There comes a point in almost every pregnancy where mama starts to feel “over it.” Apparently, this time around it is 33 weeks for me! We traveled back to Buffalo, NY (my hometown) on Thursday for Christmas and since I’ve been here I swear it’s like the Third Trimester ouchies have just taken me over. I’m twice as exhausted and extra uncomfortable. I also feel like the second round of belly expansion has hit, ha. The first one came around 4 ½ months & it was like “oh wow, there’s the belly” then it kind of leveled out for a bit and just this week I feel like I’ve reached the “final stages belly”. I’m really glad I have been eating well and working out 5 days a week because it has helped me feel much better than I did last pregnancy, but at a certain point you just stop feeling cute and start feeling like “I’m huge” whether it’s when you look in the mirror or when you try to roll over in bed. While there is nothing you can do about the size of your belly until after the baby is here, there a few different pampering techniques that can make you feel a little more yourself!
I have to preface the rest of this post by saying I am not the greatest at consistency when it comes to beauty stuff. I get my hair colored whenever I feel like it (sometimes not for two years), you will almost NEVER see me with a fresh polish on my nails, I tweeze my own eyebrows and not always when needed, I’ve never had any plastic surgery or cosmetic procedures & I straight up hate doing my hair and makeup. Despite not being the most consistent with all the beauty stuff, the few cosmetic/pampering things I do for myself make SUCH a difference. When you’re pregnant and just not feeling like yourself or when you’re a new mom and can’t remember the last time you took a shower, some self-care can work wonders for your mood and self-esteem. I’m going to share my favorite pregnancy-safe pampering things to get you feeling like your old self again!
About 5 months after Lily was born, Andy wanted me to have a day out of the house so he treated me to a facial, massage and mani/pedi spa trip. Since then, I have actually kept up monthly facials and despite it being the most high-maintenance thing I’ve ever done for myself, I really like it and totally notice a difference in my skin. During my pregnancy with Lily I had the WORST acne and I wish I would have known what a difference regular facials could have made. The key is finding an esthetician you like and a spa that carries natural, pregnancy-safe skin care. I’ve noticed a lot of spas now actually have “pregnancy facials” on their menu. It’s always good to do your due diligence and ask about the products to make sure you feel comfortable using them. As a rule, I always use non-toxic skin care while I’m pregnant or breastfeeding but I don’t panic if there’s one ingredient I don’t love in a product if it’s for something I don’t do that often (like a facial) because most of the nasty stuff needs to build up in your system to cause harm to your growing/feeding baby. If a spa trip isn’t possible for you, try an at-home mask like Juice Beauty’s Green Apple Peel!
Like I said above, I am so NOT consistent with nail care and a lot of you would probably cringe at the cracked polish I have on my nails as I type this. The truth is I just do not have the time or patience to go every two/three weeks and wait for my nails to dry. But, when I do pull it together long enough to get a manicure I really do love it. Something about a fresh set of finger and toenails does make you feel a little more polished (pun intended). Unfortunately, not all nail products are pregnancy safe and some of the stuff is downright nasty. You can look for nail salons that use non-toxic products or you can buy your own nail polish. When I’m not pregnant I typically do gel polish so it will last longer but during pregnancy, I buy Zoya brand nail polish along with the base and top coat to bring to the salon. I also found this nail polish remover from Pure Vitality Beauty on Amazon that I use to take off my own polish at home. Having all of those bases covered makes me a lot less nervous about getting mani/pedis which means I can enjoy myself a lot more! Another note about pedicures- if you are pregnant, make sure a technician never performs an “acupressure” massage on your feet or hands. There are a ton of points in your hands and feet that if pushed with the right force for the right amount of time can trigger labor. You can read more about that so you can be informed during any type of massage!
Although I don’t get spray tans very often, I am so obsessed with the results when I do. After I learned about what sun exposure can do to your skin, I started wearing sunscreen daily and sitting in the shade whenever we are out in sunny weather. That means my once tan limbs have been pale for a very long time. I tried my first spray tan 5 years ago and although I loved the results I hated the process: making sure you shave right before, no lotions, wearing weird billowy clothes so you don’t wipe off the tan, looking like a total freak for 24 hours before you can shower and not going near any water until the tan is done setting and you can bathe. Just this week, though, I had my first experience with mobile spray tanning and it is a total game changer! I used Southern Glow on the Go in Atlanta and they did an amazing job. Literally in and out of my house in 30 minutes. She set up a small tent in my bathroom while I wiggled down to my underwear and by the time the spray was done it was already dry. Perhaps the best part of the experience, though, was that it was a rapid tan meaning that I could shower & get wet after only FOUR hours. That meant I could do the dishes and give Lily a bath that very same night. I seriously can’t even explain how much better I feel after having a little tan on my skin. It makes such a difference! If you live in the ATL area and are looking for a mobile spray tanner you need reach out to Southern Glow on the Go and let them come to your house. Regular spray tans are $50 and Rapid tans (like what I got) are $55 which is about as much as you would pay to have to drive to a salon to get one done. Mention my name and get $10 off for the rest of December just in time for New Years Eve! Here is their instagram page! Oh, and of course I have to mention that not all spray tans are alike, so please please do your research about what products each company uses. The owner assured me that their tans are nut-based, organic, and paraben-free!
Oh, eyelash extensions. How happy I am that I found them! They are seriously one of the best things I’ve ever done for my beauty routine. I feel a little high-maintenance when I do it but I can leave the house with no makeup on (which I do quite often!) and not feel like a total slob. The key is finding the right place and doing a test patch with the glue they use to make sure you’re not allergic. I had an awful experience at one of the big chain places I went to the first time but after that, I started going to a privately-owned salon called Blink & Wink in Atlanta and the owner Anastasia and all of her girls are INSANELY good. The first set can take upwards of 2 hours and the fills after are every 2-3 weeks for about an hour and a half. That should tell you how much I love them if I’m willing to go that often to keep them up! I usually take a few months off a year to let me natural lashes rest but I miss them when they’re gone!
What is your beauty routine like when you’re pregnant? Do you switch up your cosmetics or just use what you would use when you’re not pregnant? Let me know!