Skincare Ingredients You Should Avoid During Pregnancy

Skincare Ingredients You Should Avoid During Pregnancy

Which skincare ingredients are acceptable to use while pregnant and which should be avoided? Here is all the information you need to develop a skincare routine appropriate for pregnancy.

The same foods and drinks that are off-limits during pregnancy should also be avoided, as should potentially dangerous cosmetic products. While there are still many products available that may make you feel and look your best, these days, you'll need to pay closer attention to ingredient lists.

Why? While certain compounds used in skin care products are known to be harmful to expectant mothers, further study is required to understand if some other substances might harm your unborn child.

Here are some skincare products to steer clear of, some to discuss with your doctor, and other safe alternatives during pregnancy. The positive news While it's true that certain cosmetic products should never be used while you're pregnant, the majority are completely safe.

Why should pregnant women avoid certain skincare ingredients?

These days, you probably pay great attention to what you put in your body, but what you put on your body is just as significant. Various components in cosmetics, skincare, and personal care items are absorbed into the bloodstream and may be detrimental to an unborn child.

Additional skin care compounds have been connected to potential hazards, but more study is required to understand whether or not they are harmful. Ingredients with known or suspected dangers should be avoided during pregnancy. Some expectant mothers choose to avoid products that include these substances. In contrast, others may use them after speaking with their doctor, especially if they have a serious skin disease or another medical condition that would benefit from using the product.

If you're uncertain about skin care products, it's always a good idea to see your doctor.

Pregnancy-unsafe skin care ingredients

Put these items at the top of your "do not use" list since it is considered that they might be harmful to babies. 


This skin-lightening ingredient may be included in anti-dark spot or anti-hyperpigmentation products. Although there is little information on the usage of hydroquinone during pregnancy, many doctors advise against it since it is highly absorbed via the skin.

Isotretinoin, retinol and other retinoids

Retinoids, used to treat acne and come in oral and topical forms, including isotretinoin, tretinoin, adapalene, and tazarotene, are off-limits until you give birth and wean. Avoid any over-the-counter retinol serums and other anti-aging treatments that include retinol to be on the safe side.

Salicylic acid (in high doses)

Salicylic acid, an anti-inflammatory, should not be used in excessive dosages in oral drugs or peels since it may harm your kid.

Nevertheless, various over-the-counter skin care products include salicylic acids, such as cleansers, body washes, serums, lotions, and acne spot treatments. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, OTC medications containing salicylic acid typically include modest levels safe for expectant mothers (ACOG). To be safe, though, it's always a good idea to see your doctor before using a product.

Skin care ingredients that may be unsafe during pregnancy

More study is required to identify whether or not these compounds are unquestionably dangerous, even though they have been associated with potential hazards. It is essential to discuss your options with your doctor before deciding whether or not to use items that include the substances listed below.

Benzoyl peroxide

This component is often included in OTC acne treatments. Although there is some controversy around benzoyl peroxide while pregnant, many experts, including the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) and ACOG, believe it is probably safe to use in moderation.

Botox and fillers

Additionally, this wrinkle remover is categorized as a category C ingredient, which implies that we don't have enough information on its safety during pregnancy. Botox is occasionally prescribed for medical conditions like incontinence, overactive bladder, and chronic migraines; in these cases, you and your doctor may decide that its benefits outweigh any potential risks. However, many experts advise against using Botox and other fillers for cosmetic purposes during pregnancy to be safe.

What about parabens and phthalates during pregnancy?

While phthalates are a collection of chemicals included in many personal care products, especially those containing scent, parabens are a preservative often used to stop the development of mold and germs in moisturizers, shampoos, soaps, deodorants, and cosmetics.

The topic of regular paraben and phthalate usage during pregnancy is up for dispute. Endocrine-disrupting substances (EDS), including parabens and phthalates during pregnancy, have been associated with potential concerns such as reproductive problems in certain animal studies. The FDA asserts that further study is required since studies have not conclusively shown that parabens and phthalates are dangerous.

Look for formulations without parabens if you choose to avoid them while pregnant (some of the most commonly used parabens in products are methylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben, and ethylparaben). Since manufacturers are not required to submit specific fragrance components to the FDA, phthalates may be harder to find on an ingredient list; if you'd rather avoid them, check for fragrance-free formulations.

Safer options for skincare during pregnancy

Your skin doesn't have to suffer even if some of your preferred products are temporarily bounds. Some choices are practical throughout pregnancy and secure for your unborn child.

Anti-aging skin care ingredients

Use an exfoliating scrub that contains mild chemical exfoliants like lactic or glycolic acid or physical exfoliants like salt or sugar to remove dead, dull skin cells. It is also okay to use products that include vitamin C, an antioxidant that helps to produce collagen-plumping protein in the skin and may lighten hyperpigmentation.

Want to give yourself a day at the spa? While most face treatments are safe during pregnancy, you should avoid retinoid or strong salicylic acid peels anywhere on your body. The skin of pregnant women might be more irritated by other kinds of peels, including microdermabrasion. Additionally, for the time being, no treatments using lasers or electrical microcurrents are permitted. Before your treatment, talk to your practitioner and aesthetician if you need clarification on what is safe and what isn't (or likely to trigger a skin freakout).

Acne-fighting skin care ingredients

The ACOG advises against topical over-the-counter acne medications that include azelaic acid or glycolic acid. Your doctor could advise using oral erythromycin or cephalexin for severe acne, as well as topical clindamycin and benzoyl peroxide.

Moisturizing skin care ingredients

Do you suffer from dry skin these days? Using a gentle, soap-free cleanser may aid in the hydration of your skin. Look for mild lotions and creams that include hyaluronic acid or coconut oil to help seal in moisture.

Sunscreen ingredients

Sunscreens shield your skin from the sun in two different ways: Some formulations use physical components (such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide), which physically deflect UV rays before they reach your skin. Other formulations use chemical compounds, which absorb UV photons and turn them into energy. Some expectant mothers use physical sunscreens throughout their pregnancy since they are hypoallergenic and are not absorbed into the skin as chemical sunscreens are. Both, nevertheless, are thought to be safe to take while pregnant.

The essential thing is to choose sunscreens with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or greater than give broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection.

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