You’ve just bought a new, 10-step skincare kit and have all the steps down pat. You’re pretty sure nothing stands in the way of radiant, glowing skin now — nothing, except for those stubborn bumps under your skin. That smattering of blackheads on your nose. Enlarged pores on your cheeks… maybe you have a long way to go before regaining clarity in complexion because of congestion — or clogged pores, if you will.

“My pores still clogged with the day’s wear.
I long for moisture and rejuvenation.”

SHELLS HEART
Credit: Ayo Ogunseinde

TELLTALE SIGNS YOUR SKIN IS CONGESTED

One could have a seemingly smooth complexion but have hidden congestion issues. A quick test to see if you suffer from it — run a hand over your face. If your skin feels bumpy and uneven to the touch, chances are high that it’s congested. More obvious signs that most people are familiar with are blackheads (especially along the T-zone and cheeks) and whiteheads.

WHAT IS CONGESTION?

In layman terms, we like to call it “gunk” or “dirt”. In more formal terms, it’s a combination of impurities, sweat, dead skin cells, sebum and natural oils that become trapped within the pores, causing blackheads and / or whiteheads to form. While whiteheads tend to appear as firm, white bumps, blackheads are clogged pores that remain open and darken due to oxidation.

When pores are often congested and clogged with impurities, they tend to stretch—causing the appearance of enlarged pores.  A lot of times, simply clearing the skin of blackheads and congestion can help reduce the appearance of large and open pores.

CARING FOR CLEARING CONGESTED SKIN

The tips and tricks are many, so regaining smooth, glowing skin from within is very much possible.

DOUBLE CLEANSING

Double Cleansing with a makeup remover / pre-cleanser thoroughly removes environmental pollutants accumulated through the day, making the same job easier for your cleanser. More importantly, pre-cleansing softens your skin so that following products can be absorbed more effectively. Double cleansing is one of the simplest, fastest ways to ensure the skin is thoroughly cleansed of debris, dirt, makeup, and all other incriminating factors needed for congestion to happen.

“Take your time when cleansing – it’s not a step to be rushed.”

EMMA HOBSON
EDUCATION MANAGER FOR THE INTERNATIONAL DERMAL INSTITUTE
AND DERMALOGICA

EXFOLIATION

Exfoliation helps keep your skin clear and more even as it gets rid of flaky skin cells and loosens keratin buildup. Look for exfoliants with fruit enzymes as they are gentler and do a better job of dissolving dead skin cells without irritating or damaging the skin. Even better if the exfoliator returns water to the skin with hydrating ingredients like aloe extracts. The goal here is to revive the skin’s surface while preventing over-drying or irritation. An effective exfoliant does its job without abrasion, helping to clear your pores while also nourishing the skin.

Avoid any exfoliants that contain micro-beads or granules as these are generally more aggravating to the skin.

TONING WITH AHAS

One of the most important parts of the daily skin care routine is toning. It balances the skin after cleansing, calms and lowers its pH level. Toning helps prep the skin for any serums that follow, and removes excess oil your cleanser may have missed. Another perk? It shrinks the size of your pores! Find toners with AHAs, as these break the bonds between weakened skin cells, making it much easier to exfoliate and encourage cellular production. New cells = smoother-looking, healthier skin!

Glycolic and lactic acids are two such sources of AHAs; it gently peels the top layer of the skin, helping dislodge buildup from clogged pores, and with regular use, improves the skin’s overall appearance and clarity. These remove excess sebum, impurities and dead skin cells to clarify the skin to make way for a brighter, clearer complexion.

Remember to always use sunscreen, especially after using products with AHAs to protect your skin from free radicals and UV damage!

GEL-BASED MOISTURISING

Once your skin is primed and prepped for moisture (after all that cleansing, exfoliation and toning), it’s important to use a moisturizer that isn’t too heavy or thick, but provides superior hydration down to the deeper layers of the skin.

