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Ingredients to steer clear of while you're expecting

This week I am so excited to have a blog to share with you from the AMAZING Charlie from My Lilli Pilli. We are so happy to have some gorgeous pregnancy skincare products from My Lilli Pilli in our New Mum Hampers, and in our Skincare for New Mums collections. Check out this great advice about pregnancy safe skincare!

As a pregnant mama, you want to be extra mindful about the skincare products you're using. It's not just about you anymore – your little one's health and well-being is on the line too! And let's be real, finding skincare products that are safe and effective can be a bit of a challenge. But don't worry, we've got your back.

Here are some common skincare ingredients that you might want to steer clear of during pregnancy:

#1: Parabens – these preservatives are super common in skincare products, but some studies have suggested that they can mess with your body's hormone levels. In Europe, certain types of parabens have been banned in skincare since 2014, but they're still allowed in Australia.

#2: Formaldehyde-releasing preservatives – these preservatives, like DMDM hydantoin and quaternium-15, can irritate your skin, eyes, nose, and respiratory tract. They can also slowly release small amounts of formaldehyde, which has been linked to leukemia.

#3: Phthalates – you'll find these chemicals in fragrances, hair products, skin products, and nail polish. They help to stabilise fragrances and enhance absorption, but some research has linked them to health issues like breast cancer, asthma and fertility problems. A few types of phthalates have been banned in Australia for use in cosmetics.

#4: Retinoids – these are a type of vitamin A that are often used in anti-aging products. High doses of retinoids have been linked to birth defects, so it's best to avoid them during pregnancy.

#5: Salicylic acid – you'll find this ingredient in lots of acne products. It can be absorbed through your skin, and while it's generally considered safe (at low concentrations) to use during pregnancy, it's always a good idea to check with your healthcare provider first, or maybe find an alternative instead.

#7: Hydroquinone - a chemical used to lighten the skin. It is absorbed into the body when applied to the skin, but scientists aren't sure yet if it increases the risk of birth defects. It's probably better to be safe and avoid using products with hydroquinone.

#6: Phenoxyethanol - a preservative often found in cosmetics that is considered safer than parabens. However, it can cause skin irritation and can easily be absorbed through the skin. It is also toxic if ingested and can cause vomiting and diarrhea. Pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers should avoid using skincare products containing phenoxyethanol to protect themselves and their children.

Reading labels and doing your own research is always a good idea when it comes to skincare products. If you have any concerns, don't hesitate to reach out to your healthcare provider for guidance.

Author bio:

I'm Charlie, a biochemist hailing from the land of fjords and hygge. I've got three little munchkins and I'm a self-proclaimed MEGA-GEEK-MUM (aka a scientist in a lab coat with giant glasses and zero fashion sense, who tried to explain photosynthesis to my 18-month-old daughter).

I specialise in understanding how pregnancy affects the skin, and I've created an awesome skincare line specifically for pregnant and new mamas, as well as those with sensitive skin. My main goal is to educate and empower these women to make the best choices for their beauty, health and well-being, and help them achieve that radiant pregnancy glow.

Check out more of Charlie's work here, and her full range of pregnancy skincare on her website here.

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