Instagram versus Reality

Hey guys! I’ve been thinking more and more about the effect of social media on all of our lives. I even posted a long Instagram post about this the other day. And trust me, it’s not lost on me that it’s kind of ridiculous to be talking about how damaging social media can be while on social media. I know there are so many good things about connecting with people online, but with that good comes a lot of bad. And lately it’s really been bothering me. To the point where I almost feel paralyzed at times. But at the same time, Instagram and this blog are a way for me to connect with all of you. There’s so much good in that! You guys have uplifted me during tough times in my life, given me advice when I needed it and given me purposes in so many areas of my life. Hopefully I’ve done some of those things for you as well. So I’ve decided I’m going to start sharing more of myself day to day, and not just on my good days.

I try to keep it SUPER real on insta story. Showing you guys me as I am in any given moment, the good times and the bad times. And I write about the hard moments in my blog. But I don’t think my photos necessarily show that. Don’t get me wrong, my Instagram is still going to be full of pretty pictures because that’s something I enjoy doing. But instead of posting a photo of my office when it’s super clean, I’m also going to post pictures when it’s super messy. Because in REAL life, sometimes it’s clean and sometimes it’s not. Some of you have actually commented on my posts in the past saying that it’s impossible to have such a clean home with two kids. And while I don’t agree that it’s not possible to have a clean home most of the time, in my case it’s definitely NOT possible to have a clean home ALL the time! So when I post a picture of my kitchen right after we cleaned it, I will also try to post a picture of it when it’s a complete mess! Not every time, but sometimes. I just don’t want to set unrealistic expectations for anybody. Because when I’m scrolling through Instagram I don’t like it when unrealistic expectations are set for me. I find myself looking at other peoples insta feeds and not feeling good enough. Maybe their photos are prettier than mine or their feed is more cohesive or their outfits are cuter. It’s draining!!!!!!!!! And it’s definitely smothering my creativity.


So as you can see from these pictures, here’s my office super clean and organized. But there’s also a photo of it right after a busy week of work. Ha! I would say my office is probably consistently the messiest room in our house. The cleanest rooms are probably our formal living room, dining room and Molly’s room. Just because we don’t spend a lot of time in any of those places.

And you know I’m not gonna do a blog post without sharing details. I’ll link all the stuff in my office below. The main things that I absolutely love in it are the gold clothing rack, which is such a showstopper! I also really love the faux olive tree, and my desk chair makes me feel confident whenever I sit down at my computer to do work (I’m sitting in it right now!). Plus it’s just really pretty!

Scroll to see each item in my office.

And the blush tunic I’m wearing is on sale for $27! It’s been on sale for a couple weeks now so I don’t know if the price is going to go back up or what. But I absolutely love it! Check out this blog post  to see me wearing it while standing. If you go to that blog post you’ll see that it’s really long. Long enough to cover your booty. Which I love because I’m much rounder these days than I used to be. Especially when I’m wearing leggings, I don’t want my booty out there for the whole world to see. Ha!

Well that’s all I’ve got for now. I hope this post serves as something real and positive for people to see who maybe felt down on themselves at some point today or even this week while scrolling social media. Know that you’re not alone. I feel it, people who otherwise seem to have perfect lives on Instagram feel it too, and I think the people we think are happiest are struggling just like all of us are.

36 Thoughts

36 thoughts on “Instagram versus Reality

  1. Thanks for being so real and honest! Yes your life seems PERFECT from this side, so showing us that you are normal like the rest of us with struggles, ups and downs, overwhelmed at times, and having challenges, makes me feel that we all are really alike. I have to say you are my style guru. Love your style, your taste, and you wear clothes so well. So whenever you are feeling bad about yourself, remember that people like me admire you and love your life… your little family and poochie, your adoring and loving husband who has a great sense of humor and is very easy on the eyes, beautiful kiddos, beautiful home, great job which you are a natural in front of the camera, great personality, creative, such a people person, and Molly growing up before our eyes and I feel like one of her Aunties proud of her little accomplishments (she will be reading by the time she is 3!) (BTW her bday is the day before mine, so just know that you will be her very best friend as she gets older… one of the traits of a Cancer) . So thank you for being real and know that you really do have it all. ♥️

    1. Marcy! This is one of the nicest comments I’ve ever received. Thank you for being so kind to me! You’re a sweetheart!

  2. I think you’ve always done a great job of being real. You are also humble. And, I’m glad you’re still including pretty pictures, it’s a good balance.