It’s a misconception that one shouldn’t apply moisturizers if his / her skin is oily. In fact, it’s a pretty big booboo if you skip this step, especially if your skin is oily! Dehydrated skin often produces more oil because it perceives the skin to be too dry. But if you feed it with water to even out the pH balance, it stops bumping up the sebum production because your skin’s already well-fed.

However, it’s important to find the right moisturizer. These are those that are non-comedogenic, contain hydrating ingredients and occlusives to ensure that skin is hydrated and that hydration is locked within.

If your skin is really dehydrated, consider adding a power-packed serum with ingredients like hyaluronic acid and sodium hyaluronate for a surge of hydration.

Credit: Vishal Banik

“Moisturising your face is also an effective solution to keeping your pores clean. Many people with acne fear that moisturiser will add excess oil to their skin, however if they use the right product this is not the case.”

DR. KATHERINE ARMOUR
DERMATOLOGIST

PROFESSIONAL EXTRACTIONS

Unclogging congested skin can be done faster with the help of professional extractions! As always, don’t pick at your skin or attempt extractions on your own because that introduces more dirt and bacteria to inflamed skin. You know what that means — more bumps, more blackheads, more zits… more congestion!

Extractions are rarely a pleasant experience but you can help make the process a little easier and less painful by prepping your skin for it * gasp. How? Here’s a word you’ve heard countless times in this post alone — hydration.

When your skin is hydrated, it helps soften the surface so it’s more pliable, making it easier to extract comedones and congestion. Dehydrated skin, on the other hand, will harden around the blockages, locking them in place and thus making it harder or even impossible to remove. Before your extractions appointment, boost your skin’s hydration as much as possible with masks and serums! You can thank us later.

HERE COMES THE SUMMER’S SON
HE BURNS MY SKIN
I ACHE AGAIN
I’M OVER YOU

T E X A S
Credit: Shifaaz Shamoon

We all love the sun (with sun protection, of course). Summer is pretty much perpetual in hot, humid places like ours, though the recent rain spells could use a reminder who’s boss around here. So summer, real summer, is just around the corner with a warm invitation to its party. Sun, fun, beach, books to read at the beach, water, shorts and sandals…

We all really love the sun, but we don’t much fancy its plus ones: Excessive sun exposure, the sweltering humidity and too much heat — they’re our definitions of party poopers that have fun at the expense of our skin. Think pigmentation / sunburns, oil glands in overdrive and parched, parched skin.

Many of us know by now that sun protection is key — that’s the prevention bit. But did you know that other factors like hydration play an equally important role in fortifying the skin during and post-summer? That’s prevention and cure.

Read on for more essentials for dewy, glowing summer skin!

SUMMER SKIN TIP 1: LAYER DOWN — LESS MIGHT BE MORE.

SUMMER SKIN TIP 1: LAYER DOWN — LESS MIGHT BE MORE.
Credit: Blake Wheeler

SUMMER IS THE TIME TO EASE UP ON THE NUMBER OF LAYERS YOU PUT ON YOUR SKIN AND LIMIT THE NUMBER OF PRODUCTS YOU USE.

D R .  S H E R R Y  I N G R A H A M

Sweater weather skincare isn’t for humid summers. Consider layering less products on the face, swapping makeup for skin that’s bare except for sunscreen, and opting for dual-purpose products (e.g. a tinted sunscreen)!

SUMMER SKIN TIP 2: MASK ON — BALANCE THE OILY.

Given our heat and humidity, you probably didn’t think that dehydration might be an issue in summer. The strange thing is, summer can lead to parched skin, which in turn leads to oilier visages, and if you coat it with thick, oily moisturisers, you’re on the fast track to congestion, especially once these meet perspiration. What you need is lightweight, water-based hydrators to balance your pH back out, like a good old-fashioned mask.

