August 5, 2020

10 Best Face Washes for Pregnancy

10 Best Face Washes for Pregnancy

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When you’re pregnant, your hormones aren’t the same as they used to be. The change in your body chemistry makes your skin more sensitive.

That’s why most pregnant women experience acne, stretch marks, and dark spots. Many of them have to be more meticulous with their skincare products to prevent further irritation.

Gentle formulas are highly recommended for pregnant women. These are the 10 best face washes for pregnancy that we think are good options.

Table of Contents

10 Best Face Washes for Pregnancy

Our Pick

The Belli brand is known for selling products that are safe for pregnant women. That’s why this product is the best face wash for pregnancy that we recommend since it’s designed for hormonal skin. It’s even a recipient of the Women’s Choice Award since 9 out of 10 women prefer it over other face washes.

The mild formula contains plant-derived ingredients. Lemon Peel Oil is one of the key components. It has antibacterial and lightening properties that give you a brighter complexion.

Green Tea Extract and Cucumber are also added for a boost of antioxidants and nourishment.

Any dead skin you have will be exfoliated by this face wash as well. It contains Lactic Acid which is a gentle exfoliant that unclogs pores and smoothens your skin.

No parabens, artificial fragrances, or dyes are added to this facial cleanser either. It’s tested to be safe for all skin types, but especially for pregnant women’s skin. It’s also dermatologist-tested and OB/GYN-approved.

Pros

  • Gently exfoliates dead skin for a smoother complexion
  • Naturally-derived ingredients
  • No harsh chemicals
  • Nourishing formula
  • OB/GYN-recommended

Cons

  • Still has a mild scent due to the plant extracts
  • Can’t completely remove makeup on its own

Best for Pregnancy Acne

This product’s name will already tell you that it’s meant to be used by pregnant women. What makes it extra special is that it’s formulated to treat pregnancy acne.

As mentioned, a change in hormone levels is what causes acne in pregnancy. The tricky part is that you can’t use some common acne remedies since they can be too harsh. Benzoyl Peroxide and Salicylic Acid are examples of anti-acne ingredients you should stay away from when you’re pregnant.

It’s a good thing that this face wash is formulated with acne-fighting ingredients that are safe to use during pregnancy.

The key ingredient is Lactic Acid, a known mild exfoliant. It decongests clogged pores to reveal a clearer and brighter face. It’s also what prevents acne from forming.

Other ingredients like Green Tea, Cucumber, and Lemon Peel Oil extracts are also included in the formula. They work together to strengthen, nourish, and soothe sensitive skin during pregnancy.

Many users say that this product works great on their face even when they’re no longer pregnant. With acne, this face wash is highly effective. Even those with easily irritated skin enjoy using this.

This product is certified paraben-free, phthalate-free, and fragrance-free. It has no artificial dyes or preservatives.

Pros

  • Has a mild exfoliant to prevent and treat acne
  • Safe for sensitive skin
  • No harmful ingredients
  • Naturally-derived formula

Cons

  • Has a slight scent despite being fragrance-free 
  • The bottle lid and seal tend to loosen during shipping

Best for Dry Skin

Apart from acne, pregnant women also commonly experience dry skin. It’s another repercussion of the change in hormones during pregnancy.

This gentle facial cleanser by La Roche-Posay is one of the best face washes we recommend for dryness. It has a hydrating formula that retains the skin’s moisture levels.

(If you’re interested in other La Roche-Posay products, we reviewed them in our Best Non-Comedogenic Moisturizers and Best Non-Comedogenic Sunscreens articles.)

The ingredients are both gentle and non-clogging on the pores. They create an effective cleansing formula that’s safe enough for regular use even when you’re pregnant.

The star ingredient is La Roche-Posay Probiotic Thermal Water which is great at soothing and moisturizing the skin. It even has antioxidant properties.

Ceramide-3 , Glycerin, and Niacinamide also work together to provide hydrating properties. You can be sure that your skin retains moisture for much longer when you use this face wash.

