Pregnancy and breastfeeding period is not necessarily the time you think about skincare or even get to invest in self care. Still if you are someone used to a routine or someone who wants to start with some skincare to combat all the spots and marks left by the crazy hormones, this post will help you get started.
- To start with, a nourishing and balanced diet is what is essential for your skin and overall health of you and baby during pregnancy. So nothing else can help, if you don’t pay attention to your diet. Natural sources of fibre and protein are your friends now and always.
Seeds, nuts, single origin cocoa, greens, local fruits especially banana, cold pressed oils, organic red rice, whole grain flours have to be included in diet along with protein rich food.
- Hydrate : This must be something even your doctor and mom keeps saying. It is essential to have plenty of water and electrolytes for a glowing skin and a healthy pregnancy. Coconut water, lime water, herbal waters are all great.
Make sure you use good quality glass or steel bottles instead of plastic ones.
- Use gentle and minimal skincare products. A good quality, gentle, soap free cleanser, SLS free shampoo, body butters/synthetic free creams, floral waters or face mists, chemical free deodorants, bath salts and a lip balm is the most you really need for self care during this time.
When you need a quick freshen up and can’t leave the baby, just spritz some face mist and it would give you the instant boost.
If you need to relax a bit but your swollen feet is killing you, immerse it in some bath salt in a tub of warm water and you will sleep like a baby.
Body butters can double up as massage balms, moisturisers, nipple creams etc but make sure you find one with little to no essential oil.
Also using a safe sunscreen can help if your skin is prone to dark patches and pigmentation.
Gentle exfoliation using milled sugar or dry brushing (avoid face) can help your skin glow.
Niacinamide, Vit C, rosehip seed oil, propolis, Aloe Vera, Vit E are all your friends during this time.
- Be happy and embrace all the changes that comes with pregnancy. It is at times nerve wrecking to go through a lot of changes physically and emotionally during this period. But your body is there to support you and your skin is the most resilient organ.
Using cold pressed sesame oil or massaging with body butters can help give your skin the much needed elasticity. So embrace the silver marks on your belly and the dark patches, because with time these will fade out and will just be sweet memories of how your amazing body created a new life.
Before you buy a product, check with the brand to understand if it is safe during pregnancy and breast feeding.
- Ditch your synthetic deodorants having aluminium chloride and also your chemical laden makeup. Opt for natural or cruelty free vegan products. There are many affordable Indian brands creating such products.
- Avoid the formaldehyde rich nail polishes.
- Retinol, Retin-A and Hydroquinones are a strict no.
- Sunscreens can’t be completely natural but there are many brands making mom and baby safe sunscreens. I prefer mineral based ones to chemical ones.
- Essential oils and fragrance might cause sensitivity. Always patch test products having EOs and make sure the product has EOs within the permitted derma limits. Even better is to go for products with no fragrance.
- Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and parabens can be avoided as well.
- Avoid or have minimal consumption of coffee, tea and products with high sugar content.
NOTE: There hasn’t been any in depth study to prove the adverse effects of AHAs, BHAs, hair dyes and hair removal creams on pregnancy. The cautionary ingredients in these are harmful only in high concentrations. Since pregnancy causes sensitivity for many women and babies might be allergic to such product residues, it’s better to avoid these or use these1 in moderation.
You can find many safe products in my Insta handle or check out the reviews in the blog.