How to Deal with Acne During Pregnancy
Many people call the pregnancy the best time in each woman’s life. However, these precious moments can easily be ruined by overwhelming acne breakouts.
Women who enjoyed fresh and clean skin before pregnancy are appalled to what their face, shoulders, and even backs can look like during the first trimester and beyond.
Acne during pregnancy is as common as during puberty. That’s why there is no reason to stress, especially since it’s not good for the baby. Learning about a variety of ways to deal with acne during pregnancy can help you go back to enjoying this special period in your life.
Why Does Acne Appear During Pregnancy?
The causes of acne during pregnancy are simple. Your body goes through mind-boggling hormonal changes in order to accommodate the growing baby. The progesterone surges cause the sebaceous glands to produce more oil. This oil coupled with dead skin cells clogs pores and causes acne.
The acne during pregnancy can vary from mild to severe. In most cases, it occurs on your face and neck but can also find its way to the back, chest, and even the scalp.
While acne may show up at any time of your pregnancy, it’s mostly active during the first trimester when hormonal surges are the most obvious.
Fun Old Wives’ Tale: For many centuries, women used to believe that overwhelming acne during pregnancy meant that a woman was carrying a girl. I.e. while inside, the girl is stealing her mom’s beauty.
Smart Ways to Deal with Acne During Pregnancy
While acne during pregnancy might not be as annoying as during puberty, it’s still pretty bothersome. Here are a few simple ways to keep the breakouts at bay.
1. Fight the Dead Skin Cells
Since dead skin cells are one of the main acne ingredients, you need to help your skin get rid of them. Use a mild face wash to deal with your face. Don’t forget to pay special attention to hairline, jaw, and neck, where oil glands are especially overactive.
Washing your face twice a day is sufficient to remove the excess dead skin cells. If you wash your face too often, you might remove too much skin oil (sebum). In this case, the body might decide that it needs to produce even more and you could get a reverse effect.
Don’t forget to take a shower daily, using a mild shower gel. Wash your hair as soon as it appears to be slightly greasy. Clean hats, towels, sheets, and pillowcases more often than you did before the pregnancy.
2. Moisturize Your Skin
Harsh soaps might make your skin more prone to acne breakouts. Using an oil-free moisturizer can help your skin stay clean. Use the moisturizer twice a day.
Many women limit themselves to moisturizing the face. If you want to get the best effect, apply a moisturizer to your whole body, including the stomach.
3. Read the Label
Whatever skin care products you buy during pregnancy should be formulated for the sensitive and acne prone skin. Anything that doesn’t say “non-comedogenic” and “hypoallergenic” should stay on the store shelf.
4. Watch Your Diet
Vitamin A-rich foods, such as eggs, carrots, and milk can keep your skin clean. Meanwhile, you should reduce the intake of sugar, refined grains, baked goods, and anything containing saturated fats.
Colorful fruits and veggies can do wonders for keeping the skin healthy and improving your overall condition. Don’t opt for any supplements before consulting your doctor.
Don’t forget to drink plenty of water. Besides washing the toxic elements out of your body, H20 can keep your skin looking plump and fresh.
5. Keep Your Hands Off
Try to limit touching your face with your hands. This is the best way to bring bacteria to your pores and worsen the acne. The same goes for pressing the cell phone to your cheek. It’s sufficient to keep it a third of an inch away from your skin or use earpieces.
6. Keep Calm and Stay Cool
Since stress is one of the most common acne triggers, avoiding it can help you reduce the number of breakouts. Meanwhile, staying calm during your pregnancy is beneficial for your baby.
7. Talk to Your Doctor
It’s always a smart idea to ask for a professional advice. Your doctor can offer you a prescription solution, which is safe to use during pregnancy. However, most of the time, it’s smarter to opt for natural remedies.
What NOT to Do With Acne During Pregnancy
Since pregnancy is a delicate condition, you need to be careful about using some methods that might have helped you when you weren’t carrying a baby.
1. Don’t Pop Them
Squeezing and popping the pimples can bring extra bacteria to your skin. At the same time, such an approach may lead to acne scars. No matter how tempting it is to get rid of the zit fast, stick to safer approaches.
2. Go Back to Nature
If you are used to wearing plenty of makeup and using a variety of haircare products, the time has come to cut down. Try to keep your skin as natural as possible in order to avoid too many breakouts.
Always wash your makeup off thoroughly before going to sleep.
3. Lock Up Strong Prescription Meds
Even though your doctor is unlikely to prescribe harmful meds, some women might be tempted to use the drugs left over from the time they weren’t pregnant.
