My Favorite Facial Cleanser to Beat Pregnancy Acne

by Ashley

My Favorite Facial Cleanser to Beat Pregnancy Acne featured by popular Los Angeles beauty blogger and expecting mom, Ashley Terk

My Favorite Facial Cleanser to Beat Pregnancy Acne featured by popular Los Angeles beauty blogger and expecting mom, Ashley Terk

Pregnancy is such a beautiful time of celebration, expectancy, giddiness, baby clothes, nurseries and… crazy hormones. Some women are blessed with that “pregnancy glow” everyone hears about and some women, like me, are blessed with breakouts and pregnancy acne.


Because it all comes down to hormones, there’s really only so much you can do. When I first started horribly breaking out I was looking for a cure – something to make it go away and never come back. Unfortunately, after much frustration, nothing was taking it away completely and I came to learn pregnancy acne is only manageable, not curable.


Thankfully I’m finally in a place where I realize I have to let the hormones run their course and just look for ways to lessen or tame the hormonal acne as best as possible. Below are a few products, tips and tricks I’ve found that work best for me with the hopes it may help other women struggling with the same thing!


Simple, Intentional Skincare Routine to Avoid Pregnancy Acne


Step 1: Use a Gentle Cleanser


When I started breaking out, I tried everything. I spent hundreds of dollars buying and testing all the high-end skincare products, but nothing was working. When I realized it was hormonal acne causing the breakouts, I learned less is more. I tried Olay’s new exclusive Cleansing Infusion Facial Cleanser with Deep Sea Kelp and discovered the super gentle, soy-based formula was actually the best facial cleanser for my skin and helped tame my breakouts the most.

Like most women, I knew about Olay moisturizers because the organization has been a trusted worldwide leader in skin care for over 60 years, but Olay facial cleansers are like their hidden gem. Because my skin is super sensitive during pregnancy, the non-stripping formula of Olay’s new facial cleanser is gentle enough to use every day without drying my face out or causing any other problems. It actually improves skin condition as I wash, leaving my skin feeling soft and smooth. The hydrating formula with deep sea kelp and aloe extract draws out impurities and draws in hydration for that naturally glowing skin us pregnant women are always raving about or hoping for. Olay’s Cleansing Infusion Facial Cleanser with Deep Sea Kelp really helped keep my skin clean and the problems that come with breaking out, to a minimum. Because Olay cleansers are inspired by skin, not soap, Olay’s cleansers do more than just clean and let me tell you, I am grateful to now use their facial cleanser in my daily skincare routine. I’m not a doctor or expert, but it has worked for me. If your skin hasn’t been responding well to harsher medicines found in facial cleansers, I encourage you to try Olay’s Cleansing Infusion Facial Cleanser with Deep Sea Kelp. Look for the GOLD cleanser (such a bonus the packaging is cute, too!) where you buy your face cleanser.  

My Favorite Facial Cleanser to Beat Pregnancy Acne featured by popular Los Angeles beauty blogger and expecting mom, Ashley TerkMy Favorite Facial Cleanser to Beat Pregnancy Acne featured by popular Los Angeles beauty blogger and expecting mom, Ashley TerkMy Favorite Facial Cleanser to Beat Pregnancy Acne featured by popular Los Angeles beauty blogger and expecting mom, Ashley Terk


Step 2: Toner


I also use witch hazel. It’s soothing and anti-inflammatory with antioxidant properties. It works well in removing excess oils from the skin. I just pour a little on a cotton round and wipe it all over my face after using a cleanser.


Step 3: Spot Treatment


For a more natural remedy, tea tree oil is something I use specifically on problem areas because it has been shown to decrease the inflammation that causes acne. It’s a great natural remedy for the places like the chin and forehead where hormonal acne tends to show up (unannounced and very unwelcome). You guys know I love my essential oils and use them for so many different things, so if you want to see more uses or read more about essential oils click here.


See an Esthetician


Seeing an esthetician has been huge in helping when my face breakouts. An esthetician essentially is an expert in the health and beautification of the skin.


Hormonal acne breakouts have given me red marks everywhere in addition to lovely whiteheads. When I touch them, bacteria spreads making the breakout more severe which causes scarring. My esthetician is able to extract bacteria from my face without causing scars and red marks so there is less of a possibility of damage or long-term visible effects.


Goodbye Dairy


Acne itself is inflammatory. It’s caused when dirt and oil gets trapped inside our pores. When the pores are clogged they become inflamed and lead to the pimples that us women love so much.


Milk has also been proven to cause inflammation, only increasing the already irritated skin. The hormones in milk (yes, that’s a thing) can react with the (already crazy-in-overdrive) hormones in our bodies and cause bad breakouts. Scientists believe milk proteins such as casein and whey release a growth hormone called IGF-1 which is great to turn baby cows into big, strong cows, but it (unfortunately) has the same effect on our pimples. And nobody wants big or strong pimples. This growth hormone causes inflammation that leads to increased acne. – Haha can you tell.. I’ve done LOTS of research because ya girl is #desperate for a change!


This took me forever to finally do because I didn’t believe it would make that big of a difference. Ya’ll know I love my cereal every morning and creamer in my daily coffee, so it was challenging to change my diet, but I realized how much of a difference it makes in not only my skin but the way my body feels from the inside out. I switched to using almond milk in my cereal, as well as an almond milk-based creamer for my coffee, and cut out other dairy products like cheese as much as possible.


Don’t Touch Your Face


Limit touching your face! Throughout the day, we accumulate bacteria on our hands from door knobs, working out at the gym: literally anything we touch in a public space is filled with bacteria. The more we touch our face, the more that bacteria will get in our pores and our faces don’t have a fighting chance against pregnancy acne.


Hormonal acne is just part of the whole pregnancy experience, as unpleasant as it may be. What worked for others didn’t necessarily work for me, but these are the things I’ve found that allow me to manage the breakouts and feel more comfortable in my own skin during a season where everything about my body is changing and different! I hope this was helpful for you and I would love to hear what you have used to help manage your hormonal acne in the comments below! Also – if any of my tips work for you, come back and let me know down below! I love hearing success stories and celebrating with you!


This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Olay. The opinions and text are all mine.

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1 comment

Shelby Swing July 2, 2018 - 1:10 pm

Hi Ashley! Thanks for this post — I love hearing what others are doing to be the healthiest they can be, especially in regards to their face & facial health. Your suggestions are so good & I’ve heard others echo them, so they’re definitely tried and true! I’m not pregnant but I still suffer from hormonal acne (bless), and I use a clay & chamomile facial soap made by a gal who runs a small business in Chapel Hill, NC (Good Juju Herbal). She uses simple, natural ingredients and essential oils, and I’ve had great success with all the products I’ve tried! I also use her rose toner, although now I might try witch hazel like you suggested. She has some “face food” moisturizer that makes me feel & smell AMAZING. For spot treatment, I use an EO blend from another small local business. But the thing that’s really helped me is taking DIM supplements each day…I started about a month ago and have noticed so much improvement (not a cure, but definitely positive results!). It’s basically a supplement that promotes good estrogen and lessens the bad estrogen. I noticed less breakouts within two weeks of taking it regularly! I’m not sure if it’s safe for pregnant mamas, but I thought I’d mention it anyway. 🙂 Best of luck!

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