- Nature’s Bounty Hair Skin & Nails
- What is biotin, anyway?
- Tell me: Does biotin work for hair growth?
- Does biotin have side effects?
- Should I even bother taking biotin?
- We Tried Biotin, And Here’s What Happened
- Applied Nutrition Longer Stronger Hair & Nails Dietary Supplement Soft-Gels60.0ea
- Are Prenatal Vitamins the Secret to Better Hair and Skin—Even If You’re Not Pregnant?
- Changes to Hair During Pregnancy
- Skin Changes to Expect During Pregnancy
- How Do Your Nails Change During Pregnancy?
- Other Surprising Changes You Can Expect
- Hair, Skin & Nails
- What is Hair, Skin & Nails?
- Important Information
- Before taking this medicine
- How should I take Hair, Skin & Nails?
- What happens if I miss a dose?
- What happens if I overdose?
- What should I avoid while taking Hair, Skin & Nails?
- Hair, Skin & Nails side effects
- What other drugs will affect Hair, Skin & Nails?
- Further information
- More about Hair, Skin & Nails (biotin)
Nature’s Bounty Hair Skin & Nails
Use exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Never take more than the recommended dose of a multivitamin. Avoid taking more than one multivitamin product at the same time unless your doctor tells you to. Taking similar vitamin products together can result in a vitamin overdose or serious side effects.
Many multivitamin products also contain minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, and zinc. Minerals (especially taken in large doses) can cause side effects such as tooth staining, increased urination, stomach bleeding, uneven heart rate, confusion, and muscle weakness or limp feeling. Read the label of any multivitamin product you take to make sure you are aware of what it contains.
Take your multivitamin with a full glass of water.
The chewable tablet must be chewed before you swallow it.
Place the sublingual tablet under your tongue and allow it to dissolve completely. Do not chew a sublingual tablet or swallow it whole.
Measure liquid medicine with the dosing syringe provided, or with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.
Use multivitamins regularly to get the most benefit. Get your prescription refilled before you run out of medicine completely.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the liquid medicine from freezing.
Store multivitamins in their original container. Storing multivitamins in a glass container can ruin the medication.
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222. An overdose of vitamins A, D, E, or K can cause serious or life-threatening side effects. Certain minerals may also cause serious overdose symptoms if you take too much.
Overdose symptoms may include stomach pain, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, loss of appetite, hair loss, peeling skin, tingly feeling in or around your mouth, changes in menstrual periods, weight loss, severe headache, muscle or joint pain, severe back pain, blood in your urine, pale skin, and easy bruising or bleeding.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
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Latest Update: 11/9/2018, Version: 3.07
If you’ve been hanging out in your drugstore’s vitamin aisle lately, you’ve probably bumped into the newest cool kid on the block: biotin. Sellers of this beauty supplement make some pretty big promises. People claim it can give you hard-ass nails, hair that’s sleek AF, and flawless skin that could only otherwise be achieved by a Snap filter.
It’s cheap and easy to access over the counter (plus celebs like Kylie Jenner post #ads for biotin for hair on IG), so it comes as no surprise that women are popping biotin in droves.
But is this supplement really the godsend it claims to be? And are there any biotin side effects of biotin you should know about? Your guide, ahead.
What is biotin, anyway?
Biotin (a.k.a. vitamin B7 or H) is a B-complex vitamin that’s found in many foods, including eggs, milk, nuts, and grains, says Shaemah Khan, DO, diplomate of the American Osteopathic Board of Family Physicians and clinical associate of family medicine at University of Chicago Medicine. “One of the effects of biotin is that it helps turn the carbohydrates, fats, and proteins in the food you eat into the energy you need.”
Because it’s water-soluble (meaning it dissolves in water), excess biotin isn’t stored in your body; it actually just flushes right out of you when you pee. But if you follow a healthy, balanced diet, it’s likely you already get all the biotin you could possibly need, anyway. (More on recommended biotin levels later.)
But do you really need a ton of biotin to, ya know, live well? “Biotin deficiency is extremely rare because our bodies require only a very small amount, which is easily achieved if you’re eating a relatively normal American diet,” says Kimbre Zahn, MD, family medicine physician at Indiana University Health. “Additionally, our gut bacteria create biotin that gets absorbed systemically, .”
