BEST IN SHOW: MUST HAVE PRODUCTS FOR MOMS TO BE & NEW MOMS

With the spate of maternity and new mom gear on the market, it is easy to get overwhelmed. So, I took a swan dive through the marketplace and selected a few must have products to help you-and your new baby-look and feel your best. Believe me, the smallest details make the world of difference.


1. SMART STASH: emergency diapers at the ready
Diaper Buds $5.99 for 8ct.

2. DROOL WORTHY: four chic bibs in one, perfect for busy parents and stylish kids
Bebe Au Lair Quib Bibs $14

3. MATERNITY MOXIE: Must-have pregnancy kit with luxe pampering essentials
Citrus Lane Pregnancy Pampering Kit curated by Amy Tara Koch $65

4. NEW RULES!: Dr. Laura Jana’s comprehensive guide for new parents
Heading Home With Your Newborn by Laura A. Jana & Jennifer Shu

5. SLEEP SAVVY: Guru Dr. Marc Weissbluth shows you how to get baby to stack Zs
Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth

6. HEAVEN SCENT: The safest lavender-spiked cleanser for pregnancy
Belli Skincare Pregnancy Body Wash $15

7. BOOBY TRAP: Is it a bottle? A breast? Tough to tell and that’s a good thing
Mimijumi Not So Hungry bottle $13.99

8. AU COURANT CAR SEAT: The most adorable, safe, easy to carry  infant car seat
Britax Chaperone Carseat

9. GREAT CHOICE: Cord blood banking equals parental peace of mind
Viacord Cord Blood Banking

10. NURSING NIRVANA: Where (breastfeeding) fashion meets function
Leading Lady Nursing Lace Bra $31

11. PREGGO PANTIES: Sexy. Sexy. Sexy.
Belabumbum Maternity Lace Boyshorts $29

12. STROLL IN STYLE: Super stylish, lightweight stroller
Baby Cargo Stroller $150

13. HEDGE ON THE WEDGE: Get out of the preggo dumps in these sustainably sourced kitten heel wedges that come with seven ribbons to transform your look
Mohop Shoes Mid Cherry Peep toe $164

14. MOLTO MAXI: A smooth-as-silk maternity dress that can be dressed up or down in a snap
Ingrid & Isabel Athena Maxi Dress $148

15. FLIRTY & FABULOUS: The genius “Momshell” dress is perfect for pregnancy and beyond
More of Me Maternity Momshell Dress $170

16. SWELL STYLE: Jumpers are on trend. Hatch’s version accommodates a burgeoning bump and can be worn-belted-after baby
Hatch Maternity Jumper $258

17. SLEEK & CHIC: A black stretch camisole bodysuit perfectly flatters a pregnant body
Bashful Bump Maternity Camisole Bodysuit $44

18. SPACE SAVER: Rollable bibs are great for the on-the-go mom
Tommee Tipee Easy Roll Bibs $6.99 2pk

19. PURE RELEIF: Cootie free skin cream to naturally relieve baby’s eczema and assorted skin irritations
Episencial Soothing Cream $10.99

20. THE SKINNY: Destination Maternity translates the colored denim trend seamlessly into maternity with their secret fit belly.
Joe’s Jeans for Destination Maternity Chelsea Secret Belly Fit in Lollipop $185

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COVER UP: Best bets for safe and effective sunscreen for moms and kids

Summer =  fun in the sun.  And while tis the season of outdoor diversion, terror lurks in the form of skin cancer. With over 2 million people diagnosed annually, sun protection is imperative.  But, what many don’t know is that not all sunscreens are created equally.

A product with broad spectrum protection and without harmful chemicals is essential.   WHY? In contrast to many common sunscreens that only protect from UVB waves, “broad spectrum” blocks dangerous UVA waves as well.  The other component to safe and effective sun protection is scrutinizing the ingredients and avoiding preservatives like parabens and phthalates which can be absorbed through the skin to accumulate into the bloodstream.

Of course there are many incredible designer sunscreens, but you don’t need to spend the big bucks for an effective product.  Brands like Nature’s Gate, Alba Bontanica and Kiss My Face are inexpensive and just as effective as designer brands.

CONFUSED? Don’t be.  Here’s your crash course in sunscreenology and my best bets.

