I’m part of the unfortunately group of women whose pregnancy “symptoms” include hormonal breakouts. These breakouts have predominately remained on my the chin (usually cysts, which are classic indicators of hormonal imbalance), but I’ve also had smaller breakouts (not cysts) on my upper lips and forehead.
Dealing with my skin during pregnancy has been a big challenge since I’m hesitant to use some of my regular go-to products because of safety issues, such as some essential oils and anything with willow bark (the natural derivative of salicylic acid should be avoided during pregnancy).
For long term results, all hormonal-related skin issues need to be addressed internally. But, obviously I can’t do that right now since those hormones are keeping my baby safe and sound! All I can do is treat the symptoms as best I can. I’ve outlined my main strategies below.
Hormonal Breakout Treatment Plan:
1. Wash and moisturize with jojoba oil
When all hell breaks loose on the battle field (aka my face), I go back to the basics and keep my routine as simple as possible. Jojoba oil is a good neutral oil that is tolerated well by most skin types. I normally never recommend only using an oil for a moisturizer (you need to feed your skin with water -soluble ingredients as well!), honestly though this is the first time in my life where my skin has been so oily that I really do not need it. It’s also the middle of summer here in Toronto and humidity levels have been through the roof! To cleanse, I rub a small amount of oil onto damp skin and wipe off using gentle circular motions with a warm wash cloth. I follow up by applying more oil as a moisturizer afterward. I use an organic, cold pressed oil from Leven Rose.
2. Apply Lactic Acid 2-3 x per week
Alpha Hydroxy Acids are perfectly safe to use during pregnancy and are life saviours when it comes to shrinking big ugly cysts, keeping pores clear, and helping to lighten red marks left by old breakouts. My favourite one to use is Pure + Simple’s Lactic Acid.
Raw Honey is naturally antibacterial and anti-inflammatory (two necessary qualities required in an effective treatment against breakouts). 1-2 times per week, I will massage raw honey onto freshly cleansed skin and let it sit for up to 30 minutes. This helps reduce redness and clear pores.
This can be so difficult to do, but honestly, my skin is the clearest when I’m not constantly at the mirror obsessing over every little spot. Touching and picking only introduces more bacteria onto the skin and increases inflammation.
5. Wear foundation
I’m not always a advocate of wearing a bunch of makeup just to cover up a problem, but since this problem is one that I’m stuck with for the next few months, I need to look and feel my best. You may find that the foundation you always wear is actually making your skin worse. It’s important to find a natural, lightweight foundation that won’t aggravate breakouts, or clog pores. Currently, my skin tolerates Sappho Organics Foundation extremely well. It’s a bit light on the coverage, but does the job (and doesn’t contain coconut oil, like most natural makeup!).