Skin Care: 8 Skin Care Rules You Should Follow During Your Pregnancy | Vogue
Becoming a mother, especially for the first time, is a defining moment in the life of any woman, but it comes with its own set of challenges. From morning sickness to dietary changes and skin care issues, your daily life begins to follow a whole new routine to take care of you and your growing baby. We spoke to celebrity dermatologists Dr. Jamuna Pai and Dr. Harshna Bijlani to tackle all the skin issues that crop up when you’re pregnant and design the best kind of skincare routine that’s both safe and simple.
Common Skin Problems That Happen When You’re Pregnant
“A woman’s body goes through several hormonal changes over her lifetime, one of which is pregnancy,” says Dr. Pai. In most cases, skin and hair problems such as acne, dull skin and hair loss resolve naturally after the first trimester, and women’s skin looks lovely. But I saw [cases] where the converse is also true. There might be a breakout of acne and an increase in pigmentation, which is very common and called “pregnancy mask” or melasma. Here, doctors give us the complete glossary of skin concerns during pregnancy.
In case you thought you were done with acne as a teenager, think again. “Hormonal changes, increased sensitivity and increased oil shedding, and excessively dry skin can cause acne during pregnancy,” says Dr. Bijlani. “However, it can be treated during pregnancy, so don’t wait. Go see your doctor and find out what you can do to improve your skin health and reduce acne naturally.
“Increased sensitivity to the sun, coupled with hormonal fluctuations, can cause pigmentation anywhere and even in the folds of your body, such as in the neck or under the armpits,” she adds. This makes applying adequate sunscreen even more important. “You are also now prone to melasma or chloasma on your face. This is a type of hyperpigmentation due to excessive production of melanin, which can appear as dark or brown spots near the forehead, upper lips, cheekbones, etc. In addition, we all have a line running down our abdomen called linea alba (meaning white line in Latin).During pregnancy, this line darkens and turns brownish, and is then called linea nigra (meaning black line) This is due to hyperpigmentation and normally returns to its original appearance after pregnancy.
“This is one of the most common problems women face during pregnancy. Your skin will stretch and expand to make room for your child, which will often lead to stretch marks,” says Dr. Bijlani “‘Striae gravidarum’ or stretch marks, as they are commonly referred to, are usually an unavoidable part of pregnancy,” adds Dr. Pai. a permanent breakdown of collagen and elastin fibers in the tissues, causing them. It is important to moisturize your skin regularly, especially during pregnancy, to reduce [their appearance].” Will any old moisturizer do? “A good lotion can help increase dryness or itchiness in the skin, but it won’t completely prevent stretch marks, no matter how diligently you apply it,” says Pai. “Cocoa butter is considered one of the best moisturizers for stretch marks and can be used safely during pregnancy.”
When it comes to treating stretch marks, the earlier you start, the better. “If you’re looking to reduce your stretch marks, don’t wait a few months or put off a year or two thinking they’ll go away. Start treating them with the right treatments and products as soon as your doctor tells you that you are ready,” advises Dr Bijlani. “Use argan oil, rosehip oil or coconut oil for stretch marks – these oils help your skin hydrate and reduce the appearance [of stretch marks].”
8 skincare rules to follow during pregnancy
Don’t Skip Your Skincare Routine Completely
“Often patients start using nothing during their pregnancy. This is not a good practice either. You should always use cleanser, sunscreen, moisturizer, etc. to maintain your skin health. Try using more natural and organic products, if you feel more comfortable,” says Dr. Bijlani.
Fill up on moisturizer
“Moisturize frequently to prevent stretch marks, reduce itchiness and soothe dry skin caused by pregnancy. Moisturize your whole body, especially your knees, elbows, nipples, etc., as they tend to get even drier,” advises Dr. Bijlani.
Consult your OB/GYN before signing up for any new skin treatment
“A facial can be done once a month, but be sure to avoid intensive heat therapy and use any machine that involves electrical current,” says Dr. Pai. “Do not undergo treatments like Botox, fillers or laser during your pregnancy, and also avoid chemical peels.”
Your sunscreen is now even more important
“Due to increased sensitivity, your skin may not handle the sun or new skincare products well,” Dr. Bijlani believes. “Never go out without sunscreen, especially during your pregnancy because your skin is more sensitive to the sun at that time. Be sure to wear protective clothing like a hat, sunglasses, etc., for better sun protection You should use about half a teaspoon of sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more and touch it up every 2-3 hours for it to work and protect your skin from the sun.
You may want to switch to shaving as your preferred hair removal method
“Although there is no evidence that waxing is dangerous during pregnancy, the increased sensitivity of the skin, caused by hormonal changes in the body, can make the procedure more painful,” suggests the Dr. Pai. Although you can still use hair removal creams, the chemicals they contain can further irritate your skin. Be sure to talk to your dermatologist about your best options before using anything new on your skin.
Say no to retinoids and isotretinoin
“Stop using any restorative night cream, especially ones containing retinoids or salicylic acid,” says Dr. Pai. “Studies show that continued use of retinoids during pregnancy can cause birth defects,” adds Dr. Bijlani. “This is an ingredient that you absolutely should not apply while pregnant or trying to conceive.” Although isotretinoin can usually give you that beautiful acne-free skin, it’s best to avoid it when trying to get pregnant. “[Though it is] commonly used for anti-acne [treatments], isotretinoin should be avoided during pregnancy, as it may cause birth defects if used during pregnancy. It should also be avoided before pregnancy as it could also cause changes in your menstrual cycle making it difficult to conceive. Bakuchiol is promoted as the safe natural alternative to retinol for pregnant women. Learn more here.
Don’t use your regular acne treatments either.
“Benzoyl peroxide and clindamycin, which are great for acne, should be avoided during pregnancy, even if you have a sudden acne breakout. You can instead use mild topical AHAs available over the counter that contain glycolic acid as they will help cure acne and are safe Other topical but prescription creams would be erythromycin or azelaic acid but even these should be used under the guidance of your doctor,” advises Dr. Pai.
Add a vitamin C serum to your face and body care routine
Dr. Bijlani is an advocate for vitamin C serums for brightening purposes. “It is an excellent antioxidant and safe during pregnancy. It helps repair tissue, heal and keep your skin healthy and glowing,” she says.
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