Skincare During Pregnancy

Posted by The Editor on

Skincare During Pregnancy

This general guidance should not replace any medical advice from your doctor on what to use or not to use during pregnancy. Your doctor can give you tailored advice appropriate to your own medical history and needs and your doctor should make all final decisions regarding skincare products used during conception, pregnancy and nursing. We would always strongly advise speaking with your doctor or midwife so that they can give you an accurate recommendation, as we are a cosmetic brand and unable to provide specific medical advice relating to our products. 

One of the most common questions we get here at Medik8 is: “is this product suitable for pregnancy?”

One of the most precious experiences, pregnancy is a time of total transition - it can be exciting yet scary at times. From your sleeping habits, to a change of wardrobe, all the way to adjusting your diet - it can all take some time to get your head around. Skincare, in particular, can often be an area of caution for expectant mothers.

In fact, one of the most common questions we get here at Medik8 is: “is this product suitable for pregnancy?” Exploring skincare that is both safe and effective during pregnancy can be difficult due to the vast amount of information out there, so at Medik8 we’re here to walk you through the trials and tribulations of baby-safe skincare.


One of the ingredients to often top the ‘avoid during pregnancy’ lists is retinol (vitamin A). While topical vitamin A is the ‘gold-standard’ in anti-ageing for your skin with a long history of safe use, oral vitamin A (retinoids) has been shown to interfere with fetal development.[1] Therefore, as a precaution we always recommend avoiding the use of vitamin A during this time, including retinol, retinaldehyde and retinyl retinoate.

Vitamin A has always been a key part of our CSA strategy (vitamin C and sunscreen by day, vitamin A by night) so this has always been a complicated routine to navigate for our pregnant customers. Until now.


The news that vitamin A is not advised for pregnancy may have been a major bump (sorry - couldn’t resist!) in your skincare routine, so we are ecstatic to announce the well-awaited arrival of Bakuchiol Peptides. A clinically proven, plant-based substitute that finally completes the missing piece of the CSA puzzle for those who can’t use vitamin A. Derived from the lilac-coloured Indian Babchi plant, bakuchiol is taking the skincare world by storm because of a study in the British Journal of Dermatology, hailing it for its ability to meet the standard of retinol-like anti-ageing efficacy, without any side effects i.e. dryness or flaking.[1]

Medik8’s Bakuchiol Peptides harnesses the powers of 1.25% pure bakuchiol and is enhanced with brightening peptide precursors and calming cica. Many competitor products don’t come close with either low-strength bakuchiol ‘extracts’ or water-based serums that lack serious punch.

The nourishingly indulgent serum acts as a moment of relaxation for you - the lilac-hued oil-based formula is incredibly soothing on skin. Photostable, Bakuchiol Peptides can be applied both day and night - perfect for times when your daily routine can be a bit all over the place (even at 3am!)

Bakuchiol Peptides can in fact target and improve many different skin conditions brought on by this extreme hormonal change. For example, it can help to lift areas of pigmentation, often known as the ‘mask of pregnancy’ which affects up to 70% of pregnant women[3]. So don’t worry, you’re not in this alone and Medik8 are here to help - Bakuchiol Peptides can help to brighten and even-out the tone of your skin.

Changing hormone levels also can increase the blood flow to your skin and can raise its surface temperature, making your skin look red and blotchy. The combination of pure bakuchiol and centella asiatica in Bakuchiol Peptides use their calming powers to reduce visible signs of inflammation and redness. Ideal!


Chemical exfoliating acids such as glycolic acid, salicylic acid or mandelic acid have all become staples of our skincare routines. However, we have to sadly recommend to take a step back from using leave-on, high-strength exfoliating acids while pregnant. Research has shown that oral salicylic acid is not safe during pregnancy, therefore doctors recommend avoiding high strength use of even topical products containing BHAs (beta hydroxy acids) [3]. So, for precaution we recommend to also avoid using high-strength, leave-on AHAs.

However, it isn’t all bad news for the acid-lovers of you out there - there still are ways to achieve that smooth-textured skin surface even while you are pregnant. Low-concentration AHAs, wash-off exfoliating cleansers or manual exfoliation may be the go-to method for the removal of dead skin cells during pregnancy.


Vitamin A (retinol, retinaldehyde, retinyl retinoate) Retinol TR™, Retinol TR Intense™, Crystal Retinal™, any r-Retinoate® and Night Ritual Vitamin A™ Bakuchiol Peptides Liquid Peptides
Leave-on BHAs (salicylic acid) Blemish SOS™, Blemish Control Pads™, Smooth Body Exfoliating Kit   Clarity Peptides Brightening Powder Cleanse
High strength, leave-on AHAs (glycolic acid, lactic acid, mandelic acid) Glycolic Acid Activator™, Pore Minimising Tonic™, White Balance® Original Serum



There are many more anti-ageing ingredients that we would love to recommend to maintain a beautiful complexion over the next few months.

Vitamin C, niacinamide, peptides and hyaluronic acid are generally considered safe for topical use during pregnancy, and there is no research to suggest otherwise. Together these ingredients can address all common pregnancy skin issues: blemishes, pigmentation and dehydration while keeping up the anti-ageing power.

However, if you are unsure of starting a new anti-ageing product or a new combination of ingredients, always check with your doctor - you can find our full ingredients lists on our website.

Sunscreen remains incredibly important whilst pregnant. You may opt for a sunscreen that uses physical rather than chemical filters, such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. You can find these in Medik8’s Physical Sunscreen™, a 100% nano-free, lightweight physical UV filtered sunscreen that does not penetrate the skin.

Dehydration & dryness, Hydr8 B5 Intense™ - Our ultimate rehydration serum Ultimate Recovery™ Bio-Cellulose Mask - Sustainable TLC sheet mask
Blemishes Clarity Peptides™ - “Clear skin, bottled”
Uneven skin tone & pigmentation C-Tetra Intense® - Super-nourishing vitamin C White Balance® Brightening Serum - Tackles hyperpigmentation Bakuchiol Peptides - Plant-based vitamin A alternative
Sensitivity Calmwise™ Colour Correct - Instant coverage Micellar Mousse™ - Refreshing daily cleansing
Sun protection Physical Sunscreen™ - Advanced physical filtered formula


Please see our regime guides section on our website for Mums-to-be.

Shop Bakuchiol Peptides now to complete your CSA.


*Of course, due to ethical considerations the Bakuchiol Peptides formula has not been tested on pregnant women, but there is nothing in the formula which is known to be an issue (eg vitamin A or high levels of exfoliating acids). If you are at all concerned, always consult your doctor.


[1] R Alan et al, Recommendations For Vitamin A Use During Pregnancy, Teratology, 1987, 35, pp 269-275

[2] S. Dhaliwal et al, Prospective, randomized, double-blind assessment of topical bakuchiol and retinol for facial photoaging, BJD, 2019, 180(2), pp 289-296 (

[3] I Bolanca et al, Chloasma-the mask of pregnancy, Coll Antropol, 2008, 42(suppl 2), pp 139-41

[4] P Bozzo et al, Safety of skin care products during pregnancy, Can Fam Physicician, 2011, 57(6), pp 665-667


Older Post Newer Post