A SUNSCREEN GLOSSARY

SPF: Sun Protection Factor, rating applied to only UVB rays.  The higher the SPF does not mean you can stay out in the sun that much longer.  For example, SPF 15 means it blocks all but 1/15 of UVB meaning you are about 93% covered for those rays. The difference between SPF 30 and SPF 60 is just an extra 2% of coverage.

UVA: Makes up 95% of UV radiation reaching the Earth’s surface, less intense than UVB but penetrates deeper in the skin to the dermis.

UVB: UV radiation that hits the top layer of skin, epidermis, responsible for sunburn and any skin reddening. The most significant amount of UVB hits the U.S. between 10 AM and 4 PM from April to October.

Broad spectrum: Look for sunscreen boasting broad spectrum,-multi spectrum or UVA/UVB protection to ensure defense against both types of UV radiation.

Parabens: A synthetic preservative that can be found in shampoos, moisturizers, shaving gels, cleansing gels, topical pharmaceuticals and toothpaste.  According the Environmental Working Group (EWG), parabens can disrupt the hormone system, and were found in the breast cancer tumors of 19 of 20 women studied.

Phthalates: A chemical compound called “plasticizers” making PVC and found in nail polish, shampoos, detergents, hair spray, toys, food packaging and much more. Like parabens, phthalates hinder the endocrine system.


BEST BETS

SUNSCREEN FOR ADULTS: all of the following products have broad spectrum coverage and are free of parabens, phthalates, fragrance, nano-technology and chemicals

SKINCEUITICALS PHYSICAL FUSION: $30, SPF 50, universal tint that evens skin tone, high UVA protection, protects against collagen damage, water and sweat resistant, does not clog pores, features plankton extract, J.Lo is a fan!

BELLI ANTI-CHLOASMA FACIAL SUNSCREEN: $24, SPF 25, Pregnancy-friendly ingredients, lightly tinted to blend with all skin types, oil free, may be worn alone or under makeup

Belli skincare sunscreen ATK

KATE SOMERVILLE SERUM SUNSCREEN: $45, SPF 55, oil/alcohol free, can be used daily for oily or problematic skin, does not leave skin feeling chalky, sticky or greasy, celeb clients include Christina Aguilera, Katy Perry and Selma Blair

Kate somerville sunscreen serum

ALBA BOTANICA NATURAL SUNBLOCK: $9.95, SPF 30+, certified organic sunflower seed and jojoba seed oils, aloe vera and calendula moisturize and nourish skin, 100% vegetarian ingredients, grape seed oil and vitamin E provide antioxidant protection

alba botanica sunscreen ATK

NATURE’S GATE MINERAL SPORT BLOCK: $9.99, SPF 20, Seaweed extract revitalizes, milk thistle extract soothes and Mimosa bark extract repairs and protects.

natures gate sunscreen

KISS MY FACE, FACE FACTOR: $12.95, SPF 30, water resistant, helps reduce wrinkles with UVA/UVB protection, great for sensitive skin

SUNSCREEN FOR KIDS: products below are water resitant

EPISENCIAL SUNNY SUNSCREEN: $14.99, SPF 35, Free of Petroleum/hormones/gluten/nut oils, manufactures with solar power, organic sesame, safflower and avocado oils to moisturize and nourish the skin

DR.ROBIN: $24, SPF 30, quinoa and oat protection for soothing hydration and green tea extract to help prevent free radical damage, Used by Celeb Moms–Debra Messing and Jennifer Garner

Dr Robin Chemical Free Sunscreen for Kids and Babies

KISS MY FACE NATURAL MINERAL SUNBLOCK LOTION: $14.99, SPF 30+, retains SPF after 30 minutes of activity in water, Gluten free, Natural ingridients include aloe, sunflower oil, green tea, shea butter, carrots, mushrooms and olive oil

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bumping it up—SF style!

I just completed my fantabulous BUMP IT UP event with Twitter Moms at the W Hotel San Francisco. The day included incredible “cravings-based” treats, tasty mocktails by La Croix, Sprinkles cupcakes, Makeunders from Lancôme, Bliss mini-spa treatments, shapewear and bra fittings from Wacoal, registry tips from Giggle, baby planning tutorials from Itsa-Belly, Britax and Baby Björn and fab gift bags featuring my favorite mommy must-haves like Tide To Go™, Pampers with DryMax™, Moms The Word smoothies, Mama Mio Boob Tube™, Episencial Playful™ foaming bath and gifts from Wacoal.

More photos can be found here: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=236273&id=114367277518

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