What is pregnancy glow?
Pregnancy glow refers to skin that looks luminous or rosy cheeks that give you a radiant, slightly flushed look. During pregnancy, the amount of blood in your body increases by about 50 percent, making your skin look brighter. This increased circulation can give you an all-over flushed appearance, which many pregnant women look forward to.
What causes pregnancy glow?
When you’re pregnant, your body shifts the production of certain hormones, such as progesterone, increasing the amount of oil that your skin produces. These hormonal shifts cause your skin to look brighter.
The increase in blood flow and extra volume also make your skin brighter. Pregnancy causes most women to have improved circulation, which can give you clearer skin. Increased blood flow means more blood in your blood vessels, which makes many women appear flushed. You may also notice that areas on your body with thinner skin, such as your chest and breasts, appear flushed as well.
What exact changes in appearance can you expect during pregnancy?
Glowing skin isn’t the only change in your appearance you can expect when you’re pregnant. Increased blood flow may also cause your veins to appear more pronounced all over your body. The increased blood volume makes the veins larger and darker.
Pregnancy hormones and some of the vitamins and minerals in prenatal supplements can also cause changes in your appearance.
Face and skin
Your face and skin may look flushed and shiny. Increased blood flow gives you a rosier appearance, and extra progesterone increases oil production.
For women with naturally oily skin, the extra oil may cause breakouts and pimples. Women who experience acne flare-ups prior to menstruation may be especially vulnerable to pregnancy acne breakouts. Check with your doctor about a pregnancy-friendly cleanser and topical creams that can reduce breakouts.
About 50 percent of women also experience something called the “mask of pregnancy.” The scientific name for this condition is melasma and chloasma. The increase in hormones during pregnancy can increase the levels of pigmentation in your skin, resulting in darker splotches on your face, usually on the forehead and cheeks.