Once upon a time, there lived a lively young woman who smelled only of the freshest scents. Never did she go a day without bathing and washing her hair or being dressed in the finest linen. Oh, her house was immaculately free of dust and dirt too. Then one day, motherhood came knocking on the door and everything changed.
I'm pretty sure that sums up a fragment of our lives. Tell me, when was the last time you sprayed on your Chanel No. 5? Or how long has that spinach been stuck between your teeth? And are you sure you've changed out of your PJ's at all?
Here we dish out all the horror stories, from pungent-smelling diapers to the reek of weeks of unwashed hair to the wonders of baby spits on your favorite blouse. If you're a 'been there, done that' mum, then sit back, relax and enjoy this piece with a satirical frame of mind. If you're a new mum in the block, be afraid. Be very, very afraid. Many long, dark and dreary days loom ahead. So here are the top 15 smells that we will be living with for the next few years. Get ready to pinch your noses ladies.
15 Eau De Baby Spit Ups
If you think you'd even be smelling slightly of Dior, then think again. 'Why' you might ask? This is because even if you did have the opportunity to dab or spray on any kind of perfume at all, the aroma would be overtaken by the overpowering smell of baby spit ups.
One could be confidently carrying one's baby in one hand and donning on the latest entry in the world of perfumes, step into Target for a quick grocery shopping only to realize that people are pinching their noses around you. You take a whiff, and hmm.....something does smell bad. Could it be a smell from the cold produce section? No. Could it be something you stepped on? Definitely not. Then realization will hit you like a smack in the face. The stench is coming from the shirt you're wearing and it has baby's breakfast spit on it. You can either hide your face in shame or ignore the stares, or complete your shopping with your head held high and swear to lock yourself at home and do online shopping only for the rest of your life.
14 Formula Parfum
Now this one isn't so bad. Research has shown that people tend to spill at least 5 to 10 percent of milk powder in the process of scooping it. And out of this small percentage of milk powder, some will end up on our bodies. Also, milk droplets can be sprayed onto our bodies when we manually shake the milk bottles. Other times, the clumsy us will spill the milk all over our own bodies. Hence, most mothers tend to end up smelling a lot like their milk powders.
One mum decided to launch a new fragrance based on milk powders. Suffice to say her foray into this one of business failed. Miserably. Why waste money trying to smell of milk powder when you can get the natural scent every day for free?
13 CK Breastmilk
This one's a gem. Imagine breastfeeding the baby. Baby sucks and sucks hungrily until baby burps. Baby is full and falls asleep on your bosom. You gently unlatch the baby and place them back in the crib, pull your shirt down, give a big sigh of relief and tiptoe out of the nursery. But the catch here is, while unlatching, a few trickles of breastmilk have stained your work attire. Or, you quickly give a peck to your mom for helping look after the baby while you zoom off to the office to give an important presentation. You arrive at the office ahead of time and start preparing your slideshow for the big shots. Then you get a whiff of familiar scent. You look down on horror and realize that the dark blue blouse you are wearing is stained with your breast milk. Nooooo......
You spend the rest of the presentation sweating it out, hoping no one notices the stain on your blouse or minds the faint smell of breastmilk more than the details of the presentation itself.
12 Baby Food Cologne
Once the baby learns to sit and crawl, they will be ready for puffs and purees. To enable the little ones to pick up motor skills, most moms will let their babies play with their food. Some will give them carrot sticks or avocados to play and chew. Others will place a few puffs for the little ones to learn to pick them up. Most of the food, however, will usually end up being smeared all over the little one as well as you. Yes, you.
So forget about anointing yourself with perfume every morning. You'll most likely end up smelling like pureed bananas ( not so bad) and chunky potatoes and barley at the end of the day. Do not fear the smell...baby food smells are the lesser of many evils. Instead, embrace them as you would any other kind of branded perfumes.
