Tag Archives: pregnancy

How To Prevent Stretch Marks During Pregnancy

Tips To Prevent And Minimize The Appearance Of Pregnancy Stretch Marks

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“Are Pregnancy Stretch Marks Preventable?”

Whether you’re planning on getting pregnant, or you’re in your first trimester, one of your biggest worries is getting those dreaded pregnancy stretch marks—and you research like crazy to see if there are ways to prevent or even just minimize them.

The answer to your question is that in some cases of women they can be completely prevented, and in others they cannot be 100% prevented—BUT, they can definitely be minimized to the point where they will fade fairly quickly after you have your baby.

The key to preventing pregnancy stretch marks (which can emerge anywhere between 13-22 weeks) is to stick to a skincare routine that you follow religiously!


When I was pregnant with my first baby, I was really nervous about getting stretch marks on my belly, especially since I was prone to getting them around my hips and thigh area during my teen years. And if I knew back then what I know now, I could have prevented those as well.

So, during my first trimester, I researched ways to prevent pregnancy stretch marks, by learning about the skin itself. And what I learned was really eye opening. For example, did you know that our skin naturally exfoliates itself every 28 days? Or that stress triggers cortisol resulting in a breakdown of collagen? Interesting stuff.

With that said, taking care of your skin is a lot of work. It’s more than just slathering on some cocoa butter and staying hydrated. Mental health plays a big role as well.

After doing my research, I created a skin care routine for myself during both pregnancies that I swear by.

It helped prevent stretch marks both times, and those that appeared in places other than my belly (like hips and breasts faded in no time).

Below I’m going to share with you my habits and pregnancy-safe skin care routine that I used throughout both pregnancies to prevent stretch marks.

Skincare Routine To Prevent & Minimize Pregnancy Stretch Marks

Exfoliate With A Sugar Scrub

Exfoliating the skin of your pregnant belly is a very important step in your stretch mark prevention routine.

Pregnant bellies stretch, and because of that, your skin gets irritated, itchy and flakey! So prior to whatever moisturizer you’re going to put on your skin, give it a gentle scrub in the shower with something as simple as a home-made brown sugar, coffee scrub, or even a store-bought apricot scrub like St. Ives. I used both, and loved how smooth my skin would feel after each shower.

Gentle exfoliation helps shed dead skin cells, and helps your skin absorb moisturizing skin care products (which we will discuss next).

Choose Serums Over Stretch Mark Prevention Creams

The harsh truth about pregnancy prevention creams is that many are ineffective, and a complete waste of money. Here’s why:

Butters and thick moisturizers don’t penetrate the skin, so you’re going to have a product that’s just sitting on top of your skin like icing on a cake—meanwhile your skin cells below the surface continue to stretch. Now, don’t discredit body butters altogether, because they are still great to use for the top layer to prevent the itch and dry flakes.

Expensive pregnancy prevention creams don’t work that well either because although they do penetrate the skin, they only go around and in between your skin cells, which also doesn’t help to stretch and expand the cells. Plus, many stretch mark creams contain unhealthy ingredients that may not be safe.

Ok, So What The Heck Do I Use?

What you need is SERUMS. Go online and order yourself a good organic vitamin E and vitamin C serum and use them together DAILY! These oils are pregnancy safe, and you don’t need a fancy brand—just as long as it’s organic.

Serums penetrate the skin, and actually go into your skin cells, which facilitate stretching and help skin expansion which prevents stretch marks.

Hence, after you exfoliate, massage in your serums, let them dry, and lock them in using a good cocoa butter. I used Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Tummy Butter—the one that comes in a small tub. It smells great, and it really helped control the flaking and itchiness.

Wear A Pregnancy Wrap To Lock In The Moisture

Consider wearing a stretchy and breathable support wrap to lock in moisture after applying your serums and butters—like the Belly Boost Pregnancy Support Wrap by Belly Bandit.