Skincare Hero: Hydrocare – Bio-Cellulose Mask

Our favourite, super-hydrating, pH-balancing, oil-free mask. Treat your skin to its cocktail of ingredients: Cactus Extracts to calm, hydrate, balance sebum levels, Litchi Seed Extracts and Vitamin A-rich Fig Fruit Extract to plump and that come rich in antioxidants to fight free radicals in summer.

Tip: Keep in fridge for an extra cooling treat for distressed skin.

SUMMER SKIN TIP 3: WATER IN — DROWN THE PARCHED.

SUMMER SKIN TIP 3: WATER IN — DROWN THE PARCHED.
Credit: Farooq Khan

On almost all days of the year, we perspire while on this sunny island. When it boils down to the actual summer months, though, the extra sweat makes it even easier for pollutants to stick onto our skin. Clog our pores. Have a party. Essentially, the heat is giving us congestion while drying us out.

What we need is to stick to our cleansing regime even more religiously with water-based products. We love lightweight products that lift impurities and hydrate, while revitalizing us from the heat. As always, we recommend double cleansing to thoroughly rid the extra layers of oil, SPF, and dirt.

Skincare Hero: Soothe – Hydro Cleanser

A sulphate- and paraben-free hydrating cleanser: Immerse your skin in a sea of calm. Made up of 80% pure Aloe Vera, 8 natural ingredients and free from sulfates and parabens, this gentle cleanser hydrates even sensitive skin while freeing it from impurities, ensuring a clear and glowing complexion.

Tip: You might feel the urge to, but don’t over-cleanse or you’ll trigger more oil production once your skin gets tricked into thinking it’s too dehydrated / dry! Limit your washes to the AM / PM and use the right cleanser for your skin type.

SUMMER SKIN TIP 4: UP THE ANTIOXIDANTS.

Aside from sunscreen, it’s important to feed your skin with a heady brew of antioxidants, both topically and food-wise. Sunscreen and antioxidant-rich skincare products help act as a bodyguard for your skin externally, but UV rays sometimes inevitably still penetrates our skin. Eating foods that are rich in antioxidants, then, helps protect us within.

Skincare Hero: Soothe – Deep Hydrating Lotion

A lightweight lotion packed with antioxidants. With its concoction of natural Jojoba Seed and Rose oils, Vitamins E and B5, Sodium Hyaluronate and Hyaluronic Acid, it combats free radicals in our environment and stimulates regeneration in our skin. Damascena Rose extracts also help deeply hydrate the skin and improve its natural resilience.

Tip: Keep this lightweight mist in the bag for all-day revitalization. Spritz to instantly refresh and hydrate for a glowing, radiant complexion. At night, soak cotton pads with this lotion as a quick-fix mask for dehydrated, tired skin.

SUMMER SKIN TIP 5: TLC FOR YOUR EYES, TOO.

SUMMER SKIN TIP 5: TLC FOR YOUR EYES, TOO.

The area around our eyes are often neglected but they are delicate and even more vulnerable to dehydration and the resulting fine lines. Remember to shower it with love, moisture and gentle yet powerful ingredients that help smoothen and destress.

Skincare Hero: RevitalEyes – Multi-Peptide Silk Mask

Reduces fine lines, puffiness, dark circles and signs of aging in 20 minutes. Harnessing the ancient benefits of silk, this mask contains 10 active ingredients to counteract the effects of stress around the eyes. The combination of Collagen, Algae Extract and Antarcticine de-puffs the eyes by reducing excess fluids, and promotes circulation to reduce the appearance of eye bags.

Tip: Keep in fridge for an extra cooling treat for distressed skin.

SUMMER SKIN TIP 6: HELLO, ALOE.

Aloe vera is such a simple, unpretentious ingredient with amazing benefits — and it’s good for so much more than sunburns and soothing inflamed skin! It also helps heal, protect, reduce the appearance of blemishes… it’s also a wonderful water bomb for your skin, which is why it’s a key ingredient in many of our skincare products.