Aside from being touted as a magic remedy for thinning hair, brittle nails, and dry, itchy skin, biotin supplements can sometimes be prescribed by doctors for other reasons too, like easing disabilities brought on by multiple sclerosis, alleviating diabetes and diabetes-related nerve damage, or encouraging baby growth and development during pregnancy, according to the National Library of Medicine.
Tell me: Does biotin work for hair growth?
Don’t get toooo excited. A few studies point to biotin as an effective supplement for hair growth, but the cold, hard truth is that there isn’t much scientific proof to show just how effective it really is at treating any of these health conditions—or whether there are long-term benefits to the dietary supplement.
“While there are some preliminary studies that may suggest a benefit , overall there is a lack of evidence to support these claims,” says Dr. Zahn.
Does biotin have side effects?
Truth is, you’re most likely never going to hear about someone ODing on biotin. It almost never happens. “Side effects from having a high dose or overdose of biotin are rare,” says Dr. Khan. “Because it is so easily excreted in urine and feces, the body can simply get rid of any excess.”
However, hair, skin, and nails supplements do come with one warning: Even in small amounts of biotin, one of the side effects of biotin is that it can sometimes totally screw with your lab test results. This is especially true if you’re testing for issues with your thyroid or hormone levels, cardiac troponin levels (used to diagnose heart attacks), or vitamin D levels. This could lead to bogus results and misdiagnosis, which could potentially be dangerous or lead you to worry or spend money on medical procedures or meds unnecessarily.
“The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) further warns that the biotin effect on the monitoring of cardiac troponin has resulted in at least one death due to a falsely reported low results,” says Michelle Galant, MD, dermatologist at Stanford Health Care.
If you do take biotin, keep this in mind the next time your doc orders a routine lab test. “It’s best to disclose to your doctor and dietitian which supplements you are taking to avoid misdiagnosing a medical condition,” says Sandra Arévalo, RDN, spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the American Association for Diabetes Educators, and director of nutrition services outreach for the community pediatrics programs at Montefiore Hospital.
There’s no hard evidence that says exactly how long biotin stays in your system after you take it, so your doctor might recommend you stop taking the supplement a few days before you head to the lab.
Another potential biotin side effect? While it’s supposed to strengthen hair, skin and nails, it could cause a skin rash if you’re taking large amounts of biotin. See your doctor if you develop a rash after taking biotin or increasing your dose. It should resolve itself if you lower the amount of biotin you’re taking or stop taking the supplement altogether.
Should I even bother taking biotin?
Honestly, probs not. Thanks to its lack of scientific backup and its reputation as a lab test saboteur, biotin isn’t generally recommended by most doctors. But if you still want to take it anyway, just make sure you’re buying a reputable brand (look for the “USP verified” on the label), and are aware of the side effects.
In terms of how much biotin you need, the recommended “adequate intake” (AI) level for biotin is up to 30 micrograms (mcg) for women 19 years old and up, says Arévalo. “Pregnant women should consume 30 mcg; 35 if nursing,” Arévalo adds.
But remember: If you are eating a healthy diet that includes meats, seeds, nuts, and vegetables, you are most likely reaching this intake already, and the biotin side effects might not be worth it. “If you are skipping certain foods or food groups, it will be good to talk to a registered dietitian to help you find which nutrients you might be deficient in, and whether you need to supplement or just eat more of other foods,” says Arévalo.
Kristin Canning Kristin Canning is the associate editor at Women’s Health, where she covers fitness, health, mental health, sex and relationships, nutrition, active travel and wellness entrepreneurs.
We Tried Biotin, And Here’s What Happened
Many hair products promise longer, thicker strands, but the fact is, anything applied topically can only create the appearance of a thicker mane. If you want to actually get more volume, you have to make changes from the inside out.
We often overlook diet and health when it comes to our beauty regimens, but they play a huge role in the look and feel of our hair and skin. One symptom of having a (very rare)biotin deficiency might be thinning hair (or hair loss), so taking biotin in that case might correct that. But, for the average person who isn’t deficient, taking extra biotin probably won’t do very much.
