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This Is How Your Skin Can Change When You’re Pregnant

The fact that your body will undergo major changes when you become pregnant is not news. But what many mamas-to-be don’t always expect is that their skin may experience things they’ve never witnessed before. Hormone fluctuations and increased blood flow (fact: your body produces 50% more blood while pregnant) can cause your skin to react in ways you’re unfamiliar with. While some changes may be welcomed—yes, pregnancy glow is a real thing—others may leave you wondering what’s normal and what’s not. Don’t stress—read on for everything to expect and how to deal.

“Mask of Pregnancy”

Or more formally known as melasma/chloasma. These dark spots can appear on your face as a result in increased levels of hormones in your body. Before you wonder “Is this typical?” know this: More than 50% of women experience melasma during their pregnancy.

How to Deal: 
Your skin becomes extra sensitive while pregnant, so sun protection is vital. Wearing sunscreen daily (which we should be doing regardless) and adding a layer of coverage—such as a wide-brimmed hat—reduces your skin’s exposure to the sun, which brings out those dark spots. Heat also exacerbates melasma, so stay cool.

Oily Skin & Acne

Whether you’ve always been prone to breakouts or have been blessed with consistently clear skin, those expecting may experience increased levels of acne during their pregnancy. Similar to those zit-freckled teenage years, increased levels of hormones cause the skin to secrete more oil, creating more breakouts than usual.

How to Deal:
Similar to how you’d treat any breakout, opt for a gentle cleanser and products that target oily skin. Our Find Clarity Purifying Mask is a great option—plus, there’s nothing like a calming dose of self-care to de-stress a mama-to-be!

Stretch Marks

Let’s just get one thing straight: Stretch Marks. Are. Normal. Almost 90% of women experience stretch marks during their pregnancy and women that aren’t expecting get them too. Because your body is gaining weight—you need room to grow another human, after all!—the skin needs to accommodate the extra space, causing these red and pink streaks to appear on the skin.

How to Deal:
Sorry to say, there is no miracle cure for stretch marks. By working to maintain the skin’s elasticity, though, you can prevent them from forming and help them fade. Keep the skin supple and hydrated—research shows hyaluronic acid is a major help. Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. Exercise, drinking plenty of water, and eating foods rich in vitamins E and C don’t hurt, either. 

Skin Tags

While slightly less common, you may notice these benign skin growths popping up due to increased levels of hormones and weight gain.

How to Deal:
While there’s not much you can do about these (although tea tree oil may help): Don’t worry. They’ll likely disappear postpartum and if not, you can easily get them removed by your dermatologist.

Spider and Varicose Veins

Due to the increase in blood circulation, you may spot spider veins (small and red) or varicose veins (big and blue) during pregnancy.

How to Deal:
Both will likely fade after delivery, but you can also alleviate symptoms by avoiding standing and sitting (especially cross-legged) for long periods of time, getting enough movement, and upping your vitamin C intake.

Rashes and Itchy Skin

A swelling belly may cause your skin to feel itchy and uncomfortable. This is especially true if you have eczema.

How to Deal:
Keep your skin nice and moisturized; we recommend our Keep It Supple Body Oil. If you notice the itchiness spreading to other areas of your body, you may have PUPP (pruritic urticarial papules and plagues), in which your doctor can recommend special creams and treatments. 
A majority of pregnancy skin conditions will subside once giving birth or sometime afterwards, but if you are concerned, always reach out to your doctor. And if you’re curious what skincare products.            are safe to use during pregnancy and what’s not, check out our handy guide on pregnancy-safe skincare.