Remember, the below drugs enter your bloodstream and reach the blood of your baby. They can also be absorbed into the breast milk so should be avoided during breastfeeding as well.
- · Accutane
- · Retina-A
- · Tretinoin
- · Tazarotene
- · Adapalene
- · Isotertinoin
- · Tetracycline
- · Doxycycline
- · Minocycline
Make it a rule not to take any oral meds during pregnancy before consulting your doctor. Some of them may cause serious birth defects.
4. Forget About Anti-acne Hormonal Therapy
Any hormone therapy should be avoided during pregnancy and breastfeeding. All the hormones your body produces during pregnancy are required to keep you and your baby healthy. Suppressing them can lead to unfortunate consequences.
5. Be Careful with Topical Medications
Some topical remedies may be useful during pregnancy. Most of them are sold over the counter. However, it’s still important to consult the physician before using them.
Some of these meds haven’t been studied thoroughly enough to understand their effects on pregnant women and the fetus. However, many doctors believe that topical meds containing erythromycin or clindamycin are safe to use during pregnancy.
If you like being on the safe side, consider avoiding medicated topical remedies.
10 Home Remedies for Acne During Pregnancy
While oral medications may be harmful and topical meds seem to be borderline, you can consider some home remedies. These home remedies are 100% natural.
1. Baking Soda Mask
If you are suffering from extra oiliness, the baking soda mask can absorb it.
Take two tablespoons of baking soda and mix them with water to create a thick paste. Apply the paste to the face and affected areas on your body. Wait for the paste to dry and rinse with tepid water. You can use this mask several times a week.
2. Egg White Mask
Egg whites mixed with lemon can tighten the pores and reduce the appearance of acne on your face and body.
Take one egg white and beat it up. Mix it with juice from half a lemon. Apply to the affected areas before going to sleep. Wash your face in the morning as usual. You can use this mask once or twice a week.
3. Coconut Oil Massage
Coconut oil contains lauric acid, which can treat acne. Take several drops of virgin coconut oil and apply to cleansed skin. Massage the oil into the skin for one or two minutes. Leave the oil on your skin overnight. You can do the coconut oil massage every evening.
4. Aloe Vera Gel
Aloe Vera is one of the most famous natural remedies for inflamed skin. Your best bet is to buy yourself a plant so you have a wonderful anti-acne weapon growing at home.
Take one leaf and cut it with a knife. Squeeze the gel onto your fingertips and apply it to the affected areas. You can repeat the process once a day. The best part about this effective treatment is that aloe vera plant doesn’t require almost any maintenance except weekly watering.
5. Turmeric Mask
Another ageless anti-inflammation remedy is turmeric. Besides being a great herb for cooking, turmeric can fight your acne.
Take one teaspoon of turmeric and mix with water until you get a thick paste. Apply the paste to acne and leave it for about an hour or overnight. Wash it off with tepid water. You can you a turmeric mask every day.
6. Sweet Honey Mask
The number of useful properties of honey is overwhelming. It fights bacteria, deals with inflammation, and heals wounds. Unless you are allergic to honey, it’s one of the safest acne-fighting weapons you have in your arsenal during pregnancy.
Mix one teaspoon of honey with one teaspoon of lime juice and apply the mask. Keep it on for 15 – 20 minutes and rinse off with warm water.
7. Oatmeal Mask
Oatmeal can do wonders absorbing excess oil from your skin and keeping your pores clean.
Take one teaspoon of honey and mix it with a cup of cooked oatmeal. Massage the paste into the affected area. Keep it on for about 15 – 20 minutes. Rinse off with tepid water. You can apply this mask every other day.
8. Useful Toothpaste
We all know that toothpaste is great for our teeth. But can you image that it’s also a great acne fighter?
Apply drops of toothpaste to the pimples. Toothpaste’s astringent properties can fight the swelling and dry a pimple out.
9. Apple Cider Vinegar Face Wash
Apple cider vinegar is a famous bacteria fighter. It can also regulate your skin’s pH balance.
Mix half a cup of apple cider vinegar with 1.5 cups of water. Apply the solution to the affected areas. Keep it on for 7 -10 minutes and wash off with tepid water. Make sure to use a moisturizer afterward.
10. Fresh Orange Mask
If you are not allergic to citrus fruits, an orange mask can be a great acne remedy thanks to its antiseptic and astringent properties. The vitamin C fights bacteria and microbes.
Dry orange peels and grind them. Mix the ground peel with several drops of rose water. Apply the mask to the affected areas. Keep it on for 5 minutes and remove with tepid water.
Learning how to deal with acne during pregnancy is easy. Don’t allow the pimples to ruin this wonderful time of your life.