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Top Choice for Pregnancy-Safe Skincare: Mandelic Acid

Pregnant woman laying down, relaxing and smiling.


During pregnancy, overactive hormones can mean your skin is suddenly all over the map. Since some of your favorite go-to skincare products have to be avoided for baby’s safety, you might not be sure where to turn.


While there are plenty of safe options, you don’t want to sacrifice results. Fortunately, there’s one ingredient that’s perfectly suited to treating all the unique concerns of moms-to-be, from breakouts to melasma.


Here’s why mandelic acid outshines all the other pregnancy-safe options during these critical nine months and beyond.


What is mandelic acid?

Mandelic acid is a natural, non-toxic alpha-hydroxy acid derived from almonds.

It’s unique among AHAs because of its larger molecular structure, which slows its absorption rate, making it the most gentle of all the acids.


The slow absorption rate means it won’t trigger an inflammatory pigment response even in darker skin tones prone to hyperpigmentation. That’s super important during pregnancy when hormones are already acting as a trigger for pigment issues like melasma.


Mandelic Acid for Melasma During Pregnancy

A lot of moms-to-be experience melasma, or what’s also called the mask of pregnancy. These patches of excess pigment that appear mainly on the cheeks, forehead, and chin are a result of an overload of estrogen hormones stimulating melanin production.


Mandelic acid is a natural brightener. It inhibits tyrosinase, the enzyme responsible for melanin production to prevent pigment formation. It also helps to fade existing pigment by increasing cell turnover to disperse excess pigment from the skin’s surface.


15% Mandelic Acid 3-In-1 Serum


This higher percentage serum is formulated to take on more resistant acne or pigmentation issues. If your skin is not yet acclimated to mandelic acid, start with the 8% Mandelic Acid 3-In-1 Serum.


Mandelic Acid for Rosacea and Redness During Pregnancy

Many women report an increase in rosacea symptoms during pregnancy. It may be hormones, or stress, or the increase in blood flow putting pressure on blood vessels. We do know that, in addition to irritation, bacteria play a significant role in the development of rosacea.


Mandelic acid’s gentle, anti-inflammatory properties help calm skin and reduce redness. But mandelic acid also ticks the antibacterial and anti-fungal boxes to control the bacterial component of rosacea.

Skin Nourishing Toner


This extra gentle, alcohol-free toner has mandelic acid at its center, along with soothing, protective elements, including niacinamide, green tea extract, rosehip oil, and honey.


Mandelic Acid for Acne During Pregnancy

Androgen hormones, the ones responsible for sebum production, are working overtime during pregnancy, often resulting in breakouts even for women who normally have flawless skin.


Dermatologist and Associate Director of the Skin of Color Division at the University of Miami, Laura Scott, M.D., told Women’s Health Magazine why mandelic is her personal choice for treating acne during her own pregnancy.


"Mandelic acid is the largest alpha hydroxy acid, so it penetrates skin slowly and doesn't cause irritation. But, boy, does it work well to keep skin glowing, prevent breakouts, and fade dark spots."


Dr. Scott’s pick? Vivant’s 8% Mandelic Acid 3-In-1 Serum.

8% Mandelic Acid 3-In-1 Serum


Use this gently exfoliating, antibacterial serum to keep skin clear and bright.   


Mandelic Acid 3-In-1 Wash


Mandelic Acid 3-In-1 Wash is a class-A acne-fighting cleanser that eliminates acne bacteria, unclogs pores, and promotes a healthy, even tone.


Mandelic Acid for Aging During Pregnancy

(Not so) fun fact: Studies show that cellular aging is accelerated by between 0.5 and 2 years for each additional pregnancy. Paradoxically, during pregnancy, a woman’s telomeres (the DNA endcaps that regulate cellular aging), look younger than predicted for her chronological age.


The antioxidant properties of mandelic acid protect skin from the effects of cellular aging, while its cell-renewing activity helps keep collagen metabolism healthy.


3% Mandelic Acid 3-In-1 Toner


Nourish the skin, protect against cellular damage, and clear cellular debris to enhance the absorption of your mandelic acid corrective serum and optimize results.