Rightly or wrongly, many people hate the stretch marks on their bodies. The pink (and later, white) straight lines found on hips and tummies can change the way a person feels about their body. But the good news is, there are a number of ways you can prevent stretch marks from occurring, or reduce their appearance.
At Victorian Dermal Group, we specialise in providing highly effective, non-invasive skin treatments. Book a free skin consultation with our expert clinicians.
What causes stretch marks?
The most common causes of stretch marks are pregnancy and rapid weight gain and/or loss. But you can also get stretch marks when you’re a teenager and experience a growth spurt, or if you have hormonal imbalances which increase and decrease the size of your boobs.
Stretch marks commonly appear on the:
Stretch marks form when collagen and elastin fibres tear and levels of glucocorticoids (hormones produced by the adrenal glands) are elevated.
Stretch marks are not to be mistaken with cellulite, which can be genetic. Cellulite is caused by the vertical formation of fibrous bands from the skin to the underlying fat.
All of this is to say, while stretch marks can be natural and there is nothing wrong with it, some people can find their stretch marks to be ugly. It may even be a potential trigger, particularly for those who used to be obese and lost a lot of weight.
How can you prevent stretch marks?
Drinking water helps keep your skin hydrated and soft. And soft skin isn’t as prone to developing stretch marks as much as dry skin.
Eat a healthy and balanced diet
Make sure your diet is rich in nutrients like:
- Vitamin A: Contributes to the development of new skin cells
- Vitamin C: Helps your body produce collagen
- Vitamin E: helps the body create more vitamin C
- Zinc: Reduces inflammation and helps your skin repair faster
Talk to a skin specialist
If you’re pregnant or endeavouring to lose or gain weight, talk to a skin specialist so you can come up with a preventative plan. This may involve using creams and products to keep your skin supple and soft, or changing your diet.
How do you treat stretch marks?
If you develop stretch marks, it’s important to treat them straight away. Otherwise, they may get worse and be harder to treat later down the line.
Use a topical cream
The cosmetic market is inundated with a range of creams and serums targeting stretch marks. If you don’t know what you’re looking for, it can be pretty overwhelming to find the right product. Here are some of the best products, ranked by price and efficacy:
- Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula range for stretch marks: Starting as low as $15, the specially formulated lotion boosts healthy collagen production while also moisturising the skin. The company recommends using the product as soon as you believe you are at risk of developing stretch marks for maximum results.
- Bepanthen Scar Treatment: This has been developed using scientific recommendations for scar management. It helps smooth, soften and flatten existing scars. It even comes with its own unique massaging device. You can purchase this at any major chemist line for around $20.
- La Mer The Concentrate: Jumping up to $530, this serum has rave reviews on Google. La Mer uses a patented Miracle Broth in its products. The broth is made of sea kelp and other pure ingredients which promote cell renewal. Read more about La Mer’s formation here.
If you find the topical creams don’t work and the appearance of your stretch marks is impacting the way you feel about your body, you should try our range of dermatological treatments.
RF INFINI microneedling treatment
This is a minimally invasive procedure. A handheld device with microneedles is pressed against the skin while sending radiofrequency energy to multiply the layers below the surface.
This combination of microneedling and RF energy stimulates the body’s production of natural collagen, in a much gentler way than other more invasive procedures.
This treatment tightens the skin and improves texture. You will need five treatments, spaced over eight weeks apart.
Fractional laser treatment
Our Fraxel laser is a non-invasive, microscopic laser which sends radiofrequency energy through fractional areas of your skin to encourage new collagen growth.
We use a 1550 wavelength to promote deeper rejuvenation for wrinkles, scar remodelling and acne scarring. Post-operative scars and older scars can be reduced with this wavelength.
This treatment will rebuild new collagen, resulting in new skin cell production. You’ll need between three to five treatments to see the best effects, spaced eight weeks apart.
Do laser treatments hurt?
It varies, person to person. But our stretch mark treatments are minimally (or non) invasive and gentler than other, more intense laser services.
The INFINI device has been developed after years of research into the optimum delivery of radio frequency energy. Its patented flow needling technology has been designed to maximise comfort for patients.
You may experience some redness after the treatment has finished. But, depending on your treatment and skin type, recovery can be as short as a single day.
Who can get laser stretch mark removal?
Any person, of any age, qualifies for laser removal treatments. The only dependencies are whether you have any preexisting skin conditions which interact with our treatments.
How does it work
We won’t proceed with any treatments unless a skin consultation is performed first. We look at things like:
- Your unique skin concerns
- Your medical history
- Any impacting lifestyle or dietary factors
We perform our skin analysis using advanced, medical-grade technology. Under an ultraviolet lamp, our dermal clinicians can identify common skin problems such as:
- Skin hydration
- Oily flow
- General skin health and function
Using diagnostic imaging technology, we can look at pigment depth and vascularity-vessel size.