Pregnant and Pretty

Anna Morozova, also a specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the GMS IVF Clinic, discusses in her interview with about cosmetic issues a pregnant woman can face as well as how to care of skin properly. She also talks about correct hair care habits.

Many women upon learning that they are pregnant tend to think, «Now I can’t do anything, as I will turn into a gross, messy fat woman by the ninth month». This cannot be more untrue with contemporary medicine and cosmetology advancing a mile a minute. Now we have everything to make a future mother feel comfortable with her beauty and her body throughout all pregnancy. Anna Morozova, Medical Director, Gynaecologist & Fertility Specialist at GMS IVF Clinic, told about cosmetic problems a pregnant woman can face. During her interview, Anna Morozova also advises on how to maintain proper skin and hair care habits.

Anna Morozova

The key highlights of the interview are as follows: (Question): The fear about horrible changes in the appearance, when a woman becomes pregnant, where does it come from?

Anna Morozova: From the moment a woman’s pregnancy is confirmed, she starts realizing that now she is responsible not only for herself, but also for the small, vulnerable little life growing inside her. Many women feel overwhelmed and at loss as they do not know what to do next, how to react, what is going to happen and/or how to live from now onwards. Some of them start developing fears regarding their appearance. It’s not uncommon and rather normal considering the emotional stress pregnant women have to go through. But everything will settle down once the body adapts to the new situation. Pregnancy is a 9-month-long process during which the function of all important organs and systems undergo significant changes. The female body needs to get used to these changes and new conditions in order to create an optimal «nurturing» environment for the growth and development of the baby. (Question): What kinds of skin related problems typically arise during pregnancy?

Anna Morozova: Women’s skin during the pregnancy changes, and this is inevitable. Changes might be various. Sometimes, skin starts producing a brown pigment. This phenomenon is called hyperpigmentation (or Melasma). It entails a rise in melanocyte-stimulating hormones (MSH) while the endocrine system readjusts, specifically the hard-working adrenal gland. This pigmentation can appear at any time during pregnancy and is impossible to prevent. Pigmented spots can appear on the forehead, nose and cheeks, stomach, around the nipples, or on the inner parts of the thighs. Modern skin care products products can help in these cases, however before using new cream or serum it is important to take your doctor’s advice. (Question): Is it okay to get stretch marks? Why do they appear?

Anna Morozova: As the pregnancy progresses, the front abdominal wall stretches and striae gravidarum or stretch marks appear. They can be various shades of white, silver, or dark purple. After having a baby, stretch marks typically don’t go away entirely. However, they usually do lose their bright color and fade into white stripes.

Women can prevent stretch marks by using nourishing or moisturizing creams throughout the pregnancy. These creams usually contain hyaluronic acid, Vitamins A and E, amino acids, collagen, panthenol, and seaweed. These cosmetic products gently nourish the future mother’s skin by making it softer, smoother and more elastic. Wheigh control is also a good prevention of stretch marks. (Question): Is that true that «insidious» cellulite is waiting for all pregnant women and is there a way to get rid of it?

Anna Morozova: Gaining weight during pregnancy is caused not only by uterine and fetal growth, but also by fluid retention in the female body. Liquid accumulates in the hypodermis and, as we call it, «cellulitis» appears. Generally speaking, there is no such term: the suffix, «itis,» in medicine means inflammation, so «cellulitis» means inflammation of the hypodermis. Inflammation is usually treated with antibiotics. Still, nobody can rid themselves of «orange skin» with antibiotics. What we all call «cellulitis» is a result of subcutaneous fat outgrowing the connective tissue net of fat cells. The subcutaneous fat starts to protrude out, resulting in skin irregularities. The best cellulite treatment is to lose extra weight and get rid of water retention. Of course, talking about losing weight during pregnancy isn’t the best idea, but future mothers should still control their weight when in preparing for pregnancy. Following a specific diet also plays a very important role in cellulite prevention. Remember that drinking too much water before going to bed can lead to ugly «bumps» on skin or worse, edema. The daily liquid intake for pregnant woman should be 2 liters.

Anti-cellulite cream, which is actively advertised nowadays, is supposed to improve the condition of skin and typically increases the amount of fluid in the skin. It is not contraindicated during pregnancy since it only affects the skin. However hold back from getting anti-cellulite massages. They are very painful, intense, traumatizing, and not appropriate for a vulnerable body of pregnant woman.

Pregnant and Pretty (Question): What kinds of skin and hair care tips would you recommend for future mother?

Anna Morozova: All «cosmetic related» changes during pregnancy are temporary, so special cosmetic or treatment procedures are not necessary. However, women expecting a child do not need to live 9 month all life pleasures, including visits to beauty parlors. Keep visiting beauty salons — future mothers can and should pamper themselves. Amongst safe procedures are different moisturizing and nourishing serums for the skin, face, and body. There is no need to stop waxing if your doctor says that it’s fine. Massages also were proved to be beneficial for women. General strengthening and relaxing massages are recommended throughout pregnancy; lymphatic drainage massages, when done by a professional, relieve edema, improve blood circulation, help subcutaneous fluid circulation, and act as a good energizer in the thirdtrimester.

Products that affect hair care such as semi-permanent hair dye or popular sulfate-free shampoos, conditioners, and masks are great choices for a pregnant woman’s skin. (Question): Are there any cosmetic procedures women should avoid while being pregnant?

Anna Morozova: Chemical peels, all types of dermal fillers, vitamin injections, cosmetic operations, or plastic surgeries should not be done during pregnancy. These methods haven’t been studied enough and can negatively affect the growth of the baby. So we suggest to be on a safe side. (Question): What is the biggest piece of advice in the context of cosmetic care you can give future moms?

Anna Morozova: Pregnancy makes any woman beautiful and there is no doubt. At the same time I am positive that if a woman has enough sleep, proper and healthy meals, moisturizing skin care, and daily exercise she will be absolutely irresistible!

Author: Olga Bolodurina



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