If you’ve ever been pregnant, you’re likely very familiar with all of the hormonal changes that occur and how those changes affected you physically, emotionally, and mentally. One common symptom of pregnancy hormones is something dubbed “pregnancy nose.” Earlier this year, moms shared their own experiences with pregnancy nose on TikTok—and the videos are as funny as they are relatable.
Related: The new mama’s guide to pregnancy symptoms
Women everywhere shared TikToks that feature their “before and after” photos from pre-pregnancy and during/after pregnancy to show the stark differences in how their nose looks at each phase. In most cases, their noses do look noticeably larger during the later stages of pregnancy.
Some of the differences are subtle for some women, and for others, the difference is immediately noticeable. Couple those photos with hilarious TikTok sounds and songs, and voila, a trend has been born (pun intended.)
@ashleyhicks718 Pregnancy rlly humbled my a$$ #pregnacy #pregnancynose #pregnancynosechallenge #pregnanttiktok ♬ Devil Eyes – There I Ruined It
What is pregnancy nose?
“Pregnancy nose” is very much a real thing. Hormones, specifically estrogen, increase blood flow everywhere when you’re pregnant. They especially increase blood flow to mucus membranes of the body, which can cause swelling and puffiness in those areas. Obviously, our noses contain mucus membranes—this is why our noses can appear physically larger during pregnancy.
Pregnancy rhinitis is also caused by the inflammation of those same mucus membranes, which causes nasal congestion. If you’re pregnant, you may not notice a change in the appearance of your nose but you may certainly notice that you’re chronically congested in your nasal passages.
Related: 7 natural ways to treat allergies during pregnancy
So if you’re currently pregnant or have been pregnant, and your nose is or was the bane of your existence, please know that while it truly sucks to deal with—you’re far from alone.
A version of this story was originally published on Jan. 5, 2023. It has been updated.