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Skin discolorations when pregnant

Skin discolorations are frequent in pregnancy, and can take many forms, including darkened nipples, chloasma, the linea nigra, and the saving grace you know as the “pregnancy glow,” when your face adopts a lovely natural blush.

What causes it?

Skin discolorations can be either physical or hormonal. Chloasma, the linea nigra, and darkening of the nipples is a result of the unpredictable hormones, which in this instance make you overproduce melanin, which is responsible for pigmentation. “Pregnancy glow” is caused by an increase in your total blood volume when pregnant, which can be as great as 50%, as well as hormones, and gives your face that welcomed aura.


There is not much you can do about any skin discoloration during pregnancy besides applying cover-up to any areas you feel self-conscious about. The hormonal discolorations will disappear after delivery, and as your blood volume returns to normal levels, so will the coloring of your face.

Read more
  • S Vaughan Jones, C Ambros-Rudolph, C Nelson-Piercy. “Skin disease in pregnancy.” British Medical Journal. 348:g3489. Web. 6/3/2014.
  • “Skin Conditions During Pregnancy: FAQ169.” ACOG. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, 6/14/2015. Web.
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