How to Get Rid of Stretch Marks at Home
Stretch marks can occur for many reasons. Whether you’ve grown quickly, you’ve had a child, or your skin has stretched for another reason, stretch marks can cause annoyance, embarrassment, and sometimes even pain.
What causes stretch marks?
WebMD states that stretch marks are scars caused by the expansion of skin. The reasons for such expansion can be:
- Abnormal weight gain on belly, arms, and thighs;
- The physical skin’s stretching due to pregnancy;
- Genetic disorders;
- Cushing’s syndrome, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, and similar adrenal gland diseases;
- Puberty hormonal changes.
The abdominal area is mostly affected by stretch marks, but one can also expect to see stretch marks on legs, breasts, arms, buttocks and thighs. In some situations, stretch marks may look unattractive and this may cause distress. However, there are many cosmetic and natural remedies for a stretch mark removal.
The medical stretch mark treatment
WebMD and Mayo Clinic offer a few options for people who want to remove stretch marks with medications and medical procedures:
This method won’t remove stretch marks completely but can help fade them away and make them less noticeable. Keep in mind that the laser therapy can be very expensive. Additionally, you will need from 5 to 12 sessions of the laser therapy for stretch marks.
Cosmetic make-up (camouflage)
You can buy a so-called cosmetic “camouflage” in over the counter pharmacies. Basically, it is a make-up concealer for the body that can be waterproof. Such make-up will cover the stretch marks for 1-2 days but won’t remove them.
Special gels, creams, and lotions
Most beauty brands promote special products for stretch mark removal. However, the majority of these products are nothing more than regular skin moisturizers. Some creams are may do a small amount to heal a scar and can help restore the collagen production. The best FDA-approved titles for products that improve the look of stretch marks are prescription Retin-A or Tazorac gels/creams and the over the counter lotion Lac-Hydrin.
Home treatment for stretch marks with natural remedies
Instead of overpaying for beauty products that you don’t know will work or painful cosmetic surgeries, you can try to remove the marks with these effective and affordable DYI stretch mark remedies:
Apply potato juice for quick stretch mark prevention and treatment
Potato juice can restore the growth of skin cells. Take a medium-sized potato or sweet potato and cut it into thick slices. Rub one slice carefully on the stretch marks for 5 minutes. After the juice dries, rinse the affected area with warm water.
A stretch marks cure with Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera is known for its soothing properties. You can mix ¼ cup of natural Aloe Vera gel with oil from 10 vitamin A capsules and 10 vitamin E capsules. Gently rub the mixture on the marks until it is completely absorbed. Apply the mixture daily.
Must-have castor oil for stretch marks
According to Dr. Josh Axe, castor oil is very effective for the treatment of dark spots, pimples, fine lines and Striae, or stretch marks. Massage the affected area with pure castor oil in circular motions for 15 minutes. Then wrap the massaged area with a clean cotton cloth. Place a heating pad or hot water bottle over the cloth. Keep the compress for 30 minutes. Repeat daily for one month.
Apply cocoa butter for stretch marks
To help blood circulation and reduce stretch marks on thighs you should massage the area with organic cocoa butter. Apply the butter at least 2 times daily. Repeat the massage daily for 2 months.
Make a home stretch mark oil with essential lavender, almond and chamomile oils.
Apply on the stretch marks a mixture of 2 teaspoons of almond oil, a half teaspoon of chamomile oil and a half teaspoon of lavender oil. Use daily at least for a month.
How to remove stretch marks that are old?
The best way to get rid of stretch marks is when they are red or pink, i.e. newly developed. When stretch marks get older it is more difficult to get rid of them. You won’t be able to remove the old stretch marks completely but can try to lessen them with such remedies:
- Apply SPF 60 products directly on the Striae;
- Try fractional laser therapy that makes the skin surface smoother. Keep in mind that fractional laser treatment may cause scarring and hyperpigmentation.
Pregnancy stretch marks and natural remedies
In addition to the all above-mentioned treatments for Striae, you can try to follow “grandma’s” methods for removing stretch marks after pregnancy:
- Make a natural scrub from oats and apply daily on the stretch marks;
- Apply Vaseline or a moisturizer on the affected areas;
- For itchy stretch mark removal, take a lukewarm bath and gently rub with castor oil.
- Folic acid can be also very efficient in the fight against stretch marks on breasts;
- To make stretch marks less visible apply Retin-A cream;
- Stimulate the production of collagen with the use of glycolic acid that is completely safe for pregnant women.
How to prevent stretch marks?
- Eat a healthy and balanced diet to keep the body mass index (BMI) between 18.5 and 25 as recommended by international health organizations;
- Consume natural foods rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin E, zinc and silicon;
- To prevent stretch marks, follow a healthy diet and regular exercises.
How to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy? During pregnancy it is absolutely normal to gain some weight. And it is better to put it on slowly and steadily to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy. Do not follow a strict diet while pregnant, it is healthier for your and a future baby to consume a variety of foods like pasta, bread, fruits and vegetables.
Always consult a dermatologist if you have many stretch marks in a short period of time. Do not use any over the counter medications for a stretch mark removal before getting approval from your doctor.