Drew Barrymore says moms shouldn’t try to be perfect: ‘Making babies is perfection’


For the life of me, I can’t figure out how Drew Barrymore keeps landing magazine covers. She’s not appearing in any upcoming movies, but I think Drew’s moving in the direction of her “lifestyle guru” peers. Not that she’s launched a Goop-esque website or anything, but I feel it coming. Just wait.

Drew covers the December issue of Women’s Health magazine to promote her new cosmetic line, Flower Beauty. The shoot must have taken place in the very early stages of her latest pregnancy because she’s glowing like mad. She looks gorgeous, and I’ve always felt a weird connection to Drew because she’s one day younger than me. Seriously! I am strange about stuff like that.

Drew’s had her ups and downs and has lived a million lifetimes in just 38 years. She says zany stuff in interviews like when she’s talking about how women are so moody (oh those poor men) and how women can’t have it all (even though Drew has a nanny, etc.). She also gets really super enthusiastic about mundane things like dining rooms. In this interview, Drew once again comes off as very enthusiastic about whatever she happens to be talking about. In this case, she’s talking about the magical experience of motherhood. She’s so effusive, but it’s hard to hate:

Why she got into the make-up biz: “I love doing the beauty line because it’s so inherently feminine and so much of a celebration of women. I think about my daughter and how special that is to be making something that’s so creative and empowering, so that really fits.”

Her changed priorities: “Being a mom is first – that’s now number one. Everything I’m going to do is going to have a real consciousness toward – is this a job I can do and still get home in time for dinner and have days where I get to do every diaper change?”

On working mother guilt: “Then I’m going to have to go out on certain days and work and not try to feel like the guiltiest person on the planet, which every mother understands.”

Body-image pressure: “You’re not supposed to look perfect while you’re making babies. Making babies is the perfection. It’s about feeling good in clothes and knowing you can get dressed up in the evening, work it for a minute, and maybe get back in a certain pair of jeans. But there’s just no such thing as perfection. So if you’re trying to get there you’re just torturing yourself.”

Her beauty tips: “My main beauty tip is don’t say that negative thing when you look in the mirror. It just isn’t healthy. That lack of beating up on ourselves–that’s my new mantra. Happiness is the best make-up; a smile is better than any lipstick you’ll put on”

[From Women’s Health]

It’s funny that Drew is talking about how “happiness is the best make-up” while she’s shilling her own cosmetics line, but she’s right. Most people look better while smiling than frowning, and the body language projected by a “smiler” (not the Miley Cyrus variety) goes miles to impress other people.

As for her statements on motherhood, we get it, Drew. You’re the first parent ever. Just like every other first-time parent out there, right? I give it a few years, and Drew will be acting like parenting is old hat. Again … just like every parent out there. We parents can be so nauseating sometimes.

Drew Barrymore

Drew Barrymore

Photos courtesy of Women’s Health & WENN

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34 Responses to “Drew Barrymore says moms shouldn’t try to be perfect: ‘Making babies is perfection’”

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  1. Lucy2 says:

    I can’t get annoyed with her. She seems really happy, and I always think that after her childhood, she deserves that.

  2. T.fanty says:

    She has the opposite effect on me: everything about her irritates. I know it’s not what she means, but that first quote about her make-up and doing something beautiful and creative for her daughter sounds really odd. It sounds as though her daughter is the project and make up is the means.

    Maybe it’s just because she’s talking crap.

    • Miss Jupitero says:

      Narcissism takes many forms.

    • Kiddo says:

      Drew is overly enthusiastic about everything, it does give me a serious case of the side eye. That said, I believe she is sincerely earnest in these endeavors and not “putting on”, so I still like her. I always think of her as the surfer chick who views the most miniscule things in life as “awesome and amazing, dude”, seeing the world through a kaleidoscope of weed, where the colors are more brilliant and saturated. Only, she doesn’t need the weed.

    • Diana says:

      Also, since when is make up empowering? cuz I missed that memo

      • Kiddo says:

        I thought she meant being her own business woman on the make-up line. Maybe I misunderstood.