The formula is oil-free, paraben-free, and fragrance-free. It’s also dermatologist-tested to be safe on sensitive skin so it’s good for pregnant women.

Pros

  • Highly moisturizing ingredients
  • Gentle and nourishing formula
  • No harsh ingredients
  • Safe for sensitive skin

Cons

  • Can’t completely get rid of makeup on its own
  • Some users find the consistency to be too watery

This face wash by Mederma is the best choice if you want mild exfoliation. In fact, it’s also recommended as an alternative to shaving cream. This is since shaving cream formulas tend to be too harsh and drying on the skin during pregnancy.

The star ingredient is an Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) which encourages skin renewal for a smoother texture. Compared to Salicylic Acid, it’s safe to use when you are pregnant. It’s also great because it’s pH-balanced so it exfoliates without drying out the skin.

Free from fragrance, perfume, and soap, this face wash is dermatologist-approved. It’s safe to use not just throughout pregnancy but even long after.

In fact, since the formula is mild, you can use it on your bikini line and underarms as well. It lessens the chances of getting razor bumps and ingrown hairs when shaving as well.

With daily use, you’ll notice clearer and smoother skin on your face.

Pros

  • pH-balanced exfoliating formula
  • No harsh ingredients
  • Safe for daily use on sensitive skin
  • Can be used as a shaving cream on intimate areas

Cons

  • Product tends to leak during shipping

The most common skin issue among women is acne. With pregnancy, it doesn’t get easier to solve at all. Luckily, this facial cleanser by Body Boost is one of the best face washes that work great for preventing acne.

Ingredients like Lemon, Orange, and Lavender extracts soothe irritation on blemish-prone skin types. They’re natural astringents that can clarify and even out your complexion.

Lactic Acid is also present as a gentle exfoliant for the face. It smooths out patchy texture and decongests the pores for smoother skin. Unlike Benzoyl Peroxide, a common anti-acne ingredient, it’s safe to use when you are pregnant.

Finally, Cucumber and Green Tea extracts in the product formula have calming properties. They lessen redness and stinging caused by any allergies.

What we really love about this product is that it has a Citrus Mint scent. It makes you feel both refreshed and invigorated as you apply the face wash.

This facial cleanser is mineral oil-free, paraben-free, and phthalate-free. It’s clinically tested to be hypoallergenic and safe on sensitive skin. In fact, it’s gentle enough to be effective on pubescent and menopausal skin as well.

Pros

  • Soothing and naturally-derived ingredients
  • Gentle exfoliating formula to smoothen skin texture
  • Safe for all skin types
  • No harsh chemicals

Cons

  • Has a mild scent
  • Some users observed that the nozzle breaks easily when twisted too much

True to its name, this face wash really is first aid for your skin. When you’re pregnant, you have to be careful to choose mild skincare products so it’s great that this product exists.

It boasts of an antioxidant blend that strengthens and nourishes the skin. Licorice Root, Feverfew, and White Tea extracts all work together to protect your skin from external damage.

Other ingredients include Aloe Vera and Allantoin. These are well-known for their soothing properties on irritated skin. They’re able to eliminate redness and dry patches caused by the hormonal changes brought about by pregnancy.

Finally, a natural moisturizer called Glycerin is also in the formula. It’s a great ingredient that will keep your skin hydrated and soft throughout the day. It also makes skin texture look smoother and silkier.

We highly recommend this face wash since it’s oil-free and fragrance-free. The formula is pH-balanced so it won’t disrupt the moisture levels of your skin. It also has no parabens, phthalates, or alcohols, unlike other face washes.

Pros

  • Soothing ingredients are perfect for irritated skin
  • Hydrating and smoothing formula
  • No harsh chemicals added
  • pH-balanced

Cons

  • Can’t remove eye makeup
  • Users still observe a mild scent despite it being fragrance-free

Anything that’s safe enough to use on sensitive skin is also safe enough to use when pregnant. Mild ingredients are always your best picks.

