More often than not, we hear that pregnant women get a “healthy glow” while expecting: that their hair grows faster stronger and looks shinier, or that their skin clears up and holds onto a dewy lustful appearance. BUT not all mamas are blessed with the beauty upsides of pregnancy. Even if your skin obtains a new clear appearance, there are many other types of beauty ailments that can come along with pregnancy. From spider veins/varicose veins, to stretch marks, it can be frustrating having to deal with these new changes and not know what types of ingredients you can and can’t use while pregnant.
IF you want to go the route of finding products that you can use for pregnancy beauty in addition to creating your own at home remedies, I have two resources for you:
Having to switch up your entire beauty and skincare routine while pregnant can be a daunting task, so hopefully the above two resources as well as the information below will help you figure everything out!
Skincare While Pregnant: Natural Remedies For Popular Pregnancy Problems
Many pregnant women discover that their face breaks out between the first and second trimester when hormone levels are rapidly changing. The rise in hormones can trigger what feels like acne from high school, but there are a few natural ways that you can help combat these breakouts. For me, my face was the worst in my first trimester. One day it would be horribly dry and flaky (and I looked like I was 5 years older due to fine lines showing up more because of the dryness), and then the next day it would be oily and 3 new breakouts would appear. Here are some natural ways that you can help diminish pregnancy acne from taking over your face:
- Simple clay masks that combine water and bentonite or dead sea mud can help unclog your pores, pull out any impurities, and even tighten your skin. When I would have larger pregnancy pimples pop up, I’d spot treat the area with bentonite clay mixed with a drop of water and leave it on overnight to really suck out the gunk.
- A few drops of tea tree oil diluted with water or a carrier oil like jojoba seed oil can be used as an evening serum over problem areas.
- Incorporating honey into your at home remedies can help kill off bacteria and infuse your skin with antioxidants and extra hydration.
- Eating foods rich in zinc, iron, selenium and probiotics will not only help keep your gut healthy (which is connected to how your skin looks), but the minerals have been studied and linked to reducing blemishes.
Preventing Stretchmarks While Pregnant
As I’m 32 weeks pregnant I’m happy to report that I still don’t have any stretchmarks on my belly. I have a few on my boobs, but the creams and remedies that I’m using are still minimizing the appearance of them. Even though stretchmarks can be inevitable for many of us, they can still be diminished with proper care. I recommend taking action from the beginning to prevent them so that when they do arrive (if they do) they are minimal. Here are my tips for preventing and diminishing stretch marks during pregnancy:
- Add collagen to your diet. I’ve written and spoke about collagen before and I’ll talk about it for years to come since I believe it is such a wonderful component of keeping skin healthy and youthful. I use simply hydrolyzed collagen protein powder during the day by either adding it to my morning coffee, or blended into smoothies. Collagen helps keep your skin elastic and helps repair your skin when it becomes damaged. You can also consume bone broth throughout the day which provides a natural source of collagen.
- Cocoa butter and Shea butter both are known to help prevent and diminish pregnancy stretch marks. Since both of these body butters are pretty rich, I like to apply them in the evening before I go to bed.
- Calendula oil is another wonderful ingredient that helps calm skin and prevent stretchmarks as it infuses your skin with nutrients that keep it elastic.
- Consume Omega 3’s and healthy fats regularly. Eating enough healthy fats ensures that your skin stays hydrated and supple, a major factor in preventing stretchmarks while pregnant!
Flaky, Dry Skin While Pregnant
I had bouts of dry skin throughout my entire pregnancy up until now. During the first trimester my face would get extremely dry and flaky, and now my belly gets dry and itchy due to it being stretched out to capacity! Also, since our blood supply increases it can result in our skin being extra sensitive, thus extra itchy! Here’s what I recommend to help with this pregnancy ailment:
- Stock up on quality body butters to use daily.
- Create an oatmeal mask to use while you take a bath. Oatmeal is an extremely calming ingredient that can alleviate itchiness and dry skin. I like making an oatmeal pack combining simply one packet of ready made oatmeal and almond milk or water, and letting it sit on my belly while I’m taking a bath. You can also do the same for your face.
- Sea Buckthorn oil face oil is another great option for your face if you are experiencing extra dryness. I like to massage sea buckthorn oil into my face at night before I go to bed to calm any itchiness.
Spider Veins and Varicose Veins
These pregnancy symptoms can be very common (I am starting to notice spider veins on the inside of my thighs) and it’s due to the impending pressure of our uterus. This pressure is applied to the veins in our legs which can cause our veins to bulge out. The increase in blood flow as well puts extra pressure on our veins, so here are a few ways that you can prevent this from happening to you:
- Witch hazel is believed to strengthen blood vessels in order to handle the extra pressure put on them, so you can soak a piece of cotton in witch hazel and then compress it on the area that is affected a few times a day.
- Elevating your legs will also take pressure off of your blood vessels, so when you’re sitting try to put your feet up. Walking regularly will also increase circulation to prevent your veins from experiencing added pressure.
- Dry body brushing also helps increase circulation and gets your blood moving.
- Consuming foods rich in vitamin C helps improve your circulation, so eat foods like cayenne pepper, bell peppers, dark leafy greens and parsley.
Melasma (Known As Pregnancy Mask)
Our hormone levels while pregnant pretty much go haywire, and these hormone changes can cause our skin to change in the form of hyper pigmentation which can result in dark patches on our face or skin, this is also what is responsible for the dark line running in the center of the stomach called linea nigra. To help prevent this type of skin issue, it’s ideal to have your hormones in balance before you conceive to prevent this issue. Here are some ways that you can balance your hormones before and during pregnancy, and additional remedies to utilize if you start to experience this type of hyper pigmentation:
- Make sure you eat to balance your hormones by including foods that are rich in healthy fats and proteins. Also consuming foods high in vitamin C can help even reverse hyper pigmentation.
- Ensuring that you wear sunscreen regularly can also prevent pregnancy mask. My favorite pregnancy friendly sunscreen is found in my pregnancy beauty guide.
- Using honey on your skin as a mask can also help lighten up dark spots.
- Lemon juice also acts as a skin lightener, just be sure to test it out first in case your skin is sensitive to the acidity.
All in all, it’s imperative that you take care of yourself and your skin while your pregnant. Now is the time to focus on self-care so that you and your baby can be the healthiest and happiest possible. I’d love to know what works for you if you try any of these remedies out!