Olympian Allyson Felix is All About Teaching Her Daughter There Isn't 'One Standard of Beauty'
Winning six Olympic gold medals is mind-blowingly amazing. But, as Allyson Felix, Olympic sprinter and a spokesperson for the Pantene "What's Your Legacy" campaign knows, wrangling a little one and accomplishing a daily beauty routine as a busy parent comes with its own challenges. Still, the active mom to daughter Camryn Grace, 2, currently competing in Tokyo, has some excellent and efficient ways to handle them.
How did your beauty routine change when you became a mom?
I used to have more time for it. Now, I have to be more efficient. Sometimes I stick to the basics. I like to have my hair in braids because it's a very easy style for me. I don't have to think about anything. I can just get up and go. Any time there's one less thing on my plate is good for me.
Being an athlete and being, well, always sweaty and out in the elements, I use a ton of Pantene Gold Series—especially the Hydrating Butter-Creme and Intense Hydrating Oil. Both have been great for my hair.
It's also important for me that Camryn sees me wearing my hair in its natural state. I hope that gives her confidence in her hair.
Do you put on makeup for a race?
I like a natural look—I want to feel like myself—so I apply a tinted moisturizer and I fill out my brows a little bit. That always makes me feel really confident. I look at some of my competitors and they have a full face on and look gorgeous and I'm like, how do you do that!? But we each do whatever makes us feel comfortable. I try to land somewhere in the middle.
And what skin care do you do after a day of training?
After I train, I wash my face with an SK-II cleanser and then apply Olay Whips moisturizer with SPF. As someone who is training in the sun every day, I think a lot about the health of my skin.
Do you have any beauty rituals with your daughter?
When I was a kid, every morning I would go into my mom's room and she would do my hair. It was a bonding experience and time that I knew I got with my mom one-on-one. It's really cool that now I get to have that same tradition with Camryn. Right now, we do her hair while she's in the bath occupied with her toys. I think it will always be a special thing that I hope we both embrace when she gets older—and has a bit more hair!
More of what I'm doing now is really trying to show my daughter what healthy looks like and that beauty and strength can look a number of different ways. I'm surrounding her with different people who really embrace their own beauty and to show that there's not just this one standard of beauty.
How do you make time for yourself?
First, I have to recognize that I need it and then prioritize it because life is crazy and chaotic. And a lot of times it's me letting my husband know that I need some time. I'll go and do something that makes me happy or see if my mom wants to come spend some days with my daughter so I can get some time along. It's OK to do that. It's OK to ask for help in the moments that I need it.
Something I've done that's been consistent and helpful is starting my day with my gratitude journal. And a lot of times it means that I'm getting up before my daughter to do it, but setting aside that quiet time before I really start my day has helped me kind of carve a path into the day and gives me a positive outlook.
Has any of your training as an athlete come in handy as a parent?
I feel like I'm like any other parent—I'm just trying to figure it out here! I'm calling my girlfriends, getting all of the advice and tips. But I guess the one thing I would say is that I've had to learn how to overcome a number of injuries and adversities. Being a parent is also about being ready for whatever and pushing through it. It helps to step back and look at the big picture—even in the moment when you don't feel like it.
What's one thing you would tell a mom to do to boost her confidence?
Trust your plan. I think, a lot of times, we second guess ourselves. For me, at least in training, one way I always feel prepared is by looking at what I've already done. When I look at the workouts I've done, it gives me confidence. It shows that I'm prepared. Being a parent is about having a plan. And, you know, obviously there are going to be things that shake that up. But I try not to waver, to believe that I know what I'm doing, I have a course, I have goals. I'm confident when I stick to that.
Ok, last question is just for fun: do you and Camryn have a go-to power outfit?
Our matching sweatsuits make us feel really good. We really love our days around the house—maybe going to the backyard or the park. We spend the day just kind of lounging around and having quality time together.