Wearing a belly wrap helped my serums and tummy butter last longer throughout the day, and kept my skin hydrated at night as well.

Plus, wraps help keep the oily serums and skincare products from soaking into and ruining your maternity clothing. So that’s something to definitely consider.

Implement Collagen Supplements Into Your Diet

While you should always check with your doctor when starting a new supplement, collagen supplements are considered safe during pregnancy, and I’ve personally taken collagen supplements with both of my pregnancies.

Collagen is the most abundant protein in your body, and it’s responsible for the elasticity in your skin. However, when you’re pregnant and food aversions start to become a reality, it’s hard to get a good amount of collagen into your body through food alone—that’s why collagen supplements are so beneficial.

Collagen supplements are available in both powder and pill form, and either one is fine to take—it’s all about preference. I don’t mind swallowing big pills, so I took the YouTheory Collagen pills with added vitamin C. I still take them to this day as part of my anti-aging routine.

Stay Hydrated, Exercise, And Practice That Self Care

Lastly, (and these are the no-brainers) remember to drink your water, engage in some light-moderate exercise and practice some self care.

One of my favorite ways to unwind and relax during my entire pregnancy was to lay down and listen to some ASMR, which stands for autonomous sensory meridian response.

There are many YouTube videos with creative ASMR sounds that make you feel an incredibly relaxing and sedative sensation which begins on the scalp and moves down the body. This sensation naturally produces oxytocin which prevents stress and the breakdown of collagen that we discussed earlier in this article.

I wish you the best of luck on your pregnancy journey, and I hope that these stretch mark prevention tips will work great for you! Come back and let us know in the comments!

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The Best Maternity Photoshoot Dresses And Gowns

Show Off Your Bump In These Must-Have Maternity Photoshoot Gowns!

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Maternity photos are all about celebrating the miracle of life that’s growing inside of you, the extraordinary changes that your body goes through, and becoming a mother—whether it’s for the first time, or the 8th.

With that said, each pregnancy is special, and many pregnant women want to commemorate that beautiful moment in time with a maternity photoshoot that they can cherish for a lifetime.

Which Week Is Best For A Maternity Photoshoot?

The best time for a pregnancy photoshoot is during the 7th or 8th month of pregnancy (30-36 weeks), and there are a couple of good reasons for this specific timeframe.

It is during these specific weeks that your bump transforms into that perfectly round shape that sits nice and high. It’s also that time where you’re slowly approaching your due date, and literally anything can happen.

So as long as you’re satisfied with the size of your pregnant belly, don’t be afraid to schedule a maternity photoshoot as early as week 30.

What If I am Carrying Twins or Multiples?

If you are carrying twins or multiple babies, the best time to participate in a maternity photoshoot is around the beginning of your second trimester. That’s because carrying multiple babies makes your belly grow at a faster pace, and you’re most likely going to deliver early as well.

What Is The Best Color To Wear For Maternity Pictures?

One of the most common questions that many photographers get asked is what color dress works best in a maternity photo shoot? And believe it or not, there are actually certain colors that do better than others.

The color red, for example, comes out looking beautiful because it contrasts well against many backgrounds—especially if your photography session is out in nature.

Light blues and just about any shade of pink looks lovely as well—plus, they represent the gender of the baby! So many parents choose to go with these two colors.

A vibrant gold or yellow dress also looks fabulous against an earthy or dark background—think Kate Hudson in ”How To Loose A Guy In 10 Days”—I LOVED that dress!

Now, when it comes to white and black, photographers say that those shades do not do your bump justice. They are just two colors that ”hide” the belly instead of bringing it out. They do, however, look great in black and white photos.

Below is a round-up of timeless maternity gowns that are perfect for a beautiful photoshoot. Some can even be worn post-pregnancy! These dresses will have you looking confident and absolutely gorgeous, and you’ll have wonderful keepsakes that you can cherish for a lifetime.

Fabulous Maternity Gowns For Timeless Photoshoots!

