The 7 top products that helped me manage my first trimester acne.

Two days before Christmas, we were blessed to find out that our family was growing in 2022. My eager and prepared ass got straight into gear, thinking about nursery décor, baby names, and everything else that comes into play when you first find out the exciting news. 

What I didn’t expect was having to revisit my early teen years and deal with first trimester acne

And boy, did that b**ch hang around! 

Watch: Speaking of the first trimester... here are the things pregnant people never say. Post continues below.

Video via Mamamia.

I want to preface this by saying my skin is generally on the dry side. It can be a little sensitive at times and my breakouts usually occur during my time of the month. 

Hormones are hard to control, so I knew I needed to work hard to manage the breakouts popping up on my face.  

During the first trimester, I was on a constant roller coaster, trying to keep up some sort of routine for my skin. For me, it became a confidence thing, so I became diligent every morning and night with my skincare. 

I KNOW this is not the case for everyone. What I lacked in cooking and keeping my house clean (because fatigue got me good), I made up for with my skin. 

I am also very well aware that these breakouts were a result of my hormones going wild (especially with twins growing inside me!) but I definitely found that taking action helped manage the areas so much more than sitting back and letting nature take its course. 

After so much trial and error, these are the products that worked for me.

I’ve broken the products into the real MVPs that worked their asses off every day/night, and the 'strong supports' that helped add a little extra brut when needed. 

The MVPs.

Mario Badescu Drying Lotion, $25.

Image: Mecca


Definitely a Youbie cult-favourite for most, good ol' Mario Badescu saved me from many emotional breakdowns early on. 

On my work-from-home days, I’d pop a little bit on during the day and the suckers would dry up over time. I often forgot that I had put it on and ended up through Maccas drive-thru one too many times... I’m sure the order taker was thrilled with my pink dots!

I found this also meant that I was less likely to be touching my face and picking at the spots with my filthy hands. It was also perfect for nighttime to target the pests that would just not go away! 

Asap Super B Serum, $105.

Image: Look Fantastic


Niacinamide has to be my favourite product for so many reasons. It really is a master of so many trades and targets a lot of skin concerns that I have in general. 

I knew my skin needed some support by splashing hydration back into my skin while aiding the redness I was getting from the breakouts as a result of inflammation. 

I’ve always been a lover and advocate of this product, and when used consistently (keyword: CONSISTENTLY), it bloody works! It takes time, but it’s really transformed my skin leading into my second trimester. 

COSRX Pimple Patches, $7.90.

IMage: Mecca

I’m not going to even talk too much about these because these should just be a staple in every single beauty cabinet! I found that not only did these really manage breakouts, BUT again, made me stop picking terribly at my spots during the day. 


What I loved most was the fact that I could wear them out and about without worrying too much about a random patch being seen on my face. 

Medik8 Bakuchiol Peptides, $87.

Image: Medik8


If you’re new to the world of bakuchiol, may I suggest you listen to a previous pod episode where this was spoken about? Not only is it a great alternative to vitamin A, but it’s also a product I’ve emptied a few times now and will repurchase again and again. 

I actually started using this product pre-pregnancy to see if this product was worth its price tag. I wanted to also see whether I was living in a fantasy land thinking that a plant-based alternative was going to work... I was sold within a couple of months and this has been my go-to retinol alternative option. 

Throughout my first trimester, and even to now, it has been key in helping manage my inflamed skin. I use this about two to three times a week. 

Now I know what you’re thinking... this is an anti-ageing product. What the heck has it got to do with your damn acne? 

Well, the effects of the bakuchiol helped reduce the acne scarring I was left with, as well as making my entire complexion just look and feel better. 

Trust me, in my first trimester, I was NOT sporting the natural pregnancy glow so many rave about. I was dull AF, and this helped bring some sort of love to my face. 

The strong supports.

COSRX Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask, $39.

Image: Mecca


This was such a random buy for me... and one I swear by now! The effects this product has made on my skin have been insane. 

It’s one of those products that leave your face feeling dewy and delicious once you put it on... up until you wake up and wash it off the next day. I found it also helped really add extra hydration into my key breakout areas, so would often use this as a spot mask to help aid the healing process. 

P.S. For the price, just go on and 'add to cart' now. You’ll be thanking me later!

Jojoba Company Jojoba Oil, $19.95.

Image: The Jojoba Company

This product needs no introduction! Another holy grail that I’ve been using for years now. 

I adore Jojoba Oil for its antibacterial properties and when things would get really bad with my breakouts, particularly around my chin and lip area, this was often the only product I used when I needed to give my skin a rest. 


I’ll say no more. 

Asap Liquid Platinum, $50.70.

Image: Adore Beauty

Finally, this was a relatively new product I started using just before falling pregnant and is one I have used sporadically during pregnancy. 

Packed with glycolic acid, I knew it’d be the perfect product to stand with me in line and fight this acne battle I was facing. I used the liquid platinum one to two times a fortnight, to avoid any risk of over-exfoliating while still navigating my newly pregnant skin. 

Now, I’m more confident to use it one to two times a week after building it up. 

In my skincare routine, while I still use a cleanser and moisturiser in addition to other random serums *cough* snail jizz *cough*, these products hands down helped me keep my acne at bay. 

As I mentioned, this is all blamed on my hormones. So I’m not going to expect the breakouts to go away. 

HOWEVER, I have seen such a difference when I put a proper, consistent routine in place. Tied in with smashing the water every day and being mindful of not eating crap for three, I think it’s helped in the best way possible! 

What are your go-to products for acne? Share with us in the comment section below.

Feature Image: Supplied/Despina O'Neill

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