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6 ingredients to avoid during pregnancy

Now that we’ve all had a squeal-fest about Beyonce and her adorable pregnancy, I thought it would be a good time to share a few thoughts on preggo products. (And also one of the cutest maternity videos of all time. You’re welcome.)

Let’s start with the basics. Your OB will probably tell you to stay away from tuna fish, unpasteurized cheese, lunchmeat, sushi, caffeine, alcohol…the list goes on. But he or she probably won’t encourage you to stop washing your hair or putting on lotion just because you’ve got a bun in the oven–and you aren’t going to hear that from me, either.

There are more than enough things to worry about when you’re preggo, but one thing you can easily do for peace of mind is re-evaluate your cosmetics. After all, anything your body absorbs could potentially be absorbed by your little one, too.

Here are the top six ingredients to stay away from:

  • Mercury. It’s been discovered by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) in quite a few cosmetics…if you can’t eat tuna or raw fish out of concerns about exposure to mercury, you definitely don’t want to be absorbing them through your cosmetics. Sometimes it’s listed as the preservative thimerosal.
  • Lead. In 2007, the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics tested 33 popular brands of lipstick and found lead in 61 percent of them. The FDA has verified these findings but hasn’t taken action. Here’s a quote from the story: “Pregnant women and young children are particularly vulnerable to lead exposure, because lead easily crosses the placenta and enters the fetal brain where it can interfere with normal development,” said Dr. Sean Palfrey, a professor of pediatrics and public health at Boston University and the medical director of Boston’s Lead Poisoning Prevention Program.

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