The power of the pretty :: Self confidence.

“Oh Harriet, you look so lovely.”

There is something about those words that can really lift a woman, you know? This past weekend I went to BritMumsLive and, despite a few let downs, I had a really lovely time meeting people and cementing friendships. I was nominated for an award (which I didn’t win but it did go to the fabulous The Dad Network – and I got to have a chat with Jen from the couple collab who I absolutely adored.) so I went back to the hotel before the end of the conference to don a pretty dress and make myself feel a bit special before boarding a Thames cruise at the after party award ceremony. I think as mums we don’t really do that enough do we?

There is something about feeling pretty and dressing up that can really lift a woman, really help you feel better about yourself – especially when you’re doing it for YOURSELF. I went away, I spent more than 4.2 seconds on my make up and I put on the fanciest dress I’ve owned since before I had the kids. The truth is, I don’t really go many places anymore where I can get dressed up – where I can put on a pretty dress and feel a little bit special. Mundane life tends to take over – the school run, parents evening, cooking dinner, working, working some more… go to sleep… rinse and repeat.

That becomes life doesn’t it? There should be more to it, we know there should, but when do we get the time for that “more” to happen?

For me, feeling fancy in a pretty dress and having my ego fluffed repeatedly by strangers and friends alike has been really REALLY good for my self confidence and has helped my dispel a lot of really negative feelings that have cropped up around my body image. I am not a natural health food lover or dieter – I will confess to crash dieting on numerous occasions. I’ve written about it before but after Edith, I seemed to become less confident somehow – I lost weight and then gained it as fast as I had lost it, I started to feel less attractive. I have read so many posts about body confidence and how we should be proud of these amazing bodies that grew our children, that gave the gift of life and I just couldn’t quite bring myself to embrace that – to actually feel that way. These posts weren’t written for me, they were written for people who had maybe made peace with the changes in their bodies and who were genuinely happy with the way they were – to encourage others to feel that way, but they really only ever left me feeling a sense of “what is wrong with me? Why don’t I feel proud of my body and it’s changes!?”.

Getting dolled up this weekend and feeling attractive, truly proud of the way I looked and not embraced by being on camera but in fact quite delighted to jump in front, has been so good for my soul. It’s not changed the way I feel about myself or my lack of confidence in my bodily changes, but it has given me a new sense of appreciation for myself. It’s given me the drive to say that every so often, maybe I should just take an hour to myself and do my hair and make up – even if it’s for a family day out on a Sunday, who cares?!

It might not be the pretty clothes for you, it might not be the make up or the hair or even the kind compliments. Whatever it is though that helps you feel more confident about yourself – you need to go with that, you need to allow yourself to feel that buzz.

H 🙂 x

FYI, my dress is by Chi Chi London. I wasn’t sponsored by them in any way, I was purely gifted the beautiful dress. Lastly, I’m with my lovely friend Amy Treasure in these pictures. She is always a glamour puss!


  1. Avatar October 11, 2017 / 5:33 am

    I am so glad that you had an awesome weekend. Such a great experience for you too. Feeling beautiful inside plus getting some make-over like this is indeed super wonderful.

    • Harriet October 13, 2017 / 11:25 am

      Thank you Anosa!

  2. Avatar October 10, 2017 / 5:58 pm

    Aw you and Emma look great and I am so pleased that you had a great time at Brit Mum’s and it helped boost your self confidence. You looked beautiful in your dress. x

    • Harriet October 13, 2017 / 11:26 am

      Thank you Ana, you’re too kind xx

  3. Avatar October 9, 2017 / 9:02 pm

    I absolutely LOVE those photos! I thought the top one was a stock photo, it looks so perfect and you guys are having the best time 🙂 Congratulations on being nominated for an award.

  4. Avatar October 9, 2017 / 8:33 pm

    I love your red dress, I have never tried Chi Chi London before! I’m glad you had a nice time!

  5. Avatar October 9, 2017 / 9:43 am

    Loved this. You look fab, and so happy. I empathise with what you are saying about body confidence. My last post was all about my journey to try and love my body and how it’s something I struggle with and honestly, part of me wishes I hadn’t posted it. Most responses were from people who identified with it. But some were from people who told me I was exhibiting disordered behaviour and a few were from people pitying me and looking down on me. I feel a bit worse now than I did before posting which isn’t the way I expected it to go! Anyway, I digress – my point is, you totally aren’t alone!

