When Does Linea Nigra Appear? Know It All About The Famous Dark Line

Are you pregnant? Have you noticed a rather dark line in the center of your tummy, going from the belly button and pubis? That’s called linea nigra, Latin for “black line,” and it will stay there for a few months even after delivery.

If you want to know when does linea nigra appears, you can ask your ob-gyn or estimate it off about five to six months from your pregnancy.

Most mothers panic, especially the new ones, on what to do about it. But really, it’s harmless and just part of the natural birth process and the fact that your body is changing because of the hormonal imbalance.​


When Does The Line Usually Show Up?

As stated above, it typically starts in your fifth month or week 23 of your pregnancy. The line might be already there before pregnancy, but the color is so light that you might not notice it yourself. Before pregnancy, it’s usually called as linea alba or white line as opposed to getting darker during the fifth month.

Actually, the line is just dark brown but never black in nature, to begin with. It grows about a quarter or half an inch and goes darker near your labor period. Don’t worry; the line fades away after a couple of months anyway.

Here’s a Fun Fact: When Does Linea Nigra Appear?


 Because in the old times, most expecting mothers rely on their linea nigra to determine the gender of their child.  

  • If it goes up the navel, it’s a girl.
  • Once the line nearly reaches the ribs, they’ll expect a boy for that matter.

Of course, no scientific claim can give truth to that old wives’ tale.​

Why Is It Dark?


It’s part of your pregnancy’s hormonal changes, according to Health Line. It is believed that the melanocyte-stimulating hormone is responsible for a black streak in your tummy. It’s actually the same hormone that makes your areolas in your nipples darker.

Also, don’t you know that the same hormone also causes your skin and face to become darker too? This is called as chloasma or also known as the mask of pregnancy. What made your line to become darker is actually your placenta. It’s just one of those little changes in your body when you’re pregnant.

Women who have dark skin pigmentation tend to have darker linea nigra than fair-skinned women. Also, mothers who expose themselves to UV rays tend to have greater melanocyte hormone which leads to darker line nigra.

Women who are expecting twins or triplets may have darker lines and often see them as early in their first trimester because of their higher hormonal activities.

When Will It Go Away?

The same as asking “when does linea nigra appear?” you’ll also question when it disappears. The answer is short: soon.

Some women have experienced a faster-faded line while others wait a year for it to go away. More or less, it’ll just take you a few months after giving birth your baby.

However, many mothers also say their linea nigra never faded away. Is this true? Yes, it is. But don’t fret. Below are some tips to deal with your dark lines.

How Can You Lighten Your Linea Nigra?​


Since you’ll be wearing clothes most of the time, people won’t get to see it and judge your body. But if you really are conscious and wanted to tone down the dark lines, here are a few hints, then. Take note: You can never get rid of your linea nigra. It’s part of your body.

Apply Sunscreen

To lessen the UV rays hitting your skin, you can use sunscreen starting with SPF 30, according to Fit Pregnancy. Reapplying every two hours would be ideal for better sun protection and damaging skin effect of the climate. Be sure to carry one in your handbag.

Eat Folic-rich Food

Studies show that food rich in folic have a direct relation to skin pigmentation. Examples of food to chow down are broccoli, spinach, romaine lettuce, avocado and seeds and nuts. You can take this food daily in all mealtimes a day.

Wear Protective Clothing

Wearing of extra clothing beneath can protect your skin from having direct contact with the sun’s rays. Of course, it may be uncomfortable for you, but you get the gist.

Carry An Umbrella Or Sun Protective Gears

This one is simple. If you want to go out, bring your trusted parasol to avoid excessive exposure to the sun’s rays. Or, if your husband is not that busy, ask him to drive you to your destination.

Apply Concealers Or Foundation

If it can hide your acne, it can hide those marks. But make sure to ask your doctor if it’s safe to dab some of it to your stomach. Some lightening cream contains chemicals that will harm your baby.

It’s understandable why you’re quite conscious of your body at this stage. But there’s nothing wrong with having linea nigra. In fact, it’s all part of the beauty of pregnancy. You should be rather happy to know when does linea nigra appear in your body. For sure, your baby is developing rather significantly inside of you.

How To Cope Up With Your Linea Nigra


Are you conscious? Don’t be. This may be the perfect time to form a social group of mothers sharing your most intimate pregnancy details. We know you want it to disappear because of its unsightly matter, but we’re going to tell you why it’s best to embrace it.

Think that you’re all part of nature’s plan. This may sound ridiculous, but if you pair this up with your meditation class, you can finally think of something like: “This is nature’s doing. I was born through nature. Through nature, I will return. I am one with nature.” Don’t believe me? That’s what I tell myself.

You have a great story to tell to other mothers. If you have linea nigra, you can share to other mothers or support group of pregnant women of your own dark lines and how you’re dealing with it. You get that sense of belongingness with people who have experienced the same way as you do.

And when you have a friend or family member undergoing the same route as you do, you can share them tips on how to deal with their linea nigra as you do.

Just think that after giving birth it’ll fade away. And yes it does! A few months after birth, you’ll gradually see your line fading away. Though sometimes, most mothers see their lines disappear in a year or so. What else? Sometimes it never goes. Sadly, that’s true. But, what’s cool about it that it will serve as a memoir of your pregnancy.

After giving birth, you may now use cream or skin lightening treatments. If you have the money and time, you can try treatments that will reduce the darkening of your linea nigra. It’s a bit safer to do that once you’ve given birth to your child.

Make fun with it. Hey! If you’re that creative, you can actually create artistic images of your linea nigra. You can make funny Xs vs. O’s or a ship battle between two nations. Just have a great imagination and try to document every little art you've done with your tummy.

No Shame, Just Game!

Honestly, it's no problem living with linea nigra. Women shouldn’t make a fuss all about it at all. You’ll be surprised at having one, no doubt, but you can replace that ghastly face of yours to something of acceptance and joy if you love your dark lines.How about you?

How did you cope up with your dark lines?

Sarah Clark

Hi, I'm Sarah Clark. I like to write about mommies and their babies. Sometimes, even if I don’t, I like to hear stories from other mothers. I may not be an expert mommy by any means, but I am happy to share what works for mothers out there. I, for once, would like to build a community for mothers. And that's here in Giant Mommy.

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