For many women, those two pink lines are the start of serious celebrating – and lots of second guessing when it comes to your regular routine. From working out (is it safe to hit the weights?) to eating out (should I go entirely organic?), every decision seems fraught with new meaning. And while many mamas-to-be are good about erring on the side of caution, here’s a friendly reminder. During pregnancy, what you put on your body is just as important as what you put in your body. That’s because there are many ingredients commonly found in lotions, oils, ointments and other products in our skincare regimens that are directly absorbed into the bloodstream – meaning they also come into contact with your growing baby.
Here’s the tricky part – while there are a handful of definite no-no ingredients to avoid at all costs during pregnancy (such as Retinoids and Salicylic Acid), there are many others that are questionable. The question is whether it’s worth the risk to your baby.
• INGREDIENT: Fragrance/Parfum
When you see these terms listed on the product label, they’re catch-all terms that represent an undisclosed mix of synthetic scent chemicals and fragrance dispersants, according to the Environmental Working Group (EWG). Fragrance blends have been associated with a number of issues, including dermatitis, potential effects on the reproductive system, allergies and respiratory distress. It’s a less than ideal substance to use on or near sensitive new babies, with an overall hazard rank of moderate to high on the EWG scale.
• INGREDIENT: PEG-4 Dilaurate
PEG-4 Dilaurate is a “polyethylene glycol diester of lauric acid,” according to the EWG, which means it’s essentially a liquid emulsifier. It has been cleared by the FDA as safe for use in cosmetics, despite strong evidence that it can be an allergen and toxic to human skin. EWG ranks it as a moderate hazard.
• INGREDIENT: Petroleum derivatives
Petroleum derivatives, like mineral oil, are non water-soluble and water repellent semi-solids that seal the surface of the skin, preventing it from breathing and absorbing properly (and even at all). When you use petroleum jelly, for example, your skin gives the impression of being properly hydrated. But the reality is a barrier that seals moisture (or dirt or grease) in and keeps air and moisture out. EWG lists it as a moderate hazard.
• INGREDIENT: Alcohol
Listed as SD alcohol, ethanol and denatured, isopropyl, methanol or ethyl alcohol, these ingredients work by breaking down the skin’s natural barrier for better penetration of other ingredients riding piggy-back (like vitamin C). This does immediate and long-term damage by destroying what makes skin healthy.
You’ll find these iffy ingredients in many products geared to pregnant women and babies – baby oil is 100% mineral oil!. But consider this: if you’re willing to avoid deli meats on the chance that it’s contaminated with listeria, shouldn’t that same level of caution extend to the products you use on your body? Playing it safe means using products with ingredients that have been proven to do no harm to your growing baby.
At Avishi Organics, we take the guesswork out of finding safe products. We took extreme care when we developed our product line to ensure each and every ingredient we use was not only organic and natural, but truly safe for mothers and babies alike. It’s why we share the ingredient lists for both our Intensive Stretch Mark Oil and Baby Balm in full detail. We think it’s important that you understand what our ingredients do and why we chose to include them.
While you should take care to understand any ingredient you use on your body at any time, it’s even more important during pregnancy. If there’s even a minimal risk from ingredients in your skincare products, this is the time to find something better.
Tags: prenatal skincare