Moms-to-be, is that pregnancy “glow” a myth? We all hear stories about how expectant mothers are doted over for their glowing skin, their lustrous hair, and the youthful look that comes with the extra hormones running through the body, but does this happen naturally? Do these beautiful mothers have a natural beauty edge, or are they tapping into some natural wisdom as they secretly whip up kitchen concoctions to incorporate into their self-care regime?
With the array of skin care beauty products on the market, it seems that beautiful skin has never been easier to obtain. These products are not always chemical-free, however, and many mothers are hesitant to use products during pregnancy that are not all natural. Many skin changes accompany pregnancy, and we are here to address them. Here are some do-it-yourself skin treatments that are safe and beneficial for mom and baby:
Your skin will stretch immensely during pregnancy, and with that comes dryness and itchiness that can become quite uncomfortable. Applying a natural body butter will help seal in moisture and protect your skin from rough patches and stretch marks.
Use the following natural body butter to protect your skin pre, during, and post pregnancy:
-1/2 cup raw shea butter
-1/2 cup coconut oil
-10 drops frankincense essential oil
-10 drops elemi essential oil
-10 drops Hawaiian sandalwood essential oil
1. Combine all ingredients and store at room temperature in a glass jar for up to six months.
Another great body butter to try combines some powerful essential oils with natural nourishing fats to combat stretch marks and provide some wonderful moisture to maxed-out skin:
-2 tbsp melted coconut oil
-1 tbsp vitamin-e oil
-1/4 cup shea butter
-1/4 cup cocoa butter
-3 or 4 drops lavender essential oil
1. Combine all ingredients and put the mixture into an airtight mason jar for a soothing, pleasant moisturizing experience every time you use it.
Stretch Mark Salve
-1/4 cup Shea Butter
-1/4 cup coconut oil
-3 Tablespoons Apricot Kernel Oil
-1 Tablespoon Calendula flowers (optional)
-1/4 teaspoon dried ginger root
1. If using the calendula and dried ginger, add to Apricot Kernel or Almond Oil and place in a double boiler or bowl over a small pan of water. (or use a glass jar for easier clean up)
2. Bring to a simmer and heat for 30 minutes on medium low heat to incorporate the properties of the herbs.
3. Strain through a cheesecloth or metal strainer to remove herbs. You will want to make sure you still have at least 2 tablespoons of liquid oil left.
4. Return the oil to the double boiler and add the shea butter and coconut oil.
5. Heat until melted and stir to incorporate.
6. Remove from heat and store in small glass jar.
7. Add any pregnancy safe essential oils if desired.
8. Use as needed on skin before, during or after pregnancy as needed.
With all those extra raging hormones flooding mama’s system, it is no wonder that expectant mothers can sometimes be prone to acne breakouts reminiscent of their adolescent days. To stave off the breakouts, try these beautiful skin treatment at home:
- Turmeric: Turmeric contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Mix turmeric 1 teaspoon of turmeric and some warm water into a paste and apply to affected areas. Leave on for up to an hour and rinse off with water and pat dry. Use weekly for clean, luminous skin.
- Coconut Oil: Believe it or not, coconut oil is also a very effective acne-fighting agent, as its antibacterial properties specifically target the bacteria that can cause acne breakouts.
- Simply rub some coconut oil into your skin and allow it to be absorbed; there is no need to wash it off. Coconut oil will also aid your skin in finding its proper level of moisture balance so that you will see a decrease in oil production.
- Baking Soda: Baking soda dries the oil on your skin and promotes healing.
- Make a natural spot treatment by mixing 1 tablespoon of baking soda with 1 tablespoon of water. Apply to individual pimples and not the entire body or face. Allow it to dry before washing off.
- Apple Cider Vinegar: Soak a cotton ball with raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar and apply to your skin to absorb oil.
- Mix one-part vinegar to three-parts distilled water. This will create a natural toner that is rich in naturally occurring enzymes and alpha hydroxy acids.
Varicose veins develop during pregnancy because of the additional volume of blood circulating throughout the body. Pregnancy already puts extra pressure on the veins in your legs, and when these veins become enlarged, it is difficult for blood to circulate properly. As a result, blood pools in the veins, and the veins become “varicose.” To treat the skin over and around varicose and spider veins, try the following:
- Keep exercising to improve circulation
- Wear support stockings or compression hose to reduce swelling
- Elevate the legs when you are relaxing or resting
- Sleep on your left side to avoid pressure on the vena cava
- Moisturize and stimulate blood flow by massaging the leg area around affected veins
Lavender and peppermint essential oils have been proven to improve circulation in the legs and reduce the look of unsightly spider veins. Massage the oil regularly into freshly cleaned skin to stave off the effects of spider and varicose veins.
Beautiful skin from head to toe is possible, even during pregnancy. Following these simple, do-it-yourself recipes will have you looking and feeling your best up until you deliver, and even beyond! Best of luck to you, Beautiful Mama!
Related Content: The Benefits of Delayed Cord Clamping
In the past, the common practice was to pass Dad the surgical scissors and have him perform a quick snip just before the newborn babe was whisked away to be cleaned, measured and dosed with vitamin K. Any delay in cord cutting was viewed as unnecessary in promoting general health for the baby or mother. However, recent research suggests that a delay of even three minutes can have a significant positive impact on infants.