Although, so far, there has only been weak scientific evidence to connect vitamin H, commonly known as biotin, with improvements in hair, skin, and nails, many women are declaring it as a wonder drug, claiming supplement consumption has led to faster hair growth, thicker strands, and stronger nails. In fact, there’s evidence that it helps with nail growth, but it’s inconclusive as far as hair.
Supplements and their claims aren’t regulated by the FDA, but anecdotally biotin has been making the rounds with varying results in our curly community for years. In the NaturallyCurly offices, we’ll try just about anything once (some advice: Banana is very difficult to get out of hair), so our team put biotin to the test, and this is what happened. We also reached out to our Instagram community about their biotin results, and here’s what they had to say.
Which biotin product did you take, and for how long?
“I’ve tried biotin on and off for years. Most recently, I bought it from Walmart and it was just plain, generic-brand biotin. I have also taken Hairfinity (2,500 mcg of biotin) and Hair Essentials (350 mcg of biotin) for less than a month each time.”
Why did you decide to start taking biotin?
“My goal with biotin was longer and faster hair growth, length retention, and healthier skin and nails. However, I don’t think I used any of them long enough to notice any results in terms of hair growth or skin and nail health, because each time I tried it, I began to break out, which made me stop taking it.
“To be fair, Hairfinity and Hair Essentials also have MSM in them, and I’m almost certain that MSM makes me break out. But, I still had similar results with the plain-biotin supplement. If this sounds like your skin and you’re worried about breakouts, I would recommend you drink lots of water throughout the day while you are taking biotin. In my experience, I would need at least nine cups of water; more when I was active or exercising.”
What were your results?
“I don’t think I stuck with it long enough to see results.”
“I took three tablets of Nature’s Bounty Extra Strength Hair, Skin, & Nails per day, about 5,000 mcg of biotin. I’ve done this off and on for about four years now. Each time I do this, I take it consistently for a few months at a time.”
“I started taking biotin after noticing I was losing a lot of hair during washing and styling. I talked with my hairdresser about my concerns that I was thinning and the possible reasons for it. This was during college, and we deduced that it was primarily stress-related. She recommended that I take biotin. My goal was just to strengthen my hair, as well as promote growth.”
“After about a month of taking biotin, I noticed a decent amount of new growth — at the crown of my head, specifically. There were a lot of baby hairs popping up. I also noticed that I was losing fewer strands after washing and styling, which was really exciting. It was overall a positive experience with my hair, but not so positive with my skin. I didn’t have any major problems with my skin, but going from having fairly clear skin to having a few pimples pop up here and there was unwanted.
“Although I may have broken out a little more than usual, it wasn’t enough to deter me from continuing to take it. My hair was becoming stronger and fuller, which was the goal. I didn’t notice a real difference with my nails.”
How long did it take for you to see results?
“It took me about two to three months to really notice a difference, especially with the thickness of my ponytail. My hair just felt stronger and fuller. I was clearly losing less hair, as well as growing new hair.”
Naturally Curly Instagram Followers
“I took Central Market biotin tablets, one a day at 10,000 mcg. I only took it for about three weeks and it was a mess!”
“I started taking them after hearing reports of better looking skin, and longer, thicker hair. I didn’t really need longer hair; my hair was already long enough for me, but I was hoping for fuller hair.”
“I didn’t notice a positive difference in any category: hair, skin, or nails. My hair didn’t grow or become thicker. My skin didn’t become clearer or suppler. Actually, my skin broke out in cystic acne, which I’ve never had before. This terrible side effect is the number-one reason I stopped using it. I hear my results are not atypical. I have a few friends that experienced the same thing. On the other hand, my mother has been taking the same biotin tablets in the same dosage with completely different results (the results I was expecting to see).”
“I was about one-and-a-half weeks into taking them when my skin started to flip out. I took it for a total of three weeks before giving it up.”
“I took Nature Made Biotin, 2,500 mcg twice a day, for three weeks.”
“I wanted to stimulate growth and thicken my strands. My cousin is in her 60s, and when she used biotin she went from low-density to extremely high-density strands, so I’ve seen it work for others — just not for me.”
“I had pimples all over my cheeks, and I noticed my body hair was thicker…only my body hair. There was a clear line of demarcation where the new thickness began, so it worked for every part of my body but my scalp. My hair continued to grow at the same rate, with no signs of thickness on my scalp. Just imagine how mad I was.”
