What Causes Dry Skin during Pregnancy?

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Aug 19, 2011

What Causes Dry Skin during PregnancyPregnancy is a tumultuous time for a woman’s body. There is just so much happening in there, not counting the massive change of a human being taking shape and growing inside you! One of several things that happen to a woman’s body is changes in your skin. While some women report that their skin tends to break into acne or tend to see some pigmentation, others report to having extremely dry skin. Most of these can be explained by the behaviour of hormones in the body.

There are two chief causes of dry skin during pregnancy:

  • Changing hormone levels tend to cause changes in a woman’s skin too. The changing levels of hormones have different effects on different women. Sometimes the amount of natural oil that the skin produces (called ‘sebum’) tends to increase, causing acne and pimples in some women. In others, the production of sebum decreases leading to dry and flaky skin.
  • Since there is a another human being growing within you, it is important to realise that you are now ingesting fluids and food for two instead of one person. It is due to this reason that the water that you drink is not enough to keep your skin hydrated and supple. This leads to dryness.


  • The problem of hormonal changes cannot be dealt with by medicines. It is best to use a light moisturiser with minimal chemicals (try olive oil, sesame oil, etc if you want to stick to safe natural moisturisers). Arnica oil is highly recommended.
  • Steer clear of chemical treatments like peels
  • Don’t bathe in very hot water. Lukewarm water is good, but scalding hot water can rob your skin of precious moisture. Also, keep your baths under 15 minutes.
  • Use a humidifier if you feel like the atmosphere in your room is too dry, especially at night.



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