This is a post i wrote about 3 years ago. I was pregnant with my second child and super concerned about stretch marks. I went to Dr Rostan to find out more. Things may have changed in 3 years, but this is still good information. Update: I am still stretch mark free, praise Jesus!
What about STRETCH MARKS?!? During my pregnancy with my son, I used good old Palmer’s Cocoa Butter mixed with Bio Oil. I slathered it on daily from boobs to butt! Luckily, I didn’t get any stretch marks, hallelujah! But, I didn’t exactly investigate what I was globbing on my belly. This go ’round, I decided to consult a true expert on all things skin to give us the real story on stretch marks.
I consulted Dermatologist, Dr. Elizabeth Rostan of Charlotte Skin & Laser in Charlotte, NC. www.charlotteskinandlaser.com Dermatologists are most commonly thought of as the once a year “is this freckle on my butt normal” doctor, but they are SO much more. Naturally, when I wanted to address stretch marks, Dr. Rostan was my go-to.
Amanda: For all of us civilians, what exactly are stretch marks?
Dr. Rostan: Stretch mark or striae are a very common skin concern and appear as linear
bands that are at first red or purple then gradually fade to look lighter
than the surrounding skin. They commonly occur during growth spurts of
puberty and during pregnancy. The cause is unknown but thought to be related
to mechanical stretch and increased hormone levels and genetic tendency.
Amanda: What, if anything, can you do to prevent them?
Dr. Rostan: Nothing has been shown to prevent stretch marks in clinical trials. Numerous
creams – including olive oil – have been tested in many studies and none
shown to be better than placebo. Probably the best prevention is to avoid
excessive weight gain and keep the skin well hydrated with a good
moisturizing cream. Don’t waste money on expensive stretch mark creams.
What can you do after the fact, if, god forbid, you get lots of them from
Dr. Rostan: In a clinical sense, stretch marks are like skin scars and the treatment is
the same as for skin scars. Early treatment of stretch marks while they are
still red is ideal and at this stage the Vbeam pulsed dye laser (PDL) is the
best choice. For older stretch or more severe stretch marks, a fractional
laser such as the Fraxel Re:Store laser can renew collagen in the stretch
mark and thus diminish its appearance.
Next post, we talk about the smelly business of B.O. Until then Mommas, exfoliate, moisturize, and keep it all silky smooth!!!