      • Diana says:

        @Kiddo, maybe I misunderstood? I thought she was talking about her business of making make up and how it is SO feminine and empowering. I don’t know, it just didn’t sit well with me.

    • Miss Bennet says:

      @T. fanty,
      No. That’s not at all what she meant. What she’s saying is that makeup is fun and can be empowering because it can give women confidence. But the best thing you can do for yourself is to stop with the self criticism. As she said, there is no such thing as perfection.
      As for the mommy thing, well, she’s a new mom and since her own childhood was messed up by her own irresponsible and flaky mother, I imagine she’s exerting herself to be the exact opposite.
      I admire her refusal to be negative, cynical and jaded. When you think of everything she’s been through with two shitty parents, a chaotic childhood and substance abuse issues, the fact that she’s positive, hopeful and enthusiastic about life shows strength of character and heart.
      A joyful disposition isn’t the fashion these days but it certainly beats the grouchy, woe-is-me, misery guts personality so many admire these days.
      Nothing she has said is patronizing, elitist, or indicates narcissism. See Paltrow for comparison.

  3. kelley says:

    Sounds very patronizing – trying to appeal to the masses I suppose.

  4. GoodNamesAllTaken says:

    I agree that she’s talking as if she was the first parent ever, and it makes for some eye rolling, but isn’t that the way it should be? Maybe I romanticize having children because I couldn’t have any, but let’s face it – it’s the biggest miracle you will ever be a part of. I know from my friends with children that it has very a dramatic downside of exhaustion, worry and the rest, but I think it’s sweet when people are awed by it. Because it IS that overused word, awesome.

    • JenD says:

      I feel the same way. I have a 4-month old daughter, after being told years ago I wouldn’t be able to. So everyday I have an overwhelming sense of awe about having my beautiful baby.

  5. Patricia says:

    She gets magazine covers because she has earned her way into our hearts and people love her. I just love her and I’m glad that I happen to be pregnant the same time as her.
    I don’t think she sounds anything but sweet and honest about being a mother. I don’t see the “she thinks she’s the first parent ever” thing going on here. I feel like this site just hates when any mother talks about being a mother, I don’t get it.
    And I think the enthusiasm is just how she is. We need people like that. I also get very excited about little things, like painting a wall in chalkboard paint or learning to care for indoor plants. It’s the little things in life.
    Keep shining Drew, I love you!

  6. Barrett says:

    I resent generalizations and headlines like this. It’s another way women assert what makes a life perfect. “Making babies is perfection”. I have severe endometreosis and have had several miscarriages, 1 heartbreakingly of a girl in second trimester. I guess I am imperfect. Thanks for reminding me ya jerk! Guess what I have nice hair or I don’t have a weight problem. Yes not having a weight problem is “perfection”. drew is lucky she can have babies easily later in her thirties, but overall she should keep some comments to herself. People are clueless what can be cruel to another women. Also what if this baby god forbid has a health problem? Don’t say perfection

    • Snarkweek says:

      I’m sorry about your experience. I guess this has nothing to do with the post, but I just wanted to say that. Hugs!

    • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

      dear Barrett, I’m so sorry. It gets better, I promise. It doesn’t go away completely, but the pain becomes a shadow of itself and it’s bearable. It’s much less lonely when you get a little older and everyone around you isn’t pregnant or holding their new baby. My heart goes out to you.

    • Kneel says:

      Barrett, I’m so sorry for your losses. I know what you mean, I have endo and had to go through Ivf to get pregnant after miscarriage as well and after all of that heartbreak when we finally did get pregnant we learned there was something off and got a diagnosis when our baby girl was 7 weeks old. She is special needs. So I know what you mean and it does hurt when people say “As long as it’s healthy” and if it’s not? What? I’m not making perfect babies? My baby girl isn’t perfect the way she is? Off topic but I wanted to share with you.

  7. QQ says:

    I can only see/hear Kate Hudson as her Lisping with a flower on her hair ever since that Snl ep.