“I broke out within the first week. I continued to take it for a couple more weeks, but the side effects just weren’t worth it to me.”
“I took one capsule of Nature’s Bounty 10,000 mcg daily. I used it consistently for three consecutive months.”
“I was on a chemotherapy-like treatment that was causing my edges to thin, so I read up on all of the hair-growth benefits of biotin and checked with my primary-care physician before giving it a try.”
“I felt nauseous every day for about a week, but I knew that this reaction is expected when taking a new medication or supplement. However, the feeling didn’t get any better with time. Then, I started breaking out in cold sweats, and hives would appear on my chest for minutes at a time. This happened throughout the day with no warning.”
“Unfortunately, I did not notice any results as far as hair growth is concerned. However, my nails did become stronger. The negative side effects began within the first week. While biotin deficiency has been linked to hair loss, biotin is found in the food we eat, and the body naturally produces biotin, so it is actually very rare to have this deficiency.
“You only need a small amount of biotin, and if you have a balanced diet, chances are you’re already reaching your daily intake of about 30 to 100 mcg. If you’re considering taking biotin supplements, we recommend checking with your doctor first to make sure it won’t interact with any other medications you may be taking, especially since many people have experienced such challenging and uncomfortable side effects.”
That is how we reacted to biotin, but we want to know: have you tried it? What were your results?
Applied Nutrition Longer Stronger Hair & Nails Dietary Supplement Soft-Gels60.0ea
Superior levels of Silica & Biotin
Experience the Radiance, Shine & Strength Your Hair & Nails Deserve with our Superior Nutrient-Rich Formula!*
- Advanced Strength & Protection with Collagen & Horsetail*
- Nutrient-Rich Formula For Radiant Texture & Vibrant Shine Plus Omega-6*
Plus Zinc, Vitamin C & Evening Primrose Oil For Healthy Youthful Looking Skin in Fast-Acting Liquid Soft-Gels!
Natural Beauty: More Than Just Skin Deep!
Even the finest shampoo and conditioner won’t fix hair that’s starving for nutrients; and expensive nail polish will only hide dull, brittle nails. That’s because long, radiant hair and strong, healthy nails start from within. Longer Stronger Hair & Nails® is an exclusive nutrient-rich blend of vitamins, minerals and botanicals that can help you achieve a naturally vibrant & healthy-looking appearance.*
Combat the Signs of Aging*
Over time, the cumulative effects from sun exposure, environmental pollution, dehydration and poor dietary choices can wreck havoc on the body and its overall appearance. Taking proactive measures with Longer Stronger Hair & Nails to counter these damaging effects can not only improve the way you look, but also enhance the way you feel.* It’s never too late to restore that youthful vitality!*
Revitalizing Nutrient-Rich Formula*
A unique blend of botanicals & scientifically researched ingredients that nourish the body, rejuvenate the skin and support the growth and maintenance of healthy hair & nails.*
Required for specialized proteins that make up hair, skin and nails.*
A building block of connective tissue that provides elasticity and strength.*
- Horsetail Extract
Supplies a wide spectrum of minerals – including a full 14 mg of silica for structural support of hair and nails.*
- Evening Primrose Oil
A source of GLA Omega-6 fatty acids.*
- Vitamins A, C & E plus Calcium & Zinc
Provide nutritive and antioxidant support for improved cellular integrity.*
- Liquid Soft-Gels
An advanced nutrient delivery system.*
Applied Nutrition is committed to developing science-based products that exceed the highest standards for quality and purity. As a leader in innovation, we continuously strive to bring forward new ideas and groundbreaking formulas that enhance health and well-being.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
(Adult) take two (2) liquid soft-gels daily. Store in a cool, dry place.
Are Prenatal Vitamins the Secret to Better Hair and Skin—Even If You’re Not Pregnant?
It’s no secret that prenatal vitamins are packed with a slew of essential nutrients like folic acid, iron, calcium, vitamin D, and others that help support baby’s development and protect against or birth defects of the brain, spine, or spinal cord, called neural tube defects. But could they also deliver an admittedly less important but still appealing perk for non-pregnant women—longer, faster-growing hair and smoother skin?
