Summer is just around the corner, which means it’s time to get ready for swimsuit weather. That also means it’s time to get our bodies ready to essentially go on public display. You might notice that you’ve picked up some new stretch marks, or maybe older stretch marks are becoming more prominent.
Stretch marks are perfectly normal and shouldn’t be a cause of major insecurities. But if you want to boost your self-confidence, there are some natural options out there designed to help you achieve your goals – safely and effectively.
Stretch marks are just a part of life. We all have them. They can appear on your stomach, thighs, arms, butt, hips, or chest to name a few places. They look like small lines or streaks across the skin that are usually red, brown, pink, black, purple, or silver. Stretch marks are essentially scarring on the skin due to an abrupt change that causes the collagen and elastin to rupture.
Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body and acts as a connector between tissues and the major parts of your bone, skin, muscles, tendons, and cartilage1. Collagen provides rigidity and strength to the skin. Elastin is another protein that is responsible for elasticity and flexibility in the skin.
With a sudden change in environment, these two proteins can snap and create a stretch mark on the body.
Stretch marks are caused by many different factors, while some are in your control, others are not. Here are the most common causes of stretch marks:
- Having a genetic history of stretch marks: Unfortunately, having specific genes in your body can increase the likelihood or severity of stretch marks you get.
- Being pregnant: The rapid growth of skin during pregnancy can lead to stretch marks. Studies show that the stretch marks may be worse the younger you are, as well2.
- Rapid growth spurt during adolescence: Any rapid growth spurts cause the skin and muscles to expand, leading to the potential rupture of your protein cells and causing stretch marks.
- Rapidly gaining or losing weight: Both excessive weight gain and loss can lead to stretch marks as your body adjusts to the new weight and size.
- Having breast enlargement surgery: The quick enlargement may impact the skin cells to lead to stretch marks.
- Frequent exercising: Rapidly growing muscles can affect the skin that surrounds them and lead to stretch marks.
- Genetic disorder: A disorder, like Cushing’s syndrome or Marfan syndrome, is linked to stretch marks.
If you are not a fan of your stretch marks or the ones you currently have, keep this list in mind as you adjust your diet or exercise routine.
Stretch marks aren’t a cause for major concern. They may be asthetically displeasing to you or make you feel uncomfortable in certain situations, but stretch marks are not a health risk. While stretch marks can gradually fade with time, they won’t go away completely on their own.
Society is increasingly becoming more accepting of different body shapes and size. Now is the time to embrace your body and any perceived imperfection you carry. That being said, if you want to try to get rid of stretch marks for your comfort, there are many natural ways to do so..
If you have stretch marks and you just don’t love them, there are some options available that range from simple home remedies to more expensive medical treatments.
Whichever route you decide to take, it’s important to note that the earlier you catch the stretch marks and begin treatment, the more effective it may be. Another important thing to note is that while many stretch marks may fade with time, everyone’s body is different. There is no one definite way to eliminate stretch marks completely for everyone.
Here are a few of the common remedies, treatments, and creams that may help with stretch marks:
This is the easiest and most natural way to get rid of stretch marks. While it isn’t always effective, exfoliating your skin helps by removing dead skin and leading to more rejuvenated skin underneath.
There is no lack of abundance in home remedies for stretch marks. A simple search online will yield hundreds of different home remedies that people swear by. Some common ingredients found to soothe stretch marks are:
- Aloe Vera
- Coconut Oil
- Hyaluronic Acid
Nut oils are proven to be effective nourishers for the skin and they are shown to help relieve the itching that sometimes comes with fresh stretch marks. Many people mix Coconut oil with aloe vera and rub it into the stretch mark. The act of rubbing over stretch marks is proven to be beneficial, as the pressure on the skin brings more blood flow to that particular area.
Hyaluronic acid is naturally produced in your body and plays a key role in the production of collagen. You’ll find hyaluronic acid in a lot of skin treatments, but you’re also able to find it on your own to use in your own home remedy.
There are a lot of different home remedies out there for a lot of different skin types. Make sure if you go this route to use ingredients that are safe for your body type.
Topical creams are perhaps the most affordable and easiest option to tackle the battle with your stretch marks. You can find over the country creams or prescription creams that lighten and balance the skin where the stretch marks are.
There are a lot of options out there in regards to topical creams, but one of our absolute favorites is Intensive Skinception Stretch Mark Therapy from Leading Edge Health. This particle cream is packed full of proven ingredients to help boost collagen activity in your skin and successfully lighten stretch marks that come from weight gain/loss, pregnancy, or any source related to rapid weight/gain loss.
