So many of my friends are having babies and moving to the suburbs and are “happy” all of a sudden. And it would be so damn boring if babies weren’t so damn cute. GAH, they kill me, every time. Not as cute as cats, but close. I like their chubby chipmunk cheeks and wrinkly butts. And I like buying teeny clothes as presents, but it’s annoying to know they’ll only wear things two or three times before they can’t fit into that baby crop top I spent too much money on. So instead of showering my friends with baby junk, I shower them with beauty junk. Mamas need presents, too! Enter the preggo beauty basket. Like the infamous diaper cake, but more appropriate for the ITG reader.
Sure, talk to your doctor about what works for you, but a huge trend when women get pregnant is that they want to rid their lives of all chemicals (what does that mean again?). That’s why the theme of these beauty gifts is: ALL-NATURAL, ORGANIC, PARABEN-FREE-I-DON’T-EVEN-KNOW-WHAT-PARABENS-ARE-TBH, SOME ARE EVEN VEGAN. I got a lot of fab recommendations from Ana Congdon, the founder of Le Vert Beauty, where you can find a ton of great “clean” products plus cute giraffe-themed baby lotions.
Because pregnancy fucks with your hormones so much, you’ve got to be ready for extreme dryness—in which case True Botanical’s Renew Hydrating Cleanser is amazing (smells savory and earth-nymph-like)—or annoying AF breakouts—try Indie Lee’s Brightening Cleanser (smells like Sweet Tarts, leaves your skin super tight and clean feeling).
Per Congdon, some moms-to-be experience eye-puffiness in the third trimester, and it’s no secret lack of sleep is a guarantee in the Bundle of Joy package, so I’m gifting my friend Sarah (pregnant) this Kahina Eye Serum. It’s super lightweight and helps with “lymphatic drainage” (OK?!) but TBH Sarah will be into the fact that the company sources organic ingredients from family farms and women’s cooperatives in Morocco. Eye serum, but also world peace.
Another eco-chic (SORRY) serum is Lina Hanson’s Global Baby/Sensitive Serum, which can be used to remove makeup, as a moisturizer, and even on growing bellies to deal with stretch marks, if that’s something you want to deal with. It’s made with Kalahari melon and cucumber seed, which sounds fancy but gives the silky moisturizer a clean, fresh cucumbery scent. And yeah, it can be used on baby skin, or in the baby bath, too. Both Kangas and Roos can enjoy the pleasure of luxury skincare. I love 2017! It’s vegan!
If mama’s got supes dry skin, after using True Botanical’s epic face wash, follow it up with Ursa Major’s Golden Hour Recovery Cream. It’s thick as mascarpone, smells incredible—sandalwood, neroli—and lasts all day. It makes your skin super glowy (even if all you coo over is a cat named Roger), so when people are like, “you’ve got that pregnancy glow!” you know where it’s really coming from.
If that retro-cool packaging and vaguely tanning oil scent (it’s grown on me!) doesn’t do it for you, go with Kapuluan’s tube of coconut oil because Congdon told me it’s “possibly the safest option for pregnant women.” It’s organic/cold-pressed/”beauty-grade”/not cheap (but they do plant a coconut palm tree for every bottle sold) and, as much as I thought it would be the same as grocery store stuff, it’s not. Instead of feeling greasy and slick, it soaks into your skin and turns to velvet, like whoa. If a tiny human is growing inside you, it’s great to rub on stomachs, dry cuticles, even to shave with—and on the tiny human, once she makes her debut! Also the fact that you can get it in a squeezable tube is a godsend because I hate sticking-fingers-in-jar.
Honest’s body oil is another mother + offspring oil that has a more grapefruit-citrus scent in a flowery cheerful (affordable!) package. The Bubble Bath in Lavender (“ultra calming”) can be one of those subtle gifts like, I know you’re terrified about bringing a child into this slowly warming world so please chill out for a sec.
Speaking of bathtime and dry skin and mystery rashes and sensitive boobs and stretch marks and the absurd price of pre-kindergarten, Indie Lee’s Coconut Citrus Scrub will exfoliate nearly all of those problems away. I said nearly! It leaves a layer of coconut oil on your skin, and has a low-key clean scent, which Congdon told me is good for pregnant ladiez who have a heightened sense of smell. I had NO IDEA that was even a thing, and it blew my mind. Enjoy your magic powers, pregnant pals.
Prtty Peaushun’s Skin Tightening Lotion was on a few lists of products celebrities (goddess Tracy Anderson) used while pregnant, so that amuses me, as well as the name and the futuristic packaging. Vegan alert! If you get it tinted, it’s a cross between self-tanner and lotion and covers up “broken capillaries” and other supposed flaws on your legs—something I never thought to be self-conscious about. But hey, whatever makes your self-esteem glow in a bronze shimmer.
Preg-lady hair can thin sometimes, so treat ya friends to a hair mask like Rahua’s Omega-9 or make her this witchy DIY one Brennan dug up on SpellofMagic.com. Then perform a nonsense spell over her round belly and scare the shit out of all of the aunts at the baby shower.
For soon-to-be-moms who don’t want to use the microwave now, Sundays “10-free” nail polish is vegan and comes in great gifty packaging and very of-the-moment colors that are numbered instead of given twee names. Consider naming your child after them! I highly recommend No. 34. It goes on and stays on just as long as the chemical wasteland normal stuff–I tested!—and doesn’t stink up the room as much. Double bonus: Congdon pairs that with Argan oil polish remover, which is so popular on her site it's only available for pre-order it now, along with some polishes, and call it a day.
New Chapter’s Perfect Prenatal Multivitamin is endorsed by Gwyneth Paltrow. That's all you need to know.
Earth Mama Angel Baby is the greatest brand name of all time, with the greatest packaging I’ve ever laid my spectacled-eyes on. Expectant naked moms with fluffy white angel wings. LOVE IT. They also have tea! I’m wrapping up a jar of their Mama Bottom Balm (minty! For butts!) and Nipple Butter (cocoa butter, baby safe, use everywhere) for my friend Sarah to open in a public setting, ideally. Motherhood is a beautiful, beautiful thing.
For more clean beauty–for yourself–read here for Emily Ferber's favorites.