During pregnancy, some women are lucky enough to radiate a beautiful glow and maintain their clear complexions, but unfortunately, this isn't the case for every pregnant woman. Pregnancy can attract unwanted skin conditions and dull your shine, negatively impacting your self-esteem and confidence during a transformative.
Before you run to the store and splash out on new skincare products, there are some things you need to know about pregnancy-safe skincare. We're here to walk you through the ingredients to avoid and what to look for when creating a pregnancy skincare routine.
How Your Skin Changes When Pregnant
When you're pregnant, you experience frequent shifts in hormones and changes to your cardiovascular system and immune system, all of which can lead to changes in your skin.
Experiencing all these changes at once can lead to unwanted acne, dryness, and darkening skin. If you have a skincare condition like psoriasis or rosacea, you may experience flare-ups and irritation.
In addition, you also need to worry about stretch marks on your belly and ongoing hair loss during the nine months of pregnancy and postpartum. Don't panic, though – this is all a normal part of pregnancy, and it'll all be worth it in the end!
Everyone reacts differently during pregnancy, so keep an eye out for issues that arise so you can craft a skincare routine that targets these imperfections.
Which Skincare Ingredients to Avoid During Pregnancy
While most cosmetic components are safe to use during pregnancy, there are some you should avoid. Countless studies and research suggest that certain ingredients can threaten your pregnancy, so it's always better to be safe than sorry.
Here's a breakdown of ingredients to avoid for pregnancy safe skincare:
Retinoids are a popular anti-aging skincare ingredient. Many people apply retinol serums before bed every night or have a doctor's prescription, but during pregnancy, you'll want to retire this product for the duration.
Retinoids are known for eliminating fine lines and wrinkles and can give your skin a much-needed collagen boost. Retinoid prescriptions often contain high doses of retinoids, and studies suggest that this can lead to severe congenital irregularities.
If you have a prescription for Tazorac or Accutane, speak with your doctor before using it regularly.
Formaldehyde is a well-known carcinogen and a common ingredient in nail polishes and some hair care products. Studies show that products containing this ingredient can cause fertility problems and even miscarriages. If you want to continue painting your nails, look for products with labels 3-Free or 5-Free on the label.
Phthalates can disrupt the endocrine and reproductive systems, and studies suggest pregnant women exposed to high amounts are at risk of preterm birth or miscarriages.
Personal care products, oils, lubricants, and shampoos still contain phthalates regardless of the repercussions for your skin and health. Before using these products, it's always best to research or look at the ingredients.
Parabens are preservatives, and you'll find them in a wide range of beauty products. Known to be hormone disruptors that can cause reproductive harm for men and women, studies show that parabens can reduce sperm count in men and disrupt birth weight.
Parabens are often a common ingredient in hair sprays, sunscreens, moisturizers, and deodorants.
Sunscreen is a must-have for every skincare routine, so when you spend time in the sun or plan to be outside all day, lather up with sunscreen to protect yourself from harmful UVB rays.
However, be aware that chemical sunscreens contain oxybenzone, octocrylene, and octinoxate – disruptive chemicals that can harm pregnant and breastfeeding women.
This doesn't mean avoiding sunscreen altogether. We recommend switching to mineral-based sunscreens containing titanium dioxide or zinc oxide.
Safe Skincare Ingredients to Look For
Thankfully, not all ingredients are bad for pregnancy skincare – you can substitute harmful components for skin-loving ingredients during and after pregnancy to ensure a pregnancy-safe skincare routine.
Skin needs antioxidants to combat free radicals; without these, your skin may reveal visual signs of aging, acne, and unwanted imperfections.
Pregnancy-safe skincare antioxidants include vitamins E and C, green tea, and resveratrol, which help to maintain that fabled pregnancy glow, enhance your skin's natural collagen production levels, and fight free radicals.
Hyaluronic acid is a popular anti-aging skincare ingredient that can eliminate fine lines and wrinkles and help with skin hydration. We recommend adding it to your skincare routine to replace your retinol/retinoids.
Peptides are amino acids that create collagen and elastin, two things we need to maintain skin health. Skin products often include peptides to help you maintain a youthful complexion, combat breakouts, and keep your skin firm.
Coconut oil is an ultra-hydrating ingredient in moisturizers, eye creams, and lotions, which reduces inflammation, smoothes wrinkles, and keeps your skin soft and supple. The antimicrobial properties of coconut oil can also fend off dirt, grime, and bacteria that cause redness and irritation.
