So, what exactly are stretch marks?
Stretch marks usually show up as groups of parallel lines on your skin. These lines are of a different color as compared to your skin, and they range from purple to bright pink to pale gray.
When you touch the stretch marks with your fingers, you may feel a slight indentation or so on your skin. There might also be instances when your stretch marks might feel sore or itchy.
These stretch marks usually show up during or after pregnancy or post an abrupt change in your weight. Stretch marks usually show up in teens who are growing rapidly. These aren't something one must be concerned about, and also, stretch marks tend to fade away with time.
You can have stretch marks pretty much any where, yet they are generally on your stomach, bosoms, upper arms, thighs, and buttocks.
One of the most interesting facts about skin is its versatility. This astounding property comes from the resilient center tissue known as the dermis.
The dermis comprises of protein fibers, collagen, and elastin that give the skin both thickness and strength. These protein fibers permit the skin to stretch and get back to its actual shape when the stretching power is taken out.
Nonetheless, if the stretching force is applied unexpectedly and maintained for an extensive stretch of time, it will make harm the dermis, and the skin might lose its flexibility. The harm to the dermis will show up on the upper layer of the skin (epidermis) as striae or stretch marks.
While stretch marks appear to be caused, in a real sense, by unreasonable stretching of the skin, this isn't the case. Stretching impacts where stretch marks form and the direction they run, yet other contributing variables advance the formation of stretch marks.
These elements incorporate chemicals, certain meds, nutritional deficiencies, and ailments.
For example, over-secretion of the glucocorticoids during pregnancy, the use of medicines like corticosteroids and oral/fundamental steroids, absence of Vitamin A and C, and medical conditions like Cushing's syndrome, Ehlers-Danlos disorder, Marfan syndrome can prompt debilitating of the elastic strands in the dermis.
What are certain things that you can do to prevent stretch marks?
Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate!
Drinking at least 8 to 10 glasses (minimum 3 litres) of water every day is usually recommended for the skin. It assists with reestablishing its flexibility, keeping it soft and supple. It also helps with fading the stretch marks.
Gelatin is an abundant source collagen, which is also present in your skin and is responsible for giving elasticity to your skin. Bone broth (chicken, lamb, or ham) is a brilliant source of gelatine to add to your diet.
Omega 3 Fatty Acids:
Omega-3 Fatty Acids also help in increasing elasticity in the skin. Foods like flaxseed, chia seeds, salmon, sardines, cod liver, pecans, soybean, meat, tofu, shrimps, and cauliflower help prevent stretch marks.
Foods like berries, raw cabbage, citrus fruits, kiwi, melons, peas, peppers, broccoli, pineapple, spinach, tomatoes, and turnips are abundant with Vitamin C. They are filled with anti-oxidants and help the body to fight toxins. Also, scars heal faster when you consume Vitamin C.
Vitamin E is also an anti-oxidant that battles radicals while nourishing the skin. Foods like almonds, raw seeds like pumpkin and sesame, Swiss chards, hazelnuts, pine nuts, spinach, avocado, broccoli, parsley, papaya, and olives are rich sources of Vitamin E. Every day consumption of these foods will help with the prevention of stretch marks.
These were a few prevention tips that you could follow—however, people who are looking for how can you get rid of Stretch Marks. And one of them is Microdermabrasion. Let us discuss Microdermabrasion and How it can help to get rid of the Stretch Marks.
What is Microdermabrasion?
Microdermabrasion is a non-invasive, skin reemerging procedure that gently sheds or cleans away the top layer of dead skin cells while stimulating collagen development to reveal a healthy new skin that looks and feels smoother. Fine lines, wrinkles, dull skin, and sunspots can be treated, particularly with regular treatments.
Skincare products like lotions, creams, and serums are all the more easily absorbed in the skin after dermabrasion. Also, dermabrasion is a painless and risk-free skin treatment that you must add to your beauty regime.
When to Consider Microdermabrasion?
- If you plan on brightening your dull skin and get some glow.
- In case you have sun damage, acne scars, stretch marks, or fine lines.
- If you have clogged pores and get whiteheads or blackheads.
- Lastly, it helps in maintaining a healthy skin.
How can Microdermabrasion help in getting rid of stretch marks?
Microdermabrasion is a commonly used treatment for skin inflammation scars, wrinkles, skin pigmentation, and sometimes gentle stretch marks.
The treatment includes mechanical exfoliation on the topmost layer of the epidermis, called the stratum corneum, which results in a light transmission of the skin. It helps in improving the texture of your skin and helps in lightening the stretch marks.
This 'peeling' impact kick starts the creation of collagen and elastin in the damaged dermal area of the skin, improving the skin's elasticity.
Microdermabrasion can also improve the efficacy of different treatments by improving their penetration into the deeper layers of the skin.
Now, let us have an in-depth discussion about At-Home Dermabrasion and Professional Dermabrasion to help you understand every thing in a much better and a vivid way.
At-Home Dermabrasion versus Professional Dermabrasion:
Microdermabrasion involves the use of a hand-held fine sandblaster to spray over some tiny pieces of aluminum oxide across the face when done professionally. A mix of gentle abrasion and vacuum suction that results in the removal of dead skin cells on the corneum stratum.
Instead of the aluminum crystals one, some professionals also prefer using a diamond-tipped one as it helps in an even deeper exfoliation.
At home Microdermabrasion is done using Microdermabrasion machines or kits like the professional ones. The kits usually comprise of an exfoliating tool like Microdermabrasion cloth or cleaning gels/creams containing tiny aluminum oxide stones. The at-home machines differ from one brand to another, yet the best ones use diamond tips.
