From the Blog
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You won't believe your eyes.
Being anglophiles, we were so excited to see that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are expecting their first child in Spring 2019. Our first thought was: "Oh, please be a ginger baby!". Our second? "Meghan is going to have to switch up her skin care!".
Good skin care is important during pregnancy as the changes in hormones can significantly impact the skin. Since some skin care ingredients can reach the blood stream and affect the developing fetus, it is imperative that women understand what they can and cannot safely use during pregnancy.
What to avoid:
Vitamin A derivatives - this is the big one. In some studies, topical Vitamin A has been linked to birth defects. The risk is small, but is significant enough that doctors recommend avoiding the following ingredients:
Avage, Fabior, Tazorac (tazarotene)
Retin-A, Renova (tretinoin)
Targretin gel (bexarotene)
Beta Hydroxy Acids:
This ingredient is frequently seen in anti-acne formulations and, due to pregnancy's tendency to cause increased breakouts, you may be tempted to use it. Don't. While studies have shown that very little is absorbed into the skin during topical application, in it's oral form, it can cause birth defects and pregnancy complications. It's best to use an abundance of caution and avoid it.
Skin Lightening Products:
Melasma, an increase in melanin production that causes hyperpigmentation on the face, is an issue for many women during pregnancy. The ingredient that is considered the "gold standard" for busting up the excess pigmentation, hydroquinone, is a definite NO. A study published in The Canadian Family Physician found that 35%–45.3% of topical hydroquinone is systemically absorbed through the skin. There have not been studies on the safety of hydroquinone, but given the high absorption rate, it's best to avoid the ingredient until more information is available.
What to use in small quantities only:
These compounds are great for exfoliation. There haven't been extensive studies on the safety of these ingredients, but it is not thought to penetrate the skin and enter the bloodstream. Using a low percentage in topical products should not pose a risk. Avoid professional peels and high percentage products (more than 2%)
Alpha hydroxy acid (AHA)
Beta hydroxybutanoic acid
So, with so many ingredients to avoid or limit, what CAN you use?
We recommend a gentle mechanical exfoliation (a scrub) to encourage cellular turnover, which can help with hormonally induced breakouts. Our favorite? Andrea Garland Pink Palma Rosa Scrub. It's gentle and the pink clay base will help to draw out impurities.
For moisture, we recommend Squalene Oil, such as Indie Lee Squalene Facial Oil or Indie Lee Squalene Facial Cream. It can help protect the skin from external irritants and can act as an anti-inflammatory in the skin.
Finally, a good sunscreen is key for reducing melasma. Look for a mineral based sunscreen, such as zinc oxide. The minerals are too big to penetrate the skin and, as such, are Generally Regarded As Safe (GRAS) by the FDA.
Are you or one of your loved ones expecting and would like more information and recommendations for your skin? Email Liz at email@example.com for some personalized recommendations.
One question that we're frequently asked is how to schedule a daily routine. It's true that there are products that should only be used at night and products that work better for the day. We're here to break the schedule down for you so that your skin can look its best!
Eye Contour/Lift/De-Puff Cream
Now, you might think that we've forgotten cleansing. Nope. We haven't. Washing your face 2x per day, for most people, is actually too often. Stripping away your body's natural oils can result in flaky and even oilier skin. This is especially important during the drier winter months.
Using a product that will reduce puffiness around the eyes is great for looking more youthful and more awake. This differs from an eye cream as the eye cream should have more of a cumulative effect from ingredients that are best suited for use while you sleep. An eye contour should create an immediate effect.
Moisturizers are important as they create a barrier between your skin and the external world, helping to protect you from pollutants. They also keep your skin from losing too much moisture via evaporation.
Finally, you know why SPF is important. So use it. Skin cancer is on the rise and even incremental sun exposure can add up to a big problem.
After the day is done, it's important to wash the make-up, dirt, grime, and excess oil off of your skin, using a gentle cleanser. We recommend sulfate free cleansers as they do not strip the skin.
Following cleansing, you need to use a gentle daily exfoliant. We prefer chemical exfoliants to scrubs as scrubs can irritate the skin and, in some cases, can even cause microtears, which allows bacteria to infiltrate. Chemical exfoliants include retinol, glycolic acid, and lactic acid.
After the exfoliation, apply any other serum that you use (Vitamin C, Brightening, etc). Having freshly exfoliated skin allows for a deeper penetration of these products. Incidentally, we do encourage everyone to use a Vitamin C serum.
Next comes eye cream, which should contain ceramides and peptides. These are ingredients that promote a more youthful appearance after prolonged use.
Finally, your moisturizer. Like the day moisturizer, this can help slow the evaporation of water from your skin. Unlike day moisturizers, these can have more active ingredients such as niacinamides, peptides, vitamins, and other nutrients. As you sleep, the body does its healing. So using these ingredients at night amplifies the effect.
Please contact Liz at Liz@thegildedgirl. com to create a comprehensive skin care regimen that can address all of your skin care goals!
Red Lips: I know, I know....is there nothing new under the sun? But trust us, nothing, and we mean NOTHING, makes you look more put together than a classic red lip. It's the fastest way to deliver a polished look.
Golden Eyes: We aren't talking about glitter (although, that was seen on the runways as well). We mean a sheer wash of gold, that shimmers and looks ethereal on any lid. Not only does this look gorgeous, but it can actually help you look more awake. How's that for pulling double duty?
Dramatic Black Liner: This looks devine when paired with the gilded eyes discussed above. Smoky, sexy, and imperfect. Smudge kohl around your upper and lower lash line and smolder away.
No Make-Up Make-Up: Look like you are au natural (with help from a great concealer and foundation, smudgey brown lid and liner, and a hint of cheek. Boom. Simple and sexy.
Email Liz at firstname.lastname@example.org for her help in picking out the right products for you to acheive these looks. She loves a good make-over.