If you’re one of the lucky women to benefit from the 50% extra blood flow that actually enhances your pregnant body, giving you that beautiful ‘glow’ you always hear about, I am extremely jealous of you. Also, congrats! Each week, I keep waiting for my pale skin that continues to get sprinkled with breakouts to perk up and start giving me that gorgeous, luminous, dewy radiance that I’ve seen and read about in so many other women.
Unfortunately, at 37 weeks, the combination of continued nausea and vomiting throughout each trimester, insomnia, and debilitating pelvic girdle pain and sciatica has only further dulled my pallor. Even though I constantly feel like I’ve been hit by a train, I still love being pregnant and don’t want to: A. scare people with my sallow appearance and B. miss out on that classic womanly glowing sensation.
Faking Pregnancy Radiance
Pamper Yourself in 10 Steps
Step 1: Fill a pitcher with water and your favorite flavors- cucumber slices, lemon, lime, orange, mint- the possibilities are endless! Also take off any chipped nail polish you’re wearing.
Step 2: If you’re not washing your hair, do the following: gently tease your hair, starting at the crown, and tease the rest of your hair quickly to add some body and texture. This does not need to be neat or look nice! Comb your hair up into a high ponytail at about eye level. Give your ponytail a few additional teases before wrapping it around itself. Secure with a few bobby pins to keep in place.
Step 3: If you’re able to get into a bath, I suggest taking a warm (not hot) bath with scented epsom salts. My favorite are Dr. Teal’s Therapeutic Solutions in lavender or eucalyptus and spearmint. I have trouble getting into the tub, so I would skip the bath and take a warm shower only lit by candlelight and soft, relaxing music.
Step 4: Take out your favorite body scrub. Use your finger to gently scrub your lips, too. For your face, use a clarifying scrub specifically made for your face. I use Freeman’s Facial Polishing Mask Charcoal and Black Sugar.
Step 5: Shave your legs! If you’re in the third trimester like I am, I know this is no simple task; however, having smooth legs to moisturize after your shower will feel lovely and feminine when you may otherwise feel like a frumpy blob. Don’t forget to use shaving cream or you can use baby oil for added smoothness.
Step 6: If you’re taking an epsom salt bath, you’re doing wonders for your aching, swollen feet already. If you’re taking a shower, plug your drain and add some salt to soak your feet as you continue your shower.
Step 7: After drying off, treat your belly to some cocoa butter and slather the rest of your body with your favorite lotion- I’m partial to Yes to Carrots or Johnson’s Baby Lotion in vanilla oatmeal. Don’t forget to moisturize your newly exfoliated lips- try a tinted chap stick. My favorites are Smith’s Lip Balm: Minted Rose, Cherry Chap Stick, or Nivea Lip Care Kiss of Cherry.
Step 8: Ideally, your significant other or friend is home to bring you a tall glass of your flavored water as you get dressed in your deliciously steamy, scented home spa. Drink up- the flavors will add to your pampering experience, plus you need to stay extra hydrated during pregnancy of course.
Step 9: While your skin is soft and warm from the shower and moisturizing, push back and trim your cuticles. File your nails and apply a clear coat of polish. As you’re waiting for the polish to dry, have your husband give you a foot massage with lotion (5 minutes per foot) and have him put on a pair of comfy, cozy socks.
Step 10: Take the bobby pins out of your bun and messily rake your fingers through your hair. You’ll be amazed at the gorgeous, natural look of your perfectly tousled hair. Feel free to bask in your natural beauty or add a touch of foundation mixed in your face lotion to even out your skin, add a swipe of mascara, and dust an apricot blush on your apples.
Voi la! I hope you’re feeling that pregnancy radiance you may be missing out on.