Jenna Kutcher is like that one friend in every group who *always* has the best advice — whether you’re packing for your first trip with a new baby, questioning your next career move, or navigating a difficult experience like miscarriage. Except Jenna has about a million friends she’s sharing all her secrets with. She’s generous with her time — and her personal experiences — like that.
So how did a photographer from Minnesota grow a massive audience, turn her business into a seven-figure empire, launch a super successful podcast (subscribe to Goal Digger, stat!) and become an #AerieREAL Role Model? Lots of hard work — with radical authenticity at the heart of it.
This week, Jenna announced that she’s working with Aerie to award $400,000 to 20 change-makers who are making the world a better place. (And if that’s you, go to aerie.com/realchange to share your story for a chance to receive one of the twenty $20,000 grants up for grabs.)
We sat down with the mogul and new mama to chat style secrets, showing up when it matters…and what it means to be a role model.
ON POSTPARTUM STYLE AND MAMA FASHION
“I always laugh because I don’t feel like a fashion blogger or anything. I’m just a mom, and so comfort is totally key,” says Jenna, who welcomed her daughter Conley Kate last December. “I especially need good coverage these days when I’m chasing after my baby and bending over to pick her up every 2 seconds. And so for me it’s always just about being comfortable and able to move, which is why I love Aerie.” Some of her favorite pieces from the new collection include the matching sets (“I am living in them!”), the seamless bras (Jenna loves the comfort factor and nursing accessibility), and the super soft tee shirts (“My husband always jokes, like, ‘Are you ever going to wear anything other than a tee shirt?’ but you can dress them up and dress them down, which is brilliant,” says Jenna).
ON THE PRESSURE TO BE PRESENT
“Something that shocked me about being a mom was that I had this deep desire to be present and it has almost become this frantic thing for so many women where we’re asking ourselves, ‘Am I being present enough? Am I being present enough?!’” says Jenna, who remembers the early days with her daughter spent memorizing every little eyelash and freckle, but says the last year has been a total blur. Now she’s all about setting boundaries that allow her to fully focus. “I’ve really gotten used to being all in with my daughter, or all in with my work, and I think that’s helped me to not only get more done, but also to just have really special memories where I feel like I was all in on them.”
ON BEING A ROLE MODEL
Jenna knows that the struggle is *real* for working moms. “When you’re working, you’re thinking about your child. And when you’re with your child, you’re thinking about your work,” says Jenna. “And so you’re always being pulled in a million directions. What’s so hard is that I want to do both things well, and sometimes I’m forced to choose. For example, going on work trips means I have to leave who I love to do what I love,” she says. “But I reconcile that with having my daughter see a strong mother who is chasing her biggest dreams and paving paths that maybe someday she’ll walk on.” #WorthIt.
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