Actress and Honest Company co-founder Jessica Alba is mom to son Hayes, 5 months, Haven, 6½, and Honor, 10 next month
Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

As a mom of three, Jessica Alba knows the ropes of parenting, but even she has her self-admitted flaws.

The actress and Honest Company co-founder graces the cover of InStyle‘s July issue, opening up about everything from her business’ newest endeavors to wrangling son Hayes Alba, 5 months, and daughters Haven Garner, 6½, and Honor Marie, 10 next month.

“There are always haters, and my goals are not small ones,” says the 37-year-old star. “I just want to live a full life and stay curious and challenge myself.”

“I want my kids to see me push outside my comfort zone,” adds Alba. “And sometimes that means making mistakes and admitting them, which is especially hard in front of your kids.”

Want all the latest pregnancy and birth announcements, plus celebrity mom blogs? Click here to get those and more in the PEOPLE Babies newsletter.


Jessica Alba for InStyle

Credit: Anthony Maule/InStyle

Jessica Alba for InStyle

Alba admits she makes said mistakes “all the time” in front of her children, including one recurring parenting technique that she’s not confident is a sound one.

“I have this terrible habit: Whenever my kids ask me to find something, they’re like, ‘Mom, where’s my …’ you know, backpack, toothbrush, whatever,” she says. “And I just say, ‘Up your butt,’ and that’s probably bad parenting.”

Adds the Dark Angel alum, “But they got to a certain age where I’m like, ‘That’s where it is: It’s up your butt.’ ”

InStyleJuly18 Alba

Jessica Alba for InStyle

RELATED VIDEO: Jessica Alba Breastfeeds Infant Son Hayes in a Target Dressing Room

As a driven and creative-minded individual (“I’m MacGyvering s— every day!” she jokes, giving a swaddle blanket as an example), Alba has found a realistic, fulfilling balance between work and family.

“I slowed down for a second when I had Honor and Haven, but then I was right back in the hustle,” she says. “I made a concerted effort with Hayes to appreciate the quieter moments. I had to slow down when I was pregnant, so now we have a new tradition called Family Fridays.”

“It’s our game night,” the star explains. “We get on teams and play Clue. Honor is really good. I love when she wins — she’s strategic.”