Published: 06:00, 12 April 2021
| Updated: 17:24, 19 April 2021
Four months after giving birth, most women are overjoyed just to be able to fit back into their jeans, but for one Kent woman it was the moment she realised a dream and posed for the cover of Playboy.
And Irene Major - otherwise known as Lady Hailes and the 'Queen of Ingress Abbey' at Greenhithe, near Dartford - also managed to reach the milestone after having her eighth child.
And, to top it off, she made history to boot, becoming the first black African woman to grace the cover of Playboy Czech Republic on its 30th anniversary.
Irene, a former Miss Cameroon, who gave birth to her first child at 20 and has since been juggling a successful modelling career whilst raising her brood with her Canadian oil mogul husband, Sam, said: "It has long been a dream of mine to feature in Playboy.
"Other black women have been on the cover, perhaps most notably Naomi Campbell who is one of my icons and whom I have worked with in the past. However I am indeed the first black woman from the African continent to appear on the cover of Playboy Czech Republic.
"I am proud to represent Africa and African beauty and particularly in a country where people of African origin and visible minorities in general make up a very small proportion of the population."
Despite being a mother of eight, Irene said: "My wardrobe waits for me to be able to fit into my favourite clothes after each baby and my children (and husband) are very supportive of my modelling and fashion career. I love the camera and the camera loves me back."
So what is her secret to keeping a covergirl figure after giving birth so many times?
"I watch what I eat - I believe that you are what you eat - and I am careful about how much I eat. I love smoothies - I keep coming up with new smoothie recipes ... my husband calls me smoothie queen. On top a few stretches, dancing and lots of exercise running around my Ingress Abbey after the toddlers especially."
She and her husband moved to the historic abbey - which is also the Honorary Consulate of Lithuania in Kent - in 2012.
"I love living in Ingress Abbey. It is a beautiful building, steeped in history and with various legends.
"Don’t be overwhelmed by this imposing neo-Gothic building ... inside it is full of life, warmth and love."
Life at the abbey usually involves fashion shoots, filming and cultural events but during the pandemic, restrictions meant a focus on the family side of things with the addition of remote learning for the children and the arrival of the couple's youngest son, who turns one this month.
Irene said: "Lockdown was daunting at first and it brought with it challenges and problems for all. However we found that, with all the children at home for months on end, we have come to enjoy the little things and been brought closer together ... the togetherness is a beautiful memory that I will cherish for life.
"But I should not overlook the fact that during the pandemic I did manage - socially distanced of course - to complete an important professional shoot - as a cover girl and as a Playmate featured in Playboy."