Skin changes during pregnancy not only cause changes in the internal body but also on the outer body. The outer body changes mainly refer to the skin changes, which may be seen in one or the other form.


Below are some of the common skin conditions, which women may develop during pregnancy.


  1. Stretch marks


Stretch marks are the most common type of skin condition seen in about 90% of Skin changes during pregnancy women during the third trimester. There are pink or red colored lines seen usually on the belly and/or breasts because the skin cannot cope up with the increasing body size, especially of the belly. Stretch marks can also be seen on the thighs, buttocks, and upper arms. The marks change to white or light grey color after the birth of the baby.



  1. Mask of pregnancy


Mask of pregnancy refers to the dark spots on the face that occur during pregnancy. The spots are common on the cheeks and the forehead. Nose and upper lips are other areas that are affected. Increase in the pigmentation of skin due to the hormonal changes during pregnancy leads to the formation of a mask of pregnancy. It is also called melisma and chloasma.


  1. Pregnancy Glow

It is well known that there is an increase in the volume of blood and blood flow during pregnancy. Also, hormonal changes lead to a release of oils. A combination of these two conditions increases the glow and radiance of face.


  1. Acne (pimples)


Pimples are a common problem during pregnancy. If not managed on time, these pimples can become severe. Increase in the level of hormones is the foremost cause of pimples during pregnancy. Increased hormonal secretion leads to an increased oil production from the oil glands. Women with a positive personal history of pimples are at a greater risk of getting them during pregnancy.



  1. Varicose veins


A varicose vein is defined as swelling in the veins, which bulge near the skin surface. The condition mostly affects the superficial veins of the legs. The veins appear as purple or blue in colour. The condition may further give rise to itching, pain and heaviness in the legs. The symptoms worsen in case the woman stands or sits in one position for long hours.

During pregnancy, as the baby grows there is an increase in the size of womb.  The increased size of the womb puts excess pressure on the large veins, especially on the right side of the body. This further causes an increase in pressure in the veins of the leg.



  1. Spider veins


These are minute, red coloured blood vessels that branch outward. An increase in blood circulation during pregnancy causes spider veins. The condition is also called spider nevi. Spider veins are commonly seen on the face, chest, neck and arms.



  1. Itching on the belly or abdomen


With the increase in the size of the belly, the skin around the belly tightens. This may cause itching and dryness during the later months of pregnancy. If not taken care of, the itching may spread to the arms and legs.



  1. Linea nigra


Linea nigra refers to a dark line that runs from the naval to the pubic bone. This line is anatomically present, but it becomes dark during pregnancy due to hormonal changes. The line appears during the second trimester.

There is no measure to prevent the formation of this dark line. The line fades away itself after the baby is born.


  1. Skin tags


These are small, loose skin growths. The tags are usually seen in the underarms and breasts. Similar to linea nigra, the tags disappear after pregnancy. However, if they don’t go away, then a minor surgery can be done.