Hydrate Your Skin Twice Daily
A great way to reduce stretch marks during pregnancy is to keep your skin hydrated. Youre likely used to doing that with your face and neck, but you may have to start hydrating other parts of your body as well.We find that the best solution is to apply an all-natural Soothing Moisturizing Balm to your stomach, hips, thighs, and chest at least twice a day. Hydrating balms and creams work by increasing your skins elasticity. This allows your skin to expand and grow without tearing and forming stretch marks.Make sure you choose a balm that is safe for pregnant women and has been proven safe for both mom and baby. For the best results, apply the moisturizing balm after your shower to maximize your skins ability to defend against stretch marks.
Weleda Pregnancy Body Oil For Stretch Marks
Believe it or not, I never had any stretch marks on myentire pregnancy. Maybe my skin was just elastic, and the Weleda Pregnancy BodyOil might have helped me a lot too! I really loved the relaxing and calmingscent that this body oil diffuses, and it never irritates my nose.
During pregnancy, our body needs extra care, and this oilexactly gives that care to our skin. It has natural plant ingredients thatsoothe and heals our stretched skin.
This oil maintains the natural moisture of your stomach, sothe skin would not be too shocked about its abrupt stretching!
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Calcarea Fluorica And Silicea
Calcarea Fluorica and Silicea are contained in a tissue-salt-prevent that Lleaon talks about in the book Bump to Birth. Lleaon Rao, aromatherapist and herbalist quotes Calcarea Fluorica helps in bone development and maintains elasticity of skin. It works to prevent stretch marks,and to prevent hemorrhoids and varicose veins.
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Glow Organics Belly Butter
Price: $$$ Made without parabens, sulfates, synthetics, or artificial fragrances, this organic skin butter is formulated to prevent stretch marks and improve skin elasticity. It contains macadamia nut, shea and cocoa butter along with grapeseed and sweet almond oil. These natural ingredients create a light, subtle scent, making it ideal for parents-to-be with sensitive noses.Fans of this butter say it locks in moisture and soothes dry, itchy skin. They also warn that, due to its thick, buttery consistency, you need to use the heat of your hands to melt it before applying it to your skin.
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You Have Probably Wondered Whether Or Not You Will End Up With Stretch Marks After Your Little One Arrives Stretch Marks Are Fairly Common After Pregnancy But There Are Some Preventative Measures You Can Take To Avoid Them If You Do End Up With Stretch Marks Then Try Not Let It Affect Your Self
Stretch marks are indented, often-vertical lines in your skin that can appear in a range of colors from purple to pink to light grey. You may only think about stretch marks on the area that would be stretched during pregnancy: your midsection. However, they can also appear on your legs, hips, chest, bottom, or thighs .
Some risk factors include being overweight and having a family history of stretch marks. While 50 90% of pregnant women develop some time of stretch mark during pregnancy, many of these will fade over time and become less noticeable. Even if you are more susceptible to get them, you can follow these 5 steps to avoid stretch marks while pregnant.
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Can Stretch Marks Go Away With Cream
Stretch marks simply show that your body grew or shrank faster than your skin was able to produce collagen and elastin, the components that allow for the skin to be elastic. When the body changes rapidly but collagen and elastin production cant keep pace, the skin is ruptured. As a result, you get stretch marks in the form of a scar.
In a perfect world, you could nod your head and blink your eyes like I Dream of Jeannie and banish your stretch marks with a wish. But the reality isnt so simple. The truth is, theres no over-the-counter topical solution that will make your stretch marks go away. However, some products are effective at reducing their appearance.
Its also important to keep in mind that your body chemistry, as well as your willingness to regularly apply products, will affect how effectively they work. For this reason, its a good idea to purchase products targeting stretch marks with an open mind.
And for best results, you should begin applying a stretch mark cream before you get stretch markseven before you start to show. The goal is to keep the skin supple. Board-certified dermatologist Luke Maxfield, M.D., reminds us that the most important thing is to try to treat scars and stretch marks early while they are still maturing. Being proactive is always better than being reactive.
Natural Skin Care During Pregnancy
Weve given you several tips for treating stretch marks. But these pesky lines are just one of the changes your skin undergoes during pregnancy. And skin care is much more than only taking care of stretch marks!
You may notice that your skin is drier than its ever been. You can blame pregnancy hormones for this.
In addition to protecting and moisturizing your skin with Soothing Moisturizing Balm, treat dry skin by washing your face and showering with lukewarm water, avoiding rough fabrics, and exfoliating no more than once per week.