Recently, it seems like everyone I talk to is taking prenatal vitamins for the beauty benefits. The trend appears to have gotten Hollywood’s stamp of approval, too. A quick Google search confirms that LeAnn Rimes, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Mindy Kaling all swear by prenatals for red carpet-ready strands. ” will not only scare your boyfriend, will make your hair grow faster, thicker, and keep your skin glow-y and smooth,” Kaling said a few years ago.
So should us non-pregnant folks be stocking up on prenatal vitamins at the pharmacy? After all, many reproductive-age women take prenatals when trying to conceive but before they’re actually pregnant. Doctors often recommend this, in fact, since neural tubes develop in the very earliest stages of pregnancy. But are there any long-term side effects to consider, or reasons you might want to stick to a regular multivitamin instead?
RELATED: 3 Things People Get Completely Wrong About Vitamin Supplements
We polled dermatologists, nutritionists, and a GI doc to find out what they think. Ava Shamban, MD, a Beverly Hills dermatologist and founder of SKINxFIVE, tells us that it’s probably OK for a non-pregnant woman to take prenatals, even though the vitamins contain more than the average non-pregnant woman might need. “They are calculated for the needs of a pregnant woman, not an elephant,” she says. Some people might notice a difference in their skin and hair after using them, she adds.
But other experts we spoke to warned against taking these pills when you’re not trying to conceive.
“For the first few months after having a baby—when you may not have time to eat a balanced diet and feel exhausted—taking prenatal vitamins is fine,” says Health’s contributing medical editor Roshini Rajapaksa, MD, an assistant professor of medicine at the NYU School of Medicine. “But long term, they have higher than necessary amounts of certain vitamins and minerals that can cause side effects.”
Two in particular to be aware of are iron and folic acid, Dr. Rajapaksa says. Some women can benefit from an iron supplement, such as young women with especially heavy periods and, of course, moms-to-be (the nutrient aids baby’s brain development and helps prevent iron deficiency anemia in pregnancy). But too much of this mineral can be a bad thing.
“Taking more iron than you need all the time can lead to constipation, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or worse,” says Cynthia Sass, RD, MPH, Health’s contributing nutrition editor.
Folic acid, too, can be dangerous in large amounts, and is “one of the most significant differences you’ll find in comparing a prenatal and regular multivitamin,” says Stephanie Middleberg, RD, a nutritionist based in New York City. This B vitamin is important during pregnancy because it helps prevent neural tube defects and pre-term birth. While you don’t have to worry about overdoing it on folate–the natural form of folic acid found in foods like fruits, veggies, and nuts–through diet, consuming too much in supplement form might mask a vitamin B12 deficiency or even up your risk of colorectal cancer, according to the National Institutes of Health.
RELATED: 21 Reasons Why You’re Losing Your Hair
Wendy Bazilian, DrPH, RD, a San Diego-based nutritionist and author of Eat Clean, Stay Lean ($22;amazon.com) tells us she does recommend prenatals to her female athlete clients since athletes tend to have a greater risk of low iron levels, as well as to women who think they might get pregnant soon. But she points out that other than folic acid, iron, and the essential fatty acid DHA, the vitamins and minerals in most prenatals are pretty standard. For that reason, “prenatals may not give an additional ‘boost’ above a regular quality multivitamin,” she notes.
If you’re after longer hair, Debra Jaliman, MD, a dermatologist based in New York City, recommends a daily biotin supplement for non-pregnant women instead. She suggests one that contains 2.5 milligrams (2,500 micrograms) of the B vitamin, such as Nature Made High Potency Biotin Softgels ($14; amazon.com). Another option is collagen peptides, which Middleberg says she often recommends for healthier skin, hair, and nails. Our pick: Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides ($15; amazon.com), which you can easily mix into smoothies or juice.
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The bottom line? While some people may notice faster-growing hair from taking prenatals, it’s not necessarily a good idea to take high levels of vitamins you don’t need. Always consult your doctor before taking any new supplements to make sure they’re right for you, and look for reputable brands with not too many extra filler ingredients, Bazilian says. Most importantly, don’t forget to drink enough water, get plenty of sleep, manage your stress, and fill your plate with lots of fresh produce, healthy fats, lean proteins, and fiber—all are key to a healthy body inside and out.
“It may not be as easy as popping a pill, but a healthy lifestyle will benefit you in numerous ways without posing unnecessary risks,” says Sass.
