Pregnancy brings with it lots of joy in anticipation of a new child, but it also means that there are many hormonal changes taking place in your body which in turn, affects your skin and your hair. While some women are lucky enough to get the ‘pregnancy’ glow, others find that red patches and brown spots make an appearance.
While you may be tempted to slap on more skincare and makeup to combat the changes you are dealing with, you might want to think twice. Read the labels carefully to see what’s in the bottle and avoid it if the following chemicals are listed as they could cause harm to both you and your unborn child.
Retinoids including retin-A, retinol and retinyl palmitate
Found mainly in anti-aging moisturisers and creams for acne and pigmentation, these retinoids are forms of vitamin A. While vitamin A is important for the healthy development of your baby, too much vitamin A can lead to serious birth defects and liver toxicity. If you have been using products with retinoids in them, don’t panic, just try not to use them unless absolutely necessary.
This chemical is frequently found in perfumes and nail polish as it strengthens the effectiveness of other chemicals in the formula. Studies have linked phthalates to increased risk of reproductive birth defects and a higher chance of the child developing asthma, as well as miscarriage.
Present in most nail polish formulations, this chemical has the potential to cause developmental damage to the fetus, as well as slow growth and mental development.
Hair straightening procedures, nail polish and eyelash glue are known to contain this chemical that increases the chances of fertility problems and miscarriages.
Sunscreen is essential when you are pregnant as your skin is more prone to UV-induced discolouration. Just make sure to pick the ones that don’t contain oxybenzone as this chemical is linked to low birth weights, which in turn is linked to future coronary heart disease, hypertension and type 2 diabetes, and can cause developmental problems in unborn babies.
Commonly found in cleansers, toners and exfoliants, consuming oral forms of salicylic acid is known to be unsafe for pregnant women as it causes birth defects and various pregnancy complications. Though it is not as dangerous when used topically, it is still better to be safe than sorry.