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How to Manage Skin Changes in Pregnancy

Before getting pregnant both times, I was prepared for some changes to my body. A growing bump, a ‘glow’, possible stretch marks. I did not expect the various skin changes in pregnancy and pregnancy skin problems that I ended up experiencing.

My two pregnancies were similar overall. The same aches and pains and body changes but the only significant difference was the changes to my skin. I thought I’d talk about a few of these and the steps I took to relieve my symptoms.

Here are some of the changes in skin during pregnancy that I experienced:

Skin Care During Pregnancy

Pregnant woman

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1.  Pigmentation

I’ve suffered on and off throughout my adult life with hyperpigmentation. I didn’t realise that pregnancy skin has a tendency to darken for some women, including me.

As well as nipples, random patches of skin can darken on your body and face – for me, it’s on my cheeks. I get one or two patches of darker skin develop on my face called chloasma.

It’s annoying and makes it difficult to hide it behind makeup but I know it will fade after the baby arrives. It wasn’t the pregnancy glow I was expecting!

In the meantime, if you experience skin discoloration in pregnancy, try to stay out of the sun and let your GP know. I believe the sun can make it worse or you should wear a high SPF if you are outside. Otherwise, patience is the key; it might go away a few months after the birth, as mine did.

2.  Eczema

I have never experienced eczema in my life before pregnancy. I was surprised to get itchy skin in pregnancy second time around (more on this below) and find four patches of eczema develop. Behind both knees and inside both elbows.

The patches are itchy and red/ purple. They look a little like bruises although they do not hurt, only itch and itch and itch! I wondered if that amount of skin itching during pregnancy was normal and asked my GP.

I’ve researched eczema in pregnancy and it seems for some women, their existing condition can actually improve in pregnancy. For others, like me, they can develop eczema issues for the first time.

To alleviate the itchiness, dry skin and pregnancy skin rash, I used Hope’s Relief Intensive Dry Skin Rescue. Check with your doctor if you get a skin rash during pregnancy.

You can buy Hope’s Relief Intensive Dry Skin Rescue online here in Australia, here in the US and here in the UK.

It’s a natural alternative to steroid based creams and might be helpful for dry skin in pregnancy. I like that it contains natural ingredients and I’ve been really happy that it works so quickly.

After just one or two applications, the eczema patches reduce and the itchiness completely goes. It became a bit of a pregnancy ‘staple’ for me.

3.  Linea Nigra

This is the dark line that may appear down the centre of your tummy. Not all women get this and it’s down to pregnancy hormones. The line might be from your tummy button down or might extend higher too.

It’s a bit strange to see it start to develop and for some women it’s darker and more pronounced than others but it does disappear soon after the birth.

Have you experienced skin darkening during pregnancy?

4.  Itchy Skin

I’ve experienced itchy skin and pregnancy to different degrees in each of my pregnancies. In the first, it was only the skin on my tummy and this was mainly because of the stretching due to my baby bump growing.

In my second pregnancy, I itched almost all over and at times it has been unbearable. The itchiness has not been constant but is particularly worse at night time and in my half asleep state, I’ll admit to scratching – bad move!

I’ve since researched the reasons for itchy skin in pregnancy and now know that it isn’t simply from the stretching of skin but can also be a result of the increased blood supply to the skin.

To combat the itchiness, wear breathable and loose-fitting clothes. Drink lots of water to prevent your skin becoming dry and use a cooling moisturiser. Very dry skin during pregnancy is common.

One possible condition to keep an eye on is Obstetric Cholestasis which is a liver disorder that can affect some pregnant women. It is rare but can be serious and one of the main symptoms is severe itchiness on the palms of hands and soles of feet. You can read more about obstetric cholestasis here and if you think you may be experiencing symptoms, consult your doctor asap.

5.  Stretch Marks

Every woman’s ‘favourite’ pregnancy symptom. No-one wants them, no-one likes them but for some women, they are an inevitable result of pregnancy and a growing baby bump. The stretchmarks can appear at any time from when your bump starts to grow and for some women, might not appear until after the baby arrives.

So unfortunately, you may feel that you’ve escaped them and then get a surprise. You might get stretch marks on your tummy, hips, back, thighs and breasts – really anywhere that stretches as your pregnancy progresses.

They might fade over time and be far less noticeable. Really there is nothing that can be done to totally remove them.