From the moment you notice your missed period, things are going to be different. Pregnancy is an exciting time, but it can also be scary and, at times, confusing.
Not only will you find yourself making preparations to bring new life into the world, but you’ll be dealing with some unexpected changes in your body as well.
Over the coming weeks, your belly will start to grow, and other body parts may swell along with it. Your hormones will be in a tizzy, and you’ll find that certain foods and smells either send you into ravenous hunger or running for the bathroom.
The hormonal fluctuations that come with pregnancy affect more than just your taste buds — they also affect your hair, skin and nails. Keep reading to learn what changes you can expect during pregnancy.
Changes to Hair During Pregnancy
Your hair grows in a predictable cycle, but pregnancy hormones can interrupt that cycle and cause some unexpected changes.
Healthy hair grows at a rate of about a half inch per month, growing for a period of three to five years before going into a resting phase for two to three months. After the resting phase, the hair falls out and the entire cycle repeats. During pregnancy, your hair may remain in the growth cycle longer than usual, due to an increase in estrogen hormone, making your hair appear thicker.
Unfortunately, some women experience the opposite during pregnancy — increased estrogen levels cause hair to move prematurely from the growing into the resting phase. During this time, you may experience reduced growth and increased hair shedding.
After delivery, estrogen levels return to normal and hairs in the resting phase may fall out. This results in a condition called telogen effluvium, and it usually happens between one and five months following delivery. Most women find that this increase in hair loss is temporary and hair resumes its normal growth pattern by the time the baby reaches 12 months old.
To keep your hair healthy during pregnancy, here are some simple things you can do:
- Don’t wear your hair in tight styles such as cornrows, weaves and braids to avoid putting excess strain on the hair, increasing hair loss.
- Use shampoos and conditioners that contain hair-supporting nutrients like biotin, silica and vitamin E.
- Eat a balanced diet high in fruits and vegetables because they contain flavonoids and antioxidants that protect the hair follicles.
- Be careful with your hair when it is wet because it can be fragile. Use a wide-toothed comb when brushing wet hair and use the cool setting on your hairdryer.
- Massage warm coconut or sesame oil into your scalp two to three times a week to stimulate growth and reduce hair fall.
In addition to following the tips above, you may also want to avoid dyeing your hair while pregnant. There is no conclusive evidence to show that hair dye is dangerous for babies and your hair is unlikely to absorb enough chemicals to affect you or your baby. Even so, you may want to avoid chemical hair products for at least the first trimester.
Skin Changes to Expect During Pregnancy
Pregnant women are often said to have a glow about them, but where does it come from?
When you become pregnant, your blood volume increases to provide extra blood flow to the uterus and to the developing fetus. Increased blood flow brings more blood to the vessels in your skin and increases secretions in the oil glands. These things, combined with slight fluid retention, stretching skin and hot flashes, create that pregnancy glow.
While many women experience improvements in their skin during pregnancy, some women are not so lucky. Some women find that their skin becomes drier and more prone to breakouts. Many women even find that their skin darkens overall, possibly due to an increase in estrogen and melanocyte-stimulating hormone levels.
Some other skin changes you may experience during pregnancy include the following:
- Stretch Marks — These appear as pink or purple lines that develop on the belly, breasts, hips and legs. The exact cause for stretch marks is unknown but has something to do with pregnancy hormones and skin stretching. Some studies have shown that skin creams containing vitamin E, menthol and collagen-elastin hydrolysates may help reduce the development of stretch marks.
- Chloasma — Between 50 percent and 70 percent of pregnant women experience increased pigmentation on the cheeks, nose and chin in the form of brown or yellow patches. To reduce the risk of chloasma, avoid photosensitizing skincare products and use sunscreen at least SPF 50.
- Hyperpigmentation — While some women develop chloasma on the face, others experience hyperpigmentation on the nipples, external genitalia and anal region caused by an increase in melanocytes related to pregnancy hormones.
- Acne — During pregnancy, the sebaceous glands in the skin produce more oil, increasing the risk for acne. Try using topical skin care products made with glycolic acid or alpha hydroxy acid.
- Heat Rash — Changing hormones and an increase in body weight can lead to an increase in body temperature. Many women experience hot flashes or heat rashes during pregnancy as a result.
