Our stretch marks are lovable. They are evidence that our body ebbs and flows with our fluctuations, growth spurts, pregnancies- they are our natural companions in development, making space for and adapting to our needs! But as much as we can appreciate and find immense beauty in stretch marks, we’re also no strangers to wanting to reduce the appearance of them.
What is a stretch mark, exactly? Stretch marks are essentially scars that form as a result of our skin expanding or contracting at a quick and abrupt pace. This rapid fluctuation can be the result of weight loss, weight gain, pregnancy, or muscle growth, but this sudden and fast change, no matter the cause, triggers intermittent eruptions of collagen and elastin, resulting in strips of scarring concentrated to the primary areas of growth or shrinkage. Stretch marks can also be hormonally or genetically prompted, and it is extremely common to have a genetic disposition rendering you more prone to them.
Like most scars, stretch marks tend to be permanent, but they do fade over time, and often quite significantly, though it can be extremely slow and very gradual improvement. There are means to expedite this fading process, however, and many developments in stretch mark therapies, treatments and products have been shown to impressively reduce the appearance of stretch marks to such a degree that they can become virtually imperceptible in an unprecedentedly short amount of time.
So, what are the methods or products that will eliminate the appearance of stretch marks?
When collagen and elastin are disrupted and made ineffective, our skin’s structural integrity is incredibly compromised. These functions need to be restored for visible improvement. Collagen and elastin stimulating products with an emphasis on cellular regeneration can be remarkably effective in the treatment of stretch marks. A retinol or vitamin A derivative will increase your skin’s cellular turnover rate, shedding surface skin to rapidly and abundantly produce new, fresh cells, while stimulating and reinforcing collagen and elastin production. By renewing layers of skin, improving skin texture, evening skin tone and deeply hydrating, retinols and vitamin A derivatives are an extremely promising place to start for the treatment of stretch marks.
Environ’s A, C & E Oil is an intensely nourishing, antioxidant and vitamin A rich solution to stretch marks. Suitable for all skin types, this oil has a silky, light application and immediately conditions for a soft, supple feel.
Augustinus Bader’s The Body Cream is a non-greasy, fast-absorbing and vitamin rich body moisturizer featuring innovative stem cell technology for firm and glowing skin, and the reduction of sun damage, cellulite and the appearance of stretch marks.
Regular exfoliation is another extremely effective and easy treatment for stretch marks. Similarly to the way in which vitamin A eliminates layers of dead skin cells in order to stimulate the production of new ones, buffing the skin with a physical exfoliation also enables new skin cell production. Exfoliation also stimulates and increases blood flow, and improved circulation, as a result, aids in repairing and restoring skin elasticity. In addition, when skin is well exfoliated, its product absorbability is increased, making your topical hydrating and stretch mark treating products more potent and effective with deeper penetrability. For a deeply penetrating exfoliation treatment, we recommend Goldfaden MD’s Doctor’s Ruby Crystal Microderm Exfoliator Scrub.
But the best treatment for stretch marks is prevention. Protect yourself from stretch marks by keeping your skin very well moisturized and nourished. When our skin is enriched and hydrated, our natural tissue repair functions at its most effective capacity. Our skin’s stretchability and resiliency is entirely dependent on hydration and nourishment, making nutrient rich oils and moisturizers necessities for stretch mark deterrence!