Foresee yourself overdoing it this summer? Prep and step up your repair game with our #1 fix.

Skincare Hero: Soothe – Aloe Recovery Gel  

Distressed skin requires a special touch. This weightless curative gel, suitable for any epidermal ills ranging from pimples to open wounds, not only repairs skin but increases its resilience over time. The feathery texture and anti-inflammatory properties also work to keep the skin cool and soothed.

Tip: There are many kinds of aloe vera plants, but there is one that is most beneficial for us. Look for products that contain Aloe Barbadensis, i.e. “true aloe”. The gel from this plant contains chock-full of nutrients for humans that help with cellular regeneration, hydration and anti-inflammation. Plus, look for products where the Aloe Barbadensis is the first ingredient on the list, or you’re simply buying a watered down, ineffective version.

SUMMER SKIN TIP 7: AMP IT UP WITH THE ULTIMATE RESTORATIVE TREAT

Props to you if you’ve noticed that our summer skincare revolves around protection, hydration, calming and recovery. Aside from homecare, in-spa treatments can really help to repair overindulgence in the sun. Seek treatments that incorporate the same steps, with hydration being the most important factor as it plays a part in soothing and healing the skin as well.

Skincare Hero: Sun Rescue

Soothe sun-damaged skin instantly with a combination of Oxygen- and Cryo-therapies to calm, stimulate repair, shorten recovery time and reduce skin sensitivity. Our tinted moisturizer with sunscreen is applied after to retain the facial’s effectiveness.

Tip: The Sun Rescue facial isn’t just for skin that might’ve suffered with all the sun and fun! It’s perfect for people with sensitive, dehydrated skin and is our clients’ go-to when they need a quick, calming moisture boost.

SUMMER HEROES

Enjoy our favourite skin treats for summer (and all-year long) for a limited time in-store and online! Props not included (;

SUMMER SKIN HERO: Sun Rescue + Complimentary ZapGlow @ $298.55
Summer Treats @ $298.55 (U.P. $619.55)
Sun Rescue + complimentary ZapGlow™ add-on
Summer Hydration Kit @ $70 (U.P. $100)
2x REVITALEYES, Multipeptide Silk Mask
2x HYDROCARE, Bio-Cellulose Mask

Limited to 2 sets per client only
Summer Skincare Kit @ $88 (U.P. $105)
1x SOOTHE, Deep Hydrating Lotion (30ml)
1x SOOTHE, Hydro Cleanser (30ml)
1x SOOTHE, Aloe Recovery Gel (10ml)
1x Travel Pouch
Limited edition Hello, Sunshine smoothie
by celebrity chef Angela May
Valid at 20% for Prologue readers. Simply flash this story to our friendly staff at Porcelain Origins!

Valid till 31 July only

“IT’S NOT THE TEMPERATURE THAT MAKES THE DIFFERENCE BUT THE HUMIDITY… IF THE AIR IS DRY AND HUMIDITY IS LOW, THEN REGARDLESS OF WHETHER IT’S HOT OR COLD, YOU CAN ESSENTIALLY USE THE SAME PRODUCTS. BUT WHEN THE HUMIDITY IS HIGH, YOU NEED LIGHTWEIGHT TEXTURES.”

D R  E N G E L M A N

Stay True,

We generally steer clear from sales talk or pushy blog posts, but our recent annual Client Satisfaction survey sprung some surprising results: Our clients actually want to hear more about our treatments, products and seasonal offerings. So, here’s answering some of their wishes because this X’mas, our Christmas offerings are looking pretty fine.

1: Porcelain Triple Moisture Kit for the Thirsty

Christmas Offerings 1: Porcelain Triple Moisture Kit for the Thirsty

No matter what age you are, hydration remains the essential solid foundation for great skin – making this set of three essential hydrators an absolute prize. The deal clincher – it also comes with a complimentary limited-edition pouch.

