Updated: 2019, Aug 17

Skin Darkening During Pregnancy – What Is It And How Does It Occur?

Skin Darkening During Pregnancy – What Is It And How Does It Occur?

Pregnancy and Skin Darkening

Most of the women want to look beautiful, even during their pregnancy. However, it’s not possible because of weight gain and other reasons. The women go through various changes in their body during pregnancy, and one of the concerns for pregnant women is skin darkening. Some of you may already have experienced the problem of skin darkening, and you must be asking this question to yourself, Is this normal?

The answer to your question, Yes, The problem of skin darkening during pregnancy is normal. The pregnant women are likely to develop areas of darkened skins on their face and neck. These dark skins are also known as the mask of pregnancy, melasma gravidarum, and chloasma. Here is another fact for pregnant women. If you’re a woman with a darker complexion, then you’re more prone to developing areas of darkened skins in comparison to the woman with lighter skin.

In some of the cases, the pregnant women may develop splotches in the form of a mask. If you’re exposed to the sun, then you can develop areas of darkened skin on your forearm and other parts of your body that are exposed to the sun.

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What Causes a Skin of Pregnant Women To Darken?

As I said before, pregnant women’ body goes through a lot of changes in their body. Most of these changes are due to hormonal changes that take place during pregnancy. Because of hormonal changes during pregnancy, the production of melanin in your body will temporarily increase. The melanin is the same natural substance that provides color to your eyes, hair, and your skin. This leads to a darker skin.

The exposure to sunlight also plays a critical role in the development of darkened areas on your skin. As this condition is quite normal, you will see a decrease in the areas of increased pigmentation after a few weeks of a delivery. Most of the women will have a normal skin shade after a delivery, but there are also some cases where the women can have darkened areas of skin forever.

You may also observe dark lines running down your belly. The major reason behind it is the same, and i.e. increased production of melanin that causes the areas on your face to darken. The areas of darkened skin on your face along with the dark lines running down your belly will fade away after a few weeks after your delivery.

Are There any Things You Can Do To Prevent Skin Discoloration During Pregnancy?

Although this condition usually disappears after a delivery in most of the cases, some of you may want to do everything you can to prevent it. Here are some of the tips to minimize the skin discoloration during pregnancy.

1. Protect Yourself From The Sun: The first thing for you to do is to protect yourself from the harmful rays of the sun, and i.e. UV rays, which enhances pigment changes. According to the study, the most cases of the skin cancer and also many skin problems are seen because of the overexposure of UV rays. You can protect yourself from the sun with the use of broad-spectrum sunblock with SPF 30 or higher. Apply it regardless of the weather condition.

While walking outside, you can wear a hat with a brim and a full sleeve shirt for a better protection.

2. Gentle Cleansers and Facial Creams: You can get rid of irritants that irritate your skin with the use of gentle cleansers and facial creams.

Skin Discoloration During Pregnancy

3. Use of Concealing Makeup: You can cover the areas of darkened skin with a makeup. However, you should not use skin-bleaching products during your pregnancy.

What To Do and What Can I Expect After My Pregnancy?

Do not stop using sunblock, even after your pregnancy. After your delivery, the skin discoloration will slowly start to disappear in most of the cases without any treatments. However, you should not expect an instant result. It may take a few months to observe the improvement on your skin.

If you are still observing no improvement, even after a few months, then you can consult a dermatologist for suggestions. They may recommend you with various treatment methods if needed.

See More: Why Your Nipples Get Darker During Your Pregnancy? Find Out Now!


Being a woman is a tough job. One needs to take care of their health and body despite all the difficulties they face during the period of pregnancy. Take help of your loved ones, follow some of the tips mentioned in this article, and stay positive to overcome the problems of dark skins and others during pregnancy. According to the study, some of the cases of skin discoloration could actually be the sign of skin cancer. The chance of occurrence is rare; however, there is no harm in consulting the doctor.


Dr. Ahmed Zayed

Dr. Ahmed Zayed Helmy holds a baccalaureate of Medicine and Surgery. He has completed his degree in 2011 at the University of Alexandri

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