The Unexpected Beauty Issues You Get When Pregnant



It’s not all glowing skin and glossy hair. Sometimes everything goes pear-shaped in the beauty department. Sarah Brooks-Wilson shows you how to fix it...

Pregnancy is definitely a time of change, thanks to those raging hormones and expanding waistline. While every woman is different, some get the pregnancy glow while others end up with acne and brown spots. Here’s the lowdown on those beauty-related issues that you may notice in the coming months and how to deal with them.

Photo: Julie Adams Words: Sarah Brooks-Wilson


You'll have the best hair of your life... then it snaps...

The reason your hair goes all glossy and grows fast during pregnancy is the increase in hormones, especially estrogen and progesterone. These cause the scalp hair to remain in the growing phase longer than normal, so that it grows more and sheds less. But once you’ve had the baby it can fall out and break. Trichologist David Salinger says the hairs at the front of the scalp are particularly affected by androgens (male hormones), so when estrogen levels drop after birth these typically have more influence and affect the hairs along the front hairline leading to breakage. “Supplements like folic acid and iron can help regrowth, but once your hormones level out, things will go back to normal,” he says. Use volume boosting shampoos and conditioners to help thicken and plump the hair like Essano Keratin Complex Smoothing Shampoo and Conditioner, $15.99, www.essano.com.au and Dr.Hauschka Strengthening Treatment, $56, www.drhauschka.com.au.


Your nipples will get huge with pimple like bumps...

Yes, your boobs will get bigger during pregnancy, but how is it that no one talks about how your nipples can change too. The areolas and nipples get bigger and darken plus those tiny bumps around them look like pimples. These are actually called Montgomery’s tubercles and are sebaceous oil glands and are perfectly normal in pregnancy. Just ignore them and keep up the hydration with natural body creams and oils like Swisse Multivitamin Repair Body Oil, $15.95, www.swisse.com.au.


You go through some mad skin changes...

Many women have truly gorgeous, glowing skin thanks to the 30 to 50 percent boost in blood volume. But not every mum-to-be enjoys this perfect skin, some of us have bouts of acne that rival the teenage years combined with Melasma, dark pigmentation patches. Fiona Tuck, skin and nutrition expert says to keep your skincare simple and avoid actives like salicylic acid and vitamin A-containing treatments, as they are not recommended during pregnancy. Cleansers like Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel, $53.50, www.dermalogica.com.au, will keep the skin clean and help to unclog blocked pores. Incorporating a pigment-reducing remover in your regime like 100% Pure Dark Spot Remover, $49.95, www.nourishedlife.com.au that uses natural lighteners will help to fade dark spots. “And, don’t forget to wear sunscreen everyday to help prevent it in the first place.”


Your veins become more prominent...

Pregnancy causes increased blood volume, circulation and blood pressure, plus your blood vessels dilate, proliferate and become congested, so you may see spider and varicose veins spread across your body and face. Tuck recommends putting your feet up as much as you can to take excess pressure off your legs and wear compression tights and leggings. The effects on your vascular system may also make your complexion appear flushed, so keep the skin cool with face mists and products like the Avene Antirougeurs Fort Relief Concentrate $41.95, www.avene.com.au, which contain thermal spring water. “Avoid spicy food hot drinks and warm environments if you’re prone to hot flushes,” she adds.


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