How pregnancy has changed my skin and hair … so far

We’ve crossed over into 9 weeks pregnant earlier this week and with that has come a flood of body changes that I’ve already begun experiencing. I feel like a walking science experiment.

My Hair is Thicker and WAY More Oil is Being Produced

It doesn’t seem to be growing faster yet, supposedly that’ll happen soon according to my hair dresser. Its so oily it doesn’t feel clean even though I use my more aggressive stripping shampoos. Thicker and more oily hair is totally normal during pregnancy and it doesn’t mean we’re having a girl. Part of the hormonal cocktail my body produces (regardless of boy or girl) also affects oil production. So if you’re pregnant and you’ve noticed your skin is more oily, don’t be shocked. It’s totally normal. If your hair is short, consider dropping the conditioner from your daily routine and purchase a dry shampoo like Klorane’s Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk for All Hair Types which is a non-aerosol giving you a more natural product with fewer volatile chemical exposures during your pregnancy. I also just started to use Klorane’s Oil Control Shampoo with Nettle, so we will see if that helps. The active ingredient scopoletine hasn’t been studied well in pregnant women when dermal applied and I haven’t seen anything negative about oral administration (except in some herbal remedies) which leads me to believe it’s probably safe to use as a shampoo. But as always, ask your doctor.

My Skin Turnover Is Ridiculous

I’ll freely admit that because of morning sickness and just always feeling disgusting, dizzy, light-headed, etc. my own personal beauty routine has kinda gone through a minimization, as in it might not always happen for more than a day. But that doesn’t change the fact that even when I am on my game for a few days and my skin is back to being flake free, dewy, and supple, it’s flaky the next day. My skin turnover is absolutely insane. It isn’t just my face, my skin will roll off my legs and arms. Remember that hormone cocktail? Yeah it causes your skin to turnover faster as well. In most people it helps to give that glow, increased blood flow helps that glow as well. I’m not exactly feeling too glowy yet. Not the biggest fan of Amy Schumer but I do love this post because it captures how I feel so well.

I Sleep Like I Did In High School

I could legit sleep till noon in high school. Granted, I went to bed at like 3am but that’s what teenagers are suppose to do. Now I will fall asleep at either 10pm or 2am (it depends) and wake up anywhere between 10am and 12pm. And to add this the crazy sleep schedule I enjoy taking naps that last anywhere between 20 minutes to an hour. I do work full time and am taking a rather extreme amount of sick leave (I also have an extreme amount of sick leave at my disposal) and my boss lets me work from home on some projects. To be honest, I don’t need to come into work in order to write an annual report or build a powerpoint presentation. We’re a small lab and I work solo on a lot of projects anyway. But it does mean that if I’m super tired, I can take a nap and my boss is amazingly ok with it. I either tack on the extra hour or post an hour of sick leave. You’d think I wouldn’t have bags under my eyes after getting 12 hours of sleep right? HAHA, wrong. I’m exhausted all the time. I feel like I’m hungover 24/7.

Part of the tiredness is that I’m currently making the placenta and my blood vessels are doing some crazy fun things and I’m just tired. Right now my body is entirely responsible for fetal development (hormones especially). The fetus has used up the yolk sac’s nutrients, which it uses while that placenta is developing so it can take over. Again, it’s totally normal and I do have to watch when I take my naps. Too late and I stay up all night, typically eating a lot so I don’t get sick and feel horrible the next day.

I Have New Skin Tags

Skin tags are extra little growths that remind me of extra raised moles. I adore Dr. Pimple Popper’s videos. But I have some new skin tags especially around my rib cage. My mom and I have skin tags in some of the exact same areas and there is a genetic component to skin tags. They’re easy to remove and not a big deal. Mine are really small and barely noticeable right now. Hopefully, they’ll go away after l’bebe is born. If not it’s really not a big deal, they don’t lead to cancer or have negative health outcomes so I’m not worried. They’re just cosmetic. There is no at-home remedy that’s ever been shown to work. I’ve seen Apple Cider Vinegar, Tea tree oil and patches that look a little like pimple patches on Pinterest and I’ve only ever seen anecdotal evidence from people saying it ‘worked’. The only at home remedy that I’ve seen works is tying dental floss or thread around the based of it, cutting off blood flow and it’ll fall off after a few days. Pregnancy skin tags……. totally normal.

Things That Haven’t Happened……Yet

Luckily, I haven’t had anything like freckles and hyper-pigmentation areas darken noticeably yet and I’m no where near far enough along to get the dark line down the center of the belly (linea nigra). We don’t even know why that dark line forms, although hormonal balances is believed to be one of the leading causes. That generally shows up at around 4 – 6 months.

The darkening of areolas and hyper-pigmentation caused by the placenta. Once formed, the placenta is responsible for hormone production which is why after the first trimester, morning sickness, which is caused my those pesky hormones, generally begins to fade. One of those hormones is responsible for the production of melanocytes. As the name implies melanocytes produce melanin which is what gives our skin color. In fungal organisms, melanin helps to maintain cellular rigidity but we’re not sure if human skin works this way as well. In fact, short of UV protection we aren’t really sure of other roles melanin plays in human physiology.

I like how I said this was going to be short and it really isn’t. My bad. For those that have experienced these crazy hormonal changes, what changes did you notice while you were pregnant?



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