The Paula’s Choice Research Team is the resourceful and dynamic group behind CosmeticsCop.com and the current best-selling book, Don’t Go to the Cosmetics Counter Without Me. They are recognized for their straightforward fact-finding information about which skin-care products are effective AND safe to use and which ones aren’t. Through their exhaustive research and interviews with the nation’s top dermatologists, they came up with the following guidelines for safely battling pregnancy’s toughest skin-care woes to reveal that beautiful, “new mommy” glow.
Fighting acne during pregnancy:
• Cleanse skin with a gentle yet effective, water-soluble cleanser. Find out which cleansers earn the Paula’s Choice Research Team’s seal of approval on CosmeticsCop.com.
• Exfoliate with an AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) product to help keep skin clear and radiant. Dermatologists and researchers agree that AHAs are safe for pregnant women.
• Combat blemishes with benzoyl peroxide, which is considered safe in low concentrations (5% or less) when you are pregnant.
• Avoid prescription retinoids (e.g., Renova, Retin-A, Differin, Tazorac, and generic tretinoin) and over-the-counter products with retinol.
Rosacea during pregnancy:
• Use a gentle mineral sunscreen with titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide. “This is a must for those with rosacea, whether they’re pregnant or not,” says Begoun. Check out the top recommendations for mineral sunscreen on CosmeticsCop.com.
• Decrease rosacea-related relapses and prolong intervals between flare-ups with metronidazole (the active ingredient in MetroCream and Lotion), one of the most effective and well-researched treatments for rosacea. The cherry on top? It’s safe for use during pregnancy.
• Talk to your physician about a prescription azelaic acid product (such as Azelex). Some find it effective for controlling symptoms of rosacea, as well as acne and discolorations. It is considered safe for use during pregnancy.
Skin discolorations (hyperpigmentation/
• Apply a physical (“mineral”)
• Avoid using hydroquinone during pregnancy or while you are breast feeding. Although it is considered one of the most effective skin-lightening ingredients, hydroquinone has not been tested in regard to its use during pregnancy, so there is no information to assess risk. Look up the best skin-lighteners without hydroquinone on CosmeticsCop.com.
• Talk to your physician about a prescription azelaic acid product (such as Azelex) to treat hyperpigmentation. This drug is considered safe for use during pregnancy.
Although the information above isn’t meant to be exhaustive, it presents a clear idea of what’s OK to use during pregnancy and what should be avoided. For more details, check out the Paula’s Choice Research Team’s information on pregnancy and skin care.
Reminder: Always talk to your physician before taking any prescription or over-the-counter drugs while pregnant.
Led by best-selling author and beauty expert Paula Begoun, the Paula’s Choice Research Team evaluates and reviews hundreds of skin-care and makeup products, in books such as Don’t Go to the Cosmetics Counter Without Me, and online at CosmeticsCop.com. Combining cosmetics industry knowledge and expertise, Paula and her team have developed the Paula’s Choice line of state-of-the-