5 Skincare Ingredients to Avoid During Pregnancy

You’re having a baby? Congratulations! Mixed in with all the excitement, nerves, and more excitement, you’ve surely gotten a list of things from your doctor that you can and cannot have or use during the coming months. But what about skincare during pregnancy? Whether you have that pregnant glow or that exhausted I’ve-been-throwing-up-all-day look, taking care of your skin during pregnancy is essential, and you may not be sure what is safe.


You are probably paying extra attention to your diet, avoiding caffeine and alcohol, steering clear of raw fish, and being careful to wash your fruits and veggies thoroughly before eating them. But when it comes to safe skincare for pregnancy, you may not have received much information or guidance.


In truth, what you put on your skin during pregnancy is just as important as what you put into your body. But the research and guidelines can feel a little hazy at times. Food and diet choices for pregnant women have been studied for decades, but research into safe skincare ingredients is a bit more recent.


Safe Pregnancy Skincare Routine

As with any decisions about your health during pregnancy, we advise you to talk with your doctor about what is safe and what is not. With that in mind, experts consistently list these five skincare ingredients to avoid during pregnancy:


  • Retinoids: Medications such as Accutane and Retin-A have been proven to be harmful to fetuses in the womb. Doctors encourage women to stop using these medications when trying to conceive and certainly while pregnant. Keep an eye out for these ingredients in your skincare and cosmetic products: adapalene, retinaldehyde, tretinoin, tazarotene, retinoic acid, and isotretinoin.
  • Salicylic Acid: This acid is commonly found in acne products and though for some it is said to be a low risk ingredient, it is still best to avoid this acid in your skincare products while pregnant. 
  • Chemical sunscreens: Sunscreen is critical year-round for healthy skin, but many commercial products are jam-packed with chemicals that are harmful to our bodies. Pregnant women, in particular, should watch for sunscreens that include avobenzone, oxybenzone, homosalate, octisalate, and octocrylene. Instead, look for products with zinc oxide, a safe physical UV blocker that provides broad-spectrum protection.
  • Phthalates: These chemicals are widespread in cosmetics and skincare products. They are also called plasticizers because of their use in products such as vinyl flooring and plastic toys. In skincare products and cosmetics, phthalates are used to make ingredients adhere. Hairspray, nail polish, and perfumes frequently contain phthalates. These chemicals have been found to disrupt hormone levels in fetuses, and these disruptions remain with the child after birth.
  • Parabens: Typically used as preservatives, parabens are in everything from makeup to moisturizers to facial cleansers. They can mimic estrogen in the body and have been linked to breast cancer and reproductive problems, along with growth and development delays. Watch out for ingredients that end in -yl, such as propyl, butyl, and methyl.
  • Formaldehyde: Once left to the realm of morticians and science labs, this chemical is in a surprising number of products. Nail polish and hair straighteners frequently have formaldehyde in them, and it has been linked to respiratory problems and cancer, specifically leukemia.



Fountain of Youth Skincare Protects Your Skin Naturally

At FOY Skincare, we take our responsibility seriously. Your health matters to us. Our products, from cleansers to moisturizers to masques, are made from natural and certified organic ingredients that are safe for you and good for the earth. We recommend speaking with your doctor to get a full list of ingredients to avoid during pregnancy before purchasing any products during pregnancy. Once you do, be sure to carefully check all ingredients in your skincare routine to ensure what you are putting on your skin is both healthy to you and your baby!


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