Being pregnant on a movie set is not ideal. Neither is going on tour, dancing, staying up all hours of the night or shaking hands with lots of germy fans. Being a celebrity, in fact, is in no way conducive to pregnancy. No one wants to be photographed leaving their OB-GYN, exhausted and pale from morning sickness. No pregnant woman I know would be interested in spending 2 hours getting their hair and makeup done, standing in 5-inch heels for 10 hours under bright lights, then sleeping in a chair on set in their first trimester. Planning to get pregnant during a career lull or waiting to do so until the right time makes sense for a lot of successful women.
We all know that woman - the one who plans her pregnancy down to the month. The teacher who plans her maternity leave during the summer, so she doesn't lose any benefits. The one who wants to get tenured before becoming a mom. Then there's the attorney with a big trial coming up, that won't ditch her IUD until it's over.
With lucrative projects that can take years at a time, it's no surprise that celebrities like to plan ahead when it comes to pregnancy. Their bodies, salaries and schedule can all be affected by the choice to grow their family. Whether they're a model, athlete, producer or mother to other children, adding on to their brood can greatly impact the power of their rising star.
While conception is no easy feat, these women made it happen exactly when they wanted in an effort to keep working, earning and being relevant. Here are 15 ways they planned pregnancy around their careers.
15 Adele - Scheduled In Between Tours
As she wrapped up her tour in late 2016, vocal powerhouse Adele announced to the sold-out crowd in Phoenix that she was off to "have another baby!". Adele and her longtime partner Simon Konecki are also parents to son Angelo, 4. Adele has garnered a reputation for being 'chatty' on her tours, not that fans are complaining of course, so it makes sense that she would take the opportunity to announce the good news with her fans.
In March 2017 Adele's Instagram image caused quite a stir -- it showed the singer holding her tummy during a backstage rehearsal. Of course, fans speculated that this meant she was already with child. Whether she is or she isn't, one thing is for sure - we can't wait for the singer to pour her heart into new music and hit the road once again!
14 Carrie Underwood - Age Matters
We have all loved Carrie Underwood since she was the baby-faced country singer headed for super stardom on American Idol. Her sweet nature, outrageous talent and down-to-earth personality won us over at the get-go. It was no surprise, then, that in addition to being an international megastar, she chose to become a mom.
Carrie and professional hockey player husband Mike Fisher welcomed son Isaiah in 2015. The singer often posts photos of her outrageously cute family on her personal Instagram page. They can be seen doing yoga, dressing up in costume and just being downright adorable.
The singer, however, has seemingly held off on adding to her family. Amid her husband's recent retirement from professional hockey and Isaiah's 2nd birthday, it looks like the perfect time to add baby #2. Underwood has said only that she would leave having other children "up to God". She has also said that "every minute away from her son makes her feel guilty." Perhaps she wants to give Isaiah the only-child treatment as long as possible!
13 Megan Hilty - Kids And Showbiz
Musical maven and former 'good witch' in Wicked, Megan Hilty thought she would never embark on parenthood at all. The blonde beauty did not see the possibility of having children and a full-time acting and singing career. She thought that parenting would mean giving up late-night shows, filming television series' (including her star turn on NBC's Smash) and time with her husband, Brian Gallagher. Once she discovered that she could tour while pregnant, and even travel with her children, the possibilities were endless.
When Hilty became pregnant with daughter Viola, she and her husband were on a full-fledged world tour. The couple worked up until Viola's birth, even dedicating a sweet song to her in-utero at each concert. They followed suit when Hilty became pregnant with their second child, son Ronan.
Once the Broadway star saw that pregnancy and motherhood could fit into her career, she became unstoppable. She has since recorded a Christmas album, and embarked on its promotional tour.
12 Gwyneth Paltrow - Career First
Yes, she grew up with a silver spoon in her mouth, but that didn't give Gwyneth Paltrow permission to take the easy road in Hollywood. She spent years working on films like Emma, Seven and Sliding Doors before her award-winning turn in Shakespeare in Love.
Rather than having children during the height of her career, Paltrow chose to focus on acting. Only after years of consistently bringing in rave reviews, however, did she decide that family and children were a possibility. Taking a step back from the movie biz didn't pose much of a risk at that time since Paltrow was already an Oscar winner and solid earner. She was at a time in her life and career when she could definitely afford to take some time off and become pregnant with then-husband Chris Martin.
Paltrow has said, though, that her career after having children is "nowhere near where it once was." While she used to star in three movies a year, she now favors supporting roles and running her website, goop.com. In her case, waiting on pregnancy was a smart decision! We wouldn't expect anything less from Ms. Paltrow.
11 Lauren Conrad - The Optimal Time To Conceive
We've all known and loved Lauren Conrad since she was an 18-year-old high-school student with dreams of becoming a fashion designer. From Laguna Beach to Fashion Week, we've seen her grow into a lovely 31-year-old woman.
Over the years, Conrad has become somewhat of a fashion mogul. She has several lines at Kohl's, a boutique line called Paper Crown, a website and a bit of a cult following. Her girly, floral designs always leave us swooning.
