Pregnancy skincare: what to use, what to avoid, and how to adjust your routine
In our experience, pregnancy comes with a LOT of questions and information-seeking. It will come as no surprise that in the maple + björk universe, some of our fact-finding was related to our skin and finding a pregnancy safe skincare routine.
Whether it's dealing with a sudden case of hormonal acne, dark patches appearing across your cheeks, or wondering what products are safe to use, we promise that you can find a balance between maintaining that gorgeous glow and choosing pregnancy safe skincare routine. Read on to find about about ingredients to avoid, possible pregnancy-related skin changes and suggestions for products to counteract them.
It is important to note that this is not an exhaustive list of ingredients and options. As always, you should consult your midwife or doctor regarding decisions related to your pregnancy.
INGREDIENTS TO AVOID
You can rest assured that many skincare products are completely safe for both you and baby, but there are a few ingredients that research suggests may be harmful to your growing little one, or your skin may be more sensitive to during pregnancy. While not all of this research is conclusive, many mothers to be choose to avoid the following ingredients to avoid potential risks:
- retinol and retinoids
- high doses of salicylic acid (more than 2%)
- chemical sunscreens
- parabens, pthalates, formaldehyde, artificial fragrances (none of which are on the ingredient lists of products carried by maple + björk)
ACTIVE INGREDIENTS THAT ARE SAFE TO INCLUDE
Luckily the list of actives that are pregnancy-safe includes some of our all-time favorites - click here to see our entire assortment of pregnancy friendly products:
- hyaluronic acid
- lactic acid
- glycolic acid
- salicylic acid (2% or less)
- vitamin C
- mineral and physical sunscreen (for example including zinc oxide or titanium dioxide)
POSSIBLE SKIN CHANGES AND PRODUCTS TO COUNTERACT THEM
Some women may experience no skin changes whatsoever during pregnancy, while others may notice previous concerns flaring up (for example if you have eczema, psoriasis or rosacea) or new ones cropping up. The most common new concerns are:
- dry skin
- extra sensitive skin
- darkening of the skin (a condition called melasma)
Safe ingredients for each concern:
- dry skin: to increase the moisture level if you usual moisturizer isn't cutting it, we recommend adding a pre-moisturizer hyaluronic acid (we love Pestle & Mortar's), or post-moisturizer facial oil (try this!)
- extra sensitive skin: soothe the skin with a gentle serum (like this or this) and further protect it with a nourishing cream (we recommend this)
- acne: try adding a glycolic acid (like this), salicylic acid (less than 2%), or lactic acid (like this) step into your routine
- darkened skin: vitamin C is the holy grail (Ursa Major's one of our faves)! You could also benefit from glycolic and lactic acids (see above)
Disclaimer: above all, talk to your midwife or doctor and ensure you are following their advice - we are the skincare junkies, they are the medical professionals!