How to deal with oily skin in pregnancy

Were you expecting to have the famous ‘pregnancy glow’, but instead your T-zone is super shiny due to the excess amount of oil? You are a bit worried that this will cause your skin to break out?

Don’t worry, just keep reading.

What causes oily skin in pregnancy?

During pregnancy there’s an increase in hormones called androgens and progesterone.

These hormones can cause your sebaceous glands to suddenly produce more oil (sebum) making your skin greasier, especially in the T-zone of your face, upper chest and back.

T-zone and oily skin in pregnancy

Why do we produce sebum?

Sebum during pregnancy

The human sebum is a viscous fluid made from a mix of oils including triglycerides, wax esters, cholesterol and squalene.

We need it, as it lubricates and delivers antioxidants to the surface of our skin. Sebum also protects against friction and microbes and will help keep the skin hydrated.

However, if we produce too much sebum, it can be an issue. Excess oil and dead skin cells can together clog the pores creating pesky white- and blackheads. If bacteria start growing in these clogged pores, they will get inflamed and form pimples.

How to safely deal with oily skin in pregnancy.

Understanding your skin and having a good skincare routine will help you get oily skin under control.

This is what we recommend:

1. Cleanse twice a day. 

Wash your face in the morning and evening (and after strenuous exercise) using a gentle foam cleanser. Make sure to avoid overly drying and harsh face washes (cleansers containing SLS or SLES – read more about which ingredients to avoid here) as your skin might be more sensitive during pregnancy. We recommend our Clarity Foam Cleanser.

2.  Keep your skin hydrated by using serums or light moisturisers. 

Even though you have greasy skin, you still need to keep the skin hydrated. Apply a hydrating serum packed with vitamins and / or a very light moisturiser after cleansing (avoid heavy creams).

3. Gentle exfoliation once a week. 

Avoid getting clogged pores by using a gentle exfoliant (don’t scrub too hard).

4.  Always wear sunscreen when outside. 

If you are outside, always remember to apply sunscreen (especially if you are in Australia). Try using a physical or mineral sunscreen (look for ingredients such as zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide).

5.  Check your makeup.

Use products that are labelled as non-comedogenic (so they won’t clog pores). Make sure to wash it off every day.

6.  Change your pillowcases often.

Pillowcases can contribute to acne breakouts, as they accumulate bacteria, oil and dirt over time.

During pregnancy it can be rather difficult to work out which skincare products are safe to use. This is where we can help you! Our skincare products are formulated with pregnant and nursing mums in mind.

Our pink skincare range is made to help with oily skin:

References: Oily Skin: A review of Treatment Options, Oily skin: an overview