Stretch marks can be frustrating and debilitating at times. It is not a severe health issue, but it’s a cosmetic concern. But look at the flip side of it: Stretch marks are a bane to our existence! You can see a map of purple and white lines criss-crossing your skin; stretch marks on thighs, abdomen, stomach, back, and buttocks are most common. Whether you are a proud mother who’s just given birth to a beautiful baby or have indulged in junk food, stretch marks are the souvenirs that keep on appearing. But don’t worry; we are here to help you navigate this tricky terrain and help you say goodbye to your stretch mark!
What Is a Stretch Mark?
Stretch marks, also known as striae distensae, are narrow lines or stripes that appear on the skin due to rapid stretching or contraction of the skin. Stretch marks can occur to anyone, irrespective of gender and age. They are often caused by weight gain, weight loss, rapid growth during puberty, pregnancy, and other factors. Stretch marks on thighs, hips, abdomen, breasts, and buttocks are common, but it can also appear on other parts of the body. They may appear red or purple when new but tend to fade to a white or silvery color over time.
Stretch marks occur when the skin of that particular area is ruptured due to the tensile pressure. Decreased collagen production in the body, reduces the skin’s elasticity, resulting in stretch marks.
Types Of Stretch Marks
Stretch marks are common for many people, but did you know there are different types of stretch marks? This article will explore the various types of stretch marks and their unique characteristics.
- Striae Rubra: These are the most common stretch marks, usually red, purple, or pink. They tend to be itchy and are commonly found on the abdomen, buttocks, breasts, hips, and thighs. This is the initial stage of stretch marks.
- Striae Alba: As these stretch marks age, they turn white or silver. They are obscure and less itchy than striae rubra. This is known to be the advanced stage of stretch marks.
- Striae Gravidarum: Also known as “pregnancy stretch marks,” these stretch marks are caused by the rapid stretching of the skin during pregnancy. These pregnancy stretch marks are usually found on the belly, breasts, and hips.
- Striae Atrophicans: This stretch mark is caused by a loss of elasticity in the skin, leading to skin thinning and easy bruising. Commonly found in those suffering from Cushing’s syndrome.
- Striae Nigra: Dark grey or black coloured marks often seen in people with a darker complexion.
- Striae Caerulea: Purple or dark blue coloured stretch marks found in people with a dark complexion.
Understanding the different types of stretch marks can help you understand your skin and seek the appropriate treatment to remove stretch marks.
How To Get Rid Of Stretch Marks?
Stretch marks are permanent skin scars, but they gradually lighten or fade away with time. Home remedies can relieve stretch marks, but the result may differ from person to person. Many home remedies, topical stretch mark creams, and in-office treatments are available to remove stretch marks.
- Home Remedies
Home remedies can help to lighten stretch marks. Regularly applying moisturizers such as shea or cocoa butter and massaging with argan, olive, or almond oil are two practical options for topical treatment. Consider keeping your skin hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day and taking Vitamin C and collagen supplements orally; additionally, adding foods rich in vitamins A & E – carrots, spinach, broccoli etc – in your diet could help promote collagen production. It may take some time to deliver the desired result, so just be patient and consistent.
- Topical Creams
Stretch mark removal creams, lotions and serums are available, which help to fade away stretch marks. As per experts, topical stretch mark removal creams and lotions help only in the initial stage of stretch marks. Look for skin-friendly ingredients such as niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, squalene, and tretinoin in your skincare products. I highly recommend using ThriveCo’s Stretch Marks Expert Serum Cream! Formulated with Striover, an active ingredient that stimulates collagen production and reactivates elastin fibres, this Stretch Mark Expert Serum Cream has been hailed by dermatologists as one of the best skincare products on the market. It goes beyond just fading away those pesky stretch marks; its unbelievable moisturizing properties will give your skin a more youthful glow while providing added nourishment from natural oils like almond oil and rosehip oil, which are rich sources of Vitamin E and A.
- In-Office Treatments
There are now several types of in-office treatments available to help reduce the appearance of stretch marks and give you back your confidence! These include laser therapy, radiofrequency therapy in which energy waves are sent to the skin to boost collagen production, microdermabrasion and micro-needling with PRP (platelet-rich plasma) therapy. Each treatment works differently but is designed to break down scar tissue and stimulate collagen production to improve the appearance of stretch marks.
Choosing which treatment is right for you will depend largely on your individual needs and goals. Your dermatologist will be able to assess your condition and recommend which treatment would be most suitable for you based on factors such as skin type, the severity of stretch marks, the location of stretch marks, etc.
Stretch marks can be embarrassing, but they don’t have to stay forever! With proper care and smart lifestyle choices (such as eating right and exercising regularly), you can reduce their visibility until they become barely noticeable!
*This is a collaboration post. Readers are requested to exercise their own judgement and understanding in following the information given.