  3. This is exactly what I like. I like seeing something honest and real. I understand why pretty pictures are pretty but mom of two I want to see truth. Not just pretty pictures. I love honesty and I love to take advice from honest celebrities like that

  4. Ali, you are so awesome! I love your outlook and perspective on this. Instagram is most definitely overwhelming to scroll through- the clothes and figures and even the babies look perfect! It’s nice to know there’s someone out there who’s willing to admit to not being perfect! We are all human and life wouldn’t be exciting without or imperfections, right? Keep up the great work! Love your blog and posts!

  5. Hey Ali, thanks for sharing this post. I think we can all relate to wanting to post and talk about the pretty things in life but also we all definitely have that not-so-pretty, a little messier side to life as well.
    The imperfections in life are definitely still all apart of the ride 🙂

    Also : love that gold ottoman! I think it’s so fun looking in the office and adds a touch of glam!

    All the best,


  6. I love this idea! So encouraging to see that you are real person! I love your blog Alli! It’s always so encouraging to me! Thanks for keeping it real!

  7. This is what I think makes you stand out from other influencers. You are not afraid to keep it real and tell it like it is. Seriously you should only post the real pics – they are actually unique and stand out among all the other Instagram staged stuff. Love it!

  8. Amen sister. Thanks for keeping it real! And I agree with everything “Marcy in San Diego” said in the above comment. You ARE such a people person, you’re SO creative, you have a great sense of style, your outfits are well put-together, your home is beautiful, your kids are the cutest and your man is the sweetest (the notes he writes for you are too cute). Your pictures on Instagram are very beautiful (reminds me of Jillian Harris’s Instagram – LOVE HER) but it’s also nice for you to keep it real as well. Knowing that you’re human just like all of us is comforting 🙂 I live in LA too and always hope to run into you one day so I can say all this in person! 🙂

  9. Thank you for sharing that! Pretty sure that’s what my house looks like on a normal basis no matter how hard I try. But please know I never once faulted you for how beautiful and put together you and your home seems and I don’t want you to feel bad. IG has become a place of beautifully filtered photos that are aesthetically pleasing. You are spot on with that and whether or not it’s true or staged, I always was envious that I couldn’t get my shit together and used it as motivation to stay better organized.
    Life is about finding balance, something I definitely struggle with but thank you for sharing the balance! ❤️

    1. The formal living room, dining room and Molly’s room at honestly always very neat. Only because we don’t spend a ton of time in those places. Riley’s nursery too. But the rest gets cluttered here and there like everyone else!

    1. That is a REALLY goooooooood idea. Only problem is the hashtag. It would just be #reality. So maybe InstaReALIity ? I dunno! What do you think?

  10. Hi Ali! Always feel so inspired by your posts! I for one love the overall aesthetic to your insta feed it’s so bright and cheery -at least that’s how it makes me feel 🙂 I am a first time Mama to a beautiful 7 month old baby girl so seeing a fellow Mama out there who can be both put together when needed and be make up free in a nursing tank both comforts me and inspires me. Will love the reality pics peppered in too of course 🙂 Also, do you think you could sometimes do a blog on beauty/hair tips (like your super cute relaxed pony look)? Also, I’m sure others are thinking it but under garment suggestions for smoothing?? Thanks for all you do!

  11. I love your blog and you IG! I have a book recommendation for you that I think you would love! It is called: my not so perfect life by Sophia kinsella. She is a huge author in England and this book is hilarious and is all about the reality of life vs IG photos. She started the IG #mynotsoperfectlife if you read I know you would love it! Thank you again for always being real and inspiring others!

  12. THIS right here is why I love your blog and recommend it to my friends. Because you are honest and show your life isn’t perfect!! Thank you for all you do. My 21 month old daughter and I love watching you!!


  13. #Realstagram. Thank you for being honest on here about your bad days and struggles in addition to the good things in your life. It makes you more relatable in my opinion and so many times I’ve thought to myself, “Oh yeah, I’ve been there” and know exactly how you must be feeling!

  14. Ali, this is why we all love you and can relate to you so much. I have been following you for years and not only I love your style but also your positivity, your keeping real and sharing everyday life for you. I must say, I use your posts as inspiration and yes, they’re pretty hard to “replicate” but they’re still inspiring me ☺️
    I appreciate you doing this so much, I think today’s too easy get lot in the perfection that is the “instalife” and forget that’s not the norm. So, THANK YOU.

  15. Hi Ali!! I love everything about your blog! It makes me feel so good to hear encouraging things!! I have two little boys 2 and 3 months. Raising tiny humans is exhausting!! I am actually moving my little into his crib in a few months and would love to get the same bunny sheets that Riley has! Could you share info?!