Brand | Lamosi

Size Range | S—4XL

This elegant maternity gown doubles as a robe, and according to the brand, is customizable without any extra fees. It’s a super fancy design with a flowy train, and for this reason is perfect for a one of a kind maternity photoshoot!

Brand | PinkBlush

Size Range | S—L

This charming chiffon maternity maxi dress features long, cuffed sleeves with buttons, a cinched elastic waist, pleated details, a waist tie, and a v-neckline. It is double lined to prevent sheerness, and can be worn post-baby bump!

Brand | Banetteta

Size Range | S—3XL

This off the shoulder mermaid gown is perfect for a pregnancy photoshoot and your baby shower! You can also wear the dress as is, or add a sash or belt around the middle to give it a little something extra. This dress is stretchy, easy to move around in, and super comfortable.

Brand | Ziumudy

Size Range | One Size Fits Most

This beautiful maternity gown looks gorgeous in an outdoor setting—especially if there’s a little bit of wind to make the chiffon train come to life. It also has a sweetheart neckline, and off-the-shoulder sleeves to make you look and feel like a princess.

Brand | PinkBlush

Size Range | Small—XL

This pretty metallic maternity photoshoot gown by PinkBlush features an off shoulder elastic neckline with a wrap front style, long sleeves, mermaid style skirt with form-fitting ruched sides, cinching under the bust, and a hi-low hemline with a slight train. It’s a beautiful and elegant design that can also look great in baby shower photos!

Brand | Myzeroing

Size Range | S—XXL

This beautiful floral lace maternity gown is perfect for the earthy mama who loves the boho-chíc fashion style. This dress contains an elegant train and off-the-shoulder sleeves, and is available in many colors, but this vibrant yellow shade is simply gorgeous!

Brand | Saslax

Size Range | XS—XXL

This fabulous maternity dress looks like the dress that Julia Roberts wore to the opera in Pretty Woman. It’s the perfect style and shade if you’re looking for some serious contrast, and it’s quite comfortable to have on.

Brand | JustVH

Size Range | S-XL

This budget-friendly maternity dress looks elegant and offers a comfortable slim fit that outlines your baby bump perfectly! Many moms to be are loving this dress, and it’s an affordable buy without losing style or quality.

Brand | Ever-Pretty

Size Range | 4—16

This beautiful white maternity dress is especially perfect for black and white photos. It’s also great for a baby shower, and perhaps even a minimalist wedding.

Brand | PinkBlush

Size Range | S—XL

If you want to add a little bling to your maternity photoshoot, this sequin maternity gown by PinkBlush is the way to go! It contains a v-neckline, is cinched under the bust, and is lined to prevent sheerness.

Brand | Formaldresses

Size Range | 6—26Plus

This rainbow maternity dress is absolutely perfect for a rainbow baby maternity photo shoot! It has beautiful flowy layers that look magical in some light wind, and the soft pastel colors look dreamy against a sunset.

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10 Best Products For Morning Sickness Relief

10 Morning Sickness Must-Haves For Rapid Relief!

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Disclaimer: Content on this site is for reference purposes and is not a substitute for advice from a licensed health-care professional.

A majority of pregnant women experience morning sickness primarily in their first trimester. For some, it’s severe enough to require medical intervention, but for most, pregnancy nausea is tolerable, and can be relieved with over the counter candies, supplements and gadgets.

How Long Does Pregnancy Nausea Last?

For many moms-to-be, morning sickness kicks in at around 6-9 weeks, and can linger into the second trimester. Once the placenta is fully formed in the second trimester and takes over the production of progesterone, many pregnant women finally get nausea relief and regain energy (and get that pregnancy glow you hear about).

What Can I Take To Relieve Pregnancy Nausea?

Below is my top 10 list of recommended products for morning sickness relief that may help you tolerate the first trimester a little more.

They consist of safe, non-toxic, and organic supplements, aromatherapy products and even a couple of gadgets that offer quick and effective nausea relief.

