“This is Where I’m Meant To Be: Chloe Pridham talks Modelling and Motherhood
Wowza! I have a supermodel on this week’s Modelling & Motherhood series! Chloe and I started as new faces together at Select, and Chloe’s career has since gone interstellar. Being tall, lean, exercise-mad and with a face that makes men (and women!) melt, Chloe became pretty huge in the lingerie world. Whenever I’d just eaten a pie, I always seemed to see her on a bus in her knickers.
She’s since added to her very photogenic brood (Chloe’s husband, Will Chalker, is also a model) with Arthur, who is a very diddy and handsome little man. I caught up with Chloe to ask her what making the transition from lingerie model to mother & lingerie model was like…
1) Hi Chloe! I think you’re the only one of my model mates who hasn’t had a daughter! How has having a son changed you?
Besides the obvious of my body…It’s a very humbling experience. I’m more grounded than before and it’s the cliché of ‘you now come second’. I’ve become a lot more anxious, aware of life and how precious it is. So, for example, I’m now a terribly nervous flyer. I was told that that’s very common for women after having a child though. The survival instinct goes into overdrive to keep your child and yourself alive.
I’m a tigress when it comes to Arthur. I’ve found a love that I never imagined, so much so I grind my teeth in joy thinking about him and have to now wear a retainer at night!
Having him has also made me spontaneous. I was never spontaneous before as needed some sort of routine in an already crazy lifestyle and he’s relaxed me. I go with the flow and have surprised myself how relaxed I am as a mother. It also helps I have an amazing husband who’s the best daddy ever and we do it together! We support each other 100%…I couldn’t do it without him!
2) You seem so chilled about it all on your Instagram feed, laughing at Arthur’s tantrums and generally looking like the world’s MILFIEST MILF! Have you found that modelling and motherhood compliment each other?
I’m a bit of a disorganised kid so I have to laugh at it all. Arthur was never gonna have a conventional upbringing with my husband and I being models and travelling here, there and everywhere.
I would say I surprised myself with how relaxed I have been with Arthur and bringing him up (tantrums, feeding, work) as in the rest of my life I like to know exactly what I’m doing and when. Arthur definitely changed all that!
Modelling and motherhood are like any other job you could have as a mother. It’s having two jobs. One of them gives back SO much. Love, laughter, happiness – believe me it’s SO, SO worth it. The other you do to keep the first job alive!
The two have definitely complimented each other. For me it’s because I’m increasingly more comfortable with who I am and what I look like and feel at one with being a mum. I’m more confident in everything I do and what’s sexier than that?
3) You’re known for your knockout figure. Were you or your agency worried about how pregnancy might affect work?
Yeah I was for sure. My body was my money and work and that was my life. I did A LOT of lingerie modelling and it was a huge weight on my mind. When in your spare time from work you’re running and going to the gym getting a flat toned stomach and maintaining your weight, as soon as you see it starting to change and you can’t stop your tummy getting bigger its weird!
Luckily though I was with someone who supported me every step of the way and someone I knew I wanted this with more than ever so it was very natural. The further into the pregnancy I got and the bigger I got the more I embraced it and the easier it became. I took it as the first time in years I could eat whatever I wanted!!
The agency most probably had very similar fears and financially they’re obviously not getting that money anymore either, but I have to say Select were amazing about it all and so supportive and kind. They made it very easy!
4) And there was no need to worry if there was any…You look as amazing as before! How did you train to get back to working?
That’s very kind of you but no, my body has definitely changed forever. Yes I’m still slim and realistically I don’t have a lot to complain about body-wise, but your hips expand and I’ve lost a defined waist [I disagree! She looks amazing as ever, go take a look – R]. There’s a lot of things I’d criticise because, being a girl, that’s what we do – but actually I’ve learned that it doesn’t matter all that much and I’m happy with it all. It’s so worth it! I go through months of training 3 times a week to then months of not training at all and eating very badly. I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with the gym and it’s not the healthiest way of living. Now I find it really hard, especially when you have a sproglet at home and you’re exhausted. I just have to really push myself to work out. I try to eat healthy but I don’t bust a gut, I don’t want to be miserable and starving so it’s all in moderation.
I’ve recently found boxing at Bodyism and I’ve fallen in love with it. My trainer George is amazing and keeps me going. Before I know it the sessions over. It’s fun and tones you really quickly!
5) What were your main fears about modelling and being a mama before you had Arthur, and were they founded at all?
My main fear at first selfishly was my looks, and they were founded yes. I don’t care what anyone says but I definitely think work slows down once you’re a mummy. Naturally the time you’ve taken off for the pregnancy and then once they’re born is time away that others models are taking your clients.
Once you’re then back, even if you look exactly the same there is this nervous air of now she’s a mum can she commit? Will she be reliable? Does she really look the same?
I always naively assumed you get pregnant, you have the baby and 3 weeks later you’re back at work. I soon realised that that wasn’t going to happen, as it is such a life-changing, exhausting and exhilarating thing to happen. I was working SO much before (12 years and what felt like 100 flights a year) and during the first few months of my pregnancy. I was shooting La Perla and Agent Provocateur campaigns 2 months pregnant trying to hold in my stomach (almost impossible) whilst running to throw up between shots due to morning sickness and then eating like a monster. I was doing Marks and Spencer advertising up until 3 months in and trying to conceal this bump that was starting to become quite obvious. I was still flying all over the world then finally at the 12 week scan could tell everyone and it was such a relief. I cancelled jobs that were too far away and slowly work stopped due to my tummy getting bigger.
Since those last few months before I announced my pregnancy, I haven’t done that kind of work again. I have put myself out there, done casting after casting. Test shoots, editorials etc etc and it has never come back to how it was before.
Don’t get me wrong, I couldn’t do it like before now I have Arthur and I wouldn’t want to, but it was a hard reality for me to take that my life was somewhere else now. I had to adapt quick.
6) Finally, what advice would you give to any models thinking about starting a family?
Do it! I wouldn’t change a thing about it. Just looking at my husband with him makes me realise that that’s what it’s all about and for me it’s where I’m meant to be and what I’m meant to be doing. There’s no right or wrong, it’s a choice and if you choose to have children embrace it, love it and appreciate it. Life changes all the time and for me this was for the better in every single way!
I just have to say… WOMEN ARE FUCKING AMAZING!!!! We are so so incredible and we need to appreciate and love each other. Motherhood has really highlighted that for me even more.
Hear hear! Thank you so much for your honesty and amazing answers, Chloe. Being a Mum definitely suits you and stop being so hard on yourself! You look utterly incredible.
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Chloe is at Select Models.