-either one of the two soft parts on a woman’s chest that produce milk when she has a baby
-the front part of a person’s body between the neck and the stomach
-the chest thought of as the place where emotions are felt
There has always been a lot of controversy around breasts. What’s appropriate? What’s inappropriate? What is considered sexually explicit? Is a mother breastfeeding her child considered sexually explicit? Or, is it just considered sexually explicit simply because a breast is involved?
Society has long debated the appropriateness of breastfeeding in public. Celebrities have been speaking out more and advocating for breastfeeding, positivism, and their rights as women. If a bottle-fed baby is hungry when a mother is out, she can feed her baby; but a woman who breastfeeds can’t?
Celebs are gaining more attention in the media recently, sharing breastfeeding pics on their social media pages. They are raising awareness and attempting to dilute the stigma surrounding breastfeeding.
So, which celebs are pro-breastfeeding? Which ones have actually been caught out in public breastfeeding? Or even did a photo-shoot while nursing? Scroll down to check out which mommy celebs have made the list.
15. Maggie Gyllenhaal
The actress was spotted breastfeeding her daughter, Ramona, when she was 7-months-old at a New York City park. The paparazzi printed some pretty intimate shots of Maggie and caused a bit of controversy. The actress felt scrutinized and judged for a decision that was hers and hers alone to make.
Gyllenhaal has commented about the pressures of breastfeeding and raising a newborn.
“I’m not a leave-them-in-their-crib-to-cry kind of girl. Fundamentally, I didn’t find that worked. Everyone’s got their own thing, you know? You can’t tell another person when it’s right to stop breastfeeding, or how to put your kid to sleep. Every child is different.”
The Dark Knight star became a hero to breastfeeding activists.
14. Julie Bowen
The star of the popular series, Modern Family, was not shy at all about sharing her experience with breastfeeding. In 2010, she made an appearance on Lopez Tonight, and showed viewers a photo of her nursing her twin boys, John and Gus.
The actress joked that the two were like “little liposuction machines on you” and that breastfeeding had definitely helped her get back to her pre-baby weight. Julie later commented on her feelings about the pressures of breastfeeding. “I’m a big live and let live-r,” Julie said. “Seriously [do it], if it works for you, if it’s easy. If it wasn’t easy, I wouldn’t have done it. Some people can’t do it physically…so don’t do it.”
13. Salma Hayek
The actress made headlines back in 2009 on a philanthropic trip to Sierra Leone when she breastfed a week-old infant whose mother was too weak and hungry to product milk. Hayek had still been breastfeeding her own daughter, Valentina, at the time.
The actress was hoping to raise awareness that Sierra Leone has the highest infant mortality rate in the world. This is mainly due to the fact that women there feel pressured to stop breastfeeding early because the men there believe that they cannot have sex with a breastfeeding woman. Hayek later went on to comment about the experience, “I actually think my baby would be very proud to share her milk. And when she grows up I’m going to make sure she continues to be a generous, caring person.”
12. Keely Shaye Smith
Pierce Brosnan, a.k.a. James Bond, and his wife, former journalist Keely Shaye Smith, were famously featured in the December 1997 issue of REDBOOK. The couple was featured on the cover with their (then) 11-month-old son, Dylan. At that time, this was seen as pretty daring for a magazine cover. The editor in chief of REDBOOK, Kate White, said at the time that the magazine decided to produce two covers—one a bit more…traditional—as they did not want to force the image on anyone. Convenience stores even claimed the right to move the cover behind the counter along with risqué men’s magazines like Playboy.
11. Mayim Bialik
Mayim Bialik, star of the popular series The Big Bang Theory, posted a photo on her social media of her breastfeeding her son, Fred, on a New York City Subway. Talk about not giving a crap what other people think! Bialik was very open about her choice to breastfeed her son longer than most mothers. She even became a lactation educator!
The actress also wrote an accompanying piece to compliment the pic. “I have written about my now 3-year-old son Fred, and his nursing rhythms before,” Mayim wrote. “To recap: Fred nursed for a solid 12 months with no supplements, no solid foods, and not even a sip of water. He got the hang of eating solids around 18 months, but continued to nurse all day (with bottles of pumped breastmilk when I was at work), and on demand all night. A typical night involved no less than four wake-ups and sometimes six (every 2 hours on the clock for 12 hours of bed time was not unusual). This went on for almost 3 years.”
Sounds like a nightmare.
10. Alyssa Milano
Actress Alyssa Milano shared an adorable pic of her nursing her daughter, Elizabeth, with her Facebook followers. The actress has been an outspoken breastfeeding activist. With her post, she added a touching quote, “Ah, the joy of sucking! She lovingly watched the fishlike motions of the toothless mouth as she imagine that with her milk there flowed into her little son her deepest thoughts, concepts, and dreams.” ~Milan Kundera
Milano took to becoming a breastfeeding “advocate” after sharing many photos of herself and her daughter. The actress was stunned by how opinionated people were about “something that is supposed to be so incredible natural.”
