The Do's and Don'ts of Skincare During Pregnancy

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Monday, August 23rd, 2021

by Mary-Kate Ellis, PA-C

One of our sweet Aestheticians, Morgan, is about to have her baby girl, so I thought it would be appropriate to talk about skincare and injectables during pregnancy.  Your body goes through so many changes every single day when you’re pregnant, and those changes include your skin! There is no “one-size-fits-all” for your skin during pregnancy, and that can be extremely frustrating! Not only is your skin changing, but the products you’re able to use during pregnancy are different too. Our recommendations follow the same guidelines as The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, but we also recommend discussing any skin care treatments or procedures with your OBGYN.

Skin Changes to Expect When You’re Expecting  

Many pregnant women experience melasma, dark spots or brown patches that typically appear on the cheeks, nose, and forehead. These are caused by an increase in melanin from hormonal changes during pregnancy. Melanin is a natural substance that gives color to the skin, hair and eyes. Melasma usually fades after you give birth, but some women can have dark patches that last for years. UV exposure can cause melasma to reappear, which is why it is so important to apply your daily SPF.

Many women experience acne during pregnancy, especially during the first and second trimesters. Increased androgens (male sex hormones like testosterone) cause your skin to produce more sebum, clogging pores and causing breakouts. Ingredients that can help with pregnancy induced acne include:

  • Salicyclic Acid (<2%)
  • Glycoloic Acid (usually less than 10% is advised)
  •   Lactic Acid
  •   Azelaic Acid

Also, don’t be discouraged if your melasma or acne worsens in the weeks after you’ve given birth. Your body is still experiencing hormonal changes, and if you’re breastfeeding, you’ll need to keep using products that are pregnancy-safe to protect your baby.

What to Avoid During Pregnancy

If you are pregnant, we advise that you stop using topical salicylic acid more than 2%, topical tretinoin/retinol, and products containing hydroquinone. You must also avoid Botox and dermal fillers while pregnant and breastfeeding.

  • No tretinoin/retinols/retinoids
  • No salicylic acid over 2%
  • No glycolic acid over 10%
  • No hydroquinone
  • No injectable treatments (Botox®/dermal fillers)

Safe Products for Treating Melasma and Acne in Pregnancy

  • Brightening Facial Wash is a cleanser than contains both glycolic and salicylic acid, both at pregnancy safe levels. These ingredients are great for exfoliating and reducing pigmentation. The combination of glycolic and salicylic acid helps unclog pores, kill bacteria, and exfoliate the skin, all of which decrease the severity and frequency of acne.
  • Papaya Enzyme Cleanser is a papaya extract cleanser with <0.5% salicylic acid for gentle exfoliation
  • C+ Correcting Complex is a great vitamin C for melasma patients, pregnant or not, because of it’s unique melaPATH technology. It stops the hyperpigmentation process before it even begins.
  • Bakuchiol is a retinol alternative with similar benefits to retinoids in its hyperpigmentation benefits
  • Physical sunscreens and sun avoidance will also aid in preventing melasma

Dry Skin and Pregnancy

Another common complaint during pregnancy is dry skin. Hormonal changes during pregnancy can cause the skin to lose moisture and elasticity. I recommend adding in these ingredients to help with dry skin during pregnancy:

  • Hyaluronic Acid
  • Hydrating moisturizer

At Spa Medical, we carry several different skincare lines. I recommend scheduling a consultation so one of our providers can examine your skin and review your specific goals and concerns. This will allow us to get you on the perfect regimen for your skin’s needs. The above products are just a few of my favorites.

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enjoy a relaxing environment

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It’s Just 3 Easy Steps…

make an appointment

to receive a customized treatment plan

enjoy a relaxing environment

during your treatment/procedure

Look & Feel Younger

because you deserve it

Wrinkle Prevention in Pregnancy

-Revox Line Relaxer: While you’re missing your quarterly Botox injections, this product by Revision will be your best friend until you’re reunited with your injector! It is often referred to as “Botox-in-a-bottle.” It contains 8 peptides to safely relax the muscles contributing to your wrinkles within minutes. It also contains hyaluronic acid and inulin to improve fine lines and hydrate.

Spa Medical Treatments That Are Safe for Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

There are several treatments and procedures you can have done while pregnant. At Spa Medical, our providers will make adjustments and customize the treatment to ensure it is safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Of course, you should always check with your OBGYN for clearance first.

Hydrafacial and Stimulator Facial are two treatments we can customize for you if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. These procedures are great clinically for your skin!

AquaGold Infusion delivers a customized cocktail of antioxidants and hydrating ingredients beneath the skin’s surface. This treatment stimulates collagen production, tightens pores, hydrates skin, aids with skin texture, and helps with fine lines/wrinkles.

Microneedling can be combined with PRP to address skin concerns like melasma, acne scarring, fine lines/wrinkles, etc.

PRP uses your own blood to boost collagen and elastin. It can be injected or combined with other treatments such as microneedling and aqua gold infusions.

While these tips are a great starting place for what to expect when you’re pregnant, we advise you discuss any skincare treatments with your OBGYN. Once you are no longer pregnant or breastfeeding, our Spa Medical team will be ready to hit the ground running with your favorite treatments!

Begin your journey to healthy skin during your pregnancy by scheduling a skin consultation with our team. Call (478) 743-2299 or request a consultation to get started.

Spa Medical® is located in downtown Macon, Ga and offers surgical and non-surgical anti-aging procedures to help you look as young as you feel.

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