The other thing youll notice about your pregnancy skin is that its especially sensitive to the sun. That doesnt mean you cant enjoy the great outdoors or a day at the beach just take extra protective measures.
Armor up: wear sunscreen and a hat, stay in the shade, up your moisturizing game, and drink extra water.
Finally, when considering what products to use to care for your skin, make sure youre treating your skin with natural ingredients and not chemicals. This will also be important when it comes to the products you put on your babys delicate skin. Avocado oil is one natural ingredient that is great for both you and your baby!
Mustela is committed to skin health, and we use safe, effective, and natural ingredients in our products. Check out what we put in our products here.
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When To Seek A Dermatologists Expertise
Stretch mark treatments that you can buy at a store or online can be expensive. If you find yourself spending a lot of time and money without getting any results, seeing a board-certified dermatologist can be helpful.
The in-office procedures have proven more effective than the creams, lotions, and gels. Dermatologists can also tell you about any new product or procedure that may help.
Are all dermatologists board certified?
No. See what it takes to become board certified.
ImagesImage 1 used with permission of the American Academy of Dermatology National Library of Dermatologic Teaching Slides.
Image 2 and 3: Getty Images
ReferencesHague A and Bayat A. Therapeutic targets in the management of striae distensae: A systematic review. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2017 77:559-68.
Stier MF and Hirsch RJ. Rejuvenation of scars and striae. In: Hirsch RJ, et al. Aesthetic rejuvenation. McGraw Hill Medical, China, 2009:224-9.
UdDin S, McGeorge D, et al. Topical management of striae distensae : prevention and therapy of striae rubrae and albae. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2016 30: 21122.
What Is Best To Prevent Or Minimize Stretch Marks During Pregnancy
If you are still concerned about the likelihood of developing stretch marks during pregnancy, and you are afraid of the toll it will take on your mental health, dont worry.
The best way to combat them is with 8 Sheep Organics Sleepy Body Lotion. You may already be familiar with this product, as it is one of the best tools pregnant women can use to fight insomnia, stress, and pain throughout their pregnancy.
As it turns out, however, this lotion also does wonders for helping your skin heal, thus minimizing the appearance of stretch marks. How does it do this?
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What Are The Possible Treatments For Stretch Marks During Pregnancy
Although there is no proven cure for stretch marks, some treatments can lighten and reduce their intensity considerably. These include:
- Topical medication: Prescribed medications containing hyaluronic acid, trofolastin, and tretinoin might work for stretch marks. Topical application has shown significant improvement in discoloration of the stretch marks, making them faint in appearance . Massaging the skin with the above creams for around six months could work .
- Lotions and oils: Creams or oils containing vitamin E can treat pregnancy stretch marks. Moisturizing the skin with cocoa butter, bio-oil, and olive oil eventually fades the marks or reduces their occurrence .
- Medical procedure: Post-pregnancy treatments such as laser therapy, microneedling, radiofrequency, and energy-based devices may be recommended by your healthcare provider. Laser therapy and microneedling enhance collagen production and reduce the blood flow to the stretch mark lesions .
- Early treatment: Most doctors recommend treating the stretch marks when they appear. You can consult with your healthcare provider about the possible treatment options .
Stretch Marks Are A Common Annoyance During Pregnancy Here’s A Trimester
Stretch marks develop in nine out of ten pregnancies, usually in the sixth or seventh month. These pinkish streaks around stomachs, breasts, or hips happen when collagen and elastin stretch and snap during pregnancy due to the pressure of rapid weight gain. You have the best chance of reducing the appearance of stretch marks when they’re new. Once scars fade to white, they’re extremely difficult to treat.
Whether you get them depends mostly on your pregnancy and your genetics, says dermatologist Dendy Engelman, M.D. If your mom or grandma developed stretch marks, you’re more likely to get them too. While there’s no surefire way to prevent stretch marks, these tips can keep them to a minimum during your pregnancy.
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Other Oils That Can Help
Some other oils that research has shown may help minimize the appearance of stretch marks include rosehip seed oil, tamanu oil, and olive oil.
These are typically just alternatives to the aforementioned compounds: coconut oil and mango butter, however, as nothing really beats that duo, along with cocoa and shea butter. Plus, all four of these ingredients are 100% safe for you and your baby during pregnancy.
Pat Your Skin Dry Instead Of Rubbing It
Washing your skin with a gentle moisturizer is an important part of not just treating your itchy stretch marks, but caring for your sensitive skin while pregnant. However, what you do after your shower is just as important.
