What are Stretch Marks?
Rapid stretching of the skin can result in stretch marks. Overstretching of the skin affect collagen tissue and the damage of this tissue is what causes stretch marks. This can happen to both men and women, although women are more likely to develop stretch marks, especially on the hips, thighs, lower back, breasts, buttocks or on the belly. Puberty, weight changes (whether weight loss or weight gain) and pregnancy are some of the conditions known to provoke stretch marks. Weight lifters or bodybuilders can also experience this problem.
Stretch marks are actually scars on the skin that look like lines. In the beginning these are purplish red, but after some time, scars become white, look empty and the affected skin is soft to touch. The skin changes in texture and color, but the people affected by stretch marks don’t experience any pain because of that.
Reduce and Prevent Stretch Marks
Stretch marks are not the most pleasant site on anyone’s skin, and people often want to get rid of them. There are some cosmetic and plastic surgeries designed to erase stretch marks, but no one can guarantee good results. Costs of these surgeries are also very high, and this may be the reason many people turn to natural and home remedies against stretch marks.
Regular exfoliation can help you to reduce the stretch marks. Simply, use scrunchy or loofah every time you take a shower and the parts of your body affected by stretch marks will look better. Hot baths and massages using cod or olive oil are also found to be especially beneficial for these scars. You could try Vicks Vapor rub for the same purpose, too.
Some claim that the content of vitamin E capsules (the gel) is very good for stretch marks. Use the gel on the skin every day for 2 weeks and the result should be visibly improved scars.
According to some sources, glycolic acid and vitamin C supplements (dose about 500mg) should be used three times per day, in people who want to get rid of stretch marks.
However, you have to know that stretch marks can’t be removed completely, only reduced. Human skin consists of three layers, known as epidermis, dermis and subcutaneous stratum. Stretch marks appear as the result of the stretching of the middle layer, dermis, for a period of time and tearing of both dermis and epidermis of the skin. Preventing stretch marks has much more sense than wasting the money trying to remove them unsuccessfully. Regular exercise, healthy diet and plenty of water are some of the advices for prevention of stretch marks. Women planning the pregnancy should start to use cocoa butter on the skin, because it is said to improve elasticity of the skin and prevent any potential stretch marks.