Peels and Pregancy


When it comes to procedures during pregnancy, there can be some confusion. This is because, when it comes to treatments such as peels, there remains a debate amongst professionals over whether or not there is any danger or risk of harm to the pregnancy.

Peels come in a variety of strengths and ingredients. While some are considered safer than others, there is always a need for caution and expectant mothers should be aware of any associated risks.

From an aesthetic view, the client is likely to be looking at a peel to treat acne or melasma which has been brought on by the change of hormones during pregnancy. Because of this, any results from the treatment peel are likely to be short lived. Being an issue of hormonal change, a balancing of hormones will see more results. Such issues generally fix themselves after childbirth.

On some occasions, peels to treat pigmentation in the skin can actually worsen the issue. Some women have found that, rather than minimising the appearance of melasma, a peel has actually darkened the pigmentation.

While there are varying depths in peels, from light through to deep penetration of the skin, it’s best to err on the side of caution and consult a GP or OBGYN prior to booking in for any treatments.

Many deep peels require the client to go under anaesthetic; as such, this treatment is strictly a no go zone for pregnant women as anaesthetic carries a risk of miscarriage.

There is also the risk of what the body can absorb during a peel. Some peels can penetrate the deeper layers of skin which can then be absorbed into the blood stream. Common peel ingredients including Salicylic acid, Glycolic acid, tretinoin and trichloroacetic acid have all been cited in various studies with conflicting evidence as to whether each ingredient, used individually or in combination, poses a risk to expecting mother and their foetus.

There remains a lack of complete and sound scientific evidence to disprove the potential negative effects of chemical peels on a developing foetus and as such, the general consensus amongst professionals is to refrain from chemical peels until after childbirth and always seek medical advice prior to undergoing any aesthetic treatments whilst pregnant.


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