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The Pregnancy Glow – Causes and Helpful Skin Care Tips

“You are glowing” is something you might hear during the duration of your pregnancy but is this term a myth or is it reality? The truth is, there is something like the pregnancy glow and unfortunately not all mothers get that look. It usually occurs in the second trimester and continues to the end of your pregnancy.

The pregnancy glow refers to your skin especial when they look at your face, having this radiant and rosy look. This pregnancy glow term can be explained medically. Here are some reasons why you may experience a difference in appearance all of a sudden:

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1. Fluctuating Hormone Levels.

During pregnancy the fluctuating hormones may have a huge impact on the mother. These hormones produced by the mother’s glands and the placenta can alter your mood causing anxiety or depression and may even affect the appearance of your skin.

Estrogen

This hormone helps to develop and maintain both the reproductive system and female characteristics. Those female characteristics include breasts and pubic hair. A woman will produce more estrogen during pregnancy than throughout her entire life. This hormone increases steadily throughout the pregnancy and reaches its peak in the third trimester.

Progesterone

Progesterone, also known as the pregnancy hormone. This hormone is occurring naturally in the body. It is produced mainly by the ovaries, but also produced in the placenta and adrenal glands. It is heavily involved in pregnancy. In the early stages of pregnancy this hormone is secreted, preparing the uterus by thickening it to receive the embryo. Progesterone can also be referred to as P4 or Prog.

Human Chorionic Gonadotropin

HCG, Human chorionic gonadotropin, is a hormone produced in pregnancy by the placenta. It is commonly found in the blood and urine throughout pregnancy. Increased levels of HCG would indicate that you are pregnant. That’s how the home pregnancy test work. It detects the levels of HCG in your urine. This hormone helps to thicken the uterine lining to support the growing embryo.

All these hormones give your face a flushed look.

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2. Excessive Oil Production

This is related to the increased levels of hormones in your body as well. The increased hormones stimulate the oil glands to produce more oil. The hormones that do this are progesterone, which I explained earlier is produced by the ovaries, placenta and the adrenal glands, the other hormone is androgens. This hormone plays a large role in reproductive and body development. This may give you that glowing look. On the downside, the more oil that you are producing in your skin can make you more prone to acne.

3. Increased Blood Flow

This would cause your face to look brighter. When you are pregnant your body will produce more blood. The increased blood circulation to the face will tend to make your face look brighter. Again, there is a downside, the increased volume of blood during your pregnancy can cause spider veins. These are easily visible on the skin and are small red, purple, or blue veins that look like a spider’s web or tree branch. They are typically found on the legs or face. Increase blood volume may also cause varicose veins; these are larger raised swollen blood vessels that twist and turn on the skin. They are mainly found on the legs.

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Skin Care Tips for Pregnant Women

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While pregnant, it will be good if you try natural products on your skin because pregnant women are more likely to develop irritations and allergies during pregnancy. Non-natural products can have toxic chemicals that can cause these irritations. Here are some natural ingredients that you can use.

Aloe Vera Gel

This gel acts as a moisturizer. Aloe Vera is good for persons that have oily skin because it absorbs easily. It also helps seal moisture into your skin. So, if you have dry skin, this is a good option for you as well. If your skin itches, the aloe Vera gel will help to sooth that area and alleviate that discomfort.

Aloe Vera is also known to help get rid of hyperpigmentation and acne scars. There is a compound in aloe Vera known as aloesin. Aloesin reduces the overproduction of melanin.

Almond Oil

Sweet almond oil contains vitamin E, monosaturated fatty acids, proteins, potassium, and zinc. It is used as a natural moisturizer making your skin appear smooth and soft. This is especially good for pregnant women with dry skin because the fatty acids would help your skin retain moisture and it will heal chapped and irritated skin. It is also known to help prevent stretch marks.

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Coconut Oil

It had emollient properties and is perfect for pregnant women with normal to dry skin. Coconut oil contains linoleic acid (this is an essential fatty acid mainly found in plants which provides moisture) as well as Lauric acid (it is a saturated fatty acid found in coconuts and palms).  This oil is good for trapping and keeping moisture locked in. Other benefits of this oil includes:-

  • It increases collagen production. The presence of lauric acid helps in collagen production. Therefore, the skin maintains its firmness and elasticity.
  • Lightens dark patches. Coconut oil lightens skin and helps in the reduction of dark spots that may occur during pregnancy.
  • Reduces inflammation. Coconut oil is known for having anti-inflammatory properties. This makes it good for irritated skin.
  • Honey. Honey naturally contains a wide array of vitamins as well as minerals. Studies have shown that honey can help clear your skin of acne woes if the acne is a result of bacterial problems. It is good to use when you have wounds or bruises, because it has natural antibiotic properties. It is also known to improve complexion.
  • Beeswax. Beeswax is a humectant, meaning it retains or preserves moisture.  Naturally, bees wax protects the skin. It can also reduce eczema, soothe, and reduce acne due to its anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. If you are acne prone, this would be a good product to use. Honey contains hydrogen peroxide, and this helps to fade scars. Honey generally provides a healthy skin glow.
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