This facial cleanser by Derma E is pH-balanced and formulated for daily use on sensitive skin. It doesn’t make you overly oily or overly dry. It keeps the balance on your skin so that you get a healthier complexion.

Aside from cleaning out impurities, it also has a combination of antioxidants that nourish your skin. Green Tea and Pycnogenol work with each other to strengthen the skin’s upper barrier. They protect your face from pollution and UV damage.

A blend of plant extracts also provides your skin with much needed soothing. Lemongrass and Chamomile calm down irritation. They’re even effective on skin with rosacea and dry patches.

This face wash is free from parabens, sulfates, and mineral oils. It’s also cruelty-free, gluten-free, and lanolin-free.

Pros

  • Has antioxidant properties to strengthen the skin
  • Nourishing, plant-derived ingredients
  • Soothing formula is perfect for easily irritated skin
  • No harsh chemicals added

Cons

  • Can’t completely wash away all your face makeup
  • The pump dispenser tends to break during shipping

If you follow us, you might already know that we’re big fans of the Cerave brand. We’ve included their products in a few of our previous round-up articles since their formulas are not only effective, but affordable as well.

(You can check out our Best Salicylic Acid Body Washes and Best Body Washes for Sensitive Skin articles for more Cerave picks.)

This face wash is no exception. The best part is that it’s safe enough to use all throughout your pregnancy since the formula is mild.

The star ingredients are a blend of Ceramides and the brand’s patented MVE Technology. The former strengthens your skin’s upper barrier to protect it from damage. The latter is a concoction of highly moisturizing ingredients that ensure optimum hydration for your skin.

As your face gets cleaner with every wash, it also stays properly moisturized because of the Hyaluronic Acid content. And since this product was developed by dermatologists, you can rest assured that it’s safe on any skin type, but especially for dry skin.

This facial cleanser is also certified to be non-comedogenic, fragrance-free, and hypoallergenic. It also has no parabens and is approved by the National Eczema Association.

Pros

  • Highly moisturizing and nourishing formula
  • Safe for daily use on sensitive skin
  • No harsh chemicals

Cons

  • Some users find the consistency to be too thick
  • Not suitable for oily skin

Pregnancy changes many things about your skin’s natural chemistry. That’s why you should get an effective face wash. This product by Mama Mio is a great choice.

Just from the brand name, you can see that it’s made for pregnant women. It’s formulated with mild but effective ingredients that can treat various skin issues that come with pregnancy.

A combination of Tea Tree Oil and Green Tea Leaf extract cleanses the skin without drying it out. The former has antiseptic properties that can treat acne. Meanwhile, the latter provides the skin with antioxidants that protect it from free radicals and environmental damage.

A special concoction of coconut-based cleansers nourishes the skin while clearing it from impurities. They contain vitamins and omega components that make your face softer and more elastic.

You can rest easy knowing that none of the ingredients in this facial wash is harmful for you throughout your pregnancy.

Pros

  • Natural antiseptic and antioxidant properties
  • Nourishing ingredients improve skin texture
  • No harsh chemicals are included in the formula

Cons

  • Some users say that the pump breaks easily
  • Has a mild fragrance

Completing our list of best face washes is this product by Andalou Naturals. Though it’s mainly formulated for skin dryness, it’s great for treating skin issues brought about by pregnancy as well.

To cleanse the skin, it uses probiotics. Apricot and Borage oils mixed with resveratrol COQ10 wash away impurities without causing irritation. They also provide antioxidants that can delay the signs of aging.

Other ingredients in the formula include Goji Berry and Aloe Vera. They work together to improve skin texture by moisturizing the skin. You’ll enjoy a healthier and brighter complexion when you wash your face with this.

Finally, the components of this facial cleanser are 70% organic and naturally-derived. They’re GMO-free, gluten-free, and cruelty-free as well.

