Are My Beauty Products Safe During Pregnancy?

Beauty ingredients to avoid

  • Peroxide, found in tooth whitening products, is safe for women in small doses, but it isn’t known how it may affect a developing fetus. Opt for peroxide-free formulas to be safe.
  • Phthalates, which are found in nail polish and hair spray, may have a possible link to birth defects, but the research is inconclusive for now. Experts say additional studies are needed to determine what impact, if any, exposure to phthalates has during pregnancy. If concerned and not willing to risk it, opt for phthalate-free nail polish and use hair gel or mousse instead of hair spray.
  • Acne medications ““ Before using any over-the-counter or prescription medication or cream, speak with your doctor as there are many treatments that should not be used when pregnant. Common problem ingredients include salicylic acid, retinol, retinoids and benzoyl peroxide, all of which have been linked to birth defects and miscarriage.
  • Hair dye ““ Women have long been advised to avoid dying their hair during pregnancy. Many physicians still continue to counsel patients as such, though others are now less restrictive. There is some research now indicating that little of the chemicals are actually absorbed into the skin, and if the colorist is careful to avoid the scalp, exposure may be greatly minimized. Still, check with your doctor before booking an  appointment.
  • Cosmetics ““ Few of the chemicals in your makeup actually get absorbed into your skin, though it is possible.  The key is to minimize cosmetic use as possible. You certainly don’t need to avoid using all cosmetics, but if there’s a way to cut back, why not?

If you have questions about a specific product or ingredient, consult your doctor. If possible, bring the bottle with you to your appointment so your practitioner knows exactly what is of concern. If you’ve found information online, print that out and bring it with you as well, so he/she can help you figure out the validity of the information you are reading.

What beauty products are safe during pregnancy?


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