"It’s all about your own personal understanding and expectations that you have of yourself," Ciara says of getting back into shape after giving birth
Ciara may be juggling life as a mom, wife and career woman, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t make herself a priority too — especially when it comes to her health.
“I think when it comes to your body, it’s all about the goals you set for yourself,” the singer, who was just named the newest face of Revlon, tells PEOPLE. “I can honestly say when I first started my career, I weighed almost 20 lbs. more than I weigh now.”
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“I feel like it’s all about your own personal understanding and expectations that you have of yourself,” she explains. “I definitely, in my mind, want to always raise the bar high because being healthy has to be a way of life for me. And that’s the level I set. I don’t want to set a level where I am trying to make other people happy, either.”
She confesses she gained 60 lbs. while pregnant with Future, but notes that her determination made her bounce back more healthy and fit than ever.
“After delivering my son, a 9-lb. 10-oz. baby, and gaining 60 lbs., I was committed to [returning] to how I felt before I had him. Four months after having him, I was back to my original shape. There’s something very empowering about that,” she says. “Something about that gave me an extra pep in my step, and motivated me even more to go harder.”
Continues the “I Bet” songstress, “I think it’s important to always raise the bar high, keep the bar high in life for whatever you’re trying to achieve because that’s gonna ultimately allow you to keep doing bigger and better things. I think it boils down to your own understanding of what makes you feel beautiful.”
Much like making her healthy habits a priority, Ciara has found ways to make time for her beauty routine — which is not always an easy feat with her on-the-go little guy.
“I think my plan [has proven] to be the perfect plan for having my little one because, as I think all moms know, a lot of times, you have no time for you,” she says. “When it’s nap time, I get to it and put my face together. I put on mascara, a little concealer under my eyes and [tinted] lip balm. It takes, like, 10 minutes and sometimes that’s all you have with a child.”
She continues, “I literally have to map it out. That’s the thing about having your little one: When you have them on a schedule, take advantage of the schedule and map things out.”
For more from Ciara, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.
- With reporting by JACKIE FIELDS