TODAY   |  June 27, 2012

Moms dare to bare post-pregnancy bellies

Tired of seeing celebrities looking perfect just weeks after giving birth, a group of Connecticut moms decided to bare their own post-baby bodies to empower real women. They speak with TODAY’s Natalie Morales about why they feel the photos are important.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> a baby should be the happiest moment of a new mom's life, but sometimes the joy can be tempered by the pressure even if self-imposed to get back to that prepregnancy weight. most moms don't have celebrity-like tummies. that seemed to be perfect after a baby's arrival. to empower women, a group of connecticut moms decided to bare their mommy bellies for everyone to see. dina , kate, kate, katie, marie and jean. good morning, ladies and gentlemen .

>> good morning.

>> i love this, because so many of us have seen those celebrity photos and you're like, how did they do this. was this, dina , the reason you wanted to do hispanic like this.

>> we are bloggers for ct working moms.com. we have this little group that gets together. we were talking about it. i think somebody posted that they were afraid to click on a link. we got to thinking about it and saying we wanted to do our own photo shoot .

>> afraid to click on a link. it was marie. you saw beyonce post baby.

>> it was one of those things right after, i was at my desk. i don't want to see this. took me forever to get where i was later. we all eventually clicked on it and she looked gorgeous and beautiful.

>> she always does.

>> exactly. we're so happy to see that.

>> now, of course, i imagine it took some convincing to get some of you to take that photo where you are exposing all. how did you guys convince each other.

>> wine.

>> wine. wine does it usually, it works.

>> also getting together really helped. as soon as we all got together and had our clothes on. all of a sudden we're like, okay, this is it. we're going to do it. as soon as we basically took our tops off. we started cat calling and telling each other how beautiful. michelle has mentioned this before to me and dina , to do it alone is empowering. but when you have other people, women supporting women, it definitely makes it amazing.

>> you guys call this the goddess gallery. jean, i think you were the photographer of the shoot. what did you hope to accomplish putting these ladies in various positions.

>> i love the message they wanted to send. keep it real. accept yourself. it was such a delight. it was so much fun. it was absolute fun.

>> it's a great message. we have seen with the dove campaign showing real women . is that something in this celebrity world that we seem to lose sight of? you all have beautiful new babies and there's such joy in that moment but there is that self-imposed pressure, right? is it coming from celebrities necessarily or is it coming from you guys?

>> i think both. i think definitely it comes from both. we embrace the pregnant form so much, then you have this baby and you're all floppy, what do you do with it. what do you do with it. i was empowered to wear a bikini when i was pregnant. with this postpartum body, i want to hide it. the more you show it, the more real you are the more inspired they are. they can do it, too.

>> mary grace, i believe you have a daughter. what do you hope doing something like this sends as a message to her as well.

>> i really hope, and it's my greatest hope that she feels comfortable in her skin. i mean, i see her now, she's two. she's fearless and beautiful and strong. i want her to maintain that. i feel that by me setting an example hopefully so much happens during adulthood and adolescence and you lose your fear and in exhibitions along the way. i hope by me stepping out there in front of the world.

>> i should say, by the way, our "today" moms website loved this. we got a lot of great reaction and including a poll that says a lot of women feel the same pressure, getting in shape after a baby. 68% said yes they did, 33% said no. thank you for doing that for us. we appreciate it.

>> our pleasure.

>> it's so funny michelle said, don't worry, only 200 people will see this.

>> now you're on the "today" show. millions. you all look amazing, ladies. congratulations with your new babies at home. more on this story on today.com.