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Dry skin in pregnancy – Cure it now!!

Pregnancy changes your body physically & emotionally both, every mom in the world has their own different experiences for 9 months.

You can glow, you can get acne, you can get brown patches or very dry skin. It depends on Mama to Mama but the one common thing is, this is all normal & is part of your beautiful journey.

We are here to talk about dry skin, you can experience dryness or itchiness at any part of the body, thighs, belly, arms & breasts. Red bumps on the bellies are common in the third trimester.

Dry and itchy belly skin of a pregnant girl in the picture

Do not scratch your skin, it will leave permanent marks

So, what causes dry skin in pregnancy?

So many things…

  1. The crazy Hormones- Your hormones are in a very fluctuating mode throughout 9 months. Hence often, they cause skin to lose moisture & elasticity as it begins to stretch & accommodate your growing belly.
  2. High blood volume- Sometimes, the peak in blood volume increases 50% more than non-pregnant women, this increase in blood sugar causes kidneys to extra work, resulting in more washroom trips & thus dehydration which leads to dry skin & lips.
  3. Water Retention- Increased levels of Vasopressin hormones in pregnancy can sometimes cause your body to retain water, resulting in swelling & bloating. Excess swelling often stretches the skin resulting in dry & cracked skin. This happens mostly in the third trimester.
  4. Changes in body size- Obviously as your body parts grow rapidly to keep up with your baby, it stretches a lot losing its elasticity. This results in itchiness & dryness of the skin.
  5. Not drinking enough water- Dehydration in pregnancy can increase your chances of preterm labor. Staying hydrated the whole day will relax both your body & skin. Nausea & vomiting can make that difficult sometimes, hence eat high water content foods like watermelon, cucumber & strawberries.
  6. Sometimes it can just be bad weather, like cold temperature & less humidity can make everyone’s skin dry hence invest in a good humidifier for moist hydrated air around you.

Is dry skin normal during pregnancy?

YES. Very common & happens to almost everyone at some point in their pregnancy.

How to cure dry itchy skin?

A picture of a girl loading up on moisturizer on her dry pregnant belly

Load up on creams & moisturizers

  1. Load up on creamy moisturizers right after showering on damp skin, several times a day with ingredients like Ceramides, Hyaluronic acid, Oats, Cocoa butter & Shea butter
  2. Natural ingredients which soothe dry skin- Coconut oil, yogurt, milk, vitamin E, mineral oil, glycerin, cica, jojoba oil shea butter, petroleum jelly, Oatmeal, rosewater, honey, avocado mask
  3. Wear natural fabrics like cotton, linen or silk
  4. Don’t rub your face after washing, rather gently pat it dry with facial tissues
  5. Avoid fragrance, sulphates, alcohol & dyes in your moisturizers or oils. It will irritate the hell out of skin.
  6. Drink 10 glasses of water if you can
  7. Get a humidifier for your room
  8. Warm & short showers- Not hot! Warm showers, around 5 minutes add moisture to the skin & exfoliates dead cells. Pro tip: apply coconut or jojoba oil all over your body before entering the shower so that these oils can be perfectly absorbed by your body leaving skin soft & moisturized after shower.
  9. Diet – add loads of antioxidants & omega 3 to your everyday diet. Like blueberries & all kinds of berries, beans, carrots, dark chocolate, pecans, spinach, watermelon, avocadoes.
  10. Physical exfoliation- Washcloth- Very safe method esp. for sensitive skin types. Use a muslin or a cotton cloth, dip it in warm water & gently wipe your face or body parts in small circles to remove the dry dead skin.

List of ingredients to stay far away from in pregnancy!

  • All Retinoids
  • Vitamin A
  • Salicylic acid
  • Benzoyl peroxide
  • Hydroquinone
  • Essential oils
  • Parabens
  • Chemical Sunscreens
  • Aluminum Chloride
  • Formaldehyde
  • Phthalates
  • Alpha Arbutin
  • Tranexamic acid
  • Diethanolamine
  • Spironolactone
  • Tetracycline
  • Bisphenol
  • Toluene
  • Chemical peels
  • Fragranced cosmetics
  • Botox or fillers
  • Dihydroxyacetone

When does this dry skin warrant a visit to your doctor?

  1. If the dryness spreads everywhere with increased patches, it could be a condition called PUPP, Pruritic urticarial papules & plaques. Nothing to worry about the baby but it could be very annoying for you, hence the doctor might prescribe you some medication to ease your discomfort.
  2. Bleeding at the cracked skin
  3. Fluctuating Hormones often cause dry skin but if you experience severe itching in hands and feet, which doesn’t go even with all the care, consult your doctor.
  4. Look out for symptoms like dark urine, light colored stool, appetite loss or depression. They could be the symptoms of ICP (Intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy). ICP is pregnancy related liver disorder that affects the normal flow of bile. It can lead to premature deliveries. It stops or slows the bile movement; this can build up bile acid which spills into the blood. Hence any new abnormal changes should be monitored.

A Few Products Suggestions

Takeaway

Dry skin in pregnancy is common & can be cured by being hydrated all the time & having a balanced diet of veggies, fruits & good fats.

For the outer physical help, load on occlusives, humectants & emollients like petroleum jelly, shea butter, squalene oil, hyaluronic acid, ceramides, aloe vera, oatmeal enriched creams, coconut oil, vitamin E.

It should start getting better in a week or two. If the dryness increases rapidly & nothing affects you, see your dermatologist.

Have a beautiful healthy baby Mama, Love~ Beauty Stroll

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