When Jessica Alba became a mother for the first time in 2008 at 27, an allergic reaction to a baby detergent led her down a path that would ultimately lead to her new venture – The Honest Company – which offers a range of non-toxic home, body care and baby products.
Alba says motherhood has given her “the most intense responsibility” to create the right environment for her two daughters, Honor and Haven. Like any young mum, Alba has found motherhood “awesome” but not without its challenges and learning something new every day.
She says she created The Honest Company because she “had to. We had to make it easier for parents to buy safe products for their families.”
In addition to The Honest Company’s product range, Alba has also published her first book which includes personal stories, strategies and tips from the actress.
The Honest Life: Living Naturally and True to You covers all aspects of living a healthier, more sustainable lifestyle, from natural beauty products and discovering your personal fashion sense, to clean eating and avoiding toxic flame retardants in furniture.
Here’s a few starter tips from Alba for women and especially mums who may want to live more honestly.
1. Read labels. Carefully. “Know what you’re bringing into the house. Know what you’re putting on your skin,” Alba says. “I think that was the biggest eye opener for me. You’re not going to do everything right away but understanding it and knowing you have the power to make different and better choices.”
2. Minimise stress. The idea of cleaning up your live can sound daunting but it’s easier if you’re not frazzled. “You can sleep, it’s possible – it’s about putting your kid on a schedule instead of letting them run you. When you put the kids to bed at 7pm, you get to be a woman with your husband. Make sure you feel like a grown-up in this time so you’re not always tired, stressed and trying to catch up.” Alba’s favourite healthy de-stresser is to get in the bath.
3. Simplify your beauty and fashion style. Alba’s book guides reader to find a “personal style sense” while keeping it healthy and sustainable. She recommends natural make-up. “There are so many awesome beauty DIY things you can do literally from the pantry,” she says. When it comes to clothes, Alba cautions against cheap, fast fashion. “Invest in some key pieces in your wardrobe that you know you’re going to wear for a long time, or even in vintage clothing that you can pass down.” She also says that every stylish woman has a great blazer and a pair of ballet flats.