21 Weeks Pregnant: Skincare

Baby and Parenting

21 Weeks Pregnant: Skincare

Baby and Parenting

21 Weeks Pregnant

Almost 22 weeks and counting! Finding out that we are expecting a little boy last week was just magical and I’m still buzzing from it. I’ve been feeling lots of movement from him and another big strong kick. It might sound a bit crackers but I often chatter away to him, especially using his name. I’ve been buying a few things for him on eBay including a great find of a hand made cushion with his name on, which considering how rare that must be (his name isn’t that common I would say) I just had to snap it up! I have a pretty good list of what we need to purchase, while at the same time I’m trying not to let myself go mad and stick to some kind of budget. We also have a good idea of how we plan to change up the flat to create more space and have an area dedicated to him, as well as his bedside crib. I am so excited to get started, it’s going to be a lot of IKEA stuff, but I have a few hacks up my sleeve to make things more ‘us’. 

I know they say that you generally feel the best in your second trimester and for me that is certainly true, I feel fantastic! Exercise has been great, my eating has really balanced out, and apart from chicken I have no major aversions. My sleep isn’t too bad although he has a habit of doing back flips in my belly at 3am! This last week I have developed quite an intense pain in my lower back / right glute and I’m not sure whether or not I’ve just pulled a muscle or if it’s posterior pelvic pain which unfortunately after reading up a bit I believe it probably is. I’ve been doing some pregnancy pilates via You Tube to try and start strengthening my core further, but if it hasn’t improved by next week I’ll be off to the docs as this is quite literally a pain in the arse.

Over all this week I’ve just been feeling so incredibly lucky. Apologies for getting soppy, but I never realised how much love I could feel. I feel blessed every single moment for something I was starting to believe I would never experience. I just feel so thankful, I’ll never forget what a little miracle my baby boy is :-)

Skincare in pregnancy

IMG 9915

With pregnancy comes a few specific skin ‘issues’. For me, the biggest one I need to keep an eye on is stretch marks. I already have silvery lines around my hips, backs of legs and backs of arms from puberty / weight gain already, and going off genetics I know I’m prone to them. Not exactly skincare related, but varicose veins in the legs and broken veins might be an issue for me, again going off genetics and what I’ve already experienced. Other than that my skin has been great, very soft and supple and I haven’t had any issues with spots on my face.

Ultimately, stretch marks etc are a part of pregnancy for a lot of women, I don’t think they are something that you should be ashamed of. I love the Facebook page 4th Trimester Bodies which I think gives a more realistic view of what most women’s bodies look like after pregnancy. However if you can minimise them I think it makes sense to do what you can.

As always I start with nutrition first. Eating a generally healthy diet is the first step, but then some specific nutrients can be helpful:

  • Vitamin C for strengthening the vein walls and capillaries
  • Collagen (pictured above is the Great Lakes Gelatin I’ve been adding to smoothies occasionally) containing foods such as bone broth and gelatin for keeping the skin stretchy and supple
  • Healthy fats from foods like oily fish, coconut oil and avocado also for keeping the skin moisturised from within
  • Some vitamin E from seeds like sunflower can also be useful for the skin

When it comes to products to apply to the skin, I’ve been testing out a few options:

Pregnancy skin care

I started off using Neom Cocooning Oil on boobs and bump and I’ve almost ran out! That was brilliant and really made my skin feel nice and supple without being oily. A fave product has also been Organic Argan Oil cream which I was sent for review. I absolutely adore this cream, my skin has never felt so good as it does using that! I have also used Dr Organic Vitamin E stretch mark cream and on any dry bits trusty coconut oil. Recently I’ve been sent some derma oil to try out and I also treated myself to some Mama Mio products which are specifically formulated for mamas to be. The way I’m approaching it is to use an oil or stretch mark specific cream on boobs, bump and hips then a more standard cream like the argan oil cream everywhere else. 

So far I haven’t noticed any new stretch marks or issues with veins or capillaries, however I know I’m only just half way through and have a long way to go yet, plus as I blogged about a while I ago I already had some looser pre stretched skin from being overweight in the past, so maybe that is going to be a blessing in disguise!

If you’ve had a baby did you get stretch marks? Whether you’ve been pregnant or not, do you use any specific products for prevention of stretch marks? What’s your favourite skin care product?

P.S after posting my pregnancy updates weekly so far, I might start and do them every other week for the rest of the second trimester and some of the third as I’m hoping I’m reaching a staple phase of my pregnancy with not too much to report!

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29 Comments

  1. Alex

    One of my friends just had her baby this week, she knew she was having a girl from 20 weeks, her and her partner chose the name early so everyone was instructed to call the bump by its name whilst she was still pregnant so everyone could talk to it! I thought that was a lovely thing to do.

    I must say, just from the photos you post on Instagram, your pregnancy diet looks absolutely fantastic.

    Reply
    • Laura

      That’s lovely! We’ve been so tempted to tell everyone, but it will be nice to give them a surprise when he arrives. Thanks re the diet, I think I’ve been lucky in that now all I have an aversion to is chicken so I’m pretty much eating what I would normally but more of it which is fine by me ;-)

      Reply
  2. Lauren

    That first bit made me tear up! I am so happy for your little baby boy miracle :) it must be such a magical feeling!
    I am gentically prone to stretch marks. I have them all over my bum and inner thighs from puberty, weight gain and loss over the years. I have found eating lots of healthy fats keeps my skin more supple and also slathering myself in coconut oil once a week!

    Reply
    • Laura

      Thanks Lauren, it really is I can hardly find words for it! Yey for coconut oil, plus it smells amazing!

