With my baby boy due in less than six weeks, it's starting to feel like crunch time. We need to wash the tiny clothes, return the duplicate gifts, figure out how the hell to install the car seat that came with a 96-page instruction manual; the list goes on. My husband and I also need to pick a baby name. While we have a list of about 10 we like, I'm not confident our baby's name is even on that list, and we each have completely different favorites.
So when I got the chance to sit down with Jessica Alba, actress, founder of the Honest Company, and supermom to three kids ranging from 18 months to 11 years old, I couldn't help but ask for her help naming my child. Sure, I also talked to her about the amazing new eczema balm Honest just launched and her best advice for first-time moms; but I'm telling you, if Jessica Alba said, "name your baby Crayon," I'd consider it just to check off a to-do.
How to Pick a Baby Name, According to Jessica Alba
Let me disappoint you right off the bat: I can't bring myself to reveal the list here — sorry! But talking to Jessica Alba about it seemed harmless . . . I figure she has more important things to post on Instagram. I ran down the top five, and she said, "They all feel in the same world of a person — they could be on the lacrosse team." (This conversation reminded me why we're keeping the names a secret in the first place: up until this point I thought our names were at least kind of unique and not too preppy.) "I think when you meet the little one, then you'll just call them a name," she continued. "That's what I did with all my kids — Haven was almost a Charlie. Hayes-y Boo, what was his backup name? Honor and Haven really wanted another name . . . I think it was Hendrix." Note: Alba's youngest is named Hayes, which was on my list, though I didn't tell her. My husband removed it the minute I told him Alba called her son "Hayes-y Boo."
Jessica Alba's Best Advice for New Moms
Technically, Alba's advice for new moms is not to listen to too much advice. "Take in as much advice as you want, but know that it's not necessarily going to work for you just because it works for someone else," she says. "It's hard not to feel judged by other parents, but try as hard as you can to have a support system of people around you who don't judge you." And of course it all comes back to wellness, which is her brand, after all. "If you do a little bit of research and know that your child's health and wellness is first and foremost, you can take all the advice with a grain of salt," she says.
Jessica Alba's Take on Baby Stuff
I explained that I'm drowning in stuff at the moment — that my one-bedroom apartment has been taken over by bassinets and swaddles and many other generous gifts from family and friends. And I'm going to spend the weekend editing thanks to what Alba said: "At the end of the day, you don't need that much for a new baby, and you can kind of get things as you're going. You don't need it all at once. What you need for a six to eight month old is different than what you'll need for a newborn. That baby is pretty much going to be in that footed onesie and maybe a sleep sack — that's pretty much it. If they have a safe place to sleep, you're good. I feel like a lot of people think they need to have the full setup, and you really don't — not in the beginning."
But you know what you do need in the beginning? A name for the baby. So I guess I'll be working on that this weekend, too.