With the launch of her newsletter GOOP, Gwyneth Paltrow tried to transition from “beautiful, rich, successful movie star” to “lifestyle guru.” In her newsletter, she posted everything from book recommendations to recipes. Although I’ve made no secret out of the fact that I have no interest in taking life advice from a rich, privileged woman whose life bears little – if any – resemblance to mine, GOOP has been successful enough that Paltrow has spun it off into a cookbook and other projects. However, my main objection with GOOP is that it’s incredibly condescending. Paltrow is aware of the fact that people are skeptical about taking lifestyle tips from a celebrity, so she spends half her time justifying her blog instead of just writing it. She’s constantly insisting that she’s a normal hands-on mom and wife who just looooves cooking and has to struggle to find time to exercise, but it all comes off as a massive case of the lady doth protesting too much.
However, reading recent interviews with new mom Gisele Bundchen has made me suspect that she’s the next celebrity aiming for crossover “lifestyle guru” appeal. In her first interview after giving birth, she told Vogue that her son’s labor was easy and that within two hours of having her son she was up and about cooking pancakes for her entire family. She claims that her son Benjamin, who is not even walking yet, has already been potty-trained. Last week, she proclaimed that breastfeeding had helped her lose weight and stay in shape after giving birth as well as helping her bond with her baby, and that “there should be a law” requiring all mothers everywhere to breastfeed. Her comments were quickly repeated throughout the blogosphere, with some women reacting positively and others criticizing Gisele for not taking into account the fact that many women’s financial or economic situations force them to return to work after giving birth and don’t make it easy for them to breastfeed. Gisele quickly responded on her blog, saying she meant to harm with her statement and that she, like all moms, was just “trying as hard as she can.”
In the same Vogue interview earlier this year, Gisele said that she was launching a website to help young women boost their self-esteem. Based on that, and some of the comments she’s been making about her motherhood, I’m starting to suspect she might be the next celebrity to jump on the “dispensing sanctimonious lifestyle advice” bandwagon. Let’s see how she stacks up on the Gwyneth GOOP checksheet:
– Has an impossibly perfect life that she likes to tell you about CHECK
– Has an impossibly good-looking husband CHECK
– Likes to claim that difficult things (weight loss, giving birth) are incredibly easy for her CHECK
– Brags about what other celebrities she is friends with NO CHECK
– Has a website aimed at “helping people” CHECK, but it’s currently in Portuguese
Sounds like she’s on the brink of GOOP territory, guys. I give it a year before she has either a TV show or a book deal. Maybe both.