Dark spots during pregnancy: what it is and how to prevent

Dark spots during pregnancy: what it is and how to prevent

As great the feeling of bringing new life to this world is, so great are the questions on maintaining a healthy pregnancy for you and your unborn baby. This does not only refer to what’s happening on the inside but also to what’s happening on the outside. Pampering yourself with a good skincare regime may benefit you during pregnancy and in the long run after your pregnancy.

Womanhood should be embraced at all times, even if pregnancy has left you with changes to your body and skin. However, it’s totally understandable if you’d rather avoid certain pregnancy marks. In this blog, we’ll dig deeper into the formation of pigmentation spots. During pregnancy, this is called a pregnancy mask. As this is not the easiest skin condition to deal with you would save yourself a lot of money and time by preventing this from happening rather then treating it. Here are some useful tips to do so!

What is a pregnancy mask?

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Source: Instagram @leah_behr

Melasma is a more severe form of hyperpigmentation (hyper = excessive) of the skin. The word is derived from the Greek word for ‘black’ which is ‘melas’. During pregnancy, this is called pregnancy melasma or ‘chloasma’ or better known as pregnancy mask.

This simply means that spots, darker than your own skin tone (brown in color), are formed due to the higher production of pigment in particular areas of the skin. It is referred to as a mask because many of these spots are bundled in a way that it’s covering the whole face with typical occurrence on the upper lip, chin, cheeks and forehead

Why dark spots develop

The cells that are responsible for producing pigment or melanin are melanocytes. Overactivation of these melanocytes leads to the appearance of dark brown spots on the skin surface.

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In scientific literature was found that it is still not entirely known what the actual cause is of melasma. However, the occurrence of melasma has been suggested to be more prominent during pregnancy, intake of oral contraceptives and unprotected exposure to the sun which is the culprit for causing pigmentation spots. Genetic factors (DNA) also predispose whether you’re more sensitive to getting pigmentation spots.

Prevention is key

Sunscreen

The earlier in the pregnancy you start with sun protection the better your result in the long run. Wondering why sun protection is so important? UV-rays or sun rays are one of the most important factors that endorse the development of hyperpigmentation. 

Use a sunscreen with SPF50 or SPF100 for the highest protection to UV damage. It’s not enough to apply sunscreen only once a day. Multiple applications a day are a must to get the protection you need. Depending on your skin type and the amount of sun exposure, the time between applications may vary. A general guideline is to apply sunscreen every two hours.

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Antioxidants

Hyperpigmentation mostly occurs in darker skin types. If you really don’t like the texture of sunscreen, because of the whiteness that comes with higher SPF, it is recommended to at least include antioxidants into your skincare routine.

Antioxidants such as alpha-tocopherol ferulate and Vitamin C (max. ± 25%) protect from free radicals, produced by UV rays that contribute to hyperpigmentation.

Lesser-known antioxidants but much more potent than the classical vitamin C, is superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase. These are the ones that are produced by our body and when topically applied it can compensate for deficient protection of our body’s own antioxidants.

Conclusion

It’s almost impossible to keep track of all the do’s and don’t’s during pregnancy.  People do often neglect that our skin is our biggest organ and deserves more attention than you’d think. It is easier to hide a skin concern on the body, but the face area is more challenging to cope with. That’s why prevention is key, especially in the case of pigmentation which often takes a long time to vanish.

Nomige Masterclass

Can’t you get enough from absorbing all of this information about your skin? Dr. Barbara Geusens shares all of her valuable knowledge that she acquired during her PhD in dermatological sciences during her skin series.

She is also the founder of Nomige, hyper-personalised skincare based on DNA and lifestyle factors. Are you curious to know why she developed Nomige and how Nomige can help you solve your unique skin concerns? Then, you’ll have to check out her Masterclass Webinar where she will spill all the tea about Nomige.

Are you the talking type? So are we.

Book a FREE consultation

FREE 1-on-1 consultation via Whatsapp video call with our founder Dr. Barbara Geusens.

Ask any questions you have about Nomige and find out how Nomige is able to help you.

Other questions?
We are here to help you! Chat with us or email us.

Are you the talking type? So are we.

Book a FREE consultation

FREE 1-on-1 consultation via Whatsapp video call with our founder Dr. Barbara Geusens.

Ask any questions you have about Nomige and find out how Nomige is able to help you.

Other questions?
We are here to
help you! Chat with us or email us

Want to know more about skin aging?

Skin aging is a very complex process that is influenced by both internal factors (your DNA) and external factors (such as the sun, pollution, weather conditions, smoking...).  Every skin is unique and the same can be said of the ageing process.

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Connect with us and follow the hashtag #MyNomige to stay up to date of the latest skin tips and news.