Prevention of stretch marks seems to be a much-argued topic and I am no expert. I believe you can go some way to discourage their arrival but really, they’re either going to appear or they are not. I would recommend keeping your skin moisturised and supple, drinking plenty of water and trying your best not to scratch areas of stretching skin that are itchy during pregnancy.

Skin Changes in Pregnancy

The above skin conditions are some of the ones I experienced in my two pregnancies. There are more and I definitely recommend consulting your pharmacist or doctor if you have any concerns at all about changes to your skin in your pregnancy.

I could add occasional acne and bad skin during pregnancy to this list although it wasn’t great beforehand! I had bad skin in pregnancy at times and bad skin after pregnancy sometimes and it might just be the way my skin is.

If you suspect any skin allergies during pregnancy or skin rashes during pregnancy, consult your Doctor.

Did you experience any of the above? And do you have any skin care pregnancy secrets or tips?

I would love for you to share your recommendations for good skin care for pregnancy.

You can read more about skin changes in pregnancy here.

Read next:

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How to Manage Skin Changes in Pregnancy and dry skin in pregnancy with these pregnancy skin care tips! Love from Mim #pregnant #pregnancy #pregnancyskin #dryskininpregnancy #hyperpigmentation #skindarkening #lineanigra #skinconditions

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103 Comments

  1. Diiane Williamson
    / 3:01 pm

    My mother has dry skin.

  2. Nicola Holland
    / 10:27 pm

    For my daughter

  3. Helen Garner
    / 10:24 pm

    Would love this for myself

  4. Natalie Crossan
    / 10:02 pm

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    / 9:22 pm

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  6. jessica newman
    / 8:37 pm

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  11. Ellie P
    / 4:50 pm

    Me, as I have awfully dry skin and nothing is working at the moment!

  12. jo liddement
    / 2:34 pm

    I would love to give this skin care set to my daughter-in-law who suffers terribly from eczema

  13. jamie banks
    / 2:20 pm

    myself :)

  14. Darlene
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    My sister, with dry skin & IBS she needs something to bring her glow back

  17. Alexandra Smith
    / 11:42 am

    I would love to win this for myself – I have dry skin & lots of stretch marks after having my baby in Feb

  18. Lauren Old
    / 11:37 am

    My mum to help with her psoriasis

  19. Laura Pritchard
    / 10:51 am

    For myself as my post-pregnancy skin is very dry.

  20. MANDY DOHERTY
    / 10:16 am

    For my grandson x

  21. / 10:01 am

    I’d like to win this for my daughter because she’s suffered from eczema, stretch marks and all kinds of problems since she had her daughter

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    for myself

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    myself

  26. Lydia Graham
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    It would be either my daughter in law who is expecting her baby in November or my 10 year old who has eczema. Or, they could share

  27. Jane Middleton
    / 10:54 pm

    my friend

  28. Kim Beale
    / 10:15 pm

    Myself, I am currently 6 months pregnant, this would be lovely x

  29. Lisa Wilkinson
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    For myself. To help get rid of my stretch marks.

  30. Eleanor Wigmore
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    My friend who’s expecting her first baby in November.

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    / 6:42 pm

    For me

  34. teresa sheldon
    / 3:47 pm

    I’d love to win this for my daughter who suffer with her skin more so since giving birth in March to my adourable grandson William

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    for me :)

  36. Lynsey poole
    / 1:39 pm

    My little girl suffers badly from eczema. I would like to try it on her.

  37. Samantha Atherton
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    This might be good for my little girl, she suffers with eczema.

  38. Diana
    / 8:51 pm

    Myself :)

  39. Kat Allinson
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    I’m going to be selfish and say myself, I have really dry skin and I’m currently pregnant so all the help I can get is appreciated

  40. Cheryl Kean
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    I would love to win this for myself please

  41. Sue McCarthy
    / 9:06 am

    I don’t have any children but would love to win this prize to donate to charity, to go to Romania.

  42. donna l jones
    / 12:58 pm

    my daughter who is pregnant

  43. Laura Baker
    / 12:18 pm

    For myself as I have very dry and sensitive skin

  44. Karen Barrett
    / 9:09 am

    I would like to win for my DiL

  45. Rich Tyler
    / 2:07 pm

    My wifey :)

  46. pamela gossage
    / 10:13 pm

    Myself. I have very dry skin

  47. Keshia Esgate
    / 9:52 pm

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  48. / 4:48 pm

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  49. Laura Asplin
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    For me!

  50. Emily Clark
    / 7:21 pm

    My friend Lisa, who is 3 months preggers now and has all the joys ahead of her!

