How to tell if your skin care's pregnancy- and breastfeeding-safe
Congrats on the little bun in the oven! Pregnancy is an exciting time for Mommas —from picking out the perfect swaddle to basking in that legendary pregnancy glow. And guess what? That amazing "glow" could be attributed to a surge of hormones, which could lead to skin looking healthily flushed for some lucky ladies.
On the flip side, this hormonal avalanche also gives rise to some pretty unexpected mood swings, even more unpredictable cravings, and a multitude of skin changes: From breakouts and oiliness, to pigmentation, redness and even skin sensitivity.
To make matters worse, some yummy Mums may have discovered their regular skincare routine don't work as well for them during pregnancy. Others may worry about ingredients that are truly pregnancy-safe — or safe for use when breastfeeding. So we've talked to our skinsiders and zoned in on 3 secrets for perfect preggers skin!
1. Safe ingredients
Is anything with retinol your HG beauty ingredient? Sorry to be the bearer of bad news. But while this skin-boosting ingredient is derived from the safe-sounding vitamin A, topical retinoids are deemed unsafe for use for those who are pregnant or planning for a baby, according to the European Medicines Agency. It's also discouraged for use when nursing.
But does that mean you have to live with fine lines or acne? 'Cos not! The Ayurvedic Babchi plant is touted as a natural alternative to retinol - with strong antioxidant, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory benefits. Which means it helps counteract acne AND lines, wrinkles and sagging due to ageing. It also happens to be found in our Pure & Simple Gel Cleanser - for plenty of anti-ageing and anti-acne benefits.
Other major no-nos are salicylic acids (also know as BHAs), benzoyl peroxide, parabens and phthalates - all of which aren't found in The Skin Firm products!
2. Pampering sensitive skin
Do you notice your skin turning red more easily or becoming more prone to itching? Turns out that along with other zany stuff like morning sickness and a bionic sense of smell, pregnancy could also trigger skin sensitivities. Fun!
One great way to reap plenty of anti-ageing benefits without aggravating your skin is swapping out rich and oily face creams with water-based, lightweight essences and serums.
Unlike skin-irritating, alcohol-based toners of yore, essences also help nourish and protect your skin - infusing it with hydration and plumpness. Our Youth Therapy Concentrated Essence, for example, is 100% alcohol free - just like all our other products!
Serums are also a great way to target lines, sagging and even pigmentation without triggering breakouts and irritation.
3. Targeting pigmentation
A couple of freckles are definitely cute. But pregnancy pigmentation? Not really our thing. A whopping 3/4 of pregnant women, however, witness the formation of melasma - darkened patches of skin. This may take the form of dark spots on the face and body, and the darkening of existing pigmentation. The condition may also appear, or continue, after giving birth.
One common and effective pigmentation ingredient prescribed by doctors is hydroquinone. However, hydroquinone is deemed highly unsafe for pregnant and nursing women, and should only be used under a doctor's watch - whether or not you're a Mum.
There are, fortunately, safer and way more natural hydroquinone dupes that can effectively lighten and prevent pigmentation. Phew! Our fave? Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate! It's a mouthful, but this natural ingredient was first discovered as a skincare hero after elderly rice wine brewers were observed to have youthful, smooth hands.
It has also been shown to dramatically reduce melanin synthesis — the process that kickstarts the formation of icky pigments, according to a research study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.
It's no wonder that our Youth Therapy Concentrated Essence contains a high concentration of pure Korean Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate. Even better, the concentrated blend of natural amino acids (peptides), vitamins, minerals and natural acids found in the filtrate also brings about the rebirth of skin cells for supple, smooth and radiant skin! So update your skincare collection with some Mum-safe essentials, and get ready for your newfound glow!