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Pregnancy Safe Skin Care

Early on in my pregnancy I switched out a few of my skin care products to make sure everything that I use is safe for growing a tiny human. It’s amazing how fast the little one goes from an embryo to fetus and with skin being the largest organ I wanted to be sure I was nourishing myself and this tiny human in as many ways as possible.

Within just a few weeks of being pregnant I noticed my skin was going through big changes. It was drier than usual, I had dark circles under my eyes and my body temperature was rising which created more sweat than I was used to. Out of all of the body changes that pregnancy has brought on, the higher temperature has been welcomed as my constitution tends to run cold and I have zero complaints about constantly having warm feet! Needless to say, I decided to add deodorant into my skin care regime which to be honest I never wore very much before pregnancy.

There are many conflicting studies in the dermatology field about how much our skin absorbs and what percentage of the products that are used actually get into our bloodstream. Our skin has multiple layers and varies in thickness depending on what part of the body we’re looking at. For example, the soles of our feet tend to be thick therefore won’t absorb nearly as much product as our face or head which has a 5-10% higher absorption rate. I’m not a scientist or dermatologist, but there is plenty of research out there that certain chemicals in skin care like retinoids/retinol (especially taken orally) are toxic to growing babes. Here is a great list of 14 common skin care chemicals to avoid during pregnancy. I’ll add that these are great chemicals to avoid even when you’re not pregnant!

All of the skin care products I’ve been using for the last 6+ years are clean and chemical free. A few of them have ingredients that haven’t had enough testing to be sure they are 100% pregnancy safe. When I found out I was pregnant it was a matter of switching out  those products and adding a few new ones in.

My main motto during pregnancy with skin care has been less is more which isn’t that different from my pre-pregnant philosophy. Refining my skin care routine has been a good practice for me and helped me become more of a minimilast with my skin care routine. I’ve also really been enjoying creating new skin care rituals as a way to take care of myself and enjoy alone time connecting with myself. I know when the babe gets here I’ll be lucky to get a shower so I am spending more time in these skin rituals!

Below are my go-to pregnancy safe skin care products that I use daily (aside from the shampoo as I only wash my hair once a week).

Also, I haven’t been using a salt scrub much during pregnancy and have instead gone back to dry brushing a few times a week. It’s been great for my lymph, circulation, and keeping my skin soft and smooth.

Pregnancy Safe Skin Care x Ashley Neese

Face Wash
My favorite face wash for the last three years that I’ve been using throughout the pregnancy is Annee de Mamiel’s Restorative Cleansing Balm. The aroma is incredibly grounding and I love the ritual of wiping off the balm with a warm cloth. My skin is left well hydrated which means I don’t need to use as much oil afterwards. When I first started using it, I wasn’t sure how well the balm was going to clean my face as I had been using cleansers that stripped more oil from my skin. Once I got used to it, I noticed a huge difference in how my skin glowed and have been a devotee ever since.

The two toners I’ve been loving during pregnancy are I-Sun Soothing Relief Face & Body Mist and my old standby Heritage Rose Water Toner. The I-Sun mist is cooling cucumber and has been wonderful in this summer heat. I typically use this one morning and night before I put my face oil on. The Rose toner I keep in the fridge and give myself a few spritzes when I’m home and wanting to cool off. I also carry this one around in my bag and use throughout the day to refresh myself. Now that my sense of smell is super heightened from the pregnancy I’m enjoying the toners as a way to relax too as their scents are so restorative.

Face Oil
I’ve been a True Botanicals fan for a couple of years now, using their Clear line and loving it. When I got pregnant their co-founder Hillary suggested I switch to their Hydrate line which is 100% pregnancy safe and very gentle on the skin. I was reluctant to stop using the Clear oil and serum as I had experienced such epic results with them, but I trust their knowledge and integrity. I made the leap to the Hydrate oil and have been super happy with the results.

I’ve also used Annee de Mamiel’s Pregnancy Facial Oil and have enjoyed that as well. I’ve been switching back and forth with the Pregnancy and Hydrate oils and have nothing but good things to report. Both companies use the highest quality ingredients, are masterful with their essential oil blends and have made my skin very happy.

I’ve stuck to the True Botanicals Hydrate serum since week three of the pregnancy. It’s light, easy to apply and when you use it after your face oil it penetrates deep into the skin for ultimate nourishment. Since the serum is traveling father into the skin it is key to use one that is completely safe for pregnancy. This serum also blends beautifully with the True Botanicals Vitamin C Booster which I have used 1-2 x per week during pregnancy to give my skin an extra collagen boost and keep it bright.

Pregnancy Safe Skin Care x Ashley Neese

Given that Vitamin D is essential for fetal development I haven’t been wearing sunscreen on my body while pregnant. I have been going in the sun as often as possible to get as much of this vital nutrient as I can. On days when I will be in the sun for more than 30 minutes I have been using the True Botanicals Everyday Sheer in Light on my face. I just apply it once on top of the face oil when I leave the house and that’s all I’ve needed. I tend to like a little sun kissed glow on my face in the summer and aside from a few extra freckles haven’t had any issues.

Shampoo + Conditioner
I’ve been using the True Botanicals shampoo and conditioner for the last year and haven’t found the need to change because they both work really well. I’ve probably tried at least 10 other brands of clean/organic/etc shampoo and I am a big fan of the lather that True Botanicals has been able to achieve. Also, products that you use in the shower go right into your lungs as you are breathing them in through the steam so it is essential to use non-toxic products in the shower.

I am totally obsessed with the Bathing Culture soap. I like to joke that it is the modern day Dr. Bronner’s. It has a complex scent which might not be for every pregnant person, but I love how earthy and woodsy it is. Super sudsy, refreshing and biodegradable.

Belly Butter
I did a ton of research on stretch marks during pregnancy and everything pointed me to Shea butter. I love the blend created by URB Apothecary that is specifically for pregnancy. It smells great and works well. I use it on my belly, boobs and hips, basically any place that is growing and stretching! When went through 4 jars of that belly butter and now I’m using the Sun Potion Shea Butter and am loving it. It comes in a larger size which is great and I am enjoying the simplicity of using a single ingredient. I use this shea butter in all the same places after showering. It is thick and takes a while to absorb but as of now I have no stretch marks!

Body Oil
My go-to body oils are Jiva Apoha Happy and Mother. The oils are the highest quality and the scents from essential oils are next level. Applying them on my arms and legs post shower is so relaxing and restorative. I also will apply on my neck instead of wearing perfume. Jiva Apoha also makes a Baby oil which I cannot wait to get for infant massage when then babe gets here. People constantly tell me that I smell good which is also a bonus!

Last year I was given the No B.S. Ursa Major deodorant and used it a handful of times. I liked it, but as I mentioned, wasn’t much of a deodorant user until I started sweating so much in pregnancy. This one is amazing because it’s safe, it works, and unlike many natural deodorants I have tried it doesn’t stain clothes. Double points for this in my book!

*Please note this is not a sponsored post. These are products I’ve been using love to share about.**

Photos x @mariellevchua x @paigegeffen


  • Patrizia Marcano

    Thanks for sharing :)

    • ashley

      You’re so welcome Patrizia! x

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