Needless to say, Conrad is busy. She devoted her 20's entirely to growing her business, and needed to find the perfect time to plan a pregnancy. While she learned the hard way that it's not always so easy, she managed to handle her pregnancy with grace and calm.
Conrad made sure that her clothing lines had good people working behind the scenes before she embarked on her journey to pregnancy. Not surprisingly, she also used her personal milestone as inspiration for a maternity clothing line. Mogul, indeed!
10 Hilary Duff - Pregnancy Was An Excuse
Nothing makes you feel older than when you find out Lizzie McGuire is a mom, am I right? All jokes aside, Hilary Duff has been acting since the ripe young age of 6. She has starred in commercials, miniseries, Disney shows and a solid handful of feature films. The girl has hustled, to say the least.
One year after marrying professional hockey play Mike Comrie, Duff became pregnant with their first child, son Luca. Duff has said that she wanted a full year to spend with Mike as a married couple before adding to their family. She also used the opportunity to take a breather from her lifelong career.
Only 24 at the time, Ms. Duff didn't waste any time planning to pick up right where she left off. During her pregnancy she was quoted as saying that "she couldn't wait to get back into the recording studio after giving birth." She did just that! Her sixth album Breathe In. Breathe out. debuted in 2016. She also now stars on the TV Land series Younger.
9 Heidi Klum - Documented Her Perfect Body First
We all know Heidi Klum as a Jane-of-all-trades. She works as a host, actress, model, fashion critic and reality star. Before Heidi became a megastar, though, she was most well known for her amazing figure and multiple Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue covers.
Born in Germany, Klum began modeling at the age of 18. From then, her career skyrocketed, as she earned gigs for Victoria's Secret and became a regular on the cover of international fashion magazines. Her beautiful body and face has been well-documented over the years, making her a favorite among fashion fans all over the world.
After promoting her various covers and fashion spots, America began to fall in love with Klum's personality. Charming and goofy, she became a regular on the talk show circuit. In 2004 she became a mother for the first time, welcoming daughter Leni.
A regular body is difficult to maintain after giving birth, but maintaining a model body seems near impossible. At this point, Klum's career began to shift. She became the host of Bravo's hit show Project Runway. The audience fell in love with her voice and spirit, and soon she was also hosting America's Got Talent and Germany's Next Top Model. She may not be a regularly working model anymore, but motherhood has surely impacted her career for the better!
8 Serena Williams - Perfect Timing
Serena Williams is a force to be reckoned with. I don't know about any of you, but I could barely walk to the kitchen in my first trimester, let alone win a professional athletic event. Some professional athletes might choose to take it easy in their first few months, but not Serena.
Instead of planning her career around her pregnancy, she planned her pregnancy around her career. After her epic 23rd grand slam at the Australian Open, the athlete stopped competing for the remainder of her pregnancy.
Williams has said that pregnancy calmed her, although she still had fears about her health while carrying a baby. In 2011, after foot surgery, Williams was treated for pulmonary embolisms. The tennis star had to inject herself with blood thinners all throughout her pregnancy.
After a long break with new baby girl, Alexis Jr., Williams plans to return to the site of her last victory - the Australian Open in Melbourne this January.
7 Kristin Cavallari - Pregnancy Became Part Of Her Brand
Kristin Cavallari is living a real-life reality show. She said that she wanted to have 2 children back-to-back before marrying quarterback husband Jay Cutler, and that she did. Luckily, she was able to parlay motherhood into an ever growing brand of healthy cookbooks and lifestyle tips.
Since becoming a mother, Cavallari's career has flourished. She has hosted several red-carpet pre-shows on E!, written a cookbook, had two more children and developed shoe and jewelry fashion lines. One look at Cavallari's personal Instagram page, and you can really begin to understand why she is #momgoals. She has also written two books! Balancing in Heels, published in 2016, is a lifestyle guide to how she juggles all of her responsibilities. True Roots, set to debut in 2018, is a cookbook full of organic fare and healthy food for the whole family.
Before getting pregnant, Cavallari was another reality star-turned-wannabe-actress. Now she can hold her own among Hollywood's most elite moms and organic chefs. Green muffin, please!
6 Behati Prinsloo - A Fitness Routine Before Getting Pregnant
Victoria's Secret models like Alexandra Ambrosio and Behati Prinsloo started planning a 'fit pregnancy' before they ever tried to conceive. The preparation that goes into maintaining a model body begins long before conception.
Walking in the Victoria's Secret fashion show takes months of hard work. While the models consistently stay fit, their workout and diet plans intensify in the weeks leading up to the big show. Most of them have trainers and exercise upwards of 6 days a week. This creates a nice baseline for when they are ready to try to conceive.
The models are advised to get to their goal weight or even below before trying to get knocked up. This way, when they gain a few extra pounds (as pregnant women often do), it doesn't show as much. They attain this weight by following a strict diet high in vegetables and lean protein, as well as hitting the gym. Being in good shape before a pregnancy is said to help them "bounce back" more quickly after giving birth.
