In an interview that touched on her new makeup line and her new baby daughter, it was Eva Mendes’ throwaway comment on how to hold onto your man that is drawing heat.
“You can’t do sweatpants,” Mendes said in an interview with “Extra,” adding “ladies, number one cause of divorce in America, sweatpants, no!”
The actress and mother of six-month-old Esmeralda has drawn a firestorm of criticism.
Mendes later apologized via Instagram, and stressed that she has nothing against sweatpants. Why, she even has a pair.
"Dear favorite pair of sweatpants," Mendes wrote, "I was just kidding when I said you're the #1 cause of divorce. Everyone knows that orange crocs are the #1 cause of divorce. Either way it was a bad joke and feel terrible if you or anyone thought I was serious. Thanks for understanding sweatpants. Sorry orange crocs."
Actor Ryan Gosling, her longtime boyfriend and father of Esmeralda, came to her defense on Twitter, advising people to lighten up.
Relax, Gosling said. Mendes was just having fun.
“Obviously sweatpants thing was a joke,” Gosling tweeted. “Wearing them now. That’s right, tweeting in sweatpants. Rats! Said too much! You win again Twitter.”
Still, Mendes hit a nerve among moms, who’ve showed that they have little patience for celebrities who enjoy the help of entourages and housekeeping staffs in efforts to balance family and other aspects of life.
“Just in case new moms needed more things to feel guilty about, Eva Mendes has a fresh one: You’ll destroy your marriage if you wear sweatpants,” a New York Daily News writer and mother of an 8-month-old wrote in response to Sweatsgate.
“Eva, maybe celebrities don’t realize it, but for the rest of us taking care of a new baby can make basic beauty routines like haircuts and even showers feel like luxuries — and dads should be cool with that.”
A Gawker writer also took Mendes to task, and dispensed its own bit of advice to women.
“Funny joke, we get what you're going for, but bad advice all around,” Gawker said. “Wear whatever you want if you're at home relaxing. Wear whatever you want when you're out on a motorbike."
"Wear whatever you want when you're buying peanut butter at Trader Joe's. It doesn't matter. Wear a towel, wear a dress. Wear a flouncy shirt. Wear a belt made of wrenches and rubies. Don't listen to Eva Mendes.”
Mendes is hardly the first celebrity to anger women through comments that were viewed as out-of-touch and condescending.
In 2010, supermodel Gisele Bundchen sent temperatures soaring after she said in an interview with Harper’s Bazaar UK that breastfeeding should be mandatory.
“Some people here think they don’t have to breastfeed, and I think, ‘Are you going to give chemical food to your child, when they are so little?’ There should be a worldwide law, in my opinion, that mothers should breastfeed their babies for six months.”
A New York Post writer responded: "Regular New York mommies everywhere are dropping their formula in disgust."
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