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Mother and Baby

Pregnancy Skin: Caring For Your New Complexion

Now that you’re pregnant, your usual exfoliators and moisturisers might not be doing their job quite so well. Time to crank up your skincare. Hormonal fluctuations, especially a rise in both progesterone and oestrogen, will probably cause your complexion to change over the next nine months. What better time to find a new set of skin saviours that will suit the pregnant you – and make you feel amazing. We round up the best miracles-in-a-bottle.
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Trilogy Rosehip Oil Antioxidant + Serum, £14.85, feelunique.com

A serum rich in nourishing omega-3 and -6 will help keep your skin supple, ideal for expectant mums with normal skin who find it’s becoming increasingly dry in the later stages of pregnancy. ‘This lack of moisture coincides with your baby’s brain development, as he’s using up your body’s supply of essential fatty acids,’ says facialist Una Brennan. ‘A serum containing these acids will make a big difference, as it hydrates deep below the skin’s surface.’
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Burt’s Bees Anti-Blemish Targeted Spot Treatment, £9.99, burtsbees.co.uk

Hormonal breakouts are common in pregnancy, so look for a calming spot treatment that won’t irritate highly-sensitive skin. ‘Many over-the-counter spot creams contain salicylic acid. While this is an effective exfoliating ingredient, it’s best to steer clear of it when you’re pregnant, as it may be too harsh,’ says cosmetic doctor Natalie Blakely. Many also contain the antiseptic benzoyl peroxide, which, again, will be too aggressive for easily-irritated complexions. A better option for skin that’s suffering from breakouts as well as sensitivity is tea tree oil.
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The Body Shop Aloe Gentle Exfoliator, £9, thebodyshop.co.uk

During pregnancy, your blood volume increases to meet the demands of your growing baby. Because there are lots of blood vessels just below the skin’s surface, this can lead to a flattering pregnancy glow – or you may get a general flushed look, which is less becoming. Avoid aggravating already-reddened skin with a light exfoliator containing non-scratchy beads suspended in a cooling gel.
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Champneys Replenishing Moisture Mask, £10, boots.com

Choose a face mask that delivers an intense shot of hydration for skin that’s feeling taut, itchy or sore. A perfect combination is rose oil, long associated with repairing dry skin, alongside camomile, one of nature’s skin soothers. ‘Try this trick once a week,’ says celebrity beauty therapist Nichola Joss. ‘Apply your mask overnight, in place of your usual night cream, as this is when your skin becomes more permeable and repairs itself, so you know it will make the most of the moisturising ingredients.’
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Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector BB Cream For Combination To Oily Skin, £7.49, boots.com

An increase in the hormone testosterone when you’re pregnant can send your oil glands into overdrive. A BB cream, which combines healing and hydrating benefits with a touch of colour, is the perfect remedy. Try one that contains the mineral powder perlite. This absorbs oil to create a more matte finish and prevents skin from becoming more congested. Make sure it has a built-in SPF to reduce the risk of pigmentation on your face.
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Olay Anti-Wrinkle Sensitive Skin Night Cream, £6.86, boots.com

Many pregnant women steer clear of anti-ageing creams for fear of sensitivity to hi-tech formulations and the side effects of ingredients, such as vitamin A, which has been associated with an increased risk of fetal neural tube defects. But the latest must-haves contain niacinamide – vitamin B – to reduce fine lines, proving that anti-ageing can still go hand-in-hand with pregnancy skin.
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