Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Skincare Concerns During Pregnancy

Skincare Concerns During Pregnancy
(what to use and what to avoid)

Alisa Jennifer Kay

Some pregnant women get that “glow” that makes them beautiful and beam with excitement. Most women going through pregnancy are known to really look gorgeous and have a certain extra attractiveness to them. Maybe it’s happiness and that is the cause of women radiating that glow. But, many pregnant women aren’t putting their best face forward and are dealing with unsightly acne, which is a common problem during pregnancy due to hormonal changes. Other concerns women may deal with are bumps, rashes, spots, excessively oily skin, and discolorations that occur due to hormones. These are all common during pregnancy and can be frustrating. If you are dealing with acne, do not use any products that contain benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, or any of the retinoid, because are not safe to use during pregnancy. Alternatives you can use would be sulphur-based topical products and those containing glycolic acid or alpha hydroxy acids, or at-home microdermabrasion treatment. For a daily regimen to treat acne when pregnant- wash your face gently with a mild soap or cleanser twice a day. Don’t scrub with a washcloth as this can irritate your skin. Pat skin dry and use an oil-free moisturizer. Always remember to wash your face before bed. When wearing make up during pregnancy and dealing with acne or oily skin- you can use a foundation for oily skin, or use loose mineral powder makeup, because they have oil-blotting properties and won't irritate acne prone skin. Using make up that is water based rather than oil based is healthier for your skin.

Another frustrating concern moms-to-be deal with is a skin condition called melasma, or commonly referred to as "pregnancy mask” which are patches of dark, pigmented skin that appear on the face. Melasma can appear when a steep rise in estrogen stimulates excess melanin production. The discoloration is temporary and usually fades after delivery or after breastfeeding. This condition is caused by pregnancy hormones and although there isn’t a designed treatment for pigmentation problems, it is recommended to stay out of the sun to diminish the amount of discoloration you experience . Don’t use peels bleaches, or other chemically lightening treatments which can penetrate skin. Simply use sunscreen, sunglasses and a hat. It is recommended not to use soy products, because they can make skin conditions such as chloasma worse. Use products that contain “Active Soy” because they tend to have the estrogenic elements removed from them. It is known that a topical Vitamin C product can help suppress pigment naturally and should be safe to use. A more personal issue you may be dealing with is wanting to remove excess hair during pregnancy especially if your hormones are working overtime. Hair removers are generally safe to use, when used as directed. But, It’s important to remember that some products you have used previously that were safe, may cause allergic reactions while you are pregnant, because your skin is more sensitive.

Some pregnant women not only have acne, but all over itchiness, but the way to treat that is with a healing moisturizer, such as Cocoa butter which is well known to help this condition and stretch marks. Essential oils such as Lavender, Chamomile and Calendula are calming to itchy skin and could help calm down inflamed skin, and also tame your nerves. Check to make sure that the products you are using during your pregnancy are safe. Enjoy being pregnant and if you use more natural type products for your skin, and cleanse your face daily- you should have that nice glow.

Please be sure to check to see what is safe when using any skin products and essential oils.


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