How to “Spring Clean” Your Mama-to-Be Skincare Routine
If you’re a mama-to-be preparing for your new bundle of joy, you have a lot to prepare before your big day.
One of those things? Your skincare routine. After all, there are probably chemicals that you won’t want to expose yourself or your baby to – plus, you’ll be dealing with a ton of new skincare concerns while you wait for your little miracle to arrive.
Here’s everything you need to know, and how to keep your skin clear, calm, and glowing into your next chapter.
The Most Common Mama-to-Be Skincare Concerns
First, it’s important to understand the top pregnancy skincare woes that might keep you less-than-glowing and fresh. The most common new or worsening skincare concerns to keep your eye out for include:
- Darkening skin or melasma
- Dry skin
- Exacerbation of existing conditions like psoriasis, eczema, or rosacea
Here are the do’s and don’ts of dealing with these pregnancy skincare concerns.
Ingredients You Should Avoid
First, let’s tackle the don’ts. There are many ingredients that we always think you should avoid (and you can find more information about some of them here). Some of these are especially big no-no’s during pregnancy, including:
Vitamin A derivatives like retinoids are very popular for their ability to reduce fine lines, reverse acne, and lead to a younger, more supple appearance. That said, birth defects have been linked to high doses of retinoids, so we recommend that you completely cut it out of your pregnancy routine.
Oxybenzone, a popular sunscreen ingredient, is a known endocrine-disrupting chemical. When used during pregnancy, there's concern that it can cause long-lasting damage to both mother and child. In fact, one study showed that regular use of oxybenzone during pregnancy led to permanent changes in lactation and mammary glands.
Not something any new mom should worry about.
A group of chemicals, phthalates are used in a variety of personal care products. For example, they’re used to make nail polish chip less or to make hair spray more flexible. That said, phthalates are known to cause:
- Endocrine disruption
- Developmental and reproductive toxicity
So we recommend that you avoid them at all costs.
The good news? There are many great alternatives to these no-no chemicals and ingredients.
The Right Skincare Routine for the Mom-to-Be
To tackle your dry skin, acne, and melasma, we recommend that you look for ingredients like:
- Glycolic acid: A gentle-yet-effective chemical exfoliant, glycolic acid evenly sloughs away dead skin cells and kills acne-causing bacteria without over-sensitizing the skin or causing irritation.
- Antioxidants: Antioxidants like vitamin E, vitamin C, and green tea fight free radicals, helping to clear acne, soothe redness, and lead to smoother, more even-looking skin.
- Mineral-based sunscreens: Mineral-based sunscreens like zinc oxide or titanium dioxide provide physical protection against UV rays without any endocrine disruptions.
- Peptides and hyaluronic acid: Hyaluronic acid can deeply moisturize the skin, while peptides can fortify collagen and lead to more supple-looking skin.
- Cocoa butter: Finally, cocoa butter can lock in moisture and help fend off both dryness and stretch marks – no side effects in sight.
Happy spring cleaning!