We also love Skinception Stretch Mark Therapy because it’s relatively fast to see results. You can notice the fading shortly after you begin applying the cream and takes only 2 or 3 months to see the stretch marks fade almost immediately.
Microneedling is just as the name suggests. It is a process that consists of using tiny pricks in the skin to stimulate collagen and elastin production. Microneedling helps smooth out the texture associated with stretch marks and even out the skin tone.
This treatment is effective in the treatment of stretch marks3, although it generally takes several treatments over a couple of months to take effect.
Microdermabrasion is a popular, safe, and effective method to treat stretch marks. This method is basically exfoliation of the skin brought to maximized levels. During the treatment, a handheld device is held over the stretch mark that sprays tiny exfoliating crystals over the skin. This eliminates dead skin cells and helps restore the skin.
Microdermabrasion generally takes several sessions, and some dermatologists will even suggest 10+ sessions for continued results.
Laser therapy is a very popular form of treatment for stretch marks. This method is effective in making the pigmentation of the stretch marks blend with the skin around them. The laser penetrates your skin, which then leads to regeneration of the skin.
There are several different forms of laser therapy to help with skin conditions, so it’s important to talk with your dermatologist or doctor before choosing. This treatment also takes several sessions to see results.
This is the most extreme and expensive form of treatment for stretch marks. You would generally look into cosmetic surgery, such as a tummy tuck if you are looking to not only remove the stretch marks but also remove the excess skin that comes with it.
While this option might not be for everyone, it is certainly helpful when it comes to completely eliminating the stretch marks while making other changes to your body.
So, you already have bothersome stretch marks, and wat to minimize them quickly and effectively. The easiest route to take for fast results is definitely a topical cream. They’re entirely painless and can be applied from the comfort of your own home
In addition, stretch mark creams contain the exact dosages of clinically-proven ingredients. You’re essentially taking the guesswork out of those home remedies we discussed earlier.
There’s really no sure-fire way to guarantee the elimination of stretch marks. One of the best things you can do to your body if you don’t want stretch marks is to try your best to avoid them. Maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine can work wonders for your skin. If you take care of your body, your body will take care of you.
Here are some healthy tips for the prevention of stretch marks:
We’ve already talked about how stretch markets are often a product of rapid weight gain or loss. To avoid stretch marks, and any other health complications that might come with rapid weight fluctuations, try to keep your weight at a healthy medium for your body.
By treating stretch marks immediately, it is much easier to eliminate them entirely. The longer stretch marks stay on the body, the more difficult it is to erase or treat them as they darken in your skin.
By drinking lots of water and moisturizing often, you are keeping your skin soft and healthy. Soft skin is much less likely to develop stretch marks than dry or brittle skin.
Vitamin C is crucial for the production of collagen, which is shown to not only help in the prevention of wrinkles but also with stretch marks. Citrus food, such as oranges and pineapple, are rich in Vitamin C.
While there isn’t as much research available on the connection between Vitamin D and stretch marks, Vitamin D is known to help keep the skin healthy and lively looking. Get enough sun to energize the skin and keep it working properly (but also remember to always wear sunscreen).
Make sure enough Zinc is in your diet. Zinc helps reduce inflammation and is essential in the wound healing process. Fish and nuts are rich in Zinc.
Stretch marks seem unavoidable during pregnancy, but they can certainly be reduced by maintaining a healthy weight throughout the pregnancy. It is recommended that women at a normal weight gain 25-35 pounds during pregnancy and women who are overweight gain 15-25 pounds4.
So many health problems stem from cigarette smoke. Smoking reduces blood flow to the skin, which means your skin is not getting the oxygen it needs to repair itself. Smoking also has chemicals that break down the collagen and elastin particles in your skin.
Stretch marks shouldn’t be the end of the world. We all have stretch marks. Stretch marks can even be beautiful, especially if as a result of pregnancy or a long journey you went through. We should be happy and comfortable in our bodies, and stretch marks act only as a visualization of the journey of life.
Not everyone can feel so confident in their skin, however. Or you might want to forget pieces of the journey you went through that brought about the stretch marks on your skin. While it’s good to embrace your skin, it’s also understandable to want to rid yourself of any blemishes on it.
In regards to stretch marks, it’s important to maintain a healthy and balanced lifestyle to prevent these scars. And if all else fails, there are great topical creams (such as Skinception Intensive Stretch Mark Therapy), home remedies, and more advanced treatments to help you get where you want to be with your skin in mind.
Now that we understand our stretch marks and different options out there, it’s time to either embrace or erase those little scars and get ready for summer! Also we have, “10 Spring Health Tips To Get a Head Start On Your Summer Body” to get in shape for this coming Summer!