Because your skin will be changing throughout the course of your pregnancy, you may need to make changes to your skincare routine.
Start each day with a gentle cleanser to remove excess oils. Next, apply a daily moisturizer that includes a broad-spectrum sunscreen of at least SPF 15. If you’re experiencing breakouts, try using topical products that contain glycolic acid, alpha hydroxy acid or witch hazel to calm things down.
Important Note: Retinoids are a common ingredient in anti-aging skin care products because they boost collagen production and speed cell turnover. Dermatologists do not recommend retinoids for pregnant women, however, because they have the potential to harm an unborn child. This is confirmed by a 2018 report filed by the European Medicines Agency.
How Do Your Nails Change During Pregnancy?
If you struggle with brittle nails, you may be in for a pleasant surprise. Pregnancy hormones cause many women to develop stronger, faster-growing nails. Unfortunately, some women experience the opposite — brittle nails prone to splitting and breaking.
The sudden influx of pregnancy hormones often causes increased nail growth but, for some women, that growth is accompanied by groove formation, brittleness and onycholysis (separation of the nail from the nail bed). Fortunately, these changes are usually temporary, and your nails should go back to normal after you’ve given birth. But what can you do in the meantime?
Here are some simple tips for healthy nails during pregnancy:
- Eat a balanced diet to provide your body with the nutrients it needs to grow strong nails.
- Keep taking your pregnancy vitamins, being sure to include nail-supporting nutrients like biotin.
- Include natural sources of biotin in your diet such as eggs, nuts, mushrooms, peas, avocado, milk, bananas and whole grains.
- Avoid using solvent-based nail products (such as nail polish removers) because they can dry your nails out even more.
- Keep your nails short, so they’re less likely to snag on something and break.
- Wear rubber gloves when washing dishes or cleaning around the house to protect your skin and nails from harsh chemicals.
- Push back your cuticles when painting or buffing your nails instead of cutting them.
Pregnancy can be a stressful time when you feel like you’re not in control of your own body. Taking a day to pamper yourself at the spa is a great way to relax and unwind. Avoid poorly ventilated nail salons and make sure the salon follows standard sanitization practices to reduce the risk for bacterial infection.
Other Surprising Changes You Can Expect
Being prepared for changes to your hair, skin and nails during pregnancy can make those changes a little easier to deal with. But keep in mind that 40 weeks is a long time, and you’re bound to experience some other changes, as well.
Here are some other surprising changes you can expect during pregnancy:
- You’ll develop a nesting instinct. As your due date draws near, you’ll find yourself cleaning the house from top to bottom, paying attention to details you never noticed before.
- You may notice changes in your memory and concentration. During the first trimester, fatigue and morning sickness can really wear you out, but you may still have trouble with concentration and forgetfulness even if you are well-rested — a term affectionately known to some researchers as “Baby Brain.”
- You’ll experience symptoms similar to PMS. If you experience symptoms of premenstrual syndrome normally, you’re more likely to experience symptoms like breast tenderness and mood swings during pregnancy.
- You may need to buy new bras. Increased breast size is one of the first physical signs of pregnancy, and your bra size is likely to change several times throughout your pregnancy due to higher levels of estrogen and progesterone, as well as increased lung capacity.
- You’ll find that your joints are a little laxer. As your body prepares to give birth, it produces the hormone relaxin, which loosens the ligaments in your body. This makes your joints a little less stable, so you may be more prone to injury.
- You may develop varicose veins. Your veins may become enlarged by pregnancy hormones, and varicose veins can form when blood pools in those veins. Varicose veins usually go away after birth, but you can prevent them by wearing loose-fitting clothing, wearing support hose and avoiding standing or sitting for long periods of time.
- You’ll experience heartburn like never before. During pregnancy, the muscles that break down food become more relaxed, and food stays in your stomach longer so you can absorb all of the nutrients. This can worsen existing heartburn or cause it to develop.
Becoming pregnant brings on a whirlwind of change. Though some of those changes can be unpleasant or downright uncomfortable, it is all worth it for the privilege of bringing new life into the world.
Parenthood is a noble calling, and it comes with growing pains, but you don’t have to just sit back and watch your body change without your permission. Taking what you’ve learned here, you can prepare yourself for the inevitable changes to your hair, skin and nails, so you can sail through pregnancy looking and feeling your best.
