It’s a massive understatement to say that moms-to-be have a lot on their minds. But in an effort to make the list just a little bit shorter, we reached out to top dermatologists to get the scoop on the pregnancy-safe beauty products expecting moms can use with confidence.
"I recommend Bio-Oil to all my pregnant patients. It dries quickly but [is] still moisturizing enough to help those rapidly changing body parts from belly to breasts to thighs. And the best piece of advice: Bring it to the hospital and use it post-partum to help your skin recoil back to its pre-pregnancy feel. As a new mother myself, I can vouch for the fact that there's no other organic product out there with such an affordable price point.”—Rita V. Linkner, M.D.
Bio Oil | $20
2. Manuka Doctor 24+ Bio Active Manuka Honey
"I recommend Manuka Doctor as a pregnancy-safe skincare line. Since you’re not able to use retinoids, you need to find alternative ingredients and formulas that provide anti-aging benefits. Manuka Doctor's main ingredient is manuka honey which, when used topically, has been shown to increase collagen cross-linking, promoting the structural growth of collagen in skin cells, which results in firmer, younger looking skin due to its nutrient-dense profile. It’s also a natural humectant, drawing moisture into the skin, further enhancing the skin’s elasticity and cell regeneration. The other main ingredient in the Manuka Doctor formulas is purified Bee Venom which improves skin texture, reduces fine lines and wrinkles, and reduces pigmentation and sun damage. Manuka Doctor’s Beatifying Bi-Phase Oil is a hydrating manuka honey–based product that can be easily incorporated into a skincare routine."—Mona Gohara, M.D.
3. NeoCell Beauty Bursts
4. Amarte Daily ExfoliPowder
“A safe, plant seed-based exfoliator that’s easy and gentle enough for daily use is essential to keep skin glowy, especially for those who may be avoiding chemical exfoliants during pregnancy. Between the recent microbead ban and many consumers’ increased desire for talc-free products, Amarte Daily ExfoliPowder is an ideal choice. It’s a two-in-one cleanser and exfoliator that uses plant seeds and corn starch to gently polish dry, dull skin.”—Craig A. Kraffert, M.D.
Amarte | $37
5. HydroPeptide Lash
“Just because you’re expecting doesn’t mean you have to give up lash serums! A safe, drug-free alternative to Latisse is the HydroPeptide Lash, which contains peptides, biotin, folic acid, lemon peel extract, and soybean oil to strengthen and help grow both eyelashes and thinning eyebrows. I recommend women continue use through post-partum as well, as changing hormones sometimes provoke hair thinning or breakage.”—Joyce Imahiyerobo-Ip, M.D.
6. SkinCeuticals Phloretin CF Gel
"As a mom of four and being acne-prone myself, I’ve had lots of firsthand experience with acne during pregnancy. Instead of treating with retinoids—which can be toxic to a developing baby—opt for topical antioxidants. I really like SkinCeuticals Phloretin CF gel as it is a great overall product and can be helpful as a spot treatment. Also remember, if you develop deep acne cysts, keep your dermatologist’s number at hand; they can inject kenalog or cortisone into the deep acne cysts to help. If you are nervous about topical treatments, consider blue light therapy, in which light is used to kill the acne-causing bacteria and help reduce inflammation.”—Deanne Mraz Robinson, M.D
Skinceuticals | $162
7. Elizabeth Arden Skin Illuminating Retexturizing Pads
"Glycolic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid that is safe in pregnancy. Many other agents—like salicylic acid—can be damaging during that time. Glycolic acid is great for combating the hyperpigmentation that can occur from the hormonal surges that occur in pregnancy, called chloasma. When I was pregnant, I used Elizabeth Arden's Retexturizing Pads with 5-percent glycolic acid. I would often wash with a gentle cleanser, then use these as a 'treatment toner’ two to three times a week."—Dendy Engelman, M.D.
Elizabeth Arden | $56
8. Neutrogena Pure and Free Baby Sunscreen
“Pregnant women should use broad spectrum UVA/UVB products specifically containing physical blockers such as titanium dioxide or zinc oxide for broad spectrum coverage. A non-spray option is best for pregnant women as not to directly inhale ingredients. I recommend Neutrogena Pure and Free for both mom and baby.”—Jeremy Brauer, M.D.
Neutrogena | $10