Scrolling through Instagram on the weekend, I came across Jessica's Simpson's latest post - a video plugging a detox mask that she implies helps her with her facial puffiness in pregnancy.
I can relate; I'm the kind of person who retains fluid.
I experience one blissful week in the month when the puff goes away a little, my cheeks are a little less full, and I go down a full bra cup size.
As you can imagine, for someone like me, pregnancy presents a whole new world of puffiness, which was most marked in my final and third pregnancy. So much so I dubbed myself 'Puff Mummy.'
Simpson is due soon with her third child, a baby girl they will reportedly call Birdie. She also shares daughter Maxwell, 6, and son Ace, 5, with husband Eric Johnson.
"My face is bloated and sluggish and I want something to tighten things up," she says, before applying the green tea mask. Simpson already took to Instagram in January seeking out remedies for her swollen feet, but things have obviously got even worse for the singer and actress.
As is the way of social media, people are commenting on her appearance in droves, and I found myself right back there in the sweltering summer of 2013 during the puffiest pregnancy ever.
Admittedly I wasn't world famous and it is now six years later, but these things have a way of being etched in one's memory. The looks and stares, the comments, and of course, as with Jessica, the 'concern' about my health.
Here are just a few of the comments Jess's post has attracted:
"I can relate! The bloating and general swelling is really hard on your body. I had my two youngest when I was 41 & 43 so my swelling was horrible! Hang in there girl your sweet baby girl will be here soon!"
"You should get your thyroid checked. I noticed your neck looks full, mine went crazy when I was pregnant and I ended up having a mass and had a total thyroidectomy. Better safe than sorry!"
"I had severe preclampsia and she has all the markers of it, so yes I am genuinely concerned for her and hope her Doctor checked for it."
"I just hope she doesn't have preeclampsia, I did with my first and I looked like that. Hoping for a healthy mum and baby."
Predictably, there are many unkind comments, but women have also come out in support of the star.
"You are beautiful and secondly growing a human.... nothing more beautiful ever ❤️"
"You are so adorably normal! Love you for this!"
To her credit, the star has been frank about her fluid retention, regularly posting about the difficulties of late pregnancy - her ankle swelling and breaking a toilet seat.
She also posted herself trying to squeeze through two tightly parked cars, swollen ankles in evidence, writing, "Tight squeeze but I'm pushin' through."
As for Jessica's health, let's just say that it's very likely she is being checked regularly by medical professionals. In January she caused concern among fans when she posted a picture of her foot - which looks nearly identical to what mine looked like in a normal, complication-free pregnancy.
She has made no public mention of any pregnancy complications and her swelling might well be normal, though a doctor is the only one qualified to assess that.
Even so, every pregnant person should be aware that swelling can be a sign of serious complications such as pre-eclampsia, and should never be ignored. If you experience any of the following symptoms, seek immediate medical advice.
- Sudden swelling of the face, hands or feet
- Headache that doesn't go away with simple painkillers
- Problems with vision, such as blurring, flashes of light and dots before the eyes
- Severe pain just below the ribs
- Heartburn that doesn't go away with antacids
- Generally feeling very unwell