Mostly unlovable, quite unaccepted, and often camouflaged, they embed themselves within our skin without an invitation. Stretch marks are stubborn and damage our self-esteem. Are there solutions for defeating them? Here’s some information on how to make stretch marks disappear that will also help you better understand these unwanted marks that stick to our skin.
What are stretch marks?
Stretch marks are formed when the skin is subjected to a sudden expansion that exceeds the limits of its elasticity. It’s an inflammatory reaction caused by the rupture of the collagen and elastin fibres in the dermis. Often present on the buttocks, thighs, breasts, or hips, these scars look like fine lines or little welts. When they appear, they initially have a pinkish or purplish hue then clear up after a few months, becoming white or pearly.
Why do stretch marks appear?
Several factors can cause them:
- a significant weight gain or loss;
- a weakening of the skin during strong hormonal surges (puberty, pregnancy);
- a high level of cortisol in the blood (cortisone treatments, Cushing’s syndrome);
- taking anabolic steroids.
How to treat stretch marks?
Very tough, stretch marks are there to stay. Indeed, it’s difficult to make them disappear completely and almost impossible to prevent them. While there’s no miracle cure, there are nevertheless several ways to mitigate their effects.
Here are some of these methods:
Anti-stretch mark creams
The active substances in anti-stretch mark creams (vitamin A acid or tretinoin) stimulate the production of elastic fibres in the skin. While the effectiveness of these creams on well-established stretch marks (white or pearly) remains low, the hydration that they offer your skin is beneficial. Daily long-term application is favourable.
In addition, we recommend applying your cream using the massage technique called “palpate and roll.” This method involves holding your skin between your fingers and slowly rolling it upwards.
This safe and gentle procedure involves projecting diamond crystals containing a polishing property onto the stretch marks. By eliminating the dead skin cells, the growth of new healthy cells and the production of collagen and elastin are stimulated.
Fractional resurfacing by Fraxel®
Fraxel® is a non-surgical technological platform that aims to repair your skin from the inside by treating the cells under the surface of the epidermis. By targeting one patch of skin at a time, the laser causes a multitude of microscopic lesions. The body’s natural healing process is thus stimulated, allowing for the creation of new skin cells and the production of collagen. The skin thus looks smoother, and stretch marks are diminished over the course of the treatments. It takes between 3 and 5 resurfacing sessions to achieve a satisfying result.
Although some palliative treatments for stretch marks are available, none can guarantee the permanent elimination of these little unwanted marks. Since each woman is unique, we recommend speaking with one of our consultants, who can steer you towards the right treatment based on your particular case.