Gotta Love Those Stretch Marks…NOT! – Saskia G.

21 Feb

Girls, we are on the same page when I say stretch marks are something we all wished we didn’t have? One day they weren’t here, and now they are, and why-oh-why won’t mine go away?!

Quite plain: A stretch mark is…

… a stretching of our skin. The fragile structure of the middle layer (the dermis) is torn beyond its elasticity capability, and then microscopic bleeding occurs. This damage can be seen through the also stretched and then transparent epidermis. A new stretch is mostly red in color, but after a while the color fades to be more of a silver tone. This is due to the disrupted collagen production that may cause the skin pigment producing cells to cease. And then you got yourself some pretty, shiny stretch marks!

“WHY, God? WHY?”, I want to cry out.

This question better phrased might be: “What causes a stretch mark?” According to scientific research, the forming of stretch marks is closely interlocked with a family of steroids called glucocorticoids (What good could come from this name?). When having elevated levels of cortisol (the most common steroid of this group), we tend to store fat and gain weight that leads our skin to tear.
The cause of cortisol? Stress. But stress is not the only cause; lacking good nutrition, too much caffeine and smoking are also accomplices. And rapid  weight gain (due to pregnancy, adolescent growth,  or excessive weightlifting) might also lead to skin ripping.

How can I prevent those little suckers from ruining my life? (Perhaps I’m overreacting but it doesn’t feel like it!)

Easy answer: Maintain healthy skin! Do this by…

  • … following a zinc, Vitamins A, C, D and E and protein rich diet
  • … drinking at least eight 8 oz. cups of water daily
  • … exercising
  • … NOT scratching areas prone to stretch marks
  • … exfoliating  and keeping your skin hydrated

Okay, thanks for those tips, but what am I going to do with the ones I already have?

There are a few options out there, depending on your budget and your willingness to undergo surgery. But generally speaking, once you got ’em, unfortunately, it’s not easy to get rid of ’em.

  • Chemical Peels… a diluted acid solution will remove the top layer of your skin which will induce skin cell production in underlying layers.
  • Laser Surgery… the laser will prompt new tissue growth in the middle layer.
  • Stretch Mark Creams … daily massaging helps to stimulate blood circulation and new tissue growth. Revitol’s Stretch Mark Prevention Cream has been recommended by many sources. Of course,  it does not have to be a stretch mark cream. Lotions with cocoa and shea butter, Vitamin A, E and C and oils (olive,…) are most suitable, for instance  Johnson’s Baby Oil.
  • Exfoliating … JUARA’s Invigorating Coffee Scrub is THE perfect treatment! Drinking coffee: no no no! Using that scrub: yes yes yes!

So, to sum up:

Those silvery lines have ruined my career as the next upcoming super model, (well, those lines and about a million other things,) but that’s about it. I find it difficult to follow the daily routine religiously, and surgery is no option for me. So, they are part of me. But I realize there are worse things in life. I have grown to love them. Ok, maybe not love, but I can live with and still be perfectly happy – and that’s the most important part.

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