Coconut oil and other natural hydrating oils are natural alternatives to synthetic add-ins. They're also perfect safe skincare for pregnancy products because they reduce the appearance of stretch marks and fight off infections.
Our Pregnancy Safe Skincare Routine For You
To rebuild your pregnancy skincare routine, look through your current skincare product labels and read through the ingredients. If you see something you've never heard of or can't pronounce, do some research before continuing to use the product.
If you want to build a pregnancy skincare routine, here's how:
Start with a gentle cleanser, preventing dirt, grime, and bacteria from collecting in your pores. Skipping this step can lead to acne, irritation, and redness.
In addition, choose alcohol, paraben, and phthalates-free cleansers and look for ingredients like glycerin and vitamin C.
Serums often contain anti-aging ingredients that help reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and hyperpigmentation. Body serums can also target stretch marks and other pesky skincare imperfections.
If you want skincare safe for pregnancy, choose The Serum, our popular daily face serum containing a potent formula of hyper-hydrators and complexion correctors like Rice Bran Oil, Edelweiss Pomegranate Seed extracts, vitamin C, and resveratrol. Together, this blend works to revitalize and protect the skin while helping improve tone and smooth texture.
For the best results, use it twice daily, in the morning and at night.
During pregnancy, keep your skin hydrated, soft, and supple with your go-to moisturizer. Without a moisturizer, you may experience dryness, irritation, and flaky, dry patches on your face or body.
If you’re looking for a body moisturizer, try The Body Cream, a potent blend formulated to prevent stretch marks from forming and keep your skin soft and smooth throughout your pregnancy. During our 12-week clinical trials, 90% of participants agreed that the product helped reduce the appearance of stretch marks.
For your daily moisturizer for your face, you’ll need The Rich Cream, our award-winning daily moisturizer powered by TFC8®, featuring a clinically proven blend of potent ingredients that support the skin's barrier function. The formula contains hyaluronic acid, avocado oil, vitamin E, and argan oil, all of which are safe skincare for pregnancy. Regular use can reduce the signs of aging and protect your skin from environmental aggressors.
Discover Pregnancy Skincare from Augustinus Bader
During pregnancy, consider simplifying your skincare routine to avoid ingredients that cause more harm than good. With the right products, simplifying can be just as effective as a 10-step skincare routine.
At Augustinus Bader, we developed a groundbreaking skincare line backed by more than 30 years of scientific research and innovation. All of our products contain all-natural ingredients for your skin that will give you the confidence you need throughout your pregnancy.
FAQs on Pregnancy Safe Skincare
Do I Need To Change My Skincare When Pregnant?
Not necessarily. You may already have a skincare safe for pregnancy routine and don’t know it. However, if you're pregnant, you should probably avoid some ingredients. It's always best to look at the ingredient list and be mindful of the products you include in your routine. If you have any questions or concerns about ingredients or products you enjoy using, we recommend speaking to a healthcare provider about safe skincare for pregnancy.
What is the Best Skincare for Pregnancy and Nursing?
Everyone is different, so there isn't a "one size fits all" skincare solution for every pregnant or nursing mother. However, everyone should prioritize a daily moisturizer, cleanser, and sunscreen, which are the foundation of an effective skincare routine. The big switch you’ll need to make is including mineral-based sunscreens instead of chemical-based sunscreen.
From there, depending on your unique skin concerns, you can choose which additional products you'll want to include in your pregnancy skincare routine.
Remember: Many ingredients in acne-fighting skin care are not recommended for pregnancy safe skincare. If you're struggling with acne, consult a dermatologist or a healthcare provider for more guidance.
Which Ingredients to Avoid When Pregnant?
There are many popular ingredients in skincare safe for pregnancy routines that you should avoid. This includes harsh add-ins such as formaldehyde, phthalates, parabens, and certain sulfates. You may also want to remove your retinol serum and replace any formulas that contain Salicylic Acid with a gentler acid.
What Are the Skincare Rules for Pregnancy?
Throughout your pregnancy, there are four things to focus on: Exfoliating twice a week, moisturizing daily, using sunscreen regularly, and cleansing your face. With these four components in your pregnancy skincare routine, you can maintain your youthful glow and protect your skin barrier throughout your pregnancy.
Can I Use Vitamin C When Pregnant?
Yes, vitamin C is considered a safe ingredient to use throughout pregnancy. You can still apply it topically to your face as a serum or moisturizer during your daytime or nighttime routine.