Postpartum Skin 101: How To Care For Your Skin After Pregnancy
Are you postpartum and experiencing a number of new skin concerns? Totally normal! If you’re recently postpartum, then your skin is likely experiencing quite a bit of stress and imbalance with all of the hormonal changes that take place during and after pregnancy. The good news? These changes are temporary, mama. In this week's blog, we're diving into postpartum changes, skincare, and solutions to help you get your glow back ASAP.
POSTPARTUM SKIN CHANGES
The most common postpartum skin changes include:
- Hyperpigmentation: the body produces more melanin during pregnancy, resulting in dark spots or patches called 'melasma'
- Hormonal acne: hormones fluctuate and cause increased sebum (oil) production and more clogged pores
- Dry skin: Hormone changes zap the skin of moisture and lipids causing dry skin and inflammation
Very simply, your body experiences major hormonal shifts during and after pregnancy that change the way your body produces sebum, melanin, holds moisture and more. Many of these concerns will fade or go away over time, but you can take small steps to help this happen more quickly. Let's look at how to restore your skin to balance using easy tips & the right products - no complicated 10-step routines necessary.
POSTPARTUM SKIN CARE
When we talk about 'stressed' skin, the postpartum phase definitely applies. Because skin stress starts on the inside, so too should your 'skin care.' Here are a few tips to help you support your postpartum skin from the inside out:
- Increase your water intake - As our friend Kari writes in her blog, How To Treat the 3 Most Common Postpartum Skin Concerns Naturally, "Our insides are reflected by our outsides and your body is going to give all the good stuff to baby first, so you need to top yourself up to manage enough liquids for both of you. The first signs of mama not getting enough water typically shows in the skin as the body will use it for essential areas such as organs first."
- Avoid UV exposure to hyper-pigmented skin - UV exposure increases melanin production which darkens the skin, especially areas that are already hyper-pigmented! Be sure to use a daily facial SPF to prevent further discoloration.
- Use a humidifier - A humidifier can help add moisture to your environment and support your skin's ability to hold on to that moisture if you're experiencing dry skin.
- Eat to glow - We wrote a whole blog on how to eat to heal acne and support your skin here.
- Supplement to support your skin - Work with your care provider to determine supplements (ie. probiotics, Omega fatty acids, astaxanthin or other antioxidants) that can help you increase hydration and support your skin and gut health from the inside out
During this time, it’s also important to simplify your skincare routine and support your skin with gentle, nourishing, baby-safe botanicals to help your skin 'destress' and find homeostasis again. You want to look for products that are:
- antioxidant-rich (ie. vitamin C, pro-vitamin A, astaxanthin, resveratrol)
- fragrance and essential oil-free
- non-drying (ie. alcohol free)
- support your skin's microbiome
Better yet, you can save time and energy by using products that are literally made for sensitive and stressed, postpartum skin. ☺ The following skincare routine is all of the above, takes just a few minutes, and really works. We call it...
3 Steps To Glow: Postpartum Edition
Step One: The Giver Cleansing Oil & Makeup Dissolver
To address dryness and sensitivity, it's important to use a cleanser that won't strip your skin. Conventional cleansers tend to cause dryness in the short-term & even more oil & breakouts in the long-term, so the right cleanser can make all the difference! That's where oil cleansing comes in. Oil cleansing moisturizes the skin, supports your skin barrier, and is much gentler.
The Giver Cleansing Oil is a one-step rinsable oil cleanser that gently cleanses, removes any and all makeup, and brightens dullness or dark circles with caffeine & Vitamin C. (It also smells just like a fresh cup of coffee!)
Step Two: The Offering Probiotic Toner
The toner step is important because it hydrates and soothes your postpartum skin and allows the other steps in your routine to be more effective. It's important to use a toner that's alcohol free, so it doesn't dry you out.
The Offering Probiotic Toner uses botanicals like Green Tea, Reishi and Shiitake Mushroom, and more to hydrate, calm and keep skin clear. Probiotics help feed and balance your skin's microbiome with good bacteria to gently ward off postpartum breakouts.
Step Three: Balancing Act Balancing Face Serum
This super gentle serum balances & soothes skin with fatty acids like GLA that specifically help with hormone-related skin imbalances aka. during postpartum! It's also infused with Shiitake Mushroom which is rich in beta glucan (similar to hyaluronic acid) to hydrate and Vitamin D to calm & bring the skin back to balance. Get it here.
(Optional) Light Reveal Illuminative Eye & Face Serum
For an extra boost of brightening and pigmentation-lightening power, use Light Reveal around the orbital bone (eyes) for those sleepless nights and anywhere you're experiencing dark spots or melasma. Ingredients like astaxanthin (a super-antioxidant), gentle Vitamin C, caffeine and carotenoids (pro-vitamin A) make this serum a miracle worker for postpartum skin!
(Optional) Valley of Light Illuminative Mask & Exfoliant
This time-saving 2-in-1 Mask & Exfoliant gently exfoliates, boosts skin repair and radiance, and soothes redness. But beyond that - it's such a treat for the senses with Balinese Coffee, raw volcanic Cacao, and more! Use it 1-2x weekly after cleansing when you need a little extra glow, or just 5 minutes of you-time. You deserve it, mama.
There you have it! Postpartum skin changes are a real thing, but the good news is they don't last and you can easily support your skin with the right simple tips and skincare routine. Have any questions about postpartum skin changes or skincare? Let us know in the comments below and we'll be happy to help.