EXCLUSIVE: Shahnaz Husain on the importance of grooming & self care during pregnancy

During pregnancy, women ought to do what they can to keep themselves well-groomed as this boosts self-confidence and has a psychological effect on their well being.
EXCLUSIVE: Shahnaz Husain on the importance of grooming & self care during pregnancy
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You should continue to pay attention to your appearance even during pregnancy. Have timely haircuts and styling, manicure and pedicure. Keep your hair, hands and feet well-groomed. Such treatments have a psychological effect too and boost self-confidence.

For informal wear, go for loose kurtas and maternity dresses that are loose for total comfort. If you neglect your grooming, thinking of your bulk, your morale and self-esteem can take a dive. And that is certainly not desirable. In fact, feeling good is so important during this time. Pay attention to your appearance and take trouble over it. Follow simple rules that detract from a bulky and heavy look. Remember a few rules of grooming to actually look slimmer. Create an illusion with colours and lines. Vertical lines help to look slimmer. Play down a heavy figure with a vertically striped top. Try a kurta with contrast trimming going vertically down, either at each side or at button-closing. Light colours emphasize, while dark colours, especially black, can help a person look slimmer. 

One-colour outfits in dark colours will be more flattering. Avoid bold and large prints or abstracts patterns. You can always add details, like a decorative “dupatta” or trimmings with mirror work, sequins or embroidery. Go for simple necklines, like V-neckline. Avoid round necklines, frills and collars. Wear straight sleeves, without darts or gathers. Avoid clinging fabrics and tight clothes. Wear straight sleeves.

Avoid getting too many maternity clothes, but you can buy accessories, like jewellery, bags, scarves, decorative chunni, to make your outfits look more dressy. After pregnancy and lactation, you will want to lose excess weight and get back into your pre-pregnancy clothes.

Comfort is an important factor for a pregnant woman. Avoid synthetic fabrics and be partial to natural ones. Synthetic fabrics can even cause skin irritation or rashes, especially if the weather is warm and humid. Comfort is also important while buying undergarments because sizes increase during pregnancy, so new underclothes in a larger will be needed. 

Changes in the breast also take place during pregnancy, with an increase in both size and weight. The breasts do not contain muscular tissue, so it is necessary to give them adequate support. Once they sag, it becomes almost impossible to regain their shape. Many women are reluctant to breast-feed their babies due to the fear that the breasts may lose their firmness. It is not breast-feeding, but rather inadequate support and excessive weight-gain during pregnancy, which can cause them to lose their shape. It is essential to wear well-fitting bras, to give adequate support.

Daily exercise helps. Here are some helpful exercises for the breasts.

  • Stand straight, keeping your hands on the shoulders. Rotate both shoulders, first clockwise and then anti-clockwise. 
  • Hold your arms forward, keep the elbows straight and hold a heavy book in each hand for about 15 to 20 seconds.

Both massage and exercise play important parts in body care during pregnancy. Daily massage, with good massage oils, like sesame seed (til) or olive oil, is recommended. Massage helps to improve blood circulation and muscle tone and also prevent loss of skin elasticity. However, take your doctor’s advice first for exercise and massage.

About the author: Shahnaz Husain is the founder of Shahnaz Husain cosmetics

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