  51. kathy
    / 10:20 pm

    for my friend

  52. Harriet
    / 2:36 am

    Because no-one has drier skin than me!

  53. Janet Carter
    / 10:45 am

    Myself as I suffer eczema

  54. claire woods
    / 10:04 am

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  55. Harley
    / 7:38 am

    Myself xx

  56. Ema J Lowe
    / 8:34 pm

    myself as I suffer badly with dry skin.

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    / 5:33 pm

    Me, myself and I!

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    / 3:58 pm

    My SIS as she is 6 month pregnant with a lovely new nephew

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    My wife could do with it/……

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    I’d like to try it myself!

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    / 3:38 pm

    Myself as expecting my 2nd baby

  62. Andrea Williams
    / 7:49 am

    My stepdaughter who is expecting her first child x

  63. Kat Lucas
    / 5:32 am

    I would love to win for myself

  64. Rachel Butterworth
    / 10:49 pm

    I would like to win this prize for my sister in-law.

  65. / 10:13 pm

    I didn’t have the skin issues (in fact, my eczema cleared up), but I was astonished by how much my organs were moved around by two little people wiggling around in there! Thanks for linking with #TwinklyTuesday.

    • / 7:53 am

      Oh I know what you mean – mine felt all up in my ribs! :)

  66. Nichole
    / 12:21 pm

    my sister

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    / 9:58 am

    for myself xx

  68. lynn heath
    / 8:56 pm

    My daughter suffers with Eczema and I would love to try this for her

  69. Michelle Ferguson
    / 8:20 pm

    For me as I get really bad skin

  70. Neil Firth
    / 2:56 pm

    My daughter and son who both have really bad eczema – I do too, but don’t count :-)

  71. Doreen Mccarthy
    / 2:04 pm

    My friend who is pregnant

  72. Sheila Hodgson
    / 11:05 am

    My friend Emma who is pregnant

  73. Michelle Banks
    / 11:04 am

    my hubby has really bad dry skin x

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    for me

  76. Becky, Cuddle Fairy
    / 9:51 am

    I had the same skin issues – I found the itchy and tight feeling the worst at the time, & the stretch marks are still with me. I’d love to win for myself lol I’m not pregnant but I have dry skin and am always looking for a good product. I read after entering that it’s open to UK residents – I’m in Ireland, I wonder if that counts? lol #TwinklyTuesday x

    • / 9:53 am

      Yes that’s fine! :) ah the itchiness was just unbearable sometimes – we go through a lot, don’t we :)

  77. Nikki Stewart
    / 3:43 pm

    Myself, I have terrible psoriasis and I’m willing to try anything to make it a bit better!

  78. aaron broad
    / 11:42 am

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    / 11:59 pm

    For myself

  81. Siobhan Davis
    / 9:46 pm

    My amazing mum, Her skin is so cracked and sore she would really appreciate this x

  82. Heather Haigh
    / 6:51 pm

    Both my hubby and daughter have eczema and dry skin so I would like to win for them both to try it

  83. jodie crossley
    / 6:38 pm

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  84. Alica
    / 5:46 pm

    I would love to win for myself. I have horrid psoriasis and very dry skin, I would like to try it and see if it helps me x

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    My Sister :)

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    I’d like to win it for a lady who I work with whose son has severe eczema – I’d love to help her find something that works for it as she’s really struggled finding something

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    My best friend!

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    for my friend

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    I would love to win it for my mum, who struggles with dry skin

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    / 11:10 pm

    My Bestest Friend in the whole wide world! x

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    / 10:58 am

    Id love it for my sister x

  92. Paula Readings
    / 10:32 am

    I would use this myself, my skin is horribly dry.

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    I would like it for myself, I would like to try it.

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    I would love to win it for myself

  95. brenda heads
    / 10:22 pm

    a friend who is having trouble with Eczema.

  96. sam815@hotmail.co.uk
    / 5:59 pm

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  97. kim neville
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  99. Jennifer Haden
    / 12:35 pm

    I’d love to win this for—me :D

  100. Tracey Peach
    / 12:21 pm

    I would love to win this pack for my Mum as she suffers from dry skin xxx

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I acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land I work and live on, the Awabakal peoples, and pay my respects to Elders past and present.
I thank them wholeheartedly and express my love and gratitude for the privilege to live and work in such a beautiful part of the world and for the opportunity for my family to be part of this vibrant and supportive community.