Pregnancy Skincare – Do’s and Don’ts

Pregnancy Skincare – Do’s and Don’ts

Nourish your pregnancy glow with skincare dos and don'ts! Explore expert insights for healthy and radiant skin. Empower your journey with tips on safe skincare practices during pregnancy. Start pampering yourself with confidence today!

Pregnancy brings with it many changes to both you and your beauty routine, including to your skincare regime. Some women may be shocked to learn that certain ingredients could be detrimental to their baby, while others may experience skin conditions like dryness and melasma that affect them throughout gestation.

Pregnancy-safe products exist that can address these concerns without risking the wellbeing of the baby. Here, dermatologists share tips for keeping skin in check during gestation.


As soon as you become pregnant, not only does your diet and exercise habits change but so may your skin care routine. Certain ingredients that can enter the bloodstream should be avoided to protect both mother and baby; this doesn’t mean giving up on all your favorite moisturizers or acne serums though as there are pregnancy-safe versions out there that can keep your complexion radiant throughout its nine month journey (and beyond!).

Expectant mamas should use sunscreen daily during their pregnancies due to hormonal changes that can cause melasma, dark spots and dullness of the skin. I suggest opting for physical (also known as mineral) sunscreen with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide; these ingredients sit on top of your skin surface and help reflect UV rays as opposed to chemical formulas with oxybenzone or avobenzone which are considered unsafe during gestation.

Other pregnancy-safe ingredients include glycolic acid and azelaic acid, both classified as category B products that can help brighten your complexion. Vitamin C is another excellent ingredient to look out for as it reduces blemishes and hyperpigmentation – try SkinCeuticals CE Ferulic for this antioxidant boost as an alternative to retinols!


Pregnancy brings with it many changes, both positive and negative (hello, glowing complexion!), some of which may include acne. While most over-the-counter skincare products are suitable for pregnant women, certain ingredients could potentially be detrimental to both mother and baby during the first trimester of gestation.

Pregnancy-unsafe anti-aging ingredients like retinols and high-strength salicylic acid should be avoided as these substances can enter the bloodstream and travel directly to a fetus, possibly leading to birth defects, early delivery, low birth weight or learning disabilities later on in childhood. Luckily, pregnancy-safe products exist that offer great alternatives; our favorite is Thank You Farmer’s Safe Sun Fluid AGE 0880 SPF50+ PA++++ which includes nourishing antioxidant-rich ingredients like niacinamide and centella asiatica extract for maximum benefit during gestation.

Oxybenzone and avobenzone, two chemicals commonly found in sunscreen, have been linked with pregnancy mask. If you notice dark pigmentation appearing on your skin during gestation, we advise using natural or organic sunscreen that’s free from these chemicals to lower irritation risk and help minimize melasma symptoms. As every pregnancy differs, make sure any product you plan to use with your OB first so they can provide more personalized advice regarding what’s safe.

Products to Try

Pregnancy can bring many changes, both good (hello, glow!) and not-so-good (acne). Hormonal surges may bring about dry or greasy patches, dark spots, itchy skin, stretch marks, new moles and more – the best pregnancy skincare products will work alongside rather than against your body during this journey.

Shamban recommends searching for products with short ingredient lists and easily identifiable components, like this option from First Aid Beauty that contains pregnancy-safe shea butter and colloidal oats for improved hydration and reduced irritation. She advises choosing fragrance-free options whenever possible due to their potential impact on scent-sensitive pregnancies, since many women develop contact dermatitis due to strongly fragranced products.

Although hydroquinone, which is often prescribed to women during pregnancy for pigment-squelching purposes, isn’t necessarily safe during gestation, she recommends safe spot-treaters like kojic acid and niacinamide as effective alternatives that can help fade melasma-related brown spots that appear up to 70% of pregnant women are affected by. She advises women to opt for mineral-based sunscreens over chemical ones as these may be safer since their harmfulness during pregnancy remains uncertain. She mentions oxybenzone being one such chemical. This pregnancy-safe gift box includes some of our most beloved products, like Tummy Rub Butter for your bump, Lucky Legs to help relieve puffy ankles, Boob Tube Cream to support growing breasts, Megamama Shower Milk as a soothing yet rejuvenating foaming cleanser and Megamama Shower Milk as a gentle yet revitalizing foaming cleanser.

Products to Avoid

No matter what skin condition you may be suffering from (whether dry skin or breakouts from hormones), it’s crucial to stock your beauty cabinet with pregnancy-safe products. Certain ingredients, like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid for acne treatments, should be avoided since these substances can penetrate through skin absorption into unborn babies, according to dermatologist Abigail Waldman of Mohs and Dermatologic Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Hydroquinone and vitamin A–commonly found in skin lightening creams, anti-ageing treatments, and wrinkle busters–should also be avoided.

At your service are various pregnancy-safe skincare solutions designed to keep your bump looking its best during your nine months of joy. Here are a few brands offering pregnancy-friendly beauty essentials, including our Best of the Bump Award winner:

Evereden products are created by a team of doctors who are also mothers, creating products “made by Moms in Medicine.” We especially enjoy Evereden’s Nourishing Stretch Mark Cream which features 12 nutrient-rich botanicals and powerful peptides to increase elasticity and soften stretch marks while providing broad-spectrum SPF 30 protection. ACOG advises pregnant mothers against using products containing chemicals like oxybenzone.


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