Beauty in Your Basket: Natural Beauty Tips for Pregnant Women

Pregnancy can make you feel out of sorts. Your body is a hormonal playground, and that can seriously affect your beauty needs.  Self-care is important, and luckily, your grocery basket carries powerful, natural beauty and wellness secrets!

Oranges, Lemons, and Limes

Citrus fruits pack a dose of immune-boosting vitamin C.  In addition to staving off a cold, vitamin C helps the body with cell protection and aids in collagen regeneration.  Collagen is what makes skin supple, fights wrinkles and prevents skin pitting. Vitamin C may also help combat acne — a common problem during pregnancy. Citrus is a known source of folic acid which is believed to prevent certain birth defects.

How to Use: 

Citrus fruits have a wonderful astringent quality.  Looking for a quick toner? Grab a slice of your favorite citrus fruit and rub over your skin.  Let air dry and rinse with lukewarm water. The fruit gives a toned glow and gently rejuvenates your skin. If you have dry skin, don’t use this method more than once a week.  Avoid use on inflamed or open skin.

Bananas and Plantains 

Bananas, and their larger cousins plantains, are loaded with potassium, vitamins, healthy starch, and trace protein.  They can be a great pickup when pregnancy fatigue sets in. The potassium in bananas and plantains may help balance out your sodium and keep water retention down, like swelling in your feet.  Work with your doctor and nutrition coach to find out how much potassium you need in your diet.

How to Use:

Peeled bananas mash easily into a skin softening mask.  Mash up, smear on, and lay back for about 15 minutes. Be sure to rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water.  Bananas have a high sugar content, and lingering sugar on your skin’s surface is a draw for microbes and yeast. Yuck!


Avocados are packed with potassium and healthy fats.  They are filling and versatile, and they help fortify your hair.  It can even be used to make vegan chocolate pudding, and you can’t go wrong with that!

How to Use:

Like bananas, a ripe avocado is easy to mash and apply as a softening and smoothing regimen that you can use on any external part of your body – including your hair. 


Milk is an excellent source of calcium and vitamin D — nutrients that can be easily sapped from you during pregnancy.  Along with a vitamin boost, milk is high in protein – the building block to beautiful hair, skin, and nails. 

How to Use:

Whole milk makes for a luxurious addition to your bathing routine.  Since it’s not advised for pregnant women to immerse in hot water, you can try adding milk to warm water in a big bowl and sponge it onto your skin in the shower.  Lactic acid in milk helps break down dead skin cells and renew your glow.


Melons like cantaloupe, honeydew, and watermelon are loaded with vitamins, and their high water content can help to hydrate you.  Their density also helps you feel satisfied without leaving you feeling overloaded and bloated. 

How to Use:

Cut a slice of melon and remove the seeds.  Scoop out most of the flesh, leaving just a little bit on the rind.   Rub gently over your skin and let the juice air dry on your face or body — about 10 minutes.  Rinse well with lukewarm water.  

BONUS: Did you know that cucumbers are in the melon family?  These water-filled fruits have a lasting reputation as beauty aids.  Many spas offer water infused with cucumber, and people use cold cucumber slices over their eyes to help reduce puffiness.


Oatmeal is a hearty and versatile breakfast choice that is inexpensive and easy to make.  Natural rolled oats are more nutritionally sound than the instant packet variety, which has a lot of added sugar and preservatives.  Natural rolled oats – even the 1-minute cook type – provide healthy carbohydrates, iron, selenium, magnesium, and lots of fiber.  

How to Use: 

Oatmeal is an effective binder in face masks and is often used to soothe irritated skin.  If you find yourself with itchy or sensitive skin during your pregnancy, try a lukewarm bath in regular oats or colloidal oatmeal powder.  


Yogurt is a natural source of calcium and probiotics that may aid digestion.  Be sure to choose a pasteurized yogurt and avoid making it at home on your own.  Pregnant women need to be extra cautious during pregnancy about consuming bacteria that may develop in certain foods.

How to Use: 

Like milk, yogurt’s lactic acid properties are a great beauty aid.  Lactic acid helps to slough off old skin cells, leaving your skin soft and revitalized.  Try adding mashed papaya, mango, or berries for added benefits.  

Olive Oil

Olive oil is a staple ingredient in diets from all over the world.  Considered a “good” fat, it may reduce bad cholesterol levels, a risk factor for health issues.

How to Use: 

Olive oil is an effective moisturizer.  Try a tiny dab on your lips before bed or use it to target rough areas of skin.  Because your skin must breathe, do not use any oil on your whole body at one time. Instead, treat small areas at different times.  

If using olive oil straight out of the kitchen doesn’t appeal to you, you can still find benefits.  Your local natural foods store likely sells soaps and lotions derived from olive oil, in bar or liquid form.

Cocoa Butter

Cocoa butter is not something that you are likely to enjoy eating by itself, but it’s a common ingredient in chocolate, many baked goods, and more.  (If you’re a white chocolate fan, the predominant ingredient is cocoa butter).

How to Use:  

Cocoa butter (which really does smell like chocolate!) is sold in many pharmacies and grocery stores in the beauty and skin care aisle. Known for its effectiveness in reducing the visibility of scars, many women use cocoa butter to reduce the formation and appearance of stretch marks.  Some prefer lotions containing cocoa butter to the waxier texture of cocoa butter sticks.

That grocery basket just got a whole lot more interesting now, didn’t it?  Talk to your doctor or midwife about the best choices for you and your pregnancy.