The measure of active ingredients in the at-home Microdermabrasion packs is usually lower than in those used by experts; therefore, the outcome may not be as remarkable or reliable as when done by an expert. In any case, when done appropriately, at-home Microdermabrasion can give great outcomes too.
Why shall you opt for Microdermabrasion at home?
Even though Professional Microdermabrasion is very likely to be effective, since it is a more powerful and intensive beauty treatment, it is not usually the most ideal choice, particularly in the event that you have very sensitive skin. Because of its powerful nature, Professional Microdermabrasion can cause breakouts and skin irritation in people with sensitive skin.
At-home Microdermabrasion scrubs and serums are gentler. Hence, they are fewer chances that they will cause breakouts and irritation if your skin is sensitive. For the at-home machines, it is advised to read the instructions carefully and the frequency of usage to stay away from skin irritation. Also, home Microdermabrasion is much cheaper and more time-saving as compared to the professional microdermabrasion treatments.
How to perform Microdermabrasion at home?
- Start with cleaning your skin using an oil-free, no fragrance, gentle cleanser. Stay away from harsh chemicals that could make the skin dry out more than expected and sensitive to the microdermabrasion treatment.
- Using a cotton towel, pat your skin dry. It is imperative to have your skin completely dry to let the microdermabrasion machine to work effectively.
- Turn on the microdermabrasion machine, and with your free hand, tenderly pull one skin area tight. Turn the hand-held device onto your skin in a circular motion in an upwards direction; make sure to do 1 to 2 passes, not more than that.
- Follow the same process on the targetted areas with stretch marks.
- After the process, apply the essential skincare oils, moisturizers, or creams. Remember to use a toner first to reestablish your skin's pH levels.
- Moisturize well to hydrate your skin and diminish the redness on the sensitive areas.
After your microdermabrasion treatment, your skin might feel irritated, as if you have a sunburn. While this sensation usually disappears within one to two days, you can feel better by applying an ice pack or splashing chilled water on your skin.
Make Moisturiser your best friend.
Say a No Exfoliation.
There is no reason to exfoliate after Microdermabrasion exfoliates your skin. While you are grinding away, you also should stay away from toners, astringents, and rubbing alcohol, just as items with alpha and beta hydroxy acids, vitamin A, and retinols.
These ingredients can irritate the skin further while you recuperate after your microdermabrasion procedure. You may also want to avoid using makeup on your skin for some days.
Stay Away from the Sun.
For the two weeks after your microdermabrasion treatment, you should take a good care when you head out in the sun and avoid tanning beds at all costs. If you are out in the sun, wear a cap and sunscreen with at least a spectrum of SPF 30. Also, remember to reapply sunscreen after every two hours.
While it very well might be enticing to peel or rub on the scabbing or chipping skin, you need to absolutely abstain from doing it so as to prevent scarring or some skin-related issues.
In possibly a week or two after your microdermabrasion treatment followed with treatments at regular intervals, you will see the changes. Your stretch marks will lighten, and your skin will feel regenerated.
Microneedling: Microneedling focuses on the dermis, the center layer of your skin, where stretch marks formation occurs. In micro-needling, tiny needles are stuck into your skin to trigger collagen production. Increased collagen and elastin boost the skin recovery, which helps in improving your skin's appearance while reducing the stretch marks.
To successfully treat stretch marks, you will have to take a few seatings of the treatment for a few months. Microneedling has been shown to be a fruitful treatment for diminishing the visible stretch marks, especially for people with a darker skin. Again, it can be a tad painful.
Laser Therapy: Laser treatment is a very common method to remove white stretch marks. In this procedure, lasers infiltrate the skin, triggering the regeneration of the skin. It stimulates the tissues around your stretch marks to mend at a much faster rate.
Laser treatment invigorates melanin production on the affected area, activating your skin pigment. It makes your stretch marks fuse in with your actual skin tone. Like any other treatment, laser therapy requires more than one session to see the results.
Cosmetic Surgery: If in case other treatments or ointments are ineffective, cosmetic surgery is something you can consider. It is costly yet a perfect alternative that can for permanently remove white stretch marks from your body. But, one must always keep in mind that it can cause some scarring as well.
A Tummy Tuck, medically known as an abdominoplasty, is a restorative procedure that removes stretch marks and also gets rid of excess skin and fat from your abdomen. This method gives the skin and abdomen a firmer and flatter look. Remember, it comes with its own list of pros and cons
Now, are there are any contradictions to Microdermabrasion when it comes to removing stretch marks?
Well, yes. Microdermabrasion is usually not recommended for people with:
- Unhealed wounds or burns.
- People with active skin diseases like acne, rosacea, eczema, urticaria, and so on.
- People with a weak immune system.
- People who are prone to hyper-pigmentation (common amongst dark-skinned people).
By now, we are so sure that there is only a question in your head. Is home microdermabrasion worth a shot?
We do recommend "At-Home Microdermabrasion." It does wonder in removing stretch marks from your skin.
It is absolutely worth a shot. It is because most of the people who tried Microdermabrasion at home noticed visible changes in their skin after seven to eight sessions. Their stretch marks did lighten up. And for a majority of them, they loved the procedure due to the ease of use it provides. Also, it is a much cheaper treatment compared to the ones done professionally, as microdermabrasion kits are not that costly.
To conclude, we would like to say that stretch marks are a very common thing. It should not be something you must be insecure about or concerned for that matter. However, if you plan to get rid of them, at-home Microdermabrasion is the thing for you if you don't plan to splurge heaps of money into professional treatment.
Before pursuing at-home microdermabrasion treatment, keep in mind that there might be chances that your stretch marks might not vanish completely. It can also be possible that what works for others might not work for you.