Love Your Stretch Marks

by Clutch

I will never forget the first time I spotted a stretch mark on my body. I was about 13 years old. My older sister and I were taking a dip in the pool, and she noticed them. “Oh, so you have stretch marks, too,” she said as she pointed to the top of my chest. I asked her what they were and what it meant, and she explained that it was a result of my skin stretching to fit my growing body. She also told me not to stress about it because all of my sisters had them (there are 5 of us), so we could blame genetics.

From that moment forward that I became self-conscious about this apparent “flaw,” in my physique, which I finally embraced during my college years. I love my body, and that means, the stretch marks that come with them.

According to a recent study nearly 90 percent of women have had an encounter with stretch marks. Genetics play a role as doctors say that if your mother had them, it’s likely that you will too, but there more prevalent causes such as rapid weight gain and rapid weight loss that also lead to them. The most common time they appear is during pregnancy and those adolescent teen years when growth spurts occur. