I try to not be too anal about do’s and don’ts during pregnancy. The way I see it, pregnancy can be uncomfortable enough with out adding a whole host of things you can’t eat, can’t drink, can’t take and can’t do. Of course, there are many things that are imperative to the health of your baby, and I am definitely not referring to those. But, what I am saying is, I subscribe to the “a cup of coffee and a piece of lunch meat aren’t going to do you in” method.
During my first pregnancy, there were many things under this umbrella that I simply would have never thought about. For instance, I have suffered with acne since I was 11 years old. I have thrown all of the creams and serums and spot treatments you can think of at my face. Needing to wear full coverage makeup comes with that territory naturally. Prior to pregnancy, my benchmark of an effective product was simply does it shrink the pimple or at the very least cover it? When it was explained to me that your skin is fastest way to your blood stream (26 seconds) and that you’re sharing what you put on your body (or breathe in of course) with your baby, I began to think about all kinds of products in a new way.
I wanted to list out for you some “swaps” I made during this time, that I actually continued to use and are now a part of my regular household and routine.
Method Cleaning Products
I was a Windex and 409 girl prior to pregnancy. But being all close and personal with all those chemicals felt like a bad idea for baby and me. So, I tried Method for the first time. My initial draw was that the products were a lot cheaper than other non-toxic brands (like Meyers) but when I used the Grapefruit All Purpose Cleaner on my granite and stove top for the first time I was sold! Even better- if you use Jet.com and order in bulk, you can get each product for roughly $3 a bottle and they last a long time!
Essential Oil Candles
I am a shameless candle coveter. I love me some Yankee, Bath and Body Works…all of it. But, I learned during pregnancy that the ingredients found in the wicks as well as what the FDA allows in an ambiguous ingredient called “fragrance” of many scented candles are really bad for your health. Look for candles that say “Scented with Essential Oils”, “Soy based” and “Lead free wicks”. The White Barn line at Bath and Body Works is really great, as well as Pacifica brand.
I like this brand for a ton of reasons. First, I consider myself somewhat of a make up connoisseur and I have used some of the most expensive products Ulta has to offer. The products I have “Found” (sorry, had to) are legitimately just as effective. Their concealer is full coverage, their foundation is buildable and their blush is highly pigmented. Their lipstick is super long lasting as well! As far as the beneficial side, each product will tell you what percentage of it’s ingredients are naturally derived. For instance, my foundation is made of 92% naturally derived ingredients. You want to know what makes all of this even better? It costs $10 and you can buy it at Walmart!!!
Andalou Skin Care
Like I mentioned in my intro, I have been an anti-acne warrior for going on 20 years. I have used all the products you can think of, including crazy home remedies you find online. Prior to getting pregnant with my first son, I was using a myriad of products with a ton of benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid in them. Don’t get me wrong, those are some really good acne fighting ingredients, but I kind of got the feeling that if they were harsh enough to take the color out of your hand towels, they probably weren’t easy on an unborn baby. Enter: Andalou! I scoured the internet looking at reviews of natural acne lines and Andalou: Clear was a stand out. I ordered the wash and the moisturizer first and I was OBSESSED. The wash dried things out, the moisturizer added back just enough moisture and had ingredients that helped my blemishes to heal and take down inflammation. After falling in love with the acne line, I started trying other products. A favorite, especially during pregnancy, is their 1000 Roses Body Butter. It’s $10.99 at Whole Foods, lasts forever and keeps your skin as soft as a rose petal and stretch marks at bay!
This is definitely not an exhaustive list of all of the natural products that I have switched out in my home, but just some of my favorites to get you thinking. Happy swapping!!