Deciding on the best skincare for pregnancy may not seem like an urgent priority while you’re expecting, but it’s actually a really smart idea. Not only is knowing which skincare ingredients to avoid during pregnancy crucial for your peace of mind, who doesn’t want to have a blemish-free, glowing complexion as they await the arrival of the new addition to the family?

The fastest shortcut to learning the ins and outs of pregnancy safe skincare is to book a consultation with a board-certified Viva Eve Skincare Specialist. If you do so, here’s a list of the other key topics you’ll cover during your appointment:

  • Best pregnancy skincare practices for both face and belly
  • Pregnancy breakouts and pregnancy safe prescription medications
  • Pregnancy safe in-office treatments, like therapeutic facials and extractions
  • Skin discoloration and melasma during pregnancy and ways to mitigate hyperpigmentation
  • Skin growths
  • Linea Negra (the dark vertical line that appears on the stomach and stretch marks 

In addition to all the great info you’d receive during your Viva Eve consultation, there’s plenty to learn simply by reading on right here. For starters, let’s tackle one of the biggest issues…

Skincare Ingredients To Avoid During Pregnancy

Depending on your information source, the list of skincare ingredients to avoid during pregnancy can be pretty extensive. Still, there’s no cause for alarm. Just err on the side of caution and add these to your “no” list while you’re pregnant:

  • Topical Retinoids: This includes not only common over the counter vitamin A derivatives such as Retinol and Retinyl Palmitate, but also prescription products including adapalene, isotretinoin, tazarotene, tretinoin, which are marketed under a number of brand names. 
  • Oral Antibiotics: Commonly prescribed acne-preventative oral antibiotics such as erythromycin, clindamycin, metronidazole and dapsone should absolutely be removed from your pregnancy skincare shopping list. 
  • Salicylic Acid: While a low-dose salicylic acid is deemed safe for pregnancy by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, can you really be 100 percent certain of the level contained in the skincare you’re using? It’s smarter to skip this ubiquitous anti-ingredient altogether until you’ve delivered. 
  • Hydroquinone: Because it’s so frequently recommended to reduce discoloration, it’s understandable you might want to reach for this potent skin lightener if you’re experiencing pregnancy-related pigmentation problems. But because it has an unusually high skin-absorption rate, hydroquinone unfortunately doesn’t fall under the pregnancy safe skincare ingredient umbrella. 
  • Chemical Sunscreens: If you’re not already a fan of physical sunscreens such as the mineral oxides titanium and zinc, the start of your pregnancy would be the perfect time to dive right in. Oxybenzone, one of the most widely used chemical sunscreens, has been determined to be unsafe for women who are expecting. Other classic chemical sunscreens, including octocrylene and octinoxate, are considered unsafe for the environment. Why not protect your baby and the planet at the same time? 

So What Can You Use?

By now you might be thinking: If I’m looking for the best skincare for pregnancy, what ingredients are both safe and effective? 

Thankfully there are plenty of pregnancy safe skincare options to choose from.

Glycolic acid, an alpha hydroxy acid derived from sugarcane with a solid track record in treating acne and resurfacing texture, could absolutely be considered on the list for best skincare for pregnancy. 

Commonly found in peel pads, acne patches, toners and serums, glycolic acid works by breaking the bonds between skin cells, particularly the flaky dead ones, which creates a peeling effect that reveals the clearer, brighter cells beneath. Skin appears smoother and more even. And if you’re dealing with pregnancy-generated acne, courtesy of raging hormones, glycolic acid can be extremely helpful in unclogging pores, leading to fewer breakouts. 

Naturally Safer Skincare

Not surprisingly, products with natural ingredients make it to the top of many pregnancy skincare shopping lists. 

As an alternative to glycolic acid for treating pregnancy acne, consider azelaic acid, a naturally occurring dicarboxylic acid extracted from cereal grains like barley, wheat and rye. Also used to treat rosacea, azelaic acid also kills acne bacteria, reduces swelling and calms inflammation – all great for treating blemish-prone skin.  

Tea tree oil, helpful for both treating acne and calming inflamed skin, is yet another natural option to include in your pregnancy skincare tool kit. Derived from tea trees indigenous to Australia, this herbal remedy is a powerful antiseptic that should never be applied directly to skin. Buffer it first by mixing it with your favorite skin-friendly oil, such as coconut or almond. 

And speaking of coconut oil, for the prevention of stretch marks – not to mention everyday dry skin – be sure to stock up on products crafted with this wholesome, nourishing ingredient. Cocoa butter and hyaluronic acid are also super helpful in keeping stretched skin supple. 

Finally, don’t forget to add a mineral sunscreen to your best skincare for pregnancy checklist. 

By keeping these “yes” and “no” lists handy when you’re shopping, you’ll have the confidence that comes from having great skin while you’re expecting.  

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