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Five common skincare problems during pregnancy and how to deal with them

Five common skincare problems during pregnancy and how to deal with them

I was lucky to have not experienced any serious skin issues while I was pregnant with my daughter, although I can’t say that pregnancy was good to me appearance-wise. The coveted glow was elusive, and the heaviness and discomfort I was feeling was evident on my face.

A superstitious relative even said that she thought I was carrying a boy because the way I Iooked was far from how pregnant celebrities on the covers of magazines appear. Still, I had it easy. Some pregnant women endure annoying skin problems, which we've listed here to let you know what to expect and avoid.

image via Elin.ph. Shop their site for maternity pieces you can wear even after the pregnancy.

image via Elin.ph. Shop their site for maternity pieces you can wear even after the pregnancy.


Your hormones go haywire during the first trimester of pregnancy due to the increased levels in estrogen and progesterone, and one of the ways it manifests is through acne. In some cases they are mild (a few zits on the forehead and the cheeks) while others are more severe.

Some women who have had clear skin all their lives get mild to cystic acne during their first trimester. While the condition usually goes away in the next trimester, dealing with spots while carrying life in your belly is pretty tricky.

There are a lot of ingredients you need to avoid to make sure that your child doesn’t suffer from side effects of certain chemicals. Remember to never use anything that contains retinol, retinoic acid, beta hydroxy acid, salicylic acid, tretinoin, adapelene, tazarotene, flutamide, spironolactone, tetracyclines, retinyl linoleate, and retinyl palmitate.

Products that contain benzoyl peroxide like Benzac AC are generally safe to use as the chemical transforms into benzoic acid in the skin and gets flushed from the body with urine.

If you want to cover acne (and other skin issues) with makeup, natural or organic products are your best option.


Also due to the increase in estrogen, some parts of the skin get darker. For some, the discoloration happens on the face, while others get it on their armpits. The best way to battle this is by staying away from the sun and using sunscreen. Try the Human Heart Nature Sunblock since it’s made with natural ingredients.

Now, in some cases, the darkness doesn’t go away even after birth, so treatments should be done. If scheduling an appointment with your dermatologist after giving birth is difficult, try at-home remedies.

Exfoliate your skin with the help of natural scrubs to get rid of dead skin. Lighten the dark areas by using products with natural ingredients - try rubbing calamansi juice diluted with water on your skin. Brightening products like Kojie San and Snoe’s Magic Whitening S-rub, which have potent ingredients, only after you’re done breastfeeding. Make sure to regularly moisturize the skin, too, in order to promote elasticity.

Eczema and Nonspecific Dermatitis

Some women experience having dry, itchy, scaly and flaky skin during their pregnancy. People who already have eczema may also notice that their condition worsens while they’re pregnant. This shouldn’t be a cause for alarm, though, as it can be remedied easily. Use fragrance-free, non-comedogenic cleansers like Physiogel and Cetaphil to make sure that your skin is well hydrated and not irritated.

For flaky and dry skin, use emollient-rich creams and lotions or go the natural route and slather on some beauty oils.

If you get a rash during your pregnancy, make sure to notify your OB GYN and dermatologist about it immediately, and don’t attempt to self-medicate. A rash during pregnancy might be a symptom of an autoimmune reaction or an infection.

Cherry or Spider Angioma

Apart from dry patches, some people also get red spots and lines. They’re usually caused by weight gain and pressure in the veins. Sadly, there are no over-the-counter remedies for these conditions, and you would have to rely on concealers if you’re bothered by them and want them covered. Once you’re clear to undergo treatments after giving birth, getting an IPL or diode treatment is the way to eliminate angioma.

Stretch Marks

Now, this is a problem that occurs not only during pregnancy but whenever your body experiences major changes like weight gain/loss or a growth spurt. There’s no sure fire way to avoid getting stretch marks. When it comes to pregnancy, dermatologists say genetics play a part in your chances of getting stripes, but it’s still a case-to-case scenario. (My mom doesn’t have stretch marks, but I do). And there are some people who just naturally don’t get them.

One way you can try to avoid getting stretch marks is by making sure that you don’t gain weight rapidly while you’re pregnant. But as far as products to use to prevent them go, there’s no guarantee. The one thing that is sure, though, is that your belly will itch from stretching! So make sure to use a soothing product for that, like the Tony Moly Aloe Vera Gel or the Jergens Soothing Aloe Relief lotion.

Don’t treat your stripes as a death sentence to your clear skin, though. There are still some ways to help fade them away, like getting a laser procedure. Ask your dermatologist what you can do about your marks, or if you just shrug them off and wear them proudly. They’re signs of courage and strength after all!

Are you an expectant mom who’s having skin problems? I’m sorry that you’re going through it, but it’s all going get better after sometime! Do you have a beauty-related pregnancy story to share? We’d love to hear them.

Sources: Parents, xoVain, Huffington Post, WebMD, US National Library of Medicine

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