Rubbing your wet skin with a towel can make your itchy stretch marks a lot worse. It creates heat and friction that can lead to further skin damage.
Gently patting your skin dry after you bathe is clutch when trying to prevent irritation.
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Mama Mio The Tummy Rub Butter
Dr. Garshick is a fan of this fast-absorbing, fragrance-free cream. It contains maracuja oil which helps to improve skin elasticity as well as avocado oil and avocado peptides to keep the skin healthy, hydrated and nourished throughout pregnancy, she says.
The brand recommends starting using the cream from the first month of pregnancy.
Mustela is amazing! No single stretch mark during pregnancy! And my mom had them and I had them before on my thighs. It works!
I use Mustela cream. Its not cheap, but it worked with my first pregnancy so Ill try it again!
Moisturize With Topical Creams To Keep Itchy Stretch Marks At Bay
While drinking water hydrates your body from the inside, its equally important to hydrate on the outside.
Using topical moisturizers helps your body retain moisture and stay hydrated. Covering your itchy stretch marks in moisturizer keeps moisture from evaporating, which helps treat your wounds.
Moisturizers also boost collagen and elastin, which give your skin its elasticity. Properly moisturizing your skin can both heal existing itchy stretch marks and prevent new ones from forming.
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Which Areas Are Most Affected
The belly area is the most common place women get stretch marks during pregnancy, which makes sense because the stomach has to stretch out so far to give your growing baby room.
But other popular areas for stretch marks to appear include your thighs, hips, lower back, butt, and breasts. If you gain enough weight during your pregnancy, they may also appear on your upper arms.
The majority of my stretch marks appeared on my belly, hips, and lower back. Thats also where most of my mom friends complain about theirs being too.
Unfortunately, few areas will remain unscathed by stretch marks during your pregnancy. The areas that wont get stretch marks will be the ones that dont put as much weight on, like the lower arms and legs.
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When And Where Do They Form
While stretch marks generally become visible during the later trimesters of pregnancy , some women will start to see them forming as soon as their bellies start growing. Most lighter-skinned women tend to develop pinkish stretch marks, whereas darker-skinned women tend to have stretch marks that are lighter than the surrounding skin. Their pattern of development follows three stages.
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Why Do We Get Stretch Marks
We get stretch marks when our body grows too fast for our skin to keep up. “This causes the elastic fibers just under the surface of the skin to break,” explains Dr. Vergara-Wijangco.
When the skin fibers break, new collagen forms to replace the damaged parts, which is less firm and elastic.”The new collagen may have a different texture, resulting in raised or indented scars,” says Dr. Engleman.
Dr. Vergara-Wijangco points out that stretch marks are very common in pregnancy, a time when you need to gain weight over a relatively short period. And as Dr. Engelman explains, stretch marks are scars, meaning that you can’t make them disappear completely.
What Can Be Done To Prevent Stretch Marks
The following articles are provided by organizations partnering with the American Pregnancy Association to provide tips on what can be done to prevent stretch marks. The mention of specific products or services does not constitute a recommendation or endorsement by the APA unless it is explicitly stated.
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What Are Pregnancy Stretch Marks
Pregnancy stretch marks are natural, with more than 50 percent of pregnant bodies experiencing them. Stretch marks are not exclusive to pregnancy, however men and women, whether pregnant or not, can develop these markings whenever the skin stretches rapidly. These streaky indentations in the skin can be pink, red, purple, or brown, depending on an individualâs skin color. During pregnancy, stretch marks can appear on your stomach, breasts, buttocks, thighs and upper legs, hips, and arms. As stretch marks fade, they may change colors, appearing silvery or white, or even darkening.
What Causes Pregnancy Stretch Marks
Interestingly, the cause of pregnancy stretch marks comes down to two factors, one of which is unique to pregnancy. Firstly, there is the physical stretch of the skin that occurs in pregnancy .While the skin adapts to continuous movement by expanding and contracting, during these periods the skin has insufficient time to adjust. As the body expands faster than the skin covering it, the skin tears. The resulting scar that forms from this tear is what we know as a stretch mark.The second factor, which is still a subject of debate among experts, involves the priming of the skin by increased levels of hormones in pregnancy. Together, these hormones attract more water into the skin, which relaxes the bonds between collagen fibers. This makes it easier for the skin to tear when it is stretched and for stretch marks to form.
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Start A New Skin Care Regimen To Prevent Stretch Marks