Pregnancy and PCOS: My Trusty Skincare Routine!

Have you ever met someone who says they usually never get pimples? Yep, that was NEVER my case. Growing up, as shallow as it may sound, but I will always remember how horrible my acne was. As in BIG. RED. CYSTIC. ACNE. Everywhere – from my forehead to my cheeks. Ever since, I’ve been sooo careful what I put on my face – especially during my pregnancy. I hope this article helps those who are going through a similar situation!

I experienced the acne around 4th year high school and my entire college life. It was only after college when I learned it was because I have PCOS (Google it!). PCOS has different signs in every woman so in my case – it caused really bad hormonal imbalance. So no matter how hard I tried with acne treatments, peels, facials – the cystic acne was caused internally so none of them worked.

Before I start, I need to share a disclaimer. Aside from this skincare routine, I try my best (keyword: TRY) to avoid sugar and carbs in my daily diet. I also juice 2-3x a week (details on the skincare highlight on my Instagram). In short, good skin doesn’t happen overnight! It’s a conscious effort in food diet and gentle skincare products.

I often switch up my skincare routine because I love trying new products in the market but what I’m about to share is what I am currently using NOW and my entire pregnancy.

Cleansing and Exfoliating

Tip: I use a gentle cleanser 2x a day (morning & evening) and I exfoliate 1x a week. Not all cleansers are created equal so I use certain products depending how much I need to clean off. Lol!


MALIN + GOETZ Grapefruit Face Cleanser – I super love this. Very gentle and smells nice. It’s a lot too considering you just need a pea size amount in every wash.

Peter Thomas Roth Anti-Aging Cleansing Gel – this one feels very light and good for sensitive skin.

Glamglow SuperCleanse Mud to Foam – I use this when I have light make up I’d like to remove or I feel like having a deep clean. My skin feels so nice and super clean after using this.

For gentle exfoliation (used 1x a week):

Cure Natural Aqua Peeling Gel – I use this especially around the nose and mouth area where I feel needs extra exfoliation. I love how you feel the granules (???) of dead skin afterwards.

Marta’s Handmade Cooling Mint Exfoliating Facial Cleanser – this is local brand made by my friend Marta. All natural ingredients too so pregnancy friendly. I like it cos the mint feels very cool on the skin.

Daytime routine

Tip: I like rotating my moisturisers (ie alternate it) depending on my mood and current skin condition. I do NOT use all of these at once. I just pair the facial toner with 1 moisturizer.

SK-II Facial Treatment Essence (Skin Toner) – I apply this product before the creams. I put the product on my palm then gently pat it on my face.

Peter Thomas Roth Hyaluronic Cloud Cream Hydrating Moisturizer – This moisturizer feels super light and non sticky. I love it!

Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream – I love the packaging of this cream. I feel so moisturised after using this and it’s not greasy at all. You pump it down to dispense just the right amount of product so it feels very hygienic.

Olay Regenerist Whip – this was originally gifted to me for a social media project and I’ve been using it ever since. The product has a gel-like texture that easily glides and absorbs on my skin.

Kiehl’s Daily Reviving Concentrate – If you have sensitive skin like me, you’ll surely love Kiehl’s. This serum-like product has a glass dropper applicator so I just apply 3-5 drops on my skin when it’s feeling extra dry.

Make Prem CICAPRO Refresh Light Cream – I also use the Make Prem gel sunblock. Really good! This K-beauty brand feels so gentle on my skin. I use this gel-like product when I wake up with red, inflamed, itchy skin.

Nighttime Routine

Tip: I purposely layer for products in the evening cos I feel like my skin absorbs more when I sleep. The gua sha jade tool really helps!

Herbivore Orchid Facial Oil – if there’s something I’d keep purchasing again, it’s this! This facial oil has a glass dropper applicator and I love how energized my skin feels when I wake up in the morning – thanks to this oil. Must try!

La Mer The Eye Concentrate – it’s never too early to attempt to prevent wrinkles. I gently pat this around my eye area (don’t rub!)

La Mer Treatment Lotion – similar to the SK-II essence, I simply pat this on my face before the moisturizer and serums.

La Mer Regenerating Serum – I love this. It’s a bit of a splurge but you will only need to dispense a pea-sized amount. I feel like this Serum lightens my acne scars too.

Drunk Elephant T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum – this has an interesting gel-like texture that instantly gets absorbed by the skin. It’s like magic because my skin looks glowing the next day everytime I use this.

Jade Gua Sha Tool – whichever moisturizer or facial oil I use, I make sure to massage my face afterwards with a gua sha tool (you can use a roller too!). I feel like it adds an extra push for the products to absorb better on my skin and I also noticed it helps my face look less puffy the next day (which happens during pregnancy!).

Body and Belly

Tip: I oiled up like a crazy woman during my pregnancy but unfortunately, I still had minor stretch marks on the lower part of my tummy that showed on the 36th week onwards. So adjust your expectations but at the end of the day – embrace your body cos it’s the only one you’ve got! Think of it as a souvenir from carrying an amazing little human.

Bio-Oil Skincare Oil – most recommended by my new mom friends so of course I had to try it. I like it and I felt like 1 bottle lasts for so long.

Ziba Beauty Srsly Moist – this is locally made by my friends over at Ziba Beauty (Hi Diane!) I feel like it’s more effective when I apply the oil when my skin is still sightly damp after showering.

Two Scents Grapefruit Sweet Almond Body Oil – for expecting moms, I layer this oil (and the other oils on this list) on top of the Bio Oil for extra belly moisture.

Buds & Blooms Belly Elasticity Oil – another oil I layer on top of the Bio Oil. This has a nice spray applicator and has ingredients good for skin elasticity.

Amparo’s Apothecary Homemade Olive Whipped Body Butter – this one was gifted by my co-mom Keena. I love it! Locally homemade all the way from Baguio. This butter feels extra creamy and moisturising for my belly. Since it feels slightly thicker than body oils, make sure to wear something very loose to avoid the product sticking on your clothing.

Aesop Body Balm – I love the scent and texture of this Body Balm. Doesn’t feel sticky at all but my skin instantly feels supple and hydrated.

Nivea Oil in Lotion with Rose & Argan Oil – I like this Nivea lotion range. I feel like it instantly saves my dry skin (especially in the legs area) and smells very nice. I even keep a bottle in my car.

Glossier Body Hero Daily Perfecting Cream – this smells so nice, I like saving this and just using it for my hands.

So if you are expecting (congrats momma!) or have skin that easily gets irritated, these are that products I loooove that I find compatible with my very sensitive skin. If in doubt with product ingredients, make sure you clear it with your OB.

Most of these products are compatible with all skin types (mine is combination oily and dry). Like with anything new, always try a small amount first that’s why I love travel sized products or those free samples they give you. If possible, always try before you buy! Feel free to share with me your favorite products too and let me know if any of these worked for you!


Mrs. H

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