Caprice Bourret: 'I was arrogant about motherhood. Boy, was I wrong'

The 42-year-old mother and businesswoman on vanity, surrogate babies and winning at poker

Vanity was a big part of my being. I made a ton of money from my appearance. Then I hit 30, and in modelling terms I had one foot in the grave. Making the transition [to businesswoman] was difficult, but you've got to put your ego in your back pocket and think: "Right, you're not this sex goddess any more. What's your plan B?"

Lads' mags have changed. I don't blame women for feeling objectified by them. In my day they used incredible high-end fashion photographers – now it's bottom-of-the-barrel stuff.

I made my first million in my mid-20s. That's massive for a girl from a humble background who didn't go to university. My mum taught me never to rely on anyone. You graft your own way.

It's naive to assume you can have a baby whenever you feel like it. I was arrogant about motherhood. Boy, was I wrong. There's no pain like being told you can't have children. I felt inferior as a woman after three rounds of IVF.

Falling pregnant naturally was the shock of my life. We had read through endless resumés to choose a surrogate – it's a bit like choosing a nanny. Then I fell pregnant a month after our surrogate did. I remember doing 10 pregnancy tests to be absolutely sure.

Biologically, both boys [Jax and Jett, pictured] are mine. When they get to an age where they'll understand, I'll tell them one of them had a babysitter for nine months. They'll call her Auntie and she'll always be in our lives. I don't worry about them [feeling equal] because neither will be short of love.

Jealousy and envy are healthy. I think they are both connected to that strong feeling of loving somebody and that's not a bad thing.

Marriage doesn't interest me. I don't need a piece of paper to validate my relationship. I've kissed a lot of frogs, but I knew Ty [Comfort, an investor] was special from the start – to have this best friend supporting you through everything is priceless.

I grew up on poker. Every Friday night my aunts, uncles and cousins would pile round to our family house in Hacienda Heights [California], so I know more than the basics. It's my secret weapon.

There's no such thing as having it all. Too many women put pressure on themselves to do everything. Having a nanny doesn't make you a bad mother – I have two, one for each baby.

People who say: "Oh I just eat whatever I like" are lying. Trust me – don't buy it. I used to work out more, but I don't have the time now. I can't stop altogether because my pizza habit would creep up on me.

By Caprice lingerie collections are available now. For stockists, go to


Tracy Ramsden

The GuardianTramp

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