Pregnancy is always a special time, with the rollercoaster of emotions daily, and the focus on the preparation for your little bundle’s arrival, it can feel overwhelming. But this doesn’t mean you should let the stress take over everything, instead, take the time to ensure you still find the time to look after you and indulge in some well-deserved pamper time.
This is something I would encourage all mothers to be to take part in on a regular basis. Another thing I would encourage is to ensure you remain safe so always ensure that the product formulations and actives you apply to your skin are suitable, safe and avoid any unwanted reactions. This brings us nicely to the topic of today’s blog post and finding out whether you can use mandelic acid while pregnant? So, without further a due, let’s dive in and find out more.
What is mandelic acid?
Derived from bitter almonds, mandelic acid is one of the lesser-known members of the alpha hydroxy acid family. Although there is some research lacking, it is still thought to be one of the most gentle AHA with it still helping to target some concerns. The reason for why mandelic acid is so gentle on the skin is the fact that the molecular size is larger than others, such as glycolic acid, meaning it is unable to penetrate too far into the skin leading to irritation.
Some studies have even shown how effective mandelic acid is at combating skin concerns and has even been considered more effective than salicylic acid at treating inflammations such as papules and other breakouts. One study demonstrates how using a chemical peel containing 45% of mandelic acid delivers more results than another peel containing salicylic acid.
Skincare benefits of mandelic acid
- Works at exfoliating the outer surface of the skin ridding it of a build-up in excess oil, dead skin cells, dirt, and bacteria. This not only gives the complexion and cleansed and glowing finish, but it also reduces the chances of developing acne and other breakouts.
- By sloughing away the build-up of dead skin cells, the skin texture is left feeling smoother and firmer.
- Mandelic acid can stimulate the production of collagen helping the skin to become plumper, firmer, with fine lines and wrinkles reduced.
- Areas of hyperpigmentation, such as dark spots or signs of melasma can be significantly reduced.
- Packed with antioxidants, mandelic acid can ward off damage caused from exposure to free radicals, such as UV light, pollution, central heating, and other environmental aggressors.
You can find out more about mandelic acid and how it works on the skin by taking a look at our Skin School.
What products should be avoided when pregnant?
Apart from the food and drink that should be avoided when pregnant, there is also a collection of skincare products and ingredients that should also be avoided.
- Retinol, retin-A, and retinyl palmitate
Vitamin A and all its derivatives should be avoided completely throughout pregnancy and post-partum until breast feeding comes to an end. This is due to the complications that can occur to the baby’s development and birth defects.
- Salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide
Having a flare-up in acne is a common side effect of pregnancy, many favour using salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide, however these are too potent for the skin during pregnancy and should be avoided being used. If you are finding it difficult to control any acne breakouts, it’s best to consult with a doctor or dermatologist to find the best options for you and your skin.
Some other ingredients that must not be used during pregnancy are.
- Essential oils
- Aluminum chloride
- Chemical sunscreens
If you find any of these ingredients are already existing in your routine stop using them as soon as you find out you’re expecting. I would also suggest consulting with your doctor to ensure you are using the best routine to keep you and your baby safe.
When should you not use mandelic acid?
You should not use mandelic acid if you plan on applying retinol to the skin at the same time. This is because it will be too much exfoliation and become too harsh on the skin causing it to become severely dry and irritated. With over-exfoliation you will also strip the skin of sebum, the natural oil occurring on the skin surface. This can cause some imbalance within the skin resulting in an overproduction of sebum leading to the skin becoming increasingly oily and erupt with breakouts, acne, and other blemishes.
If you are wanting to use mandelic and retinol in your routine, it would be best to alternate between the two powerhouses. By avoiding layering on them on top of each other you will give the skin enough time to absorb and rebalance its pH levels allowing the skin to reap the rewards without any unwanted dryness or irritation.
Is mandelic acid safe while breastfeeding?
Yes, mandelic acid is safe to use while breastfeeding. This is due to the acid not penetrating the skin as much as other more potent acids, such as glycolic acid and salicylic acid, this is due to fact it has a larger molecular size.
If you are feeling unsure or nervous about using a skincare formula, especially if it is a new product, then it’s best to consult with a doctor before applying anything to the skin.
What skincare can I use while pregnant?
There are several dedicated brands who have developed specific products for mothers to be to use with peace of mind. However, if you are wanting to simply change a few things in your existing routine, then you must first understand your skin will go through a few changes during pregnancy. Some of the most common skin issues that can occur when expecting are, dry skin, areas of melasma and hyperpigmentation, and flare-up in acne. You may also find if you suffer from any pre-existing skin concerns, such as eczema, psoriasis, or rosacea these may worsen for a short amount of time during your first trimester.
There you have a little more information about using mandelic acid while pregnant. Don’t forget if you have any further questions, come, and find us on Instagram.