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Nina Carbone

Why Don't I Have the 'Pregnancy Glow'?

Why don’t I have the “pregnancy glow” everyone talks about? My skin actually looks awful. Help!

Sorry, but the truth is not every mom gets the glow; sometimes it’s more like pregnancy pimples. Here’s why, according to Kenneth Mark, MD, a board certified dermatologist and clinical assistant professor of dermatology at New York University:


Why you’ve got it: Blame it on hormones pushing your glands into overdrive. Specifically, an increase of progesterone and estrogen levels in the first trimester is the cause.

How to fix it: Wash with a mild cleanser. Avoid using harsh soaps or chemicals, and don’t wash more than twice a day, which can actually backfire and create more oil.


Why you’ve got it: Your sebaceous glands are working overtime now—especially in those first three months when hormone levels rise.

How to fix it: Acne usually clears up on its own. Until then, use a mild cleanser and ask your doctor about topical treatments.


Why you’ve got it: If your once-attractive blush has veered off into blotchy, red-faced territory, the culprits are your hormones (again) and a blood flow increase of up to 50 percent.

How to fix it: Avoid hot, spicy foods—they’ll just up your circulation even more. To fight the redness, slather on antioxidant cream packed with ingredients like green tea, vitamin C and vitamin E.

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