    • Harriet October 13, 2017 / 11:45 am

      Thank you lovely lady xx

  6. Avatar October 6, 2017 / 9:28 pm

    Well frankly given the weird lighting and the fact I hid in the corner with my tribe for most of the evening, it was a good job you wore that dress because that’s actually no joke how I spotted you as I was walking past. Red is your colour Babe. Body image. Man we need to chat some time. The mess we create in our own heads. I’m obsessed with the tyre of belly fat that, after years of me being slim, is now forming no matter how healthily I eat or how much I exercise. Luuurrrrvely to meet you sweetie and you and I clearly have VERY good taste in blog friends. First it was the lovely Laura, now it’s the utterly gorgeous human that is Amy. Love that woman. So genuine. A breath of fresh air in this blogging world.

    • Harriet October 9, 2017 / 8:53 am

      Ahh my darling lady it was so lovely to meet you too! We clearly do have amazing taste, both ladies are Queens and beyond amazing. Next time you’re over here, we need to have cocktails! (I said this with Laura and we really didn’t get chance to organise anything – grr!)

  7. Avatar October 6, 2017 / 7:15 pm

    You look absolutely gorgeous although I think you look good in all of your pictures. I’m so glad you had a chance to feel glamorous and confident, I have been struggling with my body image of late, I’m not a mum but I feel the pain of not truly loving yourself at all times. It’s a great feeling when you feel that buzz and appreciate yourself

    • Harriet October 9, 2017 / 8:54 am

      Ahh thank you lovely! It’s bizarre isn’t it – we really need to learn to be kinder to ourselves. x

  8. Avatar
    October 6, 2017 / 1:13 pm

    Wit woo! You do look lovely! There’s no shame in enjoying a bit of dress up and receiving compliments. I honestly totally get where your coming from about reading body positivity posts. I actually find that the pressure to love yourself how you are naturally creates a sort of guilt for people who aren’t on that level yet.

    • Harriet October 6, 2017 / 1:55 pm

      Ahh thanks Jess, you are too kind – yes that pressure is awful! H x

  9. Avatar October 3, 2017 / 5:36 pm

    You look great Harriet, red really suits you. I can completely relate to losing confidence after babies, but I also find just getting dolled up when I can to make a massive difference too. Ultimately, no matter how many compliments you get, it is learning to be happy within yourself that is most important.

    Lily x

    • Harriet October 4, 2017 / 1:05 pm

      Thank you lovely 🙂 xx

  10. Avatar October 2, 2017 / 8:48 pm

    Such a gorgeous dress and you did look amazing in it! I’ve certainly struggled with body confidence since having my kids. While I know I have to accept my body is this way now, I still look at my saggy tummy in the mirror and a little sigh escapes. The love handles were there well before kids but I still hate them.

    I just don’t have time to workout. For me a workout is remembering to engage my core muscles when pushing the pram around which I forget about five minutes after leaving the house. So I’ve got to accept I what I am but it’s hard not to feel self conscious when I catch myself in the mirror with my tummy hanging over jeans that are getting worrying tight at the moment.

    So lovely to meet you briefly on Saturday and thanks for all your advice. You looked gorgeous in both of your outfits for the day! I agree it’s so nice getting a chance to ditch the jeans and vomit-stained tops for a day.

    Loved this post. X

    • Harriet October 3, 2017 / 10:02 am

      Ahh thanks Vicky, it’s really tough isn’t it? You are too kind, it was lovely to meet you too x

  11. Avatar October 2, 2017 / 2:00 pm

    I said before I think the getting ready and spending time with you and the girls was my fav bit of the whole weekend. It makes one heck of a difference getting glammed up and a few wines are were climbing atop monuments with a whistle from the security guard who was probably supposed to tell us to get down haha! MADD my night, and you looked totally smoking hot xx

    • Harriet October 3, 2017 / 10:01 am

      Thank you darling lady – yes it was absolutely my fave part too – it was something that is so unusual for me now, something that just doesn’t happen! I loved it. You always look smoking hot but thank you x

  12. Avatar October 2, 2017 / 12:35 pm

    You do look amazing, that dress is stunning! You are right though, it’s easy to get caught up in the boring, everyday things life throws at us and every now and then we need to take time out for ourselves and make ourselves feel good, I plan on working on that in October 🙂

    • Harriet October 3, 2017 / 10:01 am

      Thank you lovely xx

  13. Avatar October 2, 2017 / 12:25 pm

    Ahhh I’m so glad you had a fab weekend and that you found a way to feel happier with your body. I’m at the bit where I’m not happy so I totally get where you’re coming from. You look amazing – brilliant frock! X

    • Harriet October 3, 2017 / 10:01 am

      Thanks Emma. It was the ladies that made the weekend and I loved it x

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