If there is one frustration with weight gain that haunts me continually, it is stretch marks. Rapid weight gain stretches our skin out forming scars. In an evil twist, even if you lose the weight, the skin damage remains. It is like a scarlet letter, labeling you forever a fatty… or is it?
You did it, you lost weight, but now that you have noticed that you have stretch marks on your skin, you no longer feel as confident as you once did. In fact, you do not even want to go lay out on the beach this summer because you are so unhappy with your body. The great news is that new treatments can help to remove stretch marks. If you get started with some treatments now, you will be able to fade the stretch marks in just a few short months. There are many products you can use to get rid of stretch marks, so here are a few ideas for you to ponder.
If you do not want to have any kind of medical procedure done to get rid of your stretch marks, you may be looking for some products you can use in the comfort of your own home. No problem. One of the best and most popular products for preventing and helping reduce the appearance of stretch marks is cocoa butter lotion. This should be applied both morning and night and massaged into the skin for approximately two minutes. Vitamin E oil also can help, and would be used the same way as cocoa butter. Again, it is just rubbed into the skin twice a day for about two minutes. One trick is to wrap gauze over your stretch marks after moisturizing, it will help to retain the moisture.
On the medicated product front there are two options. Mederma, which is OTC, or Retinoids, which are prescription. Your doctor may prescribe you some Retin-A cream to help fade your stretch marks, but if you are a sexually active woman, they will be reluctant. Retin-A helps to boost the production of collagen, which is necessary for your skin to repair. It will work really well on new stretch marks and may even fade older ones with time.
Physical Alteration Procedures
If you don’t have success with topical products to fade your stretch marks, you may want to have them removed physically. The three options are surgical removal, laser removal, and microdermabrasion removal.
Surgical Removal is done by a plastic surgeon and sometimes a dermatologist. They cut away the stretchmarks and sew right small areas with the goal of the surgical scars being smaller and less noticeable than the stretchmarks were. Surgery is expensive and is often not covered by insurance.
Laser treatments can work wonders on getting rid of stretch marks, and have grown in popularity. A medical professional injures your skin with a pulse dyed laser. As your skin heals the scars are replaced with newer healthier looking skin. You will need about three to six sessions for best results and each session may run you around $450. There are also fractional laser treatments available for older stretch marks, and each session will cost you around $1000. Lasers are not cheap.
Microdermabrasion is probably the best value option for those with limited funds. A small device grinds away the outer layers of dead skin, exposing the healthy new layers underneath, and increasing collagen production. Microdermabrasion treatments for stretch marks can run as little as $100 per appointment. Best of all, some new machines, from companies like Riiviva and Crystalift, allow you to do microdermabrasion in your own home, at an even lower cost per treatment.
Stretch marks do not have to ruin your life. If you have them, there are many ways that you can get rid of them. If you do not want to spend a lot of money, you may want to try a topical product. If you have the extra cash, there are some great laser treatments available that you could consider. The choice is up to you and should be based on the results you want.