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Mother Essentials

Mother Essentials: Alex Elle

Written by Katie Hintz-Zambrano

The current life of Alex Elle looks a bit different from the time we first profiled her in 2017. Back then, she was the mother of one child and trying to conceive another. Fast forward two and a half years, and we once again visited Alex in her home, this time in her brand-new nursery, with a toddler in tow and baby #3 on the way. Besides growing her family (her three kiddos are now ages 6 through 16), other things have changed for Alex, too. In 2022, the Maryland resident became a New York Times bestseller (for How We Heal) and she’s created numerous collaborations with a variety of brands, the most recent being an inspired fragrance with Snif. Below, she discusses her new perfume, along with her other Mother Essentials of the moment.

Huha Bike Shorts. “These are the most comfy shorts I own. They’re antibacterial and odor reducing, which makes them great to work out in. They withstand my very sweaty Peloton rides. I love all their products but especially these.” Bike Shorts, $48, Huha.

Akimbo Zip Up Hoodie. “I am a sweatshirt collector. Akimbo is by far my favorite!” Zip-Up Hoodie, $150, Akimbo.

Leather Birkenstocks. “I cannot live without my Birks. I have way more than I care to share, but these triple black leather ones are my go-to.” Birkenstock Boston Exquisite, $220, Nordstrom.

Retinal Serum. “At this big age of almost 35, I heard I needed a retinol product. This is my favorite. It’s gentle and doesn’t irritate my skin. Love it!” Osmosis +Beauty Calm Gentle Retinal Serum, $85, Dermstore.

Sunscreen. “The perfect sunscreen for us Black girls! No white cast and no irritation. I keep this brand on hand for myself and the kids.” Black Girl Sunscreen SPF 30, $18.99, Black Girl Sunscreen.

Heal the Way Perfume. “This perfume is special! I made it in collaboration with Snif. It’s amazing, and I’m not just saying that. Everyone says it smells like a warm hug—I’d have to agree. Snif is the only brand I could wear after having my youngest kids back-to-back. Collaborating with them has been a dream and creating a clean fragrance for us sensitive to scent girlies has been an honor.” Heal The Way Perfume, $65, Snif.

Body Oil. “This body oil is otherworldly! It layers GREAT with Heal the Way too. Thank me later.” Hot Chocolate Body Oil, $55, Brown Sugar Babe.

Body Moisturizer. “Being ashy isn’t something I enjoy. This lotion helps combat ash and it’s gentle on my sensitive skin.” Lipikar AP+M Triple Repair Moisturizing Cream, $14.99, Ulta.

Gap Denim. “The older I get, the less I can wear tight jeans. I actually do not wear jeans that I can’t high kick in, lol. These baggy Gap jeans are my fave. Highkick approved.” Organic Cotton ’90s Loose Jeans, $63, Gap.

The Tree In Me. “My youngest kiddo LOVES this book. The first time I read it to her, I cried. I love it too. It’s short and sweet, with beautiful illustrations. 10/10 recommend.” The Tree in Me, $17.99, Bookshop and Amazon.

Puzzles. “My middle daughter is into puzzles these days. We love this brand!” PuzzleHuddle.com.

Crayons. “We can never have enough (or break enough) crayons. This tub has lasted us!” Crayola 240-Crayon Tub, $26.99, Amazon.

Salehe Bembury Crocs. “All the kids love Crocs, but we especially love these.” Salehe Bembury x The Pollex Clog, $70, Crocs.

My Substack. “Writing on Substack has been such a joy. I love this platform for my gratitude reflections.” Gratitude Journal via Substack.

Go-To Pens. “I am a fine tip pen gal! These are my go-to.” uni-ball Vision Rollerball Pens, $16.39, Amazon.

Fave Journal. “Affordable and fun colored journals are always a yes in my book. This brand is great!” Paperage Lined Notebook, $11.95, Amazon.

Watercolor Palette. “Painting is an act of self-care and self-regulation for me. I love Case For Making. I own almost every color.” CaseForMaking.com.

Continuous Glucose Monitor. “This device has changed the game for me, and has helped me make more mindful choices around food and its impact on my blood sugar.” Signos.com.

Factor Meals. “Hands down the best meal delivery service. Having some of my meals delivered creates ease in my life. These are mama meals, not family meals.” Factor75.com.

This Morning Walk. “I’ve been walking every single day for almost 3 years. A lot of life lessons have been learned along the way. Weekly, I sit down with my co-host, Libby DeLana, to discuss what we’re walking through, physically and emotionally.” This Morning Walk via Spotify.

For more MOTHER ESSENTIALS, peep our recent features on comedian JENNY SLATE, poet MAGGIE SMITH, Van Leeuwen Ice Cream co-founder LAURA O’NEILL, author and doula BRANDI SELLERZ-JACKSON, designer CLARE VIVIER, Miles & Milan founder SHENNEL FULLERGRACE NA of Pistola, the designers behind MILK TEETH, photographer NICKI SEBASTIAN, Duster co-founder MELISSA MAGSAYSAY, Herman Miller creative director KELSEY KEITH, chef VALERIE GORDON, artist ERIN JANG, Chicago party mom KRISTEN KAZA, Hedley & Bennett founder ELLEN MARIE BENNETT, Mochi Kids founder AMANDA STEWART, chef CRISTINA KISNER, chef CAMILLA MARCUS, artist CAROLINE Z HURLEY, Just Date founder SYLVIE CHARLES, food icon AMANDA HESSER, Prickly Pear founder MONA BAHRAINI, Solace Summer founder MEGAN BRE CAMP, Wonder Valley co-founder ALISON CARROLL, OZMA designer HEIDI BAKER, author TIFFANY ROSE SMITH, and PHOEBE SUNG of Cold Picnic.

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