WHAT’S INSIDE:

– Soothe – Aloe Recovery Gel (1x 50ml)
– Balance – Hydraclear Gel (1x 50ml)
– Pure – Botanical Soothing Gel (1x 30ml)
– Porcelain Pouch (1x, Complimentary)
– Porcelain Aurelie tea (1x, 10g) * 

PERFECT FOR PEOPLE WHO:

– Have skin so dehydrated, they think it’s oily
– Have legit, dry skin
– Frequently complain they can never find a good aloe gel that’s made up of 99% stabilized Aloe Vera
– Have pimples and who can’t find a good spot treatment that also hydrates while zapping zits and that also balances sebum and that also feels featherlight on skin and that also…
– Want a moisturizer that hydrates while providing bursts of antioxidants for brightening and protection from free radicals
– Love natural ingredients like aloe vera, peach, mountain pepper, peony, lemon verbena, tea tree oil…
– Are men who need that extra bit of TLC post-shave
– Are all of the above

 

$269 (U.P. $350.50)

 

2: Ultimate Acne Busters Kit for the Zitty and Inflamed

Christmas Offerings 3: Ultimate Acne Busters Kit for the Zitty and InflamedOur favourite unisex kit.

Also the definitive SOS kit for acne-afflicted complexions, this bundle contains what Porcelain fans consider as the go-to stars when hormones go haywire, and acne rears its many ugly heads. Ridding skin of p.acnes bacteria and excess sebum while keeping hydration levels up is key.

WHAT’S INSIDE:

– Balance – Daily Cleansing Gel (1x 120ml) or Soothe – Hydro Cleanser (1x 120ml)
– Revive – Glycolic Toner (1x 120ml)
– Balance – Sebum Control Essence (2x 8ml)

PERFECT FOR PEOPLE WHO:

Zit-prone people
– Have combination-oily skin, including and especially men who are more prone to these skin types
– Are in need of controlling excess shine
– Need a gentle, exfoliating toner that contains mild AHAs, and that hydrates while providing bursts of antioxidants for brightening and protection from free radicals
– Love natural ingredients like aloe vera, coconut, sage, cucumber, tea tree oil, soybean extracts…
– Who are men, especially the ones who believe that they deserve good skin too

 

$149 (U.P. $200)

 

3: Prep & Revitalize Kit for the Dreary and Dull

Christmas Offerings 3: Prep & Revitalize Kit for the Dreary and Dull

Or, more warmly known as the essential kit for people who have plans pre-X’mas all the way till the New Year. Also the perfect complementary set to the above two kits.

Look radiant before that Christmas / New Year bash! Come off like you’ve had 8-hours’ sleep every night when you’ve been hopping from festive dinner to dinner!

Whether it’s revitalizing you need pre- and / or post-party, cure its hangover with mask after mask, and remember to drink more water.

WHAT’S INSIDE:

– Hydrocare – Bio-cellulose Mask (2x)
– Revitaleyes – Multi-Peptide Silk Mask (2x)
– Revive – Natural Skin Refiner (1x 50ml)
– Gold Dropper Bottle (1x 5ml)

PERFECT FOR PEOPLE WHO:

– Party a lot
– Are very busy
– Have skin so dehydrated, they think it’s oily
– Have legit, dry skin
– Frequently complain they can never find a good face mask that adheres well to their faces
– Suffer from tired, lined eyes
– Love value for money and serums in equal parts: this mask comes with 30ml of serum which you can squeeze into a 5ml dropper bottle we include with every set!
– Live for multiple-functional gadgets: The Natural Skin Refiner acts as an exfoliator-cum-mask
– Want a mask that hydrates while providing bursts of antioxidants for brightening and protection from free radicals
– Are women, especially mothers, grandmothers, wives and daughters — show them it’s okay to take a break!
– Are men, especially the ones who believe that they deserve good skin too

 

$99 (U.P. $198)

 

* Buy any 2 sets with a total value of over $200 and get 1x Porcelain pouch + 1x tin of Porcelain Aurelie tea. The Triple Moisture Kit automatically comes with one of both.

(Limited to 3 per person, while stocks last)

 

4: Just Aurelie.

You’ve met Aurelie.

PERFECT FOR:

– Grandparents
– Friends who love tea
– Friends who don’t know tea
– Everyone? Who doesn’t like tea? Even coffee lovers love tea

 

We’re all waiting for X’mas,

 

 

 

 


 

READ MORE STORIES HERE:

Rescue & Restore: 4 Steps to Restore Glow to Post-Holiday Skin | #GetYourGlowOn

5 Skin Tips To Revive Dull-looking Skin In Time For X’mas | #GetYourGlowOn

5 Healthier Christmas Recipes You’ll Actually Enjoy

 

or… just flip through our site like you do a diary you found by secret!

 

 

Have you met Aurelie? She’s the latest thing to hit our shelves this Christmas — a classy silver needle white tea speckled with gold dust, and an aromatic mix of neroli, bergamot, jasmine, peach and apricot thrown in for good measure. Whether it’s brewed in a pitcher or teapot? Elegance to the highest degree. With her light, refreshing scent and taste, it’s easy to fall in love with her as swiftly as we did with her name (which we decreed after having the first sip).

A practical fun fact: Aurelie comes high in antioxidants and polyphenols (great for anti-inflammation), reduces cholesterol levels and helps with digestion.

Aurelie — Porcelain’s Bespoke Silver Needle White Tea

AURELIE — PORCELAIN’S BESPOKE SILVER NEEDLE WHITE TEA

Silver Needle is the holy grail in the world of white tea, with distinctive straight needle-like buds and tips that are usually covered in a fine, white downy hair. Beautiful — and also expensive.

The reason for the almost exorbitant price tag? The harvesting process is tedious, time-consuming and requires utmost care. Only young, unopened tea buds can be plucked. At the time of harvesting, the stems are picked as well to prevent damage to the delicate buds, and only at the factory are these removed. Due to this intensive and painstaking SOP, even the most expert tea gatherer can only pick about 500g each day. And after processing, only 100g is left.

So… Who Made Aurelie?

Our dear friends at Gryphon Tea.

So… Why Aurelie?

They understand our mission for healthiness from within. We are first and foremost a skincare provider, but we don’t believe that good skin starts and ends with just good skincare habits. Clear, radiant skin is a culmination of not just that, but a holistic sum of parts, including your diet, lifestyle, sleeping habits, etc.

And the only thing we love more than hydration is antioxidants. These protect against free radicals which damage our skin by destroying skin cells, DNA, and collagen production… in other words, they cause visible ageing: wrinkles, sagging, and roughness.

We always advocate eating your water — so why not eat your antioxidants, too?

Brewing Aurelie, A Silver Needle White Tea Cold

HOW TO BREW THE TEA: COLD & HOT

Brewing Aurelie Hot

Water temperature:      75ºC – 80ºC (167ºF – 176ºF)
Quantity:                         1.5 – 2 tsp / cup (250ml or 8oz)
Steeping Time:               3 – 5 minutes
Rebrew allowed:            Yes
Tea ware:                         Glass teapot

Directions

  1. Heat water and pour some into your teapot and cups to warm them.
    Cold tea ware will cool your tea’s temperature too much and spoil the perfect brew.
  2. Tip 1.5 – 2 teaspoons of silver needle tea leaves per cup (250ml or 8oz) into the teapot and pour the hot water (75ºC – 80ºC (167ºF – 176ºF) in.
  3. Steep around 3 to 5 minutes for the perfect infusion. We suggest a glass teapot precisely to watch the buds dance around with the gold dust — it’s a more than pretty sight!
    White tea takes longer to infuse due to its delicate nature. If you prefer an even subtler taste, infuse it for a shorter time.
  4. Silver needle buds may be re-infused up to thrice. With each additional time, you might need to add a minute to the steeping time. Experiment and have fun!

Brewing Aurelie Cold

Water temperature:      Room temperature / Cold
Quantity:                         2 – 3 tsp / cup (250ml or 8oz)
Steeping Time:               4 – 10 hours
Rebrew allowed:            Yes
Tea ware:                         Ice-cold glass

Directions

  1. Add 2 – 3 teaspoons of tea into cold water
    For cold brews, we usually recommend 1.5x the usual amount of leaves used for hot brews
  2. Leave in the fridge overnight and wake to a super refreshing brew the next day!

Just casually dropping our X’mas kits in this post too. But more on that later.

 

Stay true,

 

 

 

 


 

READ MORE STORIES HERE:

#JargonBreakdown: What Are Free Radicals?

#GetYourGlowOn: 5 Skin Tips To Revive Dull-looking Skin In Time For X’mas

or… just flip through our site like you do a diary you found by secret!

 

 

Everyone talks about the pregnancy glow. Less talked about are the nasties: Zits like back when you were in high school. Dry, flaky skin even when you don’t usually have dry, flaky skin. Days out on the beach are days long gone because — is that another dark mark on your face? We ask you to calm down though — these are all perfectly normal pregnancy skincare skintuations that many women like you face… and there are remedies.

Pregnancy Skincare: 5 Woes, 5 Tips | Pregnancy Diaries

Credit: Josh Bean

PREGNANCY SKINCARE WOE #1: ACNE
(WHEN I WAS 13, I HAD MY FIRST LOVE ZIT)

Being a teenager was nothing without bouts of breakouts… but when you’re 30 and pregnant? You might almost wish you weren’t having a baby bump. Pregnancy hormones can send your oil glands into overdrive, creating a breeding ground for acne. Worse, androgen (a male sex hormone) increases during pregnancy, further increasing sebum production, clogging, blackheads and finally, pimples.

The cruellest joke ever? The acne products you used to use are unsafe while you’re pregnant because of the chemicals. Minocycline, doxycycline, tetracycline and Accutane, are definitely no-gos as they can cause birth defects.  Then, it’s best to stay away from ingredients like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid too, since these can enter the bloodstream. Most products are not actually pregnancy-tested…

But it’s not all doom and gloom. Your skin will most likely clear up after pregnancy. In the meantime, here are some quick tips.

Skin Hacks: DON’T SQUEEZE. DON’T PICK. DON’T TOUCH. Opt for ingredients like lactic acid, tea tree oil or sulfur. See a doctor if you’re really sick of the acne that seems persistent and widespread. Instead, cleanse face with a mild, hydrating cleanser. If necessary, use steam to clear clogged pores. Look for non-comedogenic / water-based skincare products as these don’t aggravate oily, acneic skin. Also, contrary to popular belief, you CAN go for facials while pregnant — watch out for the next Nanny Princess Pregnancy Diaries post on this! 

PREGNANCY SKINCARE WOE #2: DRY SKIN

Damned hormones. Where you once had smooth, glowing skin, you’re now left with a dryness that doesn’t seem to stop itching.

Why?

It’s really many factors that play a part: More moisture is channelled to care for your baby, thus leaving you high and dry. With the little one inside you, your body temperature also tends to rise, thus literally getting you more hot-headed, stressed and itchy, thus triggering dry skin.

Pregnancy Skincare Woe #2: Dry Skin

Credit: Juliana Arruda

And the biggest contender (again): hormones. Oddly, those can’t seem to make up their mind between producing too much or too little sebum. Too little oil? You’re facing dryness and decreased elasticity. Too much? What else to do but to keep washing your face, right? Wrong. Washing your face too frequently can actually dehydrate the skin even more.

Skin Hacks: Water — lots of it. Aim for 12 cups a day. Hydrating lotions for milder cases; prescription treatments for severe ones. Warm (not hot!), comforting showers (and oatmeal baths, we hear) work wonders to calm your spirits and skin but don’t spend too long in there or your natural oils will start depleting. Get a humidifier for the bedroom. And our final, favourite trick: Get a high-grade, ultra-hydrating serum loaded with hyaluronic acid to quench your skin’s thirst.


 


 


PREGNANCY SKINCARE WOE #3: INCREASED SENSITIVITY
(YOUR SKIN IS BEING A BIGGER BABY THAN THE ACTUAL BABY)

As if acne and dry skin weren’t painful enough, your skin might be literally… in pain. The usual facials you go for might verge on painful, your face seems to get red more easily when you’re exfoliating, and your favourite scented lotion is now sitting on its lonesome on your dresser. Your skin is being a total baby.

Why?

… You guessed it. Hormones.

Skin Hacks: Gentle is the name of the game. Swap out scrubs (both for the face and body) for a loofah or a soft, textured washcloth. Switching to unscented / natural lotions and body washes could also help. Apply calamine lotion on itchy spots. Shun products that are heavy with additives, dyes, and / or fragrances, all of which can exacerbate the situation. When in doubt, always check in with your dermatologist, pharmacist or doctor.

 


“You certainly don’t want anything causing micro-tears on your skin… the more cuts and wounds on your skin, the easier it is for chemicals to be absorbed into your bloodstream. Ingredients to stay away from in soaps and body washes include triclosan, parabens and fragrance.”
| Melissa Schweiger, coauthor of Belli Beautiful: The Essential Guide to the Safest Health and Beauty Products for Pregnancy, Mom, and Baby

 

PREGNANCY SKINCARE WOE #4: (HYPER)PIGMENTATION
(AKA ITS SUPERHERO ALIAS, THE MASK OF PREGNANCY)

Aside from causing hormones to go a little (a lot?) out of whack, pregnancy also increases melanin production. Melanin is responsible for darkening of the skin, and you might be victim to dark patches.

The sun you used to love? That love might be long gone at this point. But it won’t be for ever… the melasma (another name for this pigmentation conundrum) usually fades after pregnancy.

Skin Hacks: If you weren’t religious about sunscreen before, it’s time to start now. An SPF of at least 25 to 30 would do half the trick; the other half would be for you to stay indoors as much as possible to reduce sun exposure. Physical and mineral sunblocks are your safest bets, as chemical sunscreens can irritate your sensitive skin + have potential risks. In more specific words, opt for protection that comes with titanium dioxide or zinc oxide.

PREGNANCY SKINCARE WOE #5: STRETCH MARKS
(YOU TIGRESS WHO BROUGHT LIFE TO THIS WORLD)

Pregnancy Skincare Woe #5: Stretch Marks

Credit: Chayene Rafaela

A good 50 – 90% of women get these in pregnancy. It isn’t curious—anytime a body grows at a rate at which the body can’t keep up with, these tiger stripes appear. These tend to come fastest in the final trimester when your baby grows the most.

 


“For most people, whether or not they get stretch marks has to do with genetic predisposition.”
| Glenn Kolansky, MD, a board-certified dermatologist

 

While there isn’t much you can do to prevent it, there are ways to reduce the risks of developing them (too much), including controlling your weight. Staying hydrated (at least 12 cups of water a day), and eating a healthy and balanced diet (think antioxidants, vitamins, leafies, fatty acids).

Skin Hacks: Thoroughly moisturize, especially areas which are most prone to these marks. These include your belly, boobs, stomach, hips and thighs.

Till the next Pregnancy Diaries post, stay true,

 

 

 

 


 

READ MORE STORIES HERE:

Skincare For Expectant Mothers: 10 Tips

Understanding Acne – Why Some Get It And Some Don’t

Layering Hydration the Right Way | #SkinHacks

Dry Skin Vs Dehydrated Skin – 3 Quick Tips | #SkinHacks