We need to avoid nasties in beauty products our whole lives, but most of the time it takes growing another life to have a serious look at what we're using on our bodies.
RY is a proud Australian haircare and beauty store offering only 100 percent authentic product. With both an online and bricks and mortar presence, RY is an authorised stockist for more than 250 brands.
RY's unrivalled range includes more than 10,000 haircare and skincare products, cosmetics and electrical goods from boutique brands through to internationally recognised labels including L'Oreal Paris, Giorgio Armani and Dermalogica.
It is also the exclusive online stockist for popular labels Curtis Collection, Poni Cosmetics, Salt Skincare, Lulu & Lipstick and Endota.
As well as boasting the largest offering, RY has established a significant men's range as well as a vast array of natural and organic products.
Question: Why is it important that our skincare routine change when we are pregnant?
Jade Dowling: Unfortunately, the sacrifices during pregnancy don't stop at soft cheese and sashimi. There are some common beauty product ingredients that are best avoided during pregnancy, because they carry a potential risk of harming your little one. Some of these ingredients aren't necessarily proved to cause harm, but it's a good idea to steer clear anyway.
Question: How can nasty ingredients affect us during pregnancy?
Jade Dowling: Harmful ingredients absorb into the bloodstream and can impact the growing fetus. Effects include (but certainly aren't limited to) birth defects, low birth weight and increased chances of miscarriage – pretty terrifying, and a lot to take in considering the diet restrictions you need to follow too!
Ingredients such as Retinoids, Benzoyl Peroxide, Salycyclic Acid and Formaldehyde can affect yourself and/or your baby during pregnancy. The list really does go on, so make sure you're acquainted with the chemicals in your beauty routine.
Question: What is hormone disruption and how can skincare products cause this?
Jade Dowling: Fun fact - a women produces more estrogen during one pregnancy than she will in her entire life! It's this change in hormones that aids the development of the fetus, but certain chemicals can disrupt this process when absorbed into the skin.
One chemical linked to a range of pregnancy issues is Parabens. They are a common preservative in cosmetics (from toners to mascaras) and are known hormone disruptors.
Another tip is to opt for natural sunscreen, as chemical filters found in some sunscreens are also possible hormone disruptors. My pick is the Simplicité Great Outdoors Moisturiser with Sunscreen from RY.com.au.
Question: Can these toxic ingredients affect us negatively even when we're not pregnant?
Jade Dowling: Quite a few only impact the fetus, but there are some you need to watch at all times.
Phthalates, Toluene and Formaldehyde are known as the -toxic-trio' and have been linked to ADHD and diabetes. You'll find them most commonly in nail polishes and perfumes.
Another one is Ammonia, found in hair-dye formulas. This chemical has been known to irritate skin and lungs, so have a chat to your hairdresser about low-to-no ammonia products when you next hit the salon.
Question: What specific nasty ingredients should we look for in our skincare products?
Jade Dowling: Botulinum Toxin (aka Botox)
Thioglycolic acid (found in hair removal creams)
The 'toxic trio' – Toluene, Phthalates, Formaldehyde
Ammonia (found in hair dyes)
Tetracycline (mostly found in medications)
Retin-A (found in acne and anti-aging medications)
Hydroquinone (used to treat dark patches of skin)
Question: Can you share your tips for analysing our current beauty collection?
Jade Dowling: It can be quite overwhelming when you realise just how many of your products include these harmful chemicals. Fortunately, there are plenty of pregnancy-friendly products out there.
I recommend going through your current beauty collection and marking any potentially harmful ingredients with a permanent marker and storing those products away. Consider completely throwing away any nail polishes, perfumes or hair dyes containing the 'toxic trio".
A few months after your pregnancy you can re-introduce the products you put away. Have a look at all those with multiple marks and decide if you really need them.
Question: How can pregnant and breastfeeding women look after their skin pre, during and post-pregnancy without toxins?
Jade Dowling: Skin pigmentation can be a long-term effect of pregnancy and the best thing you can do is lather up on natural sunscreen and wear a wide brimmed hat.
If you're missing that 'pregnancy glow' or perhaps you're breaking out due to all the changes in your body and life, it's a great excuse to treat yourself to a facial peel – the best baby shower gift, hint hint!
When you're not getting the usual beauty sleep, especially post-pregnancy, invest in a good serum and cleanser that will work hard to hydrate your skin.
Question: What are your favourite brands and products for pregnant women?
Jade Dowling: My favourite brand, and the one I recommend to my clients, is Mama Mio from RY.com.au. They have everything from 'push packs' to 'pregnancy starter kits', and it's made especially for pregnancy, so you know you're in safe hands. Nipple balm anyone?
For a bit of pampering, the Lightening & Brightening Pigmentation Silk Sheet Masks from Lonvitalite, available at RY.com.au, are a god send. Pop one of these on to reduce appearance of pigmentation caused by pregnancy.
Interview by Brooke Hunter