Trying to get rid of stretch marks requires patience. These stubborn, unsightly marks can either be removed through an expensive surgical procedure or through DIY techniques that you can try at home. Whereas there are creams on the market, most of them are product claims and may leave you frustrated. However, from a personal experience, Bio Oil is the miracle cure that worked for me.
That said, there are preventive measures you can take to prevent them from occurring. Also, there are home remedies you can try at home to help in reducing their appearance. Here, we will look at both preventive and healing measures.
Meaning – what are they
Stretch marks are streaks or stripes that appear on the skin. These streaks are often referred to as scars as they appear as a result of distention, or tearing of the dermis layer in the skin. They commonly occur when the skin is stretched. As a result, they are common among pregnant women, and people who experience sudden weight changes. Young people undergoing puberty are also likely to develop these marks.
Stretch marks come in various forms. They can be reddish purple, white or silvery in appearance. Some may appear darker than the surrounding tissue or may have a lighter/more textured shade giving the appearance of lines stretched out on the skin. Old stretch marks tend to be silvery in appearance as opposed to new ones.
Are the various treatments effective?
When it comes to treatment, there is no definite, generally recommended a way of dealing with them. Treatment options in the market include laser treatment, microdermabrasion, and the derma roller skin needling procedure. There are products in the market designed for the treatment of these marks. However, if you are reading this article then it means you have had your fair share of trials and failure when it comes to getting rid of this marks. So where do we go from here?
Best way to get rid of stretch marks
According to Dr. Ava Shamban, a leading dermatologist in Los Angeles, there are people with a genetic predisposition to stretch marks. That said, getting them is simply not confined to pregnant women. Women who are not pregnant or have not experienced motherhood as well as men, all have the risk of developing these marks. In men, the appearance of these unsightly scars has to do with sudden weight loss or weight gain, as well as weight lifting in the gym leading to massive muscle growth.
So what are some of the best options to get rid of these unsightly marks that are common on your buttocks, thighs, arms, breasts, tummy, and calves?
a). Laser therapy
The best way to get rid of stretch marks, for now, appears to be laser therapy. This treatment approach is popular among celebrities including Kim Kardashian. Their appearance can be made lighter using several types of the laser such as the pulsed dye laser. Laser therapy is generally expensive (about $400 or more), but is the most effective approach for dealing with freshly made ones.
b). Topical treatments
There are a vast array of topical creams and moisturizers in the market that you can apply directly to the affected area. Some of the creams with the highest product reviews include bio oil, Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Cream, and the Dermatology Stretch mark cream. I am a witness to the efficacy of bio-oil. On the downside though, the cost of these products can easily add up which can be frustrating.
c). Home remedies
There are three key factors to consider when it comes to home remedies. They include water, exercise and massage therapy. Keeping your body hydrated is a great way for beating stretch marks as the water helps in the removal of toxins and in keeping the skin moisturized. Drinking at least 7-8 glasses daily keeps the body hydrated.
Regular exercise including swimming helps in toning the body. Exercise helps you get back to your normal weight and boosts the skin’s elasticity. As you exercise, you should moisturize your skin as a preventive measure or deal with already existing ones.
Opt for moisturizers containing vitamin E and A, cocoa butter and olive oil. Lastly, massage therapy entails the use of essential oils such as olive oil, coconut oil, Shea butter, and vitamin E. These oils promote skin health as they introduce nutrients to the damaged area of the skin. Whereas there is no way of permanently removing these scars or marks. These oils help enhance the appearance of the skin by reducing the streaks or marks.
Some people have also reported that the use of lemon juice can help lighten stretch marks and reduce their appearance.
Preventing them from appearing
I am a bit of a skeptic when it comes to preventing stretch marks. I have always seen them as a natural part of life, just like getting wrinkles or a cold from time to time. As a result, I have grown to accept my skin in a way that probably would make any celebrity spit at my audacity. That said, I have sought solace in virgin coconut oil.
According to the Organic Beauty Expert, regular use of oils such as coconut oil, olive oil, almond oil or Shea butter are effective at preventing and minimizing the appearance of stretch marks. These oils are laden with powerful antioxidants that help boost the skin’s collagen and rejuvenate the skin.
If you opt for topical treatments, then bear in mind that the best strategy for getting rid of these marks is to keep the skin hydrated. The more hydrated your skin is, the less the risk of developing these marks. Regular application of oils such as virgin/organic coconut oil help in preventing the existing stretch marks from becoming worse. You can go further and make your own serums such as a combination of coconut oil and olive oil, or a combination of coconut oil and vitamin E serum. Ingredients such as tretinoin and vitamin C boost the efficacy of the oil.
Patience is a virtue
There are those who are brave enough to wear their stretch marks as a badge of honor as proof that they overcame obesity. There are pregnant mothers who take these marks as the scars of love; proof that they carried their baby for nine months and came out of it alive. Most products in the market designed to treat these target women. As a consequence, there are countless of women who end up frustrated due to the minimal success or side effects of some of the products.
The truth is, there is no permanent way of getting rid of stretch marks. These are scars caused by the tearing of the connective tissue in the dermal layer. Most treatments simple conceal or minimize their appearance.
There are those who have benefitted from the use of essential oils such as olive oil, jojoba oil, and retinoid serums. However, the outcome of each treatment varies depending on the individual. There is a high risk that nothing may work as well as you had hoped. That said, you can try the home remedies. You can trace your progress by taking pics. If you notice from the pics that the marks are fading, then you are on the right track.
- The home stretch: stubborn stretch marks stood between Ning Chao and bikini season. Here, the kick-ass techniques that got rid of them for good.” Marie Claire, July 2008, p. 148+. General OneFile, http://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/A182524298/ITOF?u=pgcc_main&sid=ITOF&xid=c0fa645d. Accessed 11 Apr. 2018.
- Samuel Billings. The Big Book of Home Remedies, Lulu.com, 2013
- Wall St. cheat sheet: Can you get rid of stretch marks? (2015). . Chatham: Newstex. Retrieved from https://ezproxy.pgcc.edu/login?url=https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.pgcc.edu/docview/1747442433?accountid=13315