Essential pregnancy tips for expectant mothers

Essential pregnancy tips for expectant mothers

Last night, the Duchess of Cambridge made her first appearance since announcing the news that she was pregnant with her third baby. Wearing a powder blue, lace dress from Temperley London, onlookers could see just the slightest hint of a bump. It's thought the Duchess is around 12 weeks pregnant, but has been suffering with Hyperemesis Gravidarum. 

While few women suffer with the condition, many are affected by morning sickness in some way. With this in mind, we asked fashion and beauty experts and founders of This Is Mothership, Gemma Breger and Sam Silver (both of whom are currently pregnant for the second time) to share their top pregnancy tips.

Gemma and Sam from This Is Mothership Credit: Courtesy of This Is Mothership

From battling morning sickness to replenishing with supplements, these are their tried and tested tricks... 

Sickness saviour 

According to fertility and pregnancy specialist Zita West, 70 percent of women suffer from morning sickness. "Gemma has throughout both of her pregnancies - and while it may not be hyperemesis gravidarum, for those that suffer it can still be debilitating," says Sam. "Gemma wasted weeks trying useless anti-sickness hacks before she came across these magic pills. Myrtle and Maude’s Peppermint Bon Bon’s, £6.99, enriched with B6 for an added energy boost, come in a handy tin for slipping into your handbag and help to settle her stomach whenever she feels a wave of nausea come over her."

Stretch class 

While some women are more predisposed to stretch marks, others can sail through the nine months without any. However, This Is Mothership firmly stand by the 'prevention is better than cure' ethos. "The fact remains that if you shower your bump in myriad oils and lotions, you’re not just arming it with the elasticity it needs to grow, but massaging it each night can help to build a bond between you and your baby," says Sam. 

Elemis Japanese Camelia Body Oil, £37

"Sam takes no chances here and swears by the concoction that worked for her through her first pregnancy: Elemis Japanese Camelia Body Oil, £37, or Weleda Stretch Mark Massage Oil, £12.37, with a liberal dose of Palmer's Cocoa Butter Lotion for Stretch Marks, £4.10, over the top," says Gemma. "Don’t forget to pay special attention to boobs, bum and thighs too where, sadly, expansion takes place." Both Sam and Gemma recommend Burt’s Bee’s Mama Bee Leg and Foot Cream, £12.99, if you're suffering with swollen legs and ankles, too. 

Scent switch up

Pregnancy can completely alter your sense of smell. As Gwyneth Paltrow once told Sam, “When I was pregnant, I couldn’t wear fragrance. I couldn’t smell anything. I couldn’t smell flowers; I was very sensitive to everything. I could smell orange juice from across the room and I remember thinking, "I will throw up." Before her first pregnancy, Sam wore deep, dark, figgy scents like Le Labo Santal and Armani Prive Figuier. "As soon as I fell pregnant, I couldn’t stomach them and my sense of smell was altered for good post-birth," says Sam. "I now prefer fresh, crisp scents like Jo Malone London Earl Grey and Cucumber rather than anything from my old fragrance wardrobe."

Jo Malone London Grapefruit Cologne, £44

If you’re pregnant and find that you can’t wear anything too cloying, look for something cleansing and refreshing instead. "Grapefruit oils have been found to relieve nausea as well as alleviate stress and boost circulation," says Gemma. "Fortunately there are plenty of single scents; simplicity bottled in the form of Neom Organics Energy Burst EDP, £49, Jo Malone London Grapefruit Cologne, £44, and Jo Loves Pomelo Cologne, £70, each every bit juicy, refreshing and simple as the other."

Tip: if you can’t bear the smell ‘on’ your skin, spritz a cloud in front of you and walk through it.

Little luxuries 

"When everything else feels like it’s ballooning out of control, your senses are in overload and you can’t do up your jeans, a little pampering is what you need," says Sam. "In these scenarios, as a consolation prize for all those horrid, cruel spells of nausea, we particularly advocate the kind of beauty treatments that usually seem too expensive and indulgent, ones that make you feel chic as you pull them out of your handbag." Your skin becomes drier during pregnancy thanks to hormone changes. "We often remedy this with facial moisturisers, but don’t forget about your hands and lips too," says Sam. 

"Avoid picking up any bugs by keeping your hands sanitized on public transport; Byredo Hand Sanitiser in Vetyver, £20, is the Rolls Royce of hand sanitisers, the Chanel 2.55 of anti-bac. The formula won’t dry your hands any further and the citrus scent won’t set your stomach off," says Gemma. 

La Mer The Lip Balm, £48

For those looking for a sumptuous hydrating hand cream, try Jo Malone London Vitamin E Hand Treatment, £42 - "The pomelo scent is perfect for during pregnancy," says Sam. "When it comes to your lips, in those puffy pregnant and post-pregnancy stages, nothing beats pulling La Mer’s Lipbalm, £50, out of your changing bag as you sip a cold coffee for boosting your mood. The minty, inoffensive taste won’t set you off. Pricier than your usual staples? Maybe. Worth their weight in gold as a pick me up? Every time."

Speedy skincare

Growing a baby is tiring work. "In the evenings we’re so desperate to crawl into bed that all pampering plans are forgotten just so that we can get our heads onto that pillow a few minutes faster," says Sam. "No beauty editor worth their salt will ever tell you to use a face wipe (they drag dirt around your face rather than remove it, no matter what you think you see on the wipe) but This Works In Transit No Traces, £17, are different." A tub full of super-soft face pads saturated in gentle rosewater, just one will remove an entire face of make-up and leave skin feeling fresh, like you’ve just had a mini facial. "Keep them by your bedside for those evenings when you’re so tired that even brushing your teeth seems like too much hassle," says Sam.

Supplementary support

Taking folic acid is drummed into you from the get-go, and is vital for the development of your un-born baby. If you have been trying to conceive, you should already have been taking it and usually it’s integrated into your pregnancy multi-vitamin. "Due to copious amounts of advertising, most of us, ourselves included, naturally gravitate towards Pregnacare but our midwives have advised us that any brand would do," says Gemma. "Pop into your local Holland and Barrett and have a look at the own brand formulas."