Linea Nigra and Pregnancy

Linea nigra is one of the most common signs of pregnancy represented by a dark vertical line running through the belly. This brownish looking line is generally around a centimeter wide and runs from the pubis to umbilicus, while it can also be seen in between the pubic area to the top of bellybutton.

Generally, this vertical streak exists in most of the pregnant women, and is completely visible by around week 23 of pregnancy. It shows that path towards your motherhood and there are a lot of reasons to love the mark.

What causes linea nigra during pregnancy?

Skin color often tends to change during pregnancy and it goes on becoming dull every single week. Similar to other changes in the skin, the darkening of it is caused by increasing hormone levels during the second and third trimester period. During the process, a brownish looking dark stream called linea nigra is visible.

There’s another line named ‘linea alba’, which is white and runs down fro belly button in all human beings. Linea nigra in comparison to linea alba is brown/black and is visible only during the case of pregnancy in general.

Linea nigra during pregnancy is caused by the increase in melanocyte-stimulating hormone, i.e., the increase in the production of melanin is what’s responsible for it. Placenta gets more active during the period which adds darker pigmentation to women’s body also leading to darkening of nipples.

When does linea nigra appear during pregnancy?

Most pregnant women notice a dark line running through their belly during the period between first and the second trimester. Moms-to-be who are expecting twins or triplets will experience darkening of skins a little faster and it might appear during the early period in the first trimester.

However, not all pregnant women experience this hormone-induced darkening of skin. Researches have found that it’s common in around 75 percent women during pregnancy.

When does Linea nigra disappear?

The darker lines in belly is washed away gradually after the first few weeks of child birth. If you are breastfeeding your child, it’s normal to last for a few months. In general, it takes around a year for the dark pigment to be washed away completely.

Are there any risks with linea nigra?

Your baby is at no risk and is completely content inside your bump, even if you see these dark lines around your belly. The only problem associated with linea nigra is that it is more pronounced in women of ethnic groups who have darker skins. This is generally caused by hyper-pigmentation.

But, there’s no need to worry. It fades away slowly after the delivery of your baby.

How to predict if it’s a boy or a girl seeing at the linea nigra?

There are some fun old wive’s tales regarding linea nigra. If a women has brownish line running through the belly button, it’s a girl.

And if the dark line runs past the belly button to up near the ribs, it means that you are having a boy. However, there are no scientific theories or researches to back up this claim.

How to remove linea nigra during pregnancy?

It’s natural. So, there’s no way you can get rid of the dark line running through you belly completely. However, there are certain measures that you can take to protect your belly skin from darkening more.

  • Always wear protective clothes. This will also ensure warmth to your baby inside your stomach and keep you away from sunlight.
  • Use SPF 15 sunscreen lotion to protect your skin from direct exposure to sunlight.
  • Eat nutritious diets rich in Folic acid like orange juice, spinach, wheat, beans, asparagus, etc.
  • Apply lemon juice and some alcohol to your skin to lighten up the pigmentation.

There’s nothing that is worrisome about linea nigra during pregnancy. All you need to do is make sure you’re eating well and the mark will vanish in a few months after you give birth to your child.

2 responses to “Linea Nigra and Pregnancy”

  1. Swetha says:

    Why is it seen only in the midline

  2. jagruti says:


    I am not pregnant but still having that Linea nigra line below my stomach.
    My concern is, does it create any problem for conceiving baby.

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