Ask Colleen – What Skincare Products Can I Use While Pregnant?

Little girl with face next to pregnant belly


Hi Colleen — I’m hoping to become pregnant in the next few months, and I’m wondering if I should make any changes to my skincare while pregnant. Also, I’m worried my skin is going to break-out with all the hormones. Is there anything I can do to prevent this from happening? — T.T. “San Francisco”

Hi T.T.,

I’m glad to hear you are already thinking about changes to your skincare regimen. To be honest, there are of skin care treatments and products that should be avoided while pregnant and nursing, but there are also a lot of ways to take care of your skin safely:

Ingredients To Avoid While Pregnant & Nursing

  • Retinoids (Retinol, Trentinoin, Retinoic acid, Retinyls, Tazorac, & Avage)
  • Salicylic Acid (Beta Hydroxy Acid)
  • Hydroquinone

Safe Treatments While Pregnant & Nursing

How To Care For Your Skin While Pregnant & Nursing:

  • To avoid discolorations-  I recommend leaving the Jan Marini Bioglycolic Cleanser on like a mask. The Agera Vitamin C Mask and CE Ferulic by Skin Ceuticals are also effective and safe.
  • For acne, use a 2% (or less) salicylic acid cleanser, but always check with your OB/GYN before beginning anything new. I usually recommend the Clean Zyme mask and Bioglycolic cleanser by Jan Marini because they work!
  • Most importantly, wear 100% physical  (mineral) UVA / UVB sunscreen of SPF 30 everyday and reapply in the afternoon. If you have oily or acne-prone skin, I recommend the Physical Fusion SPF 50 by Skin Ceuticals; for normal to dry skin, I recommend Elements by Elta MD.
  • Stay hydrated and rest!

This isn’t an exhaustive list, and I will be able to give you more personalized information during your skincare consult. Also, its really important to have a doctor approve the use of any over-the-counter or prescription drugs while you’re pregnant or nursing.  Here in our office, Drs. Lieberman & Parikh oversee all of patients,  treatments and skincare regimens.

I hope this helps! Feel free to call our office – (650) 327-3232 – or leave a comment below if you have other specific questions about skincare during pregnancy.

– Colleen

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