dry, she’s good to go.” But I also think just positioning yourself for the time you need is a really good tip as well.
What do you do to relax and take time for yourself?
I make sure at least one to two times a month I am getting my nails done and getting some type of massage; something that distinctively relaxes me. I’ll always prep that ahead of time and make sure that I position myself to have that time to myself. So I’ll let my husband know, or call my grandmother and say can I have two hours, would you mind watching my daughter. Making sure that I schedule that time because we give so much of ourselves to our village. We give ourselves to our spouses, to our babies. Self- care is a priority. I do not go a month without a solid hour of self-care. But on average I probably give myself 2-3 hours of self-care on a monthly basis, and taking little moments. When I take a shower, I make sure I am fully in that moment versus rushing. I think self-care is really a priority.
“My advice would be, take some time out, and prioritize it. Be decisive about it. When you make a decision it’s non-negotiable. Self-care is non-negotiable.”
What advice would you give a new mom struggling to maintain a sense of herself, now that she has embarked upon the journey of motherhood?
I would tell her that you being yourself is really what makes you more valuable as a mother. At the end of the day, your kid is one day going to be a teen and not have any time for you, and you want to make sure you have something solid to fall back on. And I think that is why I harp so much on self-care. Me being relaxed and having a sense of individuality and doing the things I like to do makes me a better mom, makes me a better wife, just because I have my own identity. Specifically because I am a mother of a daughter, I also want to make sure that she knows that it’s always important to be herself; one thing doesn’t define her. The fact that she’s a mother is awesome but that is just one element of being a woman. Which on the other side, it doesn’t make you less valuable if you aren’t a mother. But at the same time, yes I am a mother, but I’m still Mattie. And that’s the special sauce of my motherhood; I’m me, and I am making it fit into my life. Make sure you take time for yourself because me taking time for myself makes me excited to be around my baby. I’m not burnt out, I’m not stressed out, because they can feel that. My advice would be, take some time out, and prioritize it. Be decisive about it. When you make a decision it’s non-negotiable. Self-care is non-negotiable. So figure out how to get it done!