ask the experts
Beauty-wise, pregnancy changes everything: Hair gets thicker. Skin can rebel. Makeup needs rethinking. Here are 10 pointers for looking great the next nine months and beyond.
I’m bored with my hairstyle. What looks best during pregnancy?
“Resist the urge to make a drastic change,” says Vaughan Acord, a senior hair stylist at Bumble and Bumble in New York City and new dad. “Too many physical changes are going on during pregnancy; you don’t need another.
“Instead, freshen up your current style.” If you’re already sporting a short cut, Acord recommends growing it just a bit to balance out your new full figure and adding volume. Place a few Velcro rollers at the crown, warm with a blow-dryer, let cool and remove.
For hair that’s all one length, cut a few long layers all over, and add texture and volume.
Don’t overlook accessories if your hair is long. “Twist it up into a beautiful barrette or pin for a feminine but practical look,” Acord says. Consider shifting your part off-center or zigzagging it to thin your fuller face. Soften bangs with fringy layering, since hard-edged bangs make your face look rounder.
You needn’t fuss with a curly or wavy do. Whether your hair is short or long, apply anti-frizz products while hair is wet, then style.
If you’re considering a perm, wait until after your baby is born and you’ve stopped breastfeeding. There’s a good chance the curls won’t take while your hormones are off-kilter. Also, the harsh chemicals may be hazardous to the baby.
Can I color my hair while pregnant?
“There’s no evidence that hair coloring presents a problem during pregnancy,” says Christann Jackson, M.D., director of the Pregnancy Safety Hotline at The Western Pennsylvania Hospital in Pittsburgh. Get your doctor’s OK, then follow these guidelines:
Wait until the second trimester. “That’s the ultimate conservative approach,” Jackson says.
Don’t color at home. A pro can keep dye off your skin.
Make sure the salon has good ventilation. Although fumes from dyes and bleaches don’t pose a health threat, they can make you feel queasy.
How can I use makeup to downplay my puffy face?
“Emphasize your eyes and lips,” says Celeste Randall, a makeup artist at The Makeup Shop, a studio in New York City.
Randall recommends brushing brows upward with a clean mascara brush or comb. Then mix a soft brown eye shadow with a dot of your favorite moisturizer, and define your brows with an angled brush. “The moisturizer allows the shadow to move and stay,” she says.
Define eyes with a pencil, along the bottom lash line. Curl your lashes with an eyelash curler and then coat with mascara. Then curl again.
Line lips with a pencil, to match your natural lip color, and fill in with a glossy lip color. And limit blush to a subtle hint; bright cheeks will accentuate your temporarily full face.