'Meet with' is our series of interviews with women we admire from across the beauty, wellness and female health industries.
We're so pleased to share our recent conversation with Carli Evilsizer, the founder of Inside & Out Motherhood, an online marketplace for all your motherhood needs. She decided to build the platform after realizing she can't be the only mom to struggle with feeling like they lost part of their identity in motherhood and set about creating a way to help new moms feel more supported in their motherhood journeys. We discuss her journey to becoming a mom, the hormone and body changes she experienced during pregnancy and she shares her self-care tips as well as who she looks up to as a role model.
What led you to start Inside & Out Motherhood?
I started Inside & Out Motherhood because I felt pretty lost in my early motherhood journey. I had a fairly easy pregnancy but I just didn’t like being pregnant - I hated seeing my body change and I felt so lost trying to find maternity products that I loved. I couldn’t find anything ‘cute’ or ‘cool’ in the (very limited) maternity sections of the big name brand stores and felt like I was losing my identity before I even gave birth. My background is marketing in the startup world, so I knew there had to be some trendy DTC startups and amazing small businesses out there creating all of the motherhood products I desired - but there wasn’t one place I could go to easily search for these kinds of companies and products.
What does motherhood mean to you?
Motherhood to me means all sorts of things and it seems to change with each new stage. I think the biggest thing it means though is change - and learning to be okay with change. Everything changes when you become a mother; our bodies, our priorities, our identities - and it’s not easy. It was a hard change for me to adjust to but being a parent is one of the most amazing things I’ve experienced.
How did your body transition into pregnancy?
I have to admit my body transitioned into pregnancy very well even though I hated the experience. My skin actually was better than ever with minimal breakouts which I was very thankful for after dealing with painful hormonal acne for years.
How aware were you of your hormones and your cycle before you got pregnant?
Because I’ve had awful hormonal acne for so long, I was pretty aware of my hormones and cycle before I got pregnant. I stopped using birth control long before having kids was even a thought, and I used an app to help track my ovulation cycles.
What was healing for you during your pregnancy?
Fruit & water! I craved fruit and water a lot throughout my pregnancy after the first trimester morning sickness had passed. I think drinking so much more water than I ever had was healing. Drinking more water now is definitely something I need to get better at again.
How has your understanding of your body and hormones changed post-pregnancy?
I’m definitely more appreciative and impressed with everything our bodies go through and can do now. I never really understood what a huge impact our hormones have on our bodies - I knew to expect postpartum hair loss but I wasn’t prepared for just how much hair I would lose so quickly.
What have been some unexpected results from starting Inside and Out Motherhood?
Something that has been an unexpected benefit from starting Inside & Out Motherhood is feeling less lonely. I was working from home for a few years then I had a baby and was very anxious about leaving the house. I think motherhood can often be a really lonely experience but starting this company has allowed me to connect with so many inspiring women entrepreneurs and regular moms going through similar struggles as myself. It’s a little ironic actually that I feel less lonely now after we have all been at home in quarantine for a year.
Did you see a need for something like Inside and Out Motherhood when you were pregnant or post-pregnancy?
While I was pregnant, I started to see a gap in the market and as a consumer I was searching for something that didn’t exist. But it wasn’t until I was a few months postpartum - and struggling to find nursing-friendly clothing that was actually flattering on my postpartum body - that I realized what it was I had been searching for while I was pregnant. After being up at all hours of the night cluster feeding my newborn and scrolling Instagram, I finally began to find all of the startups who had the types of products I had been looking for.
Any advice for those going through pregnancy and the changes you can experience with your hormones during and after?
I wish I had better advice for this since I really struggled with the intense hormonal shifts on top of mental health issues. The only advice I can really share is that your hormones and emotions will be extremely crazy for a bit but it won’t last forever.
What’s your go-to hair and skin product?
I’ve been keeping my hair care pretty minimal and don’t have any favorites right now. But for skincare I love serums! My favorite serums are ones that include hyaluronic acid.
What are the top 5 products you recommend to moms post-partum?
There are SO many things I would recommend for moms to get postpartum. Invest in a good nursing bra, stock up on adult diapers or mesh panties, buy several big reusable water bottles with a straw for birth & postpartum, buy a hemorrhoid cream (even if you’ve never had one in your life before!) and treat yourself to some new cute and comfy loungewear.
Is there one quote which resonates with your journey in life so far that you like to share to inspire other moms?
I don’t think there’s such thing as balance or ‘doing it all’. You will probably feel like you aren’t doing enough in any part of your life now that you’re a mother but you are doing a great job!
Who do you look up to as a role model or for inspiration?
There are SO many people I look to as a role model, especially all of the female entrepreneurs I’ve met while starting Inside & Out Motherhood. I definitely want to give a shout-out to Emily Ironi, founder of The Dairy Fairy and Lynn Powers, CEO of MASAMi - they were some of our first brand partners and have been such helpful, entrepreneurial role models to look up to.
How do you practice self-care?
As a mom I definitely struggle with practicing self-care. Self-care used to mean face masks and painting my nails but now I’m trying to find different ways to practice self care that make my mentally happier like crafting, taking care of my plants and yes, drinking wine every now and then!
Non-negotiables for your at home routine?
Coffee. And several cups at least.
What’s your current state of mind?
Anxious and calm all at the same time if that’s possible? Starting a company and dealing with a lot of unknowns during this pandemic has been stressful but I’ve started taking anxiety medicine which has made a huge impact. There are still a lot of unknowns right now but I feel more calm and hopeful about the future than I used to be.