The Pregnancy-Safe Skincare Products You Need for Anxiety-Free Self-Care

Pregnancy involves a lot of changes. Whether it’s the vitamins you take, your exercise routine or what you eat, many things you used to do or consume before, during, and after pregnancy may not be suitable temporarily. When it comes to your skincare routine, we have good news: You can most likely keep the majority of the products you have stashed in your medicine cabinet. After all, a calming skincare routine is self care, and you shouldn’t have to sacrifice something you look forward to on the daily. There are a few things to avoid, though, so we asked Dr. Ashley Magovern, The Dermstore’s Medical Director, about the ingredients you’ll want to stay away from during pregnancy and ones that your skin needs during this time of transition.

When you’re perusing the beauty aisles while pregnant, Magovern says that “Choosing products that contain the right ingredients absolutely matter during this time.” Some ingredients she says are safe to use include alpha hydroxy acids, which brighten the skin; glycolic acids, which accelerate cellular turnover; and vitamin C, which helps aid your body in repairing damaged cells. Now, for ingredients to avoid if you’re expecting. Magovern says the most common things she tells expecting patients to avoid is any ingredients that stem from vitamin A, such as retinol and tretinoin. She also says to avoid products that contain salicylic acid, which is a common acne-fighting ingredient in many products. While you may be tempted to use this ingredient because many pregnant women experience acne, she says you should leave this one on the shelf for now. That also goes for benzoyl peroxide as well, which may have potential negative effects on a fetus.

Magovern recommends cleansing twice a day and to use a vitamin C serum or a glycolic acid product to follow-up. If that’s too much for your skin, keep a close eye on your skin’s reaction and alternate if needed. “Increasing use as tolerated can help, and I usually recommend moisturizing after these products, so continuing to do that should help as well — and don’t forget the sunscreen in the morning,” says Magovern. Below, we’ve rounded up some of Magovern’s top safe-skincare picks, along with a few others we’re loving for dewy, hydrated skin. As always, before trying new products, consult your doctor first to make sure they are suitable for you.

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