Expectant Beauty

An increasing number of consumers are looking to natural and organic cosmetics alternatives, not only for their babies but for themselves during pregnancy. “While organic skin care without the use of synthetic or petroleum-based ingredients or preservatives is important for everyone, it is especially crucial during pregnancy,” explained Motherlove’s Kathryn Higgins. Products claiming to be free of toxic chemicals are gaining ground within the industry as a whole, and a number of natural product marketing campaigns have targeted expectant mothers by highlighting the impact of their consumption and habits on the unborn baby. Companies committed to safety standards that offer pampered protection will have the upper hand.

The Connecticut-based Beaute de Maman offers a range of products that are “designed to treat the problems related to the physiological and hormonal changes experienced by women during pregnancy.” The range was developed by obstetrician Michele Brown, and includes a face and body cream and a facial scrub designed for the oily and blemished skin often experienced during early pregnancy. The face and body cream contains tea tree oil for its antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory activity. In addition to designing the products for the specific skin requirements of pregnant women, the company claims to have extensively researched the ingredients’ risks to the unborn baby.

Preventing and reducing stretchmarks is also a key issue, which marks often come out of nowhere when the baby “drops” in the last few weeks of pregnancy—presenting on the underbelly, hips, breasts and thighs. Without preparation, many moms only realize after delivery that their bodies will never be the same. Or, will they? There are increasing cosmetic choices for addressing stretch marks, among them Union-Swiss’ Bio-Oil. Its formulation contains the ingredient PurCellin Oil, a laboratory recreation of the preen gland oil of ducks. Belli’s Stretchmark Minimizing Cream is a healing skin reparative treatment specifically formulated with darutoside and registril to decrease appearance of existing stretch marks, and Elasticity Belli Oil is a blend of gotu kola extract, vitamin E and collagen hydrolysates to prevent new ones. Beaute de Maman also offers a scent-free stretch mark cream, an important consideration for any product in a line for pregnant women, who are often more acutely sensitive to fragrances.

And specialty products are becoming ever more accessible to consumers. Curél recently added Pregnancy & Motherhood Moisture Cream to its Life Stages line. Developed with obstetricians to address dry skin issues during pregnancy, the fast-absorbing cream helps skin withstand the changes of pregnancy by increasing elasticity and helping to smooth the appearance of stretch marks. It also relieves dry, tight skin—including postpartum skin—with a paraben- and petrolatum-free, oil-free and hypoallergenic formula.