11 Sweat Deodorant
Researchers agree that mothers work more hours than every other person in any field of work. The work includes feeding the baby, cleaning up the baby, cooking for the baby, doing the laundry, cleaning up the house, running for groceries, preparing breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the rest of the family, managing a career, etc. The list can go on and on and on. Basically a mother's job ( both physical and emotional) go well into the night even after all the kids and the spouse have been tucked away in bed. This, therefore, means that a mother sweats buckets while working, and because she can be so busy, she probably won't have time for a nice cooling bath and would most definitely soak in her own sweat and permeate the air surrounding her. But fret not, many claim that a sweaty woman is a sexy woman. Methinks whoever made that statement has never been near a sweaty mum.
10 Some Fresh Spray
Whenever you change your baby's diaper, chances are, you will get peed on by the little one. The probability of getting wet from the pee is also rather high when your baby's diaper leaks urine while you carry them. Not to mention, you will most likely get soaked in your baby's pee if you co-sleep with them. Sometimes they pee on you right before you can dump them in the bathtub. Other times, they pee on you right after you scoop them up from the bathtub. In short, get used to smelling like baby pee. It is not as pungent as the smell of adult urine but they can be quite put-off and is considered not hygienic by basically everyone ( and they're right!)
So mothers, always carry baby wipes and an extra pair of attire. No, not just for the baby, prepare an extra outfit for yourself too whenever you plan to go out with your baby lest you end up smelling of baby pee.
9 Essential Oil Of Baby Odor
Not only should mothers work at lightning speed when changing nappies for fear of being sprayed on with pee, they should also watch out for baby poop smearing on momma too. This is especially true when baby's poops are watery (this can be quite common especially when the baby has an upset stomach due to milk change or having ingested some dirt they picked up from the floor). Also, when a baby has extreme diahrea, the poop can be so liquidated that it can actually trickle down the diaper and well, leave their mark on you. Now both of you will smell of poop (cue to BgA's ridiculously catchy Dong Saya Dae poop song).
There will be times when a speck or two of the poop will have made their way to our shirts without us noticing it until it is way too late. So in the event that you finally realize you have baby poop on your shirt while you are out in public, pretend not to know where the odor comes from. Give other people dirty looks. Make them think they are the guilty ones. Then quickly make an exit and never return to the same shop again. Ever.
8 Parfum De Saliva
Babies salivate. A lot. Especially when they start teething. They can drool so much they put the Nigeria Falls to shame. Not only that, they can put their mummies to shame too with all the smell of baby saliva. While babies' saliva does not stink so badly, they aren't exactly CK or Chanel quality either. There's just this odor of milk mixed with stomach acid.
Babies tend to drool more excessively come the fourth to the twelfth month when the baby teeth and molars keep pushing out. Their gums would be extremely itchy and many would develop a habit of not only drooling on mummy but also sinking their gums onto mommy's shoulders and leaving a lot of saliva there, probably to claim their territory (much like how puppies tend to urinate at a spot to claim their territory). Behold my saliva on mommy's shoulders. She is my property from now on. So hands off people.
7 Not So Much Chanel No 5 As Days Of Unwashed Sleepwear
A long time ago, we would wake up from our beauty sleep and change out of our jammies to start a brand new day. Well, those days are gone and they probably won't come back for another decade or so. These days, we'll wake up to stained crumply sleepwear that has most likely not seen the washing machine in days. We will smell of sweat, baby spit ups, stained milk and maybe even a little bit of baby urine. Heck, we'll even have the colors of stained milk to remind us of how much we stink.
Perhaps we'll try to wriggle out of the nightwear but right before we can pull them off our head, the baby cries an avalanche tears. The baby needs me, we say. To heck with the shirt. I gotta stop the house from being flooded with baby's tears first. And by the time we manage to calm down the little one, half a day would have been gone and we'll forget all about our stinky little nightwear.
6 Baby Gas De Toilette
Since babies only consume milk and some purees, the emission of wind from their anus (aka the big ol' fart) shouldn't smell bad right? In fact, they shouldn't smell at all. Right?