  8. Snarkweek says:

    Somewhere Jennifer Garner is reading this article and seething.. Fires her publicist.

  9. Really says:

    I don’t feel guilty going to work. Some Monday mornings it’s more like relief. 😧

  10. Faun says:

    My husband and I have chosen not to have kids – oh well, guess we’re imperfect. Happy, but imperfect. Probably a lot like Drew.

  11. Bodhi says:

    Well she’s right about one thing: moms shouldn’t try to be perfect. The race to lose baby weight, the mommy wars, shading other parents because they didn’t do exactly what you did… Its all insane. Parents should work together to make the world a better place for all of our kids, not tear each other down over ultimately trivial shit

  12. msw says:

    I’m not going to rip apart her comments. The point of the “babies is the perfection” thing is it doesn’t matter if your body goes back to what it was before, because you have a perfect baby to show for it. I really appreciate the sentiment, actually. My oldest daughter almost died during birth. Actually, i could have died birthing her too. I would gladly be overweight forever to have my perfect, healthy daughter (thankfully, she is now). Reality is, some weight gain is necessary for most pregnant women, but at the end of the day, its so much more important to have a healthy baby than to avoid the weight. With all the pressure and criticism of women in hollywood who are pregnant or just had babies, im sure this is on their minds a lot.

  13. BreeinSEA says:

    She’s going to get ish no matter what she says. I don’t think she meant any ill will towards someone who cannot carry a child. Just trying to remind those that do that its okay to go through changes to have a baby. It’s hard to word it without a drawn out explanation to avoid misinterpreting her point. I’m sorry to anyone who has lost their babies and I’m sorry to anyone who cannot accept the effects your giving birth has on your body. I despise my stretch marks but I try not to complain because it’s worth it.

  14. InvaderTak says:

    I’ll just have to be happy being imperfect. It’s a struggle, but with time and therapy, losing my uterus at 15 won’t be so depressing. All the problems it solved are a minor consolation. /Sarcasm

    I didn’t want kids as a teenager, and now that I for sure can’t, it doesn’t bother me. All these women who go on and on about kids being the only way to be happy need to shut it.

    • Kelly says:

      Thank you. It’s beyond obnoxious.

    • Jaded says:

      Me too, lost my plumbing over the course of many operations starting in my twenties. I didn’t want kids either so it’s a moot point, but perfection takes many forms, not just making babies. Perfection for me is making a go of a writing career, taking Reiki and therapeutic hypnosis courses so I can hopefully help people deal with issues. So I wish women like Drew would just not make such a BFD about motherhood, it seems overly sanctimonious.

  15. shellybean says:

    I like Drew, but this comment about making babies is beyond annoying. I’m so sick of women who act like being a mother is the most fulfilling thing ever and who have complete personality transplants after baby. Makes me never want to join that club.

    • Sara says:

      I know, but after becoming a first time mother last Dec. it really is true. And if you never have children you will never understand that feeling you just can’t. That said, there is absolutely nothing wrong with women who choose not to have them, I used to be one;)

  16. Caroline says:

    I don’t want to have babies, so guess I’ll never be perfect, huh?
    Drew is always and forever a silly flower child.

  17. Prim says:

    I’m fine with her saying that about her body. It’s her experience. When I had my twins I was so big I couldn’t walk round the hospital ward, where I spent far too much time. I nearly died giving birth and nearly lost one of my twins. My body looks different on the outside now and is very different on the inside too. I wouldn’t personally use the word perfection, I’m more inclined to say “It was Hell” but if someone wants to say having babies is perfection, good for them. That doesn’t negate my experience. Equally, I spent years thinking I couldn’t have kids and went through a lot of IVF to have my twins. I didn’t take it personally then when women told me having babies was amazing, although I did feel bloody jealous.

  18. Dorothy says:

    I really like Drew,, she seems geniune and I haven’t heard anything but positive things about her in years. And she is a real Mom, not too typical in LA land plus she makes other women around her feel better about themselves, not like some of these self obsessed Mom “celebs”.