Formulating for the Mother-To-Be

There is a new skin care niche in the personal care industry. Now that there are products specifically formulated for both genders and almost every race, a new sub-category has emerged--pregnant women. The days of slapping cocoa butter or shea butter on stretch marks is over, and emerging is a category of skin care formulated for the pre-birth and post-birth mom.

After a successful go-round this year with its baby line, Baby Bee, Burt’s Bees will be introducing a line formulated for pregnant women in 2007. Mama Bee is a line of three soothing body care formulas for pregnant women. The line includes Soothing Leg Crème, formulated with peppermint and rosemary oil; Belly Butter, formulated with shea butter and vitamin E; and Nourishing Baby Oil.

Also new to the mommy-to-be personal care market are products from Erbaviva. The company recently has released a lip balm formulated to ease morning sickness while moisturizing and protecting lips. Quease-ease is formulated with Mentha piperita (peppermint) oil and Zingiber officinalis (ginger) root extract, reportedly to fight off morning queasiness. The product also contains Butyrospermum parkii (shea butter), Cera alba (beeswax), Carthamus tinctorium (safflower) seed oil, Ricinus communis (castor) seed oil, Aniba rosaeodora (rosewood) wood oil, Lavandula angustifolia (lavender) flower oil, Citrus aurantium dulcis (orange) peel oil, Citrus reticulate (petitgrain) leaf oil, Rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) leaf extract and Melissa officinalis leaf oil.

Erbaviva also has introduced a balm as the answer to a common complaint from mothers-to-be. Refreshing Organic Foot Balm contains Citrus sinensis (grapefruit) peel oil and Cupressus semperivivrens (cypress) leaf/nut/stem oil to help stimulate circulation in feet and legs, while Cupressus semperivivrens (cypress) leaf/nut/stem oil, Zingiber officinalis (ginger) root extract and Lavandula angustifolia (lavender) flower oil relieve swollen feet and legs. The product also contains Butyrospermum parkii (shea butter) to treat stretch marks and other oils to moisturize skin.

Carol’s Daughter has recently added to its mother-to-be products. Sexy Belly is a body balm that claims to improve skins’elasticity to the belly, breasts and hips. The product also contains  shea butter, cocoa butter and jojoba oil to help cell regeneration and capillary circulation.

The surge of products for expectant mothers may be in part due to the growing popularity of natural and organic products. Companies that offer natural and organic products have recognized their appeal to expectant mothers who may question the safety of general skin care. But formulating products for mothers-to-be is not exactly easy. Apart from shea and cocoa butter, formulators must include ingredients that make their product truly inventive.

-Katie Schaefer, C&T magazine

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