Let’s face it: Childbirth, while it can be one of the most beautiful moments in a mother’s life, is hardly the most glamorous. You’re less “dewy and fresh” than you are “sweaty and bloodshot,” and if you actually allow someone to take your picture (instead of just putting your fist through their camera), chances are you will only share the resulting photo to commemorate the all-important moment your newborn was placed in your arms. How you look will feel irrelevant.
One mom’s labor pictures are going viral for the opposite reason, though. Because even though Alaha Kaliri’s baby is adorable and the look on Kaliri’s face when she holds her is beautiful, it’s the rest of Kaliri’s visage that’s getting attention — she managed to get a full face of makeup on while she was in labor, opting for what she called “full glam” during her labor experience:
And while the full-face contouring, complete with false lashes, certainly ensure that these photos are unlikely to be shoved into a shoebox until a later date, that isn’t the most impressive thing about it. Kaliri did the makeup herself — she’s a New York-based luxury business consultant and makeup artist — which is impressive enough for those of us who can’t even seem to apply eyeliner evenly, and she did it while she was in labor. As in, in between contractions:
Oh, and when things got a little too intense for her to continue? Her helpful husband stepped in with the contouring brush to keep things on track.
Whether or not you think it’s vain or genius to get dolled up for delivery, you just can’t get around the fact that Kaliri’s ability to multitask between contractions at a time when most of us are just screaming unspeakable profanities or trying not to throw up is just downright amazing. It’s like the time that woman finished her finals while she was laboring, taking online exams like she was just passing through the maternity ward. Both women had those looks of determined concentration on their faces, and they may as well have been anywhere, not necessarily confined to a hospital room. Who wouldn’t applaud that kind of badassery?
Some people don’t, obviously, because this is the Internet, and there’s always something you’re doing wrong whether you know it or not. A few commenters have stopped by the various news outlets that are posting the viral photos to comment on how vain Kaliri is and how that’s a sure sign she is a terrible mother, because what kind of mother takes even the barest moment for herself? That’s not what their labor was like, so if Kaliri’s was different, she probably just did it wrong.
Those commenters are pretty rare, though. Most people love Kaliri’s pictures, dropping by her Instagram to tell her how gorgeous she looks or tagging other makeup-minded moms and hashtagging the post under #LaborGoals. Because honestly, why should you just accept that you’re going to come out the other side of labor looking like you were just put through a literal wringer? It’s fine if you don’t mind, but if you do, what’s vain about grabbing a 35-color palette of pressed pigment to do your eyes with?
And honestly, this likely has very little to do with vanity. Labor is long. In between the pain and the puking, it’s also very boring. Kaliri is a makeup artist, and she found a way to pass the time, look flawless while doing it, and she potentially stirred up a little business for herself in the process. That’s hardly a bad thing.
Most of us pass the time with crochet, bad T.V. or talking ourselves out of doing something we’ll regret. We look puffy and miserable doing it, and all we manage to stir up is a little bad blood between ourselves and our in-laws when we tell them that if they don’t leave right now, we’re going to name the baby KozyShack Kardashian-Obama just to spite them.
No matter how you go through it, labor is incredible. It’s messy, scary, exciting and beautiful. Kaliri only added an adjective: glamorous. And we think that’s awesome!