Kate Middleton, Jessica Simpson, Kim Kardashian (and even moi!) are all expecting; and while you always hear about that pregnancy glow, hormones and other issues can also wreak havoc on a pregnant woman's skin. Dr. Suzanne Gilberg-Lenz, a board certified OB/GYN in Beverly Hills, weighs in on the most effective and safe ways to keep your skin glowing before, during and after pregnancy.
"One of the most common skin problems resulting from pregnancy is stretch marks," says Dr. Gilberg-Lenz. "In fact, nearly 90 percent of pregnant women develop them by their third trimester; most commonly on their breasts, stomach, buttocks, arms and thighs. While you may not be able to prevent stretch marks, there are products available to help improve their appearance, such as 'Mederma Stretch Marks Therapy'.
Due to increased hormones, a lot of women also experience acne on the mouth or chin during their pregnancy. You should avoid products that contain 'benzoyl peroxide', 'salicylic acid' or any other 'retinoid' during your pregnancy, because they are not safe. However, 'sulphur-based' topical products and products containing 'glycolic acid' or 'alpha hydroxy' acids are safe to use during pregnancy - that is why I recommend 'Neutrogena Healthy Skin Face Lotion with SPF 15'. Prior to using any of these topical treatments, make sure to consult your dermatologist or OB/GYN during pregnancy.
As your beautiful belly expands to make room for your growing little one, the skin stretches and tightens which can cause dryness and itchiness. To help ease this I always recommend my patients try 'Burt's Bees Mama Bee Nourishing Baby Oil' to help recondition skin throughout, and even after your pregnancy.
Another skin issue you may face during pregnancy is 'Chloasma', often referred to as the "mask of pregnancy," which causes the skin on the face and body to darken during pregnancy. To help ensure that this mask does not darken due to exposure to sunlight, always use an SPF product, like my favorite 'Mustela Broad Spectrum SPF 50+ Mineral Sunscreen Lotion' on your skin no matter what time of year it is and especially on these more sensitive areas.
One of the most important tricks to keeping that pregnancy glow is to drink LOTS AND LOTS of water. This helps you maintain your energy throughout the day and adds moisture to your skin."
-- Ryan Patterson
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