During Pregnancy “You’re pregnant” are a few beautiful words that can make a woman dance with joy. It is natural that you become more aware of what is good and what is harmful to you and your baby in these nine months. Carefully picking your routine, your food, your medicines, your juices, your do’s, and don’ts is already an overwhelming process but you must make sure that your cosmetics and skincare products are also risk-free.
Research suggests that some ingredients in your regular beauty products can be potentially harmful for your health and your baby’s health as well. So, we’ve created a list of skincare ingredients you must avoid during pregnancy.
Skincare Ingredients To Avoid During Pregnancy
Add these ingredients to your “don’t want” list.
Retinoids: Found in Retin-A and Accutane, retinoids are medically prescribed for acne anti-ageing products. It may be listed as retinoic acid, retinyl palmitate, adapalene, retinaldehyde, tretinoin, tazarotene, and isotretinoin. According to the research, the use of retinoids may increase the risk of birth defects in developing babies. Doctors mostly make sure to warn the patients if retinoids are present in their medication.
Hydroquinone: It’s a skin-lightening agent used to treat chloasma and melasma. This is one ingredient you must avoid until your baby is born. Studies show that 45 percent of such medication is absorbed into the skin. It is not known how it affects the fetus but there’s too much chemical in the product. It can be risky.
Ammonia: Mostly found in hair dye formulas, Ammonia is a chemical that irritates skin and lungs. So stay away from it during pregnancy. If you wish to get your hair coloured, opt for a no-ammonia formula. Fortunately, there are plenty of options available.
Dihydroxyacetone: DHA is found in many spray self-tanners. It is known to react with the dead layer of the skin and is considered a safer option than sun tan. DHA is not absorbed into the body but there’s a risk that you might inhale it during application. It’s unhealthy for you and your baby. So, skip the tans.
Tetracycline: Tetracyclines are antibiotics which include doxycycline and minocycline. They are recommended in cases of acne and Lume disease. Studies show that they can damage the liver of a pregnant woman. They can also discolour the baby’s teeth. Safer antibiotics such as amoxicillin and erythromycin are prescribed by doctors in the time of need.
Thioglycolic acid: This is found in hair removal creams as acetyl mercaptan, mercaptoacetate, mercaptoacetic acid, and thionic acid. There isn’t a study to clarify how it affects a growing baby but it can cause harm to your delicate skin during pregnancy. It is recommended that you avoid it as much as possible.
Botulinum toxin: Also known as botox, Botulinum toxin can be harmful during pregnancy. There is no study that talks of its effect on a developing baby but it works on your skin by paralysing the muscles around wrinkles to make them less visible. It is safe to not risk your health with such chemicals.
Phthalates: These are the chemicals added to plastics to increase strength and flexibility. The beauty industry uses them in nail paints and perfumes. Avoid ingredients like BzBP, DMP, DEP, DBP, diethyl, dibutyl, and benzylnutyl phthalate. Recent studies have linked them to serious issues like high blood pressure, diabetes, and ADHD. A link has also been found between abnormal fetal development and prenatal phthalate exposure. So, opt for the products that are phthalate-free.
Formaldehyde: Listed as formaldehyde, quaternium-15, dimethyl-dimethyl (DMDM), hydantoin, imidazolidinyl urea, diazolidinyl urea, sodium hydroxymethylglycinate, and 2-bromo-2-nitropropane-1,3-diol (bronopol), this ingredient-type is linked to cancer and nervous system issues. It’s mostly found in hair straightening treatments, nail paints, and eyelash glues.
Toluene: Nail polish with methylbenzene, toluol, or antisal 1a on its ingredient label must be avoided. Toluene is a suspected carcinogen that is toxic, especially during pregnancy. Look for nail polish that is free of toluene, formaldehyde, and phthalate if you absolutely cannot skip it.
Fragrance: Fragrances are mostly made of harmful chemicals like aldehydes, benzene derivatives, parabens, and other chemicals that are linked to cancer and nervous system issues. They can cause irritation and redness to the skin. Hence, use a fragrance-free beauty product.
Parabens: Parabens are linked to breast cancer and the research is still ongoing. It is wise to avoid products with parabens during pregnancy.
Oral Salicylic Acid: When consumed orally, salicylic acid can be harmful during pregnancy. It may increase the risk of intracranial bleeding in the fetus.
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate: Use sulfate-free shampoos and soaps. SLS is a chemical used to create lather. It can cause irritation to your skin and might affect your nervous system, and kidney and liver function. It can also cause nausea, diarrhea, or vomiting if you ingest it.
Pregnancy Safe Skincare Routine
Now that you know what-not-to-do, let’s talk about what you can do with your skincare routine during pregnancy. Chances are that you are experiencing a lot of acne, dull skin, pigmentation, stretch marks, and hair fall due to hormonal changes. These changes make your body sensitive to most things, from the cosmetics you apply to the food you eat. Hence, it is important that you take care of yourself with the help of organic, ayurvedic, and chemical-free products. Go risk-free. That’s the best way to stay safe and keep your baby safe but do not skip your regular routine.
JH Recommends: Tender Touch Body Radiance Oil
Moisturise in the morning and before bed: Use cold-pressed oils to moisturise your skin. It’s safe and highly nutritious for your body. During pregnancy, you may experience dry, itchy skin, and other issues that will potentially come under control with enough amount of moisturisation.
JH Recommends: Extra Virgin and Certified Organic Cold-pressed Coconut Oil
Stay hydrated: Not just the body, your skin also needs proper hydration. Dry skin is very common during hormonal changes. Proper hydration will increase the amount of water content in your skin. This will maintain the elasticity and strength.
Exfoliate once a week: Cleansing and exfoliating are as important as moisturising for your skin to reap the benefits of the products. It is vital that you get rid of the dead skin cells from your body to reveal the new skin every once in a while.
JH Recommends: Apricot Sparkle Skin Radiance Scrub
Eat healthy: No product or supplement can replace this act of yours. The more nutrition-rich your diet is, the better will be your appearance and the lesser will be the need of your body to use chemical-induced products. What you’ll eat, it’ll show.
Exercise: Allow your body enough movement to maintain the tightness of your skin. A small amount of exercise will not only help you improve your and baby’s overall health but will also keep skin issues like pigmentation and stretch marks in check.