      Reply
  3. Rubee

    I have a 3 month baby girl and I remember being so excited after our 20 week scan! It’s a great time to really start preparing things. My husband and I chose her name straight away and called her it from the 20 week scan, but we wanted to keep it a secret from everyone else which proved difficult! I didn’t get stretch marks until I was 37 weeks! I was gutted because by that point I thought I would escape them. I mainly used a Clarins Oil and a Burts Bees Bump Cream because they were both full of natural products. My stretch marks have faded a lot, but I’m thinking of getting some sort of stretch mark fading cream. I’m a little undecided because all the ones I have looked at seem full of nasty products!

    Reply
    • Laura

      Congrats Rubee! We are finding the same thing, I’m hoping I’m not going to slip up and call my bump it with other people! Great that you got to 37 weeks, I’ll keep an eye out for any fading oils that are natural.

      Reply
  4. Tamzin

    I’ve got to say I have been very lucky and have never suffered from stretch marks other then a few light ones on my boobs but they disappeared ages ago but I would definitely be applying creams and oils if I was ever to become pregnant, I would like to prevent them as much as I could!

    Reply
    • Laura

      Lucky you, and great that the ones you had faded. I’m glad mine have faded right back, its if I get ones across the middle of my tummy I’m worried about now!

      Reply
      • Tamzin

        I sent you a pin with some good tips x x

        Reply
        • Laura

          I saw it, thank you chick!

          Reply
  5. Vicki

    I’m 16 weeks pregnant following ivf and glad to know I’m not the only pregnant lady speaking to her belly. No stretch marks yet but using bio oil daily to try and prevent them. Unfortunaltey I can;t excercise as much as you due to health causing mobility issues (and made worse by the pregancy hormones!) but you’re an inspiration to all prengant ladies and have a fab diet – I get food envy every time I see your posts.

    Reply
    • Laura

      Oh congrats Vicki that’s wonderful! Well if my pelvis keeps playing up I might have to cut back a bit, I’m just glad the tiredness from the first trimester has eased off! Glad you like the look of the food, it took me a while to find a groove!

      Reply
  6. Zoe

    I’ve never been pregnant but I have stretchmarks on my upper thighs/hip area. I’ve never used anything specific on them, but as I suffer from eczema I tend to use quite rich body moisturisers anyway. To be honest I’m 34 and I think most women my age have them, so I’m not very worried about them! :-)

    Reply
    • Laura

      Good for you and I would agree, as I said I don’t think there’s anything to be ashamed of, it’s more the crazy media that have photoshopped them into oblivion!

      Reply
      • Zoe

        Oh yes totally! I hope I didn’t sound dismissive. It’s just that I’m quite overweight so I’ve had to make decisions about what things to stress about, and I decided to bin stretchmarks! (No doubt once I lose the weight the worry about them will rise up again, aaaaargh!) ;-)

        Reply
  7. Claire @ Flake and Cake

    Aww so lovely to read about your miracle baby boy. Definite lump in my throat moment!
    I definitely have a few stretch marks, they seem to have faded over time but I think collagen and lots of care is a good preventative measure!
    Great to see your natural products, I’m always interested to read about new products on offer!

    Reply
    • Laura

      Thanks Claire :-) I’m just ordering more natural products for baby as I’ve found a site with 10% off!

      Reply
  8. Nicky

    Awhh everytime I read your posts I can’t help but smile Laura!! So nice to read :)

    I have a few stretch marks from being underweight and gaining weight and I’m genetically prone to them too (thanks mum!), just on the backs of the top of my thighs…they really bother me so recently I’ve been trying dry brushing and moisturising with coconut oil a couple of times a week. My skin has never felt so baby soft haha! I’ll see if it helps at all :)

    Reply
    • Laura

      Thanks Nicky :-) xxx

      Haha, yep I have my Mam to thank as well, I am expecting them to happen but will just do what I can. I used to dry skin brush and must try and get back into the habit!

      Reply
  9. Kezia

    I totally hadn’t thought of putting gelatine in my smoothie, i had been loving it in my hot chocolates but forgotten to add it and I am on a mission to balance my hormones so thanks for the inspiration!

    Reply
    • Laura

      Well there you go, exchange of ideas as I haven’t put it in hot chocolate! I am so tempted to get some of the other version that gels so I can try some of the marshmallow recipes!

      Reply
      • Kezia

        Funny – I have that version and been meaning to make marshmallows for ages – shame we are not neighbours then we could exchange cups of gelatine like proper real food hippies!

        Reply
  10. Anna @AnnaTheApple

    Gosh it’s just so exciting! Sorry about your glute/hip ache. But if that’s your only issue I think you’re doing brilliantly (in my vast pregnancy experience…). I’m so pleased you’re enjoying it and loving the experience. I hope when I’m pregnant that I have a similar experience :)

    Reply
    • Laura

      Thanks Anna! Luckily the glute issue is better now, I was getting to the point of making an appointment with the physio as the wait to see my doctor is crazy. Thinking back to when I was running I would have issues with my hip alinement so I think it’s one of those things where my posture changing with the weight at the front is going to make it flare up. Bring on the Pilates!

      Reply
  11. Maria @ runningcupcake

    Glad everything is going so well and you are feeling so good :)
    I used bio oil on my scar and I think it helped, but who knows if it helped more than just normal body cream- whatever makes you feel better is good to use I think.

    Reply
  12. Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy

    Talking to your baby doesn’t sound crazy at all. I talk to my cats all through the day haha.

    I can’t find anything to help with stretch marks. I had them from gaining so much weight and then when I lost weight, I got loads more. I give up! lol

    Reply

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