We sat down with the lead aesthetician and head of education at HydroPeptide, Erin Larson, to discuss tips on how to take care of your skin during pregnancy, and how she’s doing it herself.
What are some ways that you’ve changed your routine since you’ve become pregnant?
Since I’ve gotten pregnant, I’ve gotten more breakouts, but I haven’t been able to use the products I would normally use to treat my acne. I put more of a focus on peels and extractions and trying to balance hydration, instead of turning to things like salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. In terms of general skincare, I didn’t have to cut anything out that I was already using, one of the great reasons is because I do use HydroPeptide’s Spot Correction, which has the active ingredient colloidal sulfur and is generally accepted to use during pregnancy. So I didn’t make any big changes to my routine other than when I did have breakouts, I had to go about them in a little bit of a different way.
What are some ingredients that pregnant women should avoid?
The main ingredients that are typically one’s to avoid are salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide and retinol. Those are kind of the biggest ones to avoid, but you should check with your doctor for every new product you add into your routine during pregnancy.
How realistic is it really that putting something on your skin will have an effect during pregnancy?
It’s such a small amount, like let’s say you have a breakout and you treat it once or twice with salicylic acid. I’m not a doctor or scientist, but it’s unlikely that it’s going to cause an issue. The issue comes when you’re using ingredients that are considered “systemic,” which means they could potentially enter the bloodstream. Since every pregnancy is unique, and because it’s such an important time for development, we like to be extra cautious. So even though it’s unlikely, it’s good to be careful.
What is the dreaded “pregnancy mask” and how can you help prevent or cure it?
One of the largest skincare problems that can develop during pregnancy is malasma, or hyperpigmentation on the face. Because of hormonal changes, you can be prone to malasma during pregnancy, hence the nickname “mask of pregnancy.” Our LumaPro-C is amazing to help combat that hyperpigmentation. Using LumaPro-C and sunscreen will be a great defense. The Vitamin C Peel (Polish & Plump Peel) is also a great tool to treat hyperpigmentation. For malasma, you should definitely treat during pregnancy, but you’ll see the most results when you treat after that hormonal change has gone away.
What are some other skincare issues that are more likely to happen during pregnancy?
Breakouts are a big problem. Oily skin in general can occur because of hormonal changes. However, that increase in oil also interestingly enough is the source of the “glow” of pregnancy. So an increase in oil production can either go really well or really poorly. Stretch marks are an issue of course, which you can treat with our Firming Moisturizer to diminish the texture and discoloration of stretch marks. Swelling and puffiness can be another issue, which we always recommend treating (at least in the undereye area) with our collagel masks.
Why is checking with your doctor important even if a product has no known contraindications?
Every pregnancy is unique, so we recommend always checking with your doctor if you’re pregnant and using something new on your skin.