Today’s post is for women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant. Plus all the concerned dads who want a healthy life for their wife and child.
Health-conscious pregnant women have a long ‘to-do’ list. Eat a nutritious diet. Check. Take your prenatal vitamins. Check. See your doctor regularly. Check. Avoid alcohol and tobacco. Check. Pregnant women should now add “Switch to natural personal care products” to their list.
There is no excuse for using products with harmful chemicals. We know what those chemicals do. There is a mountain of clinical data that demonstrates the health dangers of commonly used chemicals. Many of which are found in most skin and body care products. Developing fetuses are especially vulnerable.
Last month, European researchers published the results of a 10-year study of over 1000 mothers and their babies. The study tracked babies who were exposed to chemicals in the womb, through breastfeeding, and shortly after birth. It revealed a link between exposure to toxins and respiratory disorders. The study spanned over ten years. Some of the lung problems didn’t manifest until the children were eight or ten years old. The researchers believe early exposure increases the risk of lung disease throughout a person’s life.
What chemicals are we talking about?
The study measured three families of chemicals:
- fluorinated compounds (PFAS)
Chemicals in all three categories are used extensively in cosmetics and skin care products. Parabens, in particular, have been highly questionable for years yet are prevalent in so many brands. Now that the word is out there are some companies that have withdrawn them from use. But not before time!
Lung problems aren’t the only danger. These toxins can cause cancer, health problems, developmental problems and they are known to mess with your endocrine system (reproductive health and hormonal balance). On our Australiana Botanicals blog, we have discussed chemical dangers in more detail here and here.
The good news is that there are many safe, non-toxic skin and body care products. They are formulated with ingredients that come from plants, flowers, fruits, berries, and vegetables. Carefully-chosen products will keep your skin healthy during pregnancy and beyond with no risk to you or baby.
Your skin can change dramatically during pregnancy. It may get dryer. It may be more sensitive. There can even be changes in the pigment. (Hello blotches.)
Here are some tips:
Safe Skin Care During Pregnancy
Ingredients to look for: citrus essential oils, glycerin, aloe, chamomile, jojoba oil, Kakadu Plum extract, calendula extract, carrot stem cells, green tea extract, olive oil
Ingredients to look for: sunflower oil, rhubarb extract, Witch Hazel, lavender, Australian Quandong extract, shea butter
Hormonal changes can make your skin more vulnerable to sun damage. Use a broad spectrum (blocks both UVA and UVB rays) sunscreen every day. Keep in mind, however, that sunscreens, by their nature, will have some “chemicals”.
Avoid oral isotretinoin (Claravis, Amnesteem) and topical retinoids. They can cause birth defects. Try natural home remedies like apple cider vinegar or honey. Here is our article about natural treatments. An even better daily routine is Australiana Botanicals Lemon Aspen Citrus Wash followed by Kakadu Plum and Wild Fragonia™ Bio-active Intensive Face Cream. These two skin care products deep cleanse and provide nutrition and anti-bacterial cleansing for your skin without blocking pores.
We have seen great results from this combo for acne.
Pregnancy is an exciting time, but it can also be stressful. Fluctuating hormones don’t help. Products with heavenly-scented essential oils can relieve stress and soothe frazzled nerves.
Some of the most intoxicating essential oils and superfruit extracts come from native Australian plants. Try Lemon Myrtle, Blue Mallee Eucalyptus, Kunzea, wild Fragonia™, Sweet Orange, Sandalwood Seed, Lilly Pilly, Kakadu Plum, and Sweet Almond, and Lemon Aspen. And then there is Manuka from New Zealand. (Have you heard of Manuka honey?)
These essential oils have wonderful, two-fold, benefits. They not only clean, detox and nourish but provide aromatherapy benefits of calming and de-stressing. They really are Mother Natures’ miracle gift.
Read more about these at www.AustralianaSkin.com