Karen’s Pregnancy Tips – Finessence Maternity Portrait Giveaway

by cecylia on December 6, 2013


Have you ever met  a woman who didn’t seem to put on weight during her pregnancy and had such a smooth run they continued to work until the day they gave birth? My bestie Karen, of Finessence Photography, is one such lady.  I didn’t tell her this at the time, but she single-handedly abolished all the pregnancy myths I used to fear. I recall seeing her full of glow, energy and in no shape or form like a ‘preg-zilla’ and felt assured that such a state was possible for a pregnant person. So one of the reasons I’ve managed to look half-decent during my pregnancy is due to the influence of this amazing lady. So it is with my greatest pleasure to share with you some of Karen’s precious pregnancy tips.


Karen’s Tips on Diet

Eat for one, don’t diet and overdose yourself with lots of sugar! I ate an apple a day and a glass of milo. My diet consisted mainly of homemade vegetable or chicken soup to keep my skin and hair, and baby nourished. I stayed away from cold cut sandwiches and anything raw (how I missed sushi and sashimi). I also craved for McDonald’s chicken nuggets which was a midnight snack at least 1-2 times a week.


Karen’s Tips on Exercise

I was doing intense kickboxing training for 3 years before I became pregnant, so I continued training until I was 5 months pregnant. I mainly focused on light-weight upper body training (boxing) and less lower body (kicks). The important thing was to keep an eye on your body temperature and don’t hold kick shields. Exercising helped maintain my stamina and strength for photo shoots, because I was still shooting till the day my son was born!


Karen’s Tips on Style

I tried to stay stylish and refused to wear any frumpy sports gear to cover my belly. So I invested in pieces which I could wear after pregnancy. Stretchy and oversized one piece dresses, cardigans and gathered skirts worked the best. Fitted dresses also look amazing if you want to show off your belly nicely. I highly recommend Country Road, Alpha and Gorman.

Invest in sneakers or flats and don’t get a nappy bag. If you already have a large bag somewhere in your wardrobe, use it. It’s probably cooler than a bag that screams “I’m a daggy nappy bag”.


Images by Alan from Finessence Photography

Hair and makeup by Candice Deville

Karen’s top tips are:

• I swear by Elemis massage oil for pregnant mothers – keeps your belly supple and no stretch marks.

• One thing I regretted not doing is having regular naps or sleeping early. I find napping helps my energy levels.

• Take maternity leave (at least 6 weeks early before your due date!)

• Don’t cut your hair short (only because your face gets rounder towards the third trimester)

• Don’t stick to a rigid birth plan. Be prepared to be flexible by taking the necessary steps and advice from your doctor to ensure safe and quick delivery of your child

• When someone offers you help with housework or lifting heavy things, just say YES PLEASE!

• Have beautiful and professional photos taken of yourself with your in this special moment (30-34 weeks) to treasure.

Me and Jay

When I was deciding about whether or not to cut my hair shorter, Karen’s timely advice saved me from making a grave mistake. I know that there are many of you that are pregnant or expecting, so to help you celebrate the birth of your bundle of joy, Karen is offering this generous and exclusive giveaway for a very lucky lady: a Finessence Maternity Portrait Experience!

The Finessence maternity portrait experience will include:
  • Maternity portrait session (1 hr) - valued at $129 for weekdays, $229 for weekends
  • Design and ordering session to purchase your favourite images (1 hr)
  • 8 x 10 inch art mount print – valued at $180
Valid until 31st of March 2014, not transferrable for cash. We will announce the winner then.
All you need to do is to leave a comment by telling us the best pregnancy advice you have ever received. We can’t wait to hear your tips and words of wisdom! May you become the winner of this incredible and memorable photographic experience!

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Dani December 8, 2013 at 8:17 pm

I think the best pregnancy advice I’ve received so far is to listen to my body. Each person is different, just as each pregnancy is different, and what may work for someone else may not necessarily work for me, or changes may happen at different times. So fellow mums-to-be, don’t force yourself to sleep on your left side from week whatever just because your pregnancy book tells you to – if it gives you an achey shoulder and you wake up in a completely different position anyway, that’s a sign your body doesn’t agree with that just yet. Similarly, don’t pressure yourself into eating more simply because you’re being told “you need to feed that baby, have two extra slices of cake;” eat till you’re satisfied, not uncomfortable! And if you want to sleep, sleep :)


Lisa Rai December 9, 2013 at 4:38 pm

Best advice was from a very funny granny that commented..” You can always blame the weight gain on a growing baby and sneak some cheeky cravings in, but you can’t escape the fact that you will always get caught when your wearing the evidence on your big belly and the remnants seem to get caught on your ever protruding bump”. Never a truer word. Since I’ve been pregnant I seem to wear my evidence at least twice a week! Doh! ;)


Jackie December 10, 2013 at 4:17 pm

Your friend Karen has some great tips, especially when it comes to nutrition and how truly it is important to your well being. You look beautiful, happy and very peaceful in theses photos!

xo, jackie


cecylia December 11, 2013 at 8:46 pm

Thanks Jackie! It’s actually Karen in these photos :D She was so gorgeous during her pregnancy!


Lisa Tang December 30, 2013 at 11:16 am

These pictures look so serene and beautiful, it’s hard some days to feel beautiful and glowing when you look at yourself in the mirror just out of bed, so I think it’s important to dab on some makeup, wear a nice dress and pair it with some small wedge heels to lift your spirits during pregnancy.
Finally, I came across this which I thought was inspiring and wise for not only the mother but father to be. Each baby is a gift from God, and should be a product of love between you and your partner, so ‘the best thing a father can do for a newborn is to love its mother, and vice versa.’


cecylia December 30, 2013 at 9:00 pm

aww that is the most beautiful thing I’ve heard all day! That is so true! A father is so important to the growth and development of a baby, not only directly but also indirectly through his love and care for the baby’s mother too- so well expressed, thank you Lisa!


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