  16. We were not created to be like any other and I think the true struggle is within ourselves. When we know who we are and are confident in that, nothing. Can shake it. I know it’s hard because we are not perfect humans and never will be, but it’s very possible to be confident enough that we can see a pretty post and not insta judge or insta wish it was us. God has personally really helped me see who I am to Him which makes it easy now to look at a post and not have my brain jump to conclusions of that person. Our creator made us in His perfect image. Holding on to that truth changes ones self esteem like crazy 😁btw I love pretty photos and I love to see the art of photography within them.i think the most fake posts of Instagram are the #ad ones. So fake 😂but hey it’s money And we all need money to live.

  17. I saw the pictures you talk about before in the blog. The ones during farmers market day. (You wearing cubs hat -go cubbies!my son just like Molly sings go cubs go. My son is just few months older than Molly! Play date when you come to Chicago?! ) made me like you even more!! I like famous ppl being not afraid to show how they look behind all the makeup and fence clothes. There is only few and you one of them. A true person.

  18. Ali, I feel like you are so very real in your stories and share more than most do already! I don’t think you need to feel bad for the picture-perfect settings in your Instagram photos. Isn’t that what everyone wants to share? The good? We all do it! Anyway, I just had my first son in mid June about a month behind Riley and I love following along on your parenting journey. Thanks for sharing, I love following you!
    PS I can’t believe it’s almost time for real food for these babes (re: your latest story) time flies!

  19. Love how everyone still has that chair that manages to be the catch all for everything during the week. This is what a beautiful messy life is all about. Thanks for keeping it real. I dare you to post a pic of Molly’s play room in full swing… 😉 All us momma’s know too well that the most effective time to clean is once they’re in bed.

  20. Hey Ali!! Love reading your blogs. I always think of Instagram as a “highlight reel” lol. Someone once said on a post- your kids are always happy. I WISH!!! I just don’t post when I’m screaming at them and they’re on the floor throwing tantrums. Thanks for sharing your reality

  21. I totally appreciate this post and your thoughtfulness. Social media can be so overwhelming, especially for women. I think a balance of pretty life and real life is awesome and something others need to see. I love following you on insta and I think you keep it real, especially the parenting thing. Your kids are so beautiful. I especially love Ryley’s chubby little baby cheeks! Oh my goodness, he is so cute! And Molly, such a little sweetly! Thank you for keeping it real!

  22. I love your whole Instagram. I think that Insta stories are where people can go to truly see the “real” side to someone and their life. That’s where people share raw and emotional feelings. It’s also where they go even when they have no make up on or are in their Pajamas. Sure maybe your photos look perfect but you open up to us every day and let us in to your “reality”. So thank you 🙏🏻
    Much love

  23. Hi! Thanks for posting these thoughts! I actually felt a huge calmness in my chest seeing the real picture. I love everything you and people like Jillian Harris have to say in your stories and blog posts, especially since I can relate to the young kids thing. But I find myself rarely ever feeling good or interested in seeing a perfectly styled insta photo on those types of feeds not because I compare myself, but because I have no emotional connection to it. I’ve always really enjoyed celebrity instas that are just real iPhone pics that show what they’re up to naturally. THAT to me is an interesting look at celeb life and seems personal. If I come off harsh I don’t mean it at all, I mean it as encouragement for you to feel better about just being yourself as often as you want to without having to keep up with all the curating. It’s easy for me to say though since this of course is a large part of your job. You still are super relatable and are just doing the best you can with 2 little kiddos like most of us. Thanks for always being so open and for starting conversations that many of us can relate to.

  24. Thanks for keeping it real! I definitely think social media has the power to lift others up but when we constantly/only see only everyone’s “best side” it can also do harm in creating unrealistic expectations and self doubt/comparisons. I wish more celebrities/influencers would use their platform to address that and love that you are sharing the not-always-picture-perfect aspects on your life—your willingness to be transparent and to share is one of the reasons I enjoy following you!

  25. ALI not avocado! No wonders he looked like what the hell is this, more like applesauce with some rice cereal,

  26. You seem like the most relatable, genuine and realest influencer out there. Your blog is the only one I come back to week after week. Keep it up, you’re doing so well.

  27. Ali, I actually think you’re one who gives us a good amount of both real life and the glamorous life. I think you strike a good balance between your blog, Insta stories and your IG feed and we get to see the real you and the working you – across all of your platforms. It’s also good to know that you get the same feelings the rest of us get when we scroll through IG! I’ve learned to quit following the accounts that make me feel “less than.” Even if it’s just for a short time and then I end up following them again later.
    Thanks for being so real and inspiring :). Also, thanks for sharing fashion at real prices and not Hollywood prices! That’s a treat too!

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