Pregnancy is often one of the first times in a woman's life when she really starts looking into what she puts onto her body. It goes without saying, that at TGS we encourage this practice no matter what time of life you are in, but especially if you are planning to have children.
Unfortunately, a lot of skincare products have toxic chemicals like phthalates, which can cause reproductive harm and hormone dysfunction. Along with common ingredients like salicylic acid, retinol, hydroquinone, and chemical sunscreens, which should all be avoided.
To complicate things even more, just because something is considered natural and free of synthetics or chemicals doesn't mean that it is necessarily the best option during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Essential oils are a perfect example. They are considered 100% safe but during pregnancy there are certain oils, during certain trimesters that might be best avoided, further diluted or used in other ways. This is because although natural, some oils have detoxifying effects that can interfere with implantation, alter your hormonal balance, and in large amounts become toxic to you and your baby.
Due to the ethical issue of testing expecting mothers, there are limited clinical studies that actually address the safety of essential oils during pregnancy and breastfeeding. In my years of research, I have noticed many conflicting reports- some state that an essential oil is safe, while others state that the same essential oil is unsafe. This is mostly due to an absence of testing instead of a proven record of non-safety. However, we can rely on the history of safe use and our own motherly instinct, which may be peaked during these times. It is not uncommon to be more sensitive during pregnancy and have a natural aversion or draw to certain scents- listen to this inner womb wisdom.
There are many essential oils that can be very healing while you are pregnant and/or breastfeeding and help ease your body's daily changes. Many essential oils can be used more safely as aromatherapy or inhaled versus being used topically on the skin. They can help with nausea, anxiety, aches, and pains, and even facilitate in creating a more comfortable labor.
You will find that many high-quality skincare companies have essential oils in their ingredients (like us!) that is because their benefits are tremendous in both mind, body and spirit. Although not all essential oils are created equal. Many of the essential oils available at health food stores are anything but pure. Most are cheaply made, grown with the use of chemical pesticides, and filled with toxic, synthetic fragrances. We always advise steering clear from low-quality oils for safety and effectiveness. Only carefully distilled plant matter that has been grown organically without the use of pesticides provides the benefits of the plant’s wisdom. Knowing the true source, proper formulation and application matters tremendously.
In complete transparency, we share everything that goes into each of our products as well as what you will not find in any of our products. Learn more about our ingredients HERE. You can also find a list of all of our ingredients on each products page, in order of contents ratio- meaning the ingredients listed first has the highest percentage in that product. This fluctuates depending on the type of product- our essential oil perfume is going to be much more concentrated than that of our Youth Beauty Face Oil, where the essential oils are diluted in carrier oils to make it safe for facial application. No matter what, you never want to apply undiluted essential oil to your skin, concentration and dilution matters. For example, there may be one essential oil in a product that is on the best avoided list but when you look further into the ratio of that oil in the blend, you may find that it is in a very small quantity, which would be completely different than dousing yourself in a single ingredient/concentrated version of that oil.
We encourage our buyers to be conscious, empowered consumers and always look at the ingredients they are using no matter what phase of life they are in. We believe that essential oils in general are far safer than any synthetic fragrance added, which can be a blanket term for over 150 different toxic chemicals.
Each pregnancy and each person is unique so if you are unsure, talk to your healthcare practitioner or avoid all essential oils entirely during the first trimester of pregnancy. It needs to be said that while there are guidelines from the FDA regarding pregnancy safety categories for ingredients, there are still very few studies evaluating the safety of many skin care products (because no one wants to do studies on pregnant women) for this reason, advice may even vary from one doctor to the next. It is so important that you do your own research an be your own advocate.
We compiled some lists for you below to use as a reference. Due to many conflicting reports, we aired on the extra-safe side when sharing.
In general, all essential oils should be used in half the usual quantities, or less, during pregnancy.
Essential Oils That May Be Best Avoided During Pregnancy:
- Cinnamon Leaf
- Spanish Sage
- Carrot Seed
- Black Seed
- Clary Sage (can be useful in delivery though)
Essential Oils Said To Be Best Avoided The First Trimester:
- Atlas Cedarwood
Essential Oils That Are Said To Be Generally Considered Safe During Pregnancy:
- Ylang ylang
It Is Said That You Can Try These Once You Hit Your Second & Third Trimester:
- Black pepper
- German/Roman chamomile
- Rose Otto
- Sweet orange
- Tea tree
- Ylang ylang
Based on the NAHA pregnancy guidelines. You can learn more HERE
Disclaimer: This is not medical advice or verified scientific data. Please do not use our suggestions alone. Do your own research and always speak to your medical doctor prior to trying any new product.