(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Famous Breastfeeding Magazine Covers & Photos

A nude, expecting Demi Moore on the cover of Vanity Fair, captured by Annie Leibovitz, sparked a cultural acceptance of pregnancy and launched a booming maternity and “mommy & me” industry.   Since that worked so well to mainstream pregnancy, would it work to mainstream breastfeeding?  If so, how can we get more magazines to take the plunge and put breastfeeding pictures on the cover or in the issue itself?   (By the way, Demi Moore, Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears all breastfed.)  We think that such images would go a long way towards normalizing breastfeeding in our culture so breastfeeding mothers are not harassed for breastfeeding in public.   Do you think it would help to reach the mainstream with more images that the mainstream relates to:  slick, glamorous photos of celebrities?

Update: Just remembered that Eva Herzigova breastfed in the German Magazine Bunte, check out this fabulous post with lots of pix (scroll down for the breastfeeding ones) from Celebrity-babies.com in 2007, posted by breastfeeding-friendly founder Danielle Friedland. (She since sold the site to People.com and is now a certified lactation consultant!)

The image that launched a thousand ships and copycats
Christina Aguilera does Demi Moore
Britney Spears


This version was on newstands only, subscribers got a less titillating cover.
Brad Pitt's photo of Angelina Jolie nursing one of the twins
Jerry Hall by Annie Leibovitz

8 thoughts on “(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Famous Breastfeeding Magazine Covers & Photos

  1. For those who may not have been aware, the lovely picture of Pierce Brosnan with wife Keely Shaye Smith nursing their (not so infant – woohoo!) son was actually very controversial at the time. In fact, Redbook published a different picture (non-nursing) for their subscribers, whom they judged to be more conservative, while putting the nursing picture on the newsstand copies. See the following: homepage.mac.com/lauraholt/MRHSfan/redcov.htm
    Kind of interesting in light of the latest lukewarm (at best) breastfeeding support from Redbook.


    1. You are correct Alicia and I had alluded to it in the box under the pix. Would be great if a reporter would call Redbook and find out what gives with the negativity. Are they just trying to get hits like Hannah Rosin did for the Atlantic?


  2. Certainly more breastfeeding covers can’t hurt. I wonder if the full glamour, posed approach works better to reassure moms; or pictures of the celebrities breastfeeding in public in normal everyday situations. Surely they do bf in public don’t they?


  3. I think what we need is a variety of images in order to further mainstream breastfeeding. Only one type of image can “typecast” the practice and limit its acceptability. We need to see glamorous images and everyday images. Celebrities and average women. If it’s *too* glamorized, it can seem out of reach for regular women. But women do look to celebrities for one source of values, so even the most staged pictures are valuable.

    The wider variety of images we have, the wider will be the situations in which breastfeeding is familiar; it will seem like Everyone Does It.


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