The topic at hand today is stretch marks! Although I don't see it as anything to stress about, I have been asked about this quite a lot, and if it's a concern to you, then I want to share my experience and give you some advice! I believe I get asked about this a lot because, as you may know, I used to be overweight in my early teens. With weight gain and weight loss come… yep, stretch marks! And I got a few little stretch mark “souvenirs” with me, so you’re not the only one! :)
• 75 to 90% of pregnant women develop stretch marks
• 70% of adolescent females develop stretch marks
• 40% of adolescent males also develop stretch marks
So they are very common! Are there any ways to prevent them from happening? Yes! But first let’s look at why they occur in the first place.
What are they? How do they happen?
Stretch marks are actually a form of scarring. Whenever there is rapid and sudden growth of body size, the underlying tissue grows faster than the skin layers that cover it. This causes small tears in the epidermal surface. As a result of the tension put on the skin, the epidermal layer ruptures and the scars which result cause stretch marks. (Excerpt from: http://www.gracechem.com) So basically, when the skin can’t keep up with the growing tissue underneath, it “breaks” - and that’s what stretch marks are.
How can I prevent stretch marks from occurring?
- Keep your skin moisturized (I like natural moisturizers the best, like coconut or argon oil, cocoa butter also works great)
- Exfoliate to stimulate blood flow and collagen production
- Drink lots of water and reduce caffeine intake to keep skin healthy & flexible
- Make sure to eat skin-healthy foods such as
- seafood & nuts (high in zinc & fatty acids)
- citrus fruits (great for collagen production thus boosting skin elasticity)
- colorful vegetables for vit. A (ex. spinach, carrots, sweet potatoes)
Screen shot from the video of me showing how I use my body brush.
I basically go in circular motions over any areas that could be affected.
Body brushing & exfoliating your skin in the shower using a brush like this will help prevent stretch
marks and cellulite by boosting circulation & collagen production
Although there are many creams claiming to diminish stretch marks, the only method that will really help to soften the look of deeply-set stretch marks, are laser treatments. The key here is definitely prevention! :) Body makeup is another option. Even though it's not permanent, it can help to make you feel better about them temporarily for a special occasion. Sally Hansen spray on legs works great! MUFE Face & Body Foundation is waterproof, so it’s ideal if you’re going to a pool or beach party without worrying about getting your skin wet.
This spray works great at covering up imperfections on the legs and will also
help with diminishing the appearance of stretch marks, plus it's waterproof!
Stretch marks are unfortunately permanent marks (or “scars”) inside the body, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of! If your stretch marks make you feel really bad however, then consider doing a few sessions of laser treatments to soften their appearance. Always keep your skin nice and moisturized and eat a good diet to help prevent future marks from appearing. If anyone has ever made a negative remark to you regarding your stretch marks, just brush it off - if it's a significant other, like a boyfriend, then he's not even worth your time, a real man won't care about little imperfections like that. Also know that no one is perfect! Celebrities usually have their imperfections photoshoped away, so try not to compare yourself to anyone. You are amazing just the way you are!