Fantastic Four favourite Jessica Alba is dishing diktats on how to be a supermom, the latest in a kitchen chorus of Hollywood stars ladling out their secrets to domestic paradise. Alba insists she practises what she preaches - all without relying on hired help.
The News says glossy photos of Alba in her book show her always looking fabulous, whether wiping the kitchen counter or playing with her daughters in the family's backyard pirate ship. As well as her baby-food recipes, she has included a formula for hair rinses using full-fat Greek yogurt, coffee grinds and raw cane sugar.
But in a city legendary for its "New York minute" impatience, many Big Apple mothers questioned where they would possibly get the time to follow some of Alba's advice. Samantha Willner, 22, from the suburb of Astoria, drew the line at home-prepared baby food. "Who, especially in New York, has time for something like that?" she said.
"I don't think anyone who's an average person has any of the resources: Time, money or, quite frankly, the patience."
And Frances Cabrera, 26, told the tabloid that Alba is overreacting by calling for plastics to be left outside: "Plastics are just not off-gassing that way. It's not something a normal person would have to worry about."
Her central theme is clean-living and eliminating toxins, especially those lurking in plastics and cleaning supplies. She recommends, for instance, leaving plastics outside for a few days so they will "off-gas" the worst of their chemicals.
"Many people don't even realize that there is lead in their lipstick, or that petrochemicals in your laundry detergent could be making you sick," she says.
Meanwhile, Paltrow has taken heat over her new cookbook, It's All Good: Delicious, Easy Recipes That Will Make You Look Good and Feel Great, with critics calling it weird and neurotic.
The actress and singer, who has two children with Coldplay front-man Chris Martin, advocates a menu that cuts out processed foods, tomatoes, meat, wheat, deepwater fish, shellfish, eggs, sugar, coffee and alcohol.
The New York Post lambasted Paltrow's "weird obsession," saying her book "reads like the manifesto to some sort of creepy healthy-girl sorority with members who use beet juice rather than permanent marker to circle the 'problem areas' on each other's bodies."
The Atlantic Wire said: "It's All Good seems to take laughable Hollywood neuroticism about eating to the next level."
the best part <3: "Alba says her guide is more down to earth: 'Gwyneth Paltrow probably lives a very similar lifestyle, but I didn't grow up with a bunch of money so my tips are much more grounded: Repurposing things and making things at home.'"