Pros

  • Naturally-derived ingredients
  • Nourishing and antioxidant properties
  • Moisturizing components can smooth out uneven texture

Cons

  • Can’t completely wash away face makeup
  • Not ideal for oily skin

Ingredients That Are Safe to Use During Pregnancy

When you’re pregnant, you suddenly get bombarded with so many dos and don’ts. Though there might be more don’ts, there still are some things that you can continue to enjoy.

Most doctors and dermatologists will still allow you to apply over-the-counter anti-acne products. An example is hydrocortisone cream. You can also still get products that contain triamcinolone, fluocinolone, alclometasone, and desonide.

Below are other anti-acne substances you can still apply on your face throughout your pregnancy.

Glycolic Acid

This mild exfoliant is gentle enough for those who are pregnant. It sloughs off dead cells to renew your complexion. It’s also very popular for effectively unclogging dirt and oil from the pores.

Lactic Acid

Another mild exfoliant that’s still allowed for you is this. You might have even noticed that most of the products listed above contain this substance. It’s because it’s great at clarifying the face to prevent acne and other issues.

Citric Acid

You might be more used to seeing this substance alongside citrus fruit names. Since it’s commonly extracted from oranges, lemons, and grapefruits, it’s a great source of Vitamin C. You don’t have to stop using this precisely because it’s naturally-derived anyway.

Ingredients to Stay Away From During Pregnancy

Here comes the part that you have to pay close attention to. Since you’re more sensitive during pregnancy, there are substances that you have to stay away from.

Since they’re stronger and more concentrated, you should stop using these substances as soon as possible if you’re currently pregnant.

Salicylic Acid

Though this is probably the most popular anti-acne treatment, that doesn’t mean that it’s safe enough for all skin types. During pregnancy, Salicylic Acid can cause irritation, even more so when in a face wash.

Also, since it’s quite potent, it could bring about negative effects on your fetus. The safest counterpart for this is Lactic Acid so just opt for that instead. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Benzoyl Peroxide

Another popular acne remedy that you should stop using is Benzoyl Peroxide. Like Salicylic Acid, it’s quite harsh. And since peroxide is a type of bleach, there is no way to be sure that your baby won’t be affected by this chemical.

Hydroquinone

Though this is a widely used lightening agent, you can’t apply it during pregnancy. For now, lightening those pesky dark spots will have to wait. Hydroquinone is far too strong to be applied throughout your pregnancy.

This substance can also affect the development of the fetus so be sure to toss any skin care product you have that contains it.

Retinoids

We can all admit that we’re after a youthful complexion and pregnancy doesn’t get rid of that desire. However, think twice about using Retinoids during pregnancy.

This component, though effective, is very potent. And while there have been studies that it can’t directly affect your baby, it’s still best to avoid it to be safe.

Conclusion

Pregnancy is a very exciting time in every mom’s life. And while you’re counting down the months, weeks, and days until your baby arrives, make sure to take care of yourself well.

A healthy lifestyle for you and your baby is not just about diet and physical fitness. You should be careful about the products you apply to your body as well.

Mild formulas are always best. Hopefully, you were able to choose a gentle face wash from our recommendations above that will suit your routine. A good cleanser is hopefully one less thing for you to worry about by now.

One thing that we can assure you from this point on is that you’ll be fine. We can’t wait for you to meet your baby!

We wish you luck on your journey to becoming the best mom you can be!

Paola Diaz
Paola Diaz

Hi, I'm Paola! A skin care enthusiast and nature lover. Creating content that promotes proper skin treatment and keeping a healthy glow is my way of sharing with the world how healthy skin can go a long way. I’m a firm believer of natural beauty that radiates inside all of us. All we need is the right kind of nourishment that inspires our wellness from inside out. So it’s really not about physical beauty alone – it’s the beautiful life we can create for ourselves when we connect with our own nature and see there is beauty that shines from every one of us.