All women are different, and what may work well for one pregnant mama, may not work so well for another. So it’s best to experiment with various products to see what gives the best results.

And if none of these over the counter remedies offer any relief, it may be time for you to consider professional medical intervention—and that’s perfectly ok!

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10 Helpful Remedies For Pregnancy Nausea

Pink Stork Morning Sickness Tea

Why This Might Help:

The Pink Stork Morning Sickness Tea contains a certified organic herbal blend of ginger and rooibos—both of which are very effective at calming an upset stomach. This tea is de-caffeinated, makes about 30 cups, and you’ll be pleased to know that the sachets are biodegradable. This tea has mixed reviews, but a majority of pregnant women enjoy the flavor and nausea relief that this tea gives them.

What Moms Are Saying:

This tea is INCREDIBLE!! It’s delicious and soothing and has helped to settle my stomach right away.

Bamboobies Morning Sickness Relief Drink Mix

Why This Might Help:

If you’re not a fan of tea, then you might enjoy the caffeine-free, Morning Sickness Relief Drink Mix by Bamboobies. This lemon-ginger drink mix contains B vitamins which are known for relieving pregnancy nausea, and it’s a great way to stay hydrated in early pregnancy. One box contains 10 packets, and each can be mixed with 6oz of water.

What Moms Are Saying :

I really able to notice the difference in how I was feeling within about 30 minutes time.”

Mindful Mixtures Nausea Relief Aromatherapy Roller

Why This Might Help:

The Mindful Mixtures Nausea Relief Aromatherapy Roller is a fantastic way to relieve nausea naturally. The all natural essential oil blend includes ginger to neutralize stomach acid, peppermint to relax stomach muscles, and fennel to reduce muscle spasms and pain. It’s an effective and safe way to bring balance to the digestive system without any unwanted side effects. You’ll also be pleased to know that a portion of each sale is donated to 1% For The Planet.

What Moms Are Saying :

I originally bought these to help with queziness since I get them alot. But truth be told I love it so much I have been using it as perfume!

Earthly Wellness Mama’s Tummy Relief Tincture

Why This Might Help:

The Earthly Wellness Mama’s Tummy Relief tincture contains a blend of organic herbs that help soothe stomach upset, get rid of gas, support the liver, and reduce occasional constipation. It was made primarily for pregnant women, but can work for anyone who suffers with nausea, heartburn and indigestion—so if dad is experiencing sympathetic pregnancy nausea, he can certainly use this product!

What Moms Are Saying:

So helpful with morning sickness. I had to take it as soon as I woke up to make sure it helped. I still had a hard time eating or drinking, but this definitely helped me not get to the point of throwing up.”

Organic Preggie Pop Drops

Why This Might Help:

These sour-tasting, Organic Preggie Pop Drops have been around for years, and are made with botanicals and essential oils that help calm nauseous pregnant bellies. The only downside to this nausea candy and many others like them, is that the effects wear off once you are done sucking on them. The upside to having these around is that they are individually wrapped, and can be stashed in your purse, and easily accessed when you’re feeling queasy in public.

What Moms Are Saying :

The perfect pocket candy if you’re feeling the need for a quick fix when you’re out and about”.

Sea Band Mama Acupressure Wrist Band

Why This Might Help:

The Sea-Band [mama edition] is a knitted elasticated wristband which contains a plastic knob sewn into the side of the inside of the wrist-band, and exerts pressure which stimulates the P6 (or Nei-Kuan) acupressure point. It has been proven that pressure on this specific point relieves pregnancy nausea and vomiting.

What Moms Are Saying :

I was insanely nauseous this pregnancy and tried a lot of options, this one helped a lot. It wasn’t instant magic but after a few minutes you can definitely see a difference in nausea relief! Highly recommend!

Nature Made Vitamin B-6

Why This Might Help:

Vitamin B-6 has been prescribed for morning sickness by obstetricians for many, many years. That’s because women who exhibit severe morning sickness have shown to have a low amount of B6 in their blood, thus a supplement helps make up for the loss, easing pregnancy nausea and adding a boost of energy that tired mamas need! Vitamin B-6 can also be combined with Unisom for even more effective nausea relief.