Hair, Skin & Nails
Generic Name: biotin (oral) (BYE oh tin)
Brand Name: Appearex, Cyto B7, Hair, Skin & Nails
Medically reviewed by Drugs.com on Dec 6, 2019 – Written by Cerner Multum
- Side Effects
What is Hair, Skin & Nails?
Hair, Skin & Nails is a form of vitamin B found in foods. This medicine helps the body break down fats, carbohydrates, and proteins.
Hair, Skin & Nails has been used in alternative medicine as a likely effective aid in treating or preventing this medicine deficiency. This medicine deficiency can be caused by malnutrition, rapid weight loss, long-term tube feeding, and other medical conditions.
Hair, Skin & Nails has also been used to treat seborrhea (skin rash) in babies. However, research has shown that this medicine may not be effective in treating this condition.
Other uses not proven with research have included treating brittle nails or thinning hair, diabetes, nerve pain, and other conditions.
It is not certain whether Hair, Skin & Nails is effective in treating any medical condition. Medicinal use of this product has not been approved by the FDA. This medicine should not be used in place of medication prescribed for you by your doctor.
Hair, Skin & Nails is often sold as an herbal supplement. There are no regulated manufacturing standards in place for many herbal compounds and some marketed supplements have been found to be contaminated with toxic metals or other drugs. Herbal/health supplements should be purchased from a reliable source to minimize the risk of contamination.
Hair, Skin & Nails may also be used for purposes not listed in this product guide.
Follow all directions on the product label and package. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all your medical conditions, allergies, and all medicines you use.
Before taking this medicine
You should not use this product if you are allergic to Hair, Skin & Nails.
Before using Hair, Skin & Nails, talk to your healthcare provider. Your dose needs may be different:
if you have kidney disease;
if you have had stomach surgery; or
if you smoke.
Ask a doctor before using Hair, Skin & Nails if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Your dose needs may be different during pregnancy or while you are nursing.
Do not give any herbal/health supplement to a child without medical advice.
How should I take Hair, Skin & Nails?
When considering the use of herbal supplements, seek the advice of your doctor. You may also consider consulting a practitioner who is trained in the use of herbal/health supplements.
If you choose to use Hair, Skin & Nails, use it as directed on the package or as directed by your doctor, pharmacist, or other healthcare provider. Do not use more of this product than is recommended on the label.
Measure liquid medicine carefully. Use the dosing syringe provided, or use a medicine dose-measuring device (not a kitchen spoon).
Hair, Skin & Nails can cause false results with certain medical tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using this medicine.
The recommended dietary allowance of biotin increases with age. Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions. You may also consult the Office of Dietary Supplements of the National Institutes of Health, or the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Nutrient Database (formerly “Recommended Daily Allowances”) listings for more information.
It may take 3 to 6 months before the condition of your hair or nails improves.
Call your doctor if the condition you are treating with Hair, Skin & Nails does not improve, or if it gets worse while using this product.
After you stop using Hair, Skin & Nails, your nails will likely return to their original condition within 6 to 9 months.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra Hair, Skin & Nails to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Since Hair, Skin & Nails is a water-soluble vitamin, an overdose is unlikely to occur.
What should I avoid while taking Hair, Skin & Nails?
Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.
Hair, Skin & Nails side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Common side effects may include upset stomach or diarrhea.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What other drugs will affect Hair, Skin & Nails?
Taking certain medicines can lower your blood levels of biotin, which could affect your Hair, Skin & Nails dose needs. Ask a doctor or pharmacist before using this medicine with any other medications, especially:
This list is not complete. Other drugs may affect Hair, Skin & Nails, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible drug interactions are listed here.
- Consult with a licensed healthcare professional before using any herbal/health supplement. Whether you are treated by a medical doctor or a practitioner trained in the use of natural medicines/supplements, make sure all your healthcare providers know about all of your medical conditions and treatments.
Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
Copyright 1996-2018 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 4.02.
More about Hair, Skin & Nails (biotin)
- Side Effects
- En Español
- 6 Reviews
- Drug class: vitamins
- FDA Alerts (2)
Other brands: Appearex, Cyto B7
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- Dietary Supplementation