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A Pregnancy Guide to Essential Oils

We’ve rounded up a helpful list of essential oils for skin to use and which ones to avoid while pregnant.

 Written by: 100% PURE®
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First off, congratulations soon-to-be Mama! You’re on a beautiful path to an epic experience of a lifetime and we couldn’t be more excited for you. Before we get too far ahead of ourselves by picking out their first school or who’s going to babysit first, you’ve got to get through the baby baking period. Pregnancy can be easy street for some and a bumpy ride for others. Thankfully, specially selected essential oils for your skin are here to help you get through the less than glamorous times. We’ve compiled a helpful list of pregnancy safe essential oils and which essential oils to avoid! If you’re devouring all blogs pregnancy related, we’d also recommend reading our article how to choose natural skin care and makeup that’s pregnancy safe, too. With a new baby on the way, you’re going to want to make sure you’re using the safest and healthiest products on earth.

What are Essential Oils?

Essential oils for skin are nature’s gift. Sourced from botanicals (such as flowers, plants, bark, seeds, etc.) the oil is separated from the fibrous material via distillation. When separated, the oil left behind is a potent concentration and densely packed source of aromatherapy also known as plant medicine. When choosing an essential oil for skin, take care to choose quality over quantity. We recommend opting for USDA Organic when available, and local if possible. This makes it easier to avoid any unknown contaminants such as pesticides, toxic chemical additives, or artificial fragrances.

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Pregnancy Safe Essential Oils

100% PURE always recommends consulting your doctor before trying anything new, especially when pregnant. Essential oils on skin are generally safe with very little risk, but it’s always better to be cautious, especially when making the decision for two. We’ve pulled together a short list of key essential oils for skin that will help you through a few pregnancy situations that might arise.

To Help Relieve Nausea:

Whether you are in your first few weeks of morning sickness or just get a little queasy now and then, there are a few key essential oils for skin that can help soothe general uneasiness. A direct sniff from the bottle, or dropping a few into a carrier oil (like coconut oil) to rub on your arms or chest can help relieve nausea symptoms naturally.

  • Chamomile - also known for its anti-inflammatory properties that may ease skin irritation and itchy skin conditions.

  • Lavender - shown to help fight stress, and have antibacterial properties against acne too.

  • Peppermint - helps relieve nausea and has toning effects that can help with excessively oily skin.

  • Ginger - can help to prevent vomiting and may ease nausea too.

To Soothe Muscles and Aches:

When you’re carrying an extra person in tow 24/7, your body can get tired, sore, and just generally achy. Our bodies were built for pregnancy, but it takes time to adjust to our changing body. Things that once were over there, are now over here. It’s a beautiful process, and using essential oils on skin can help to relieve minor aches and pains. Try adding a few drops of the essential oils below to a carrier oil (like jojoba oil) and gently massage into afflicted areas.

  • Lavender - helps calm your mind, leading to more relaxed muscles too.

  • Ylang-Ylang - comes with a soothing floral scent and may help fight free radical damage too.

  • Ginger - often rubbed on skin to relieve pain and soreness.

  • Chamomile - an anti-inflammatory that can help alleviate pain and tension.

  • Frankincense - a natural anti-inflammatory that may reduce pain and stiffness.

To Help Improve Sleep:

Is baby having a tiny party inside your belly, flipping around and banging on the walls? Or are you just getting started, trying to adjust to different sleeping positions? Either way, pregnancy can make bedtime a bit challenging and forces us to get creative. If you find yourself losing shut-eye, help send yourself off into dreamland with a few drops of essential oils on skin to soothe your mind and restless spirit. Using the soothing, pregnancy safe essential oils below topically or as a pillow spray mist.

  • Lavender - helps calm your mind.

  • Ylang-Ylang - has a beautiful floral scent and could help reduce signs of aging like wrinkles and fine lines on skin too.

  • Mandarin - has a refreshing, citrusy scent.

  • Frankincense - has a slightly sweet and refreshing scent to it.

We did a lot of research to compile a list of essential oils for skin while pregnant and spent even more time on the essential oils for skin to avoid. While the list below is extensive, it is not conclusive. We recommend not using any essential oils that don’t appear on either list until you speak with a licensed professional. There are a few essential oils for skin that can actually be very harmful to the mother as well as the baby if used at all or dosed incorrectly. Please take care and never use any of the following essential oils while pregnant.

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Essential Oils to Avoid While Pregnant:

  • Clary Sage

  • Fennel

  • Black Seed

  • Carrot Seed

  • Clove

  • Myrrh

  • Oregano

  • Rosemary

  • Birch

  • Thyme

  • Marjoram

  • Tarragon

  • Caraway

  • Nutmeg

  • Cinnamon

  • Pennyroyal

  • Thuja

  • Mugwort

  • Birch

  • Wintergreen

  • Basil

  • Camphor

  • Hyssop

  • Sage

  • Wormwood

  • Parsely

  • Tansy

  • Aniseed

How To Choose a Quality Essential Oil For Skin

Not all essential oils are created equal, and with this burgeoning trend comes essential oil sellers with less than stellar intentions. Buyer beware! Here are a few helpful tips for choosing the best essential oil for skin.

  • Avoid any essential oil that has been diluted with vegetable oil.

  • Look for the country of origin. If it’s not listed, move on.

  • Skip any essential oils in a plastic bottle. The plastic can leach into the oil, contaminating it.

  • Opt for smaller bottles so the essential oil stays fresh. A little goes a long way.

  • Scan for both common and Latin names. This will help you identify the exact plant species used, versus listing common or generic name only.

A general rule among experts is to avoid essential oils for skin the first trimester all together. This is an extremely critical time for early development as well as keeping the mother’s uterine healthy and relaxed. The second and third are safer and less risky to mother and child. With all essential oils for skin, always use a carrier oil to dilute the essential oil. Please note to NEVER ingest an essential oil directly or by mixing with food or water. Ingesting can cause severe stomach irritation and upset. Not all natural things are good for moms-to-be! We hope you found our list of essential oils for skin helpful and follow our few simple rules to safely and effectively use essential oils while pregnant.

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