What Moms Are Saying:

I was recommended to try this paired with unisom sleep gels. And it definitely worked after a week of consistency!”

Peppermint Essential Oil

Why This Might Help:

The scent of peppermint oil relaxes the gastric muscles and calms cramping which results in nausea. I personally used this remedy not just during my two pregnancies, but whenever I had a medical procedure or surgery which required anesthesia. Sniffing peppermint made my nausea disappear almost instantly. It’s my favorite pregnancy nausea hack, and doesn’t require ingestion.

What Moms Are Saying:

This was a lifesaver whenever I felt the urge to vomit. I poured a few drops onto a cotton ball and sniffed it until the nausea went away”.

Motherlove Morning Sickness Herbal Supplement Blend

Why This Might Help:

When taken first thing in the morning, the Morning Sickness Blend by Motherlove helps combat queasiness from all angles. Made with all organic ingredients consisting of ginger, peppermint, lemon balm, marshmallow root and red raspberry, this blend relieves nausea, and soothes indigestion and heartburn. This product does have mixed reviews, and some pregnant women recommend taking it after a meal rather than on an empty stomach.

What Moms Are Saying:

Took it for a while and it works, especially when you take it after the food.“

EmeTerm Electric Stimulator For Nausea

Why This Might Help:

This wearable wrist band is an electronic version of the Sea Band. It attaches to the the wrist via electrode pads and releases a low frequency pulse which adjusts nerve signals that travel to the brain and stomach. The brain is then tricked into postponing nausea signals to the belly, limiting the cramping which results in nausea. It’s a great and effective product, but it’s also expensive. The upside to this purchase is that if you suffer from motion sickness in general, you’ll still be able to use this after pregnancy.

What Moms Are Saying :

I have terrible morning sickness and it gets much worse in the car. I put this bracelet on before I go and don’t even notice the sickness anymore”.

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Do Biodegradable Pregnancy Tests Exist?

Why It’s Time To Make The Switch To Eco Friendly Pregnancy Tests

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I read somewhere today that around 10 million pregnancy tests are purchased in the U.S. each year; and I realized that years ago, I contributed to that statistic with my own pregnancy journeys.

Don’t get me wrong, at-home pregnancy tests are great because whether you’re trying to conceive (TTC) or anxiously waiting to be reassured that you’re not pregnant, you get to do it conveniently, and in the privacy of your own home. You’re in complete control of the situation.

But still, 10 million single-use pregnancy tests making their way to the landfill each year is pretty alarming. And it tells us that the diagnostics industry hasn’t taken any steps to minimize plastic pollution on their part—until recently.

Biodegradable pregnancy tests are starting to make an appearance, and it’s about time.

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Pregnancy tests have desperately needed a makeover to reduce plastic waste, and one
such eco-friendly pregnancy test is called SolCraft, which is made from recycled and recyclable packaging and is currently 90 percent biodegradable. The company states that they are working on becoming 100 percent biodegradable in the future.

The SolCraft pregnancy test is over 99.9% accurate with easy to read results and costs about the same as the big name brands: Clear Blue and First Response—only, it’s way more environmentally friendly.

The brand also makes biodegradable ovulation tests that come in a pack of 2—which is yet another diagnostic test that many women rely on when it comes to getting pregnant.

SolCraft Pregnancy Test

Hopefully more companies within the diagnostics industry join the bandwagon and create plastic alternatives that are more environmentally friendly.

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Perks Of The Amazon Baby Registry

A Guide To The Amazon Baby Registry

This post contains affiliate links. To learn more about my disclosure policy, click here.

If you’re looking for an online baby registry with a large selection of eco-friendly products, you may want to sign up with the Amazon baby Registry!

