Upgrading your beauty routine with winter skincare might feel like a faff, but just like your bod needs a cosy knit when the wind whips your skin needs a warm layer to keep it protected.
But we get it. You've got a lot going on right now and embracing a whole new beauty rulebook during pregnancy just isn't going to happen. Thankfully, with a few winter skincare tips -and learnings from the experts -we've got your skin covered until spring.
What can I do for my skin in winter?
During winter, rough, dry skin is the bugbear most of us are battling. You can thank the wintertime's cold, dry air and indoor heaters for this. But no matter how cold the mercury gets, you can take steps to soothe your skin before the cold snap bites.
What is the best skincare routine for winter?
If you're in search of that elusive “pregnancy glow” and are slapping on every product you can get your hands on then chill. Unfortunately, not only are you battling nature's toughest elements, but your skin is also having to handle hormones too. It's common for your skin to suddenly fall victim to breakouts, texture changes, flare-ups and hyperpigmentation.
During these months of change, focus on skincare non-negotiables: cleanser and moisturisers, using other products as and when you need. Although, don't skip SPF. Yes, even in Winter. UV rays attack our skin just as aggressively in the Winter too – worse still if you have sensitive skin during the cold season. SPF30 every day and always.
OK, what are the best pregnancy-safe skincare brands this winter?
For winter skincare brands you can ship today, shop FTCs hand-picked beauty edit. Carefully selected by our in-house team of experts, who are mamas themselves, our growing edit of beauty brands will hydrate and plump your skin no matter how low the temperature gets.
For the ultimate winter skincare routine - follow these 7 top tips
1. Quench that thirst with Hyaluronic acid
Nothing new here, skin always needs a healthy dose of hydration, aka hyaluronic acid. Cold weather however has less moisture in the air – add to that central heating - which means you would do well to up your daily dose. (A dry skin is a sensitive skin). Layer under your moisturiser morning and night, applying to damp skin for extra water-locking insurance. Double dose by adding a moisturiser over the top.
Worried about using acids in pregnancy? Fear not. Recent research in The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology reports that use of hyaluronic acid during pregnancy is considered safe, even when slathered on. Try The Sabi Collective Active Nutrient Serum to deeply nourish and renew skin stressed by the cold snap, users reported noticeable improvement in skin tone, radiance and spots in just 2 weeks.
2. Support your barrier to prevent dry skin
Look for moisturisers that will support your skin barrier – the hydrolipidic protective film which is so often sensitised by cold, blustery weather - by way of fatty acids, ceramides and glycerine. These ingredients replace lost fats in the skin and create an occlusive layer to prevent the loss of moisture, while locking in any skincare ingredients so that they work harder underneath.
3. Make a mask your winter skincare essential
By their very nature, sheet masks are designed specifically to deliver, and crucially lock-in, an intense burst of moisture instantly. Pack them on while you’re in the bath and trust me when I say, it’s worth every minute. And don't forget, masks aren't just for your face. Skin all over your body can become dry, itchy and bothered by wintertime weather. Try Hatch Mama Belly Mask to soothe your stomach and any growing stretch marks - it's a winter skincare saviour for mamas-to-be.
4. Curb your sugar this winter
We get it – that sweet tooth loves the winter season. But your skin doesn’t feel the same way. Sugar not only dehydrates our skin, but over time breaks down bouncy collagen. So, while one or two Quality Streets is fine, your skin and soul will feel best if you share the rest. If you find your sugar cravings hit at night make Hottea Mama tea your new BF. Packed with chamomile flowers, lavender, lime flowers, valerian root, rooibos and cornflowers it's designed to soothe your body and brain into the land of nod.
5. Eat your fats for glowing skin
Skincare is only part of the healthy skin equation – better still eat your way to a plump, glowing complexion. To encourage hydrated, juicy skin up your intake of good fats including omega 3 and 6 rich foods (including oily fish, chia, hemp and flaxseed) which make up the building blocks of cell membranes and encourage hydration in the skin. For a extra dose, or just to make sure you're hitting your RDAs, add a high dose marine omega into your day that's perfect for prenatal, pregnancy, breastfeeding and post-Natal and beyond.
6. Don't overlook sleep as a winter skincare essential
Bank it now, not just because it will put your in good stead for when your baby arrives, but also because it is between 9pm and midnight that your skin goes into repair mode. Remember, that every hour of beauty sleep before midnight is worth two of those banked after.
And, did you know that wearing a sleep mask can help increase REM? This simple slumber accessory is thought to block out ambient light; the kind you didn't even know was wrecking your sleep, like a street light or intermittent rays from 3am WhatsApp notifications.
Consider this your excuse to climb into bed at 8pm tonight, all in the name of nailing your winter skincare.
7. Up your vits to nourish pregnancy skin
Cosy winter food doesn’t always represent the rainbow that our bodies, and skin, like to live by. But a diet rich in vitamins A, C, and E to K plus antioxidants, including dark leafy and cruciferous veg, and berries, will help weatherproof your complexion by defending against free radicals this season. (Crucially however, remember it’s often what you don’t eat that your skin will thank you for most – swap in the sprouts for the extra tattie. Sorry.)
Don't overlook vits in your skincare too. Vitamin C is proven to help with oxidative stress AKA the load of life. Look to The Sabi Collective for a pregnancy and mama-safe option.
PS: Don't forget to avoid these skincare products in pregnancy
Unfortunately, the evidence-based data on which ingredients to swerve during pregnancy is still a growing area. However, there is a general list of no-nos:
- High dose salicylic acid
- Chemical sunscreens
If in doubt, check with a dermatologist or retire your regular winter skincare until your mini human is Earthside. And, while you're here, why not browse our edit of pregnancy and breastfeeding safe beauty products?