As far as bouncing back goes, the sooner they can get back into their lingerie, the better. While calorie restriction isn't recommended, light exercise and healthy eating is.
5 Tina Fey - Already Out Of Her System
Physical comedy, long hours and late nights are not very conducive to pregnancy. Tina Fey would know this firsthand. The hilarious writer-turned-actress spent much of her late 20's and 30's writing for and then performing on Saturday Night Live. A fan favorite, Fey later sat at the famed Weekend Update anchor chair.
As hilarious as the show is, working on SNL is not for the faint of heart. Planning for each week's show begins on Monday and includes mostly 12-14 hour days of writing, set-building, junk-food eating and performing. By the time Saturday rolls around, the crew has performed an extremely physical comedy show multiple times. Being pregnant or having a family would certainly not be ideal for any part of the crew.
Fey worked on the show from 1997-2006 and was no doubt a valuable part of the team. The demanding work, however, kept her from getting pregnant until 2011. Fey spoke in her memoir "Bossypants" about the dwindling job opportunities for older women in Hollywood. She chose to take advantage of her opportunities while she was still in-demand as a writer and actress.
Fey eventually gave birth to two children, daughters Alice and Penelope. She spoke openly about her struggle to plan a second pregnancy, fearing that it would end her career. Fortunately, it didn't: she can still be seen guest-starring on sporadic SNL episodes and producing hits like The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt for Netflix.
4 Jennifer Garner - Waited Until She's Older
Jennifer Garner seems like she was born to be a mother. Her warm smile, sweet nature and girl-next-door vibe show her nurturing spirit. Each paparazzi photo of her is a near advertisement for the perfect family.
Now a mom of three, Garner speaks often about being a working mother. Like so many of us, she chose to strike while her career iron was hot before bringing children into the picture. Her 20's were filled with hit shows like Felicity and Alias, plus guest turns on Law & Order and Spin City. Then, her movie career picked up with the adorable 13 Going on 30 and Daredevil.
After years of working hard and paying her dues, Garner was ready to wed and start a family once she met now-estranged husband Ben Affleck. Approaching motherhood as a 30-something sure paid off, as she is now viewed as one of Hollywood's most down-to-earth, grounded moms. In fact, she and Affleck were recently photographed bringing their children to church.
3 Cameran Eubanks - One Last Vacation
Cameran Eubanks has made a nice career out of being a reality star. At 19, she starred on MTV's The Real World. One decade, real estate license and husband later she can currently be seen on the Bravo hit Southern Charm. The show takes place in Eubanks' native South Carolina, where it follows a group of young people living in Charleston.
Ms. Eubanks is lovable as ever as the mother hen of her cast mates. Ever the southern belle, she is always dressed to perfection and giving sage advice to her friends. After much deliberation in Season 3 of the popular reality show, Eubanks decided to grow her family with doctor husband Jason Wimberley.
Not so fast! First, she wanted to take her friends on a party-heavy vacation to Key West. Castmate Whitney Sudler-Smith even told his mother, the inimitable Patricia Altschul, that the trip was meant to be Eubanks' last hurrah before settling down.
The vacay did not disappoint. We saw the cast eating, drinking and staying out all night. Eubanks must have felt the same, because she was pregnant a few months later!
2 Rachel Zoe - Expanded The Fashion Empire First
Fan's of Bravo's now-defunct The Rachel Zoe Project will remember the stylish starlet and her business-partner husband, Rodger. The Starbucks-toting, fur-clad, platform heel-wearing mogul would do anything for her clients. We watched her fly to Paris on a whim, drive in LA traffic and claw her way backstage at fashion shows. To say she was dedicated to her career is an understatement.
In the second-to-last season of the show, however, tensions began to rise between Zoe and her husband about when to expand their family. Rodger urged her to see a doctor due to her "advanced maternal age", but Rachel refused, saying that she wasn't ready yet - there was more she wanted from her career. Making room in her life for motherhood seemed daunting, given her success and growing list of ambitions.
Eventually Zoe had two sons, Skyler Morrison and Kaius Jagger. The fashionista welcomed her first son at nearly 40 years old, and her second at 41. She got right back to work and is now a high-profile designer in addition to celebrity stylist.
1 Jennifer Lopez - Get It Done Before Having Babies
No one could describe Jennifer Lopez as anything less than a megastar. We have watched her films, listened to her albums, seen her dance, produce, host and more. Lopez worked her entire life to become the sensation that she is, and for that reason, she took her time having babies.
The world really began to take notice of Lopez in the film Selena, where she depicted the late singer. The audience was struck by her beauty, charisma and versatility. A few years went by and she released her first album, On the 6. Not only did everyone love it, they were inspired and impressed by Lopez's talent and ability to excel in more than one field.
Toward the end of her 2007 tour, the superstar revealed that she was expecting twins with then-husband Marc Anthony. She managed to take a bit of time off after their birth, but even that didn't slow her down. She has since hosted American Idol and begun producing and acting in the new NBC series Shades of Blue.