Online baby registries have become increasingly popular among expecting moms—and for good reason. They’re convenient. They let you create a wish list of products that are visible to others; allowing new moms to get the baby products they’ve had their hearts set on!

There’s only one problem. Many expecting moms (and dads) don’t know which online baby registry to use. And that’s pretty understandable considering all the big brand stores that have recently jumped on board. All these options can be overwhelming.

That’s why you should try the Amazon Baby Registry. Many moms already have an Amazon Prime account, and the Baby Registry is not only extremely easy to use, but also comes with a lot of perks that aren’t offered on those “other” sites. Plus, they have a huge selection of green products!


FREE WELCOME BOX

Raise your hand if you love free stuff—because you are going to love getting a surprise welcome box of items for both baby and mom valued at $35!

Both new and seasoned moms to-be will appreciate an assortment of products that they can try out—and maybe fall in love with.

We tend to stick to what we know, so a welcome box packed full of surprises is a great way to try something new! However, to qualify for this box, you need to:

  1. be an Amazon Prime member
  2. must choose at least one item from Amazon’s “checklist” categories and
  3. someone must make a $10 purchase from your registry (you can make a purchase yourself).

HUGE SELECTION OF PRODUCTS

Amazon has a huge selection of eco-friendly baby and maternity products to choose from.

Amazon literally has millions of products in inventory—with an impressive selection of eco-friendly products. So there’s no question that you’ll be able to find a ton of sustainable and zero-waste products for you and your little one.

MOBILE REGISTRY

Our generation is constantly on the go! Moms today are busy working, running errands, chasing after the kids—you name it. That’s why Amazon lets you manage your Amazon Baby Registry on any device whenever—and wherever—you want.

UNIVERSAL REGISTRY

If you find something that you absolutely love on another website, you’ll still be able to add that item into your Amazon registry via their Universal Registry Button. It’s really quite simple to install!

The Universal Registry Button is a browser application that lets you add items from other websites to your Amazon Registry. Use this to keep track of what you want from anywhere.

FREE 2-DAY SHIPPING

If you are a Prime member, you automatically qualify for free shipping—however, you can still qualify for this perk as a non-member by making sure that your order is at least $25.

COMPLETION DISCOUNT

You’re going to love this! You’ll receive a completion discount of 10% on all items left on your registry list (prime members receive 15%). This offer is good on a one time purchase. What does this mean? It means that if you save the biggest, most expensive items toward the end, you’ll save BIG.

How does it work?

You’ll be be notified about your discount via email, 60 days before your due date. Following your due date, you will have 180 days to take advantage of it.

Additionally, Amazon allows you to apply the discount to a one-time purchase of up to $5,000. So, if there’s a crib, high-end stroller or other item that you really want, take advantage of that offer! It could save you up to $500.00 or more!

FREE THANK YOU LIST

This is a really cool feature—a Thank You List is automatically created for items purchased from your Amazon Baby Registry!

Your Thank Your List will show you the names and addresses of people who have bought items from your Registry.

Keep in mind that some gift givers choose not to share their address and their address will not be displayed. Gifts purchased by the registry owner will not show in the Thank You List.

FREE 365 DAY RETURNS

That’s right, mama! Gifts purchased from your Amazon baby registry are eligible for free returns within 365 days of the receipt of your shipment. Plus, the gifter won’t know that you returned them!

However, baby items purchased by the registry owner have to be returned within 90 days of receipt of shipment. And items outside of the registry are subject to the standard 30 day return policy.

DIAPER DISCOUNT

As a perk, you’ll also get 20% off diapers in baby’s first year when you reach $500 in registry spend. Combine with Subscribe & Save up to 40% off.

Keep in mind that Amazon carries eco-friendly diaper brands such as: Earth+Eden & Bamboo Nature—both made of sustainable material.

And there you have it! You get free samples, discounts, free two-day shipping, easy returns, and much more! The perks are well worth it!

To learn more or to sign up for your baby registry, click below!

Amazon Baby Registry