Well, we couldn't be more wrong. Whoever made that assumption has probably never held a farting baby before. 'Why' you might ask? This is because babies' fart can be quite the bomb. Sure, milk and purees aren't harmful, but mix them with stomach acid for a few hours and boy will they generate all kinds of fart bombs. One would literally need to wear a face mask when handling gassy babies. Kidding! But seriously, babies' fart can be rather unpleasant at times. Especially when they have not pooped for a long period of time or when they have an upset stomach. So get used to baby fart bombs, because they are here to stay, whether you like it or not.
5 Scent Of The Week-Long Unwashed Hair
Prepare to go for days without washing your hair once the baby comes. You won't have time to change out of your pajamas or spend a few minutes in the bathroom to wash that greasy hair of yours. You'll be lucky to even get to pee in peace without your little one bawling at the bathroom door for dear ol' mummy to pick 'em up.
While you might go 'Ewww' and 'yuck', your baby most likely will not mind mummy with messy, greasy hair. In fact, they might like you even more, since your body odor will be stronger for them to identify with. The same cannot be said for everyone else though. It would definitely be a put off to your spouse, colleagues, and friends. So that is why many mothers tend to get a 'mum bob' (aka mums chop off their once long and lustrous locks in favor of shorter hair for easier maintenance) right after birth. Well, if it's any consolation, short messy hair is considered sexy by many.
4 Aroma Of Oily Face
There was a time when many of us were more youthful and had ample time on our hands to go for facials and beauty therapies. The idea was to present only the best facade to the world. But when the baby came, most, if not all, of our attention turned towards this great little miracle so we were left with very little time for ourselves. Hence, the oily and unwashed face (amongst other body parts heh).
If once we had time to pick on our blackheads, now we just let the blackheads rule. After all, the spots will just give us an edgier look. Right? Right? (Gives you a death stare until you agree). And didn't studies show that people with oily faces tend to have fewer wrinkles? (Shakes fist in the air and goes into denial mode).
3 Eau De Bad Breath
If you thought unkept hair and oily faces were bad enough, wait till you smell the breath of new mums. They will literally take your breath away. No kidding. Some have gone for as long as a week without even touching the toothbrush. Many have long forgotten that such cleaning tools even exist. Others just shut their mouth and try not to talk too much, lest they get sued for air pollution.
Being a new mum is no easy feat. One basically has to make an effort to find time for oneself. The best thing would be to have someone to help you during the first few trying months, just so you slowly but surely ease into the less than the glamorous role of 'motherhood'. But if you can't, then well, be ready with a pack of chewing mints because you'll definitely be needing it.
2 Scent Of Her Downstairs
One of the greatest horrors to ever face a newborn's mother is the scent of stained urine on their hair down there or the pungent smell of unwashed private areas rising to fill our nostrils.
Imagine this, your bladder is full from not having visited the loo in the last 10 hours and you quickly pop into the bathroom for a quickie. Not even 5 seconds have passed before your little one comes crawling to the bathroom door peeking in and crying his or her eyes out. And you haven't even taken a dump in three whole days! You quickly pee fast as you can, pull up the baggy shorts and scoop up your little one at lightning speed before he or she tumbles into the bathroom floor. Sound familiar? Some even have to carry their babies on their laps and sing 'the wheels on the bus to them' if they are truly unable to hold back their poop anymore. Standing ovation for mommas, please.
1 The Changing Baby Odor
As babies grow, their sweat glands will develop and mature. Once that happens, many of them will sweat profusely, especially during the first few hours of sleep. Sweat, mixed with the dribbles of their saliva, milk spit ups, and leaky diapers, and you might just get a slightly smelly baby. Oh, the smell won't be a turn-off. Babies, however much they stink, (baby poop aside), will still generally smell better than the average adult. They will, however, have a baby odor that will send a signal to your brain, "please clean me up so I can be all cuddly again".
The strange thing about baby odor is that they tend to rub off on you. So even after you've bathed the little one and puffed them in baby powder or lotion, the odor will still somehow linger on your body, like a vein that has to plant its roots in you.....sounds scary but true. Try as you might, it will be hard to get rid of the baby odor unless you manage to have a proper shower and hair shampoo session. Which by the way is extremely hard to come by. So happy baby odor everyone!
References: Babycenter.com, Mumjunction.com, Livestrong.com