9. Gisele Bundchen
This infamous photo with Gisele features the model feeding her daughter while she got her hair and nails done. Vivian, her daughter with NFL quarterback Tom Brady, was 1-year-old at the time. Her photo caused a debate online to spread. Women were accusing her of exploiting an intimate moment between a mother and child and other women lashed back at her haters and came to Gisele’s defense.
The highest paid model in the world was also later criticized for posting a picture of her infant daughter with her ears pierced.
8. Jerry Hall
After the Brosnan’s cover on REDBOOK, it appeared they had started a trend. Actress and model Jerry Hall was featured on the cover of Vanity Fair, shot by the infamous Annie Leibovtiz, breastfeeding her son, Gabriel. Rocker Mick Jagger is the child’s father; although he and Jerry were no longer together at the time of the photo. Jerry’s cover was much more revealing than the Brosnans’.
This magazine cover is the perfect example of the tension between the female identities of a sexual woman and as a nurturing mother. Hall’s photo is much more sexually themed than the Brosnan’s. Hall is dressed in slinky heels and a glamorous fur coat, with her long, silky legs on display.
7. Doutzen Kroes
Another Victoria’s Secret Angel makes the list—Doutzen Kroes shared a rather revealing picture breastfeeding with the hashtag #workingmom. The model has posted a few more pics of her and her daughter, Myllena, feeding. In fact, I think she may have set a record- posting four breastfeeding pictures in three months. She has posted to her fans saying that she is promoting breastfeeding, adding, “It’s the best for your baby when possible!”
In March of 2015, Kroes did a photoshoot for Vogue Netherlands where she is seen breastfeeding her daughter sitting on a bed with husband, Sunnery James.
6. Angelina Jolie
The daring and stunning actress opened up back in 2008 for W magazine’s November issue, including photographs shot by her husband, Brad Pitt. One of the photographs was a black and white image of her breastfeeding one of their (then) 3-month-old twins, Knox or Vivienne.
Angie opened up about breastfeeding during a very emotional time of her life.
“I had lost my mum, I’d had a baby and I’d been breastfeeding and I was in a very emotional place as a woman. I knew instinctually and talked to Brad about it, that if I could find something that would get me physical again it would be like therapy, because everything was making me cry.”
5. Kourtney Kardashian
Kourtney Kardashian is definitely taking the most natural and holistic approach to health out of all of her reality star sisters. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that Kourtney was spotted in public breastfeeding her daughter Penelope, who was one at the time.
The Keeping Up With The Kardashians star has been outspoken about her love and support for breastfeeding, she had even talked to Kim about the possibility of wet nursing when they both had infants. “She said to me, ‘One sister should babysit all the kids, so I can go out or vice-versa, and whichever sister is babysitting should just breastfeed all the kids that are there,’” Kim shared.
4. Gwen Stefani
Punk rocker and super cool mom Gwen Stefani has been open about her choice to breastfeed. She shared a sweet moment with her social media followers back when her son Zuma was 3 months old of her breastfeeding him on a park bench in Los Angeles. She has also shared many other images of her breastfeeding including this stunning image during a trip in Switzerland.
During her band No Doubt’s reunion tour, the singer had shared about the difficulties she had trying to wean her son, Zuma, off of breastfeeding, “I didn’t want him to [quit],” Gwen said. “It felt like a total rejection. It was really hormonal, and trying to stop in the middle of tour was insane.”
3. Miranda Kerr
The Victoria’s Secret Angel shared a photo of her breastfeeding her son Flynn in full hair and makeup at a photo-shoot that spread like wildfire across the internet. This wasn’t the first time she shared such intimate photos… The model shared a pic of her breastfeeding baby Flynn just hours after giving birth!
Kerr also gave breastfeeding some credit for being able to get back in shape so quickly.
“I think if you really eating the right foods, putting the nutrition into your body and doing yoga and breastfeeding; those things have helped me get back into shape. I remember I was on the elliptical machine when I was pregnant with Flynn.”
2. Jaime King
Actress Jaime King took to social media to celebrate her son James’ 8-month birthday by sharing an intimate photo of her nursing with her fans. King has spoken out against mothers getting shamed for breastfeeding in public, saying “Breastfeeding should not be taboo- and bottle feeding should not be judged- it’s ALL fun for the whole family :)”
King spoke out on her belief that every woman should have the right and the choice to do what she wants to do for her child. The criticism hasn’t stopped this mommy from sharing intimate and adorable photos with her family!
1. Olivia Wilde
Actor and actress couple Olivia Wilde and Jason Sudekis announced the birth of their son, little Otis, in 2014. Olivia posed for Glamour in the fall of 2014 with Otis. One of the shots includes an intimate image of her breastfeeding. The star is a supporter of breastfeeding, “Breast-feeding is the most natural thing. I don’t know, now it feels like Otis should always be on my breast.”
Wilde did not expect to receive any of the negative reactions that she did, “I certainly didn’t expect people to be upset at the obscenity of public breastfeeding,” she said. “I was shocked that there were still people who find it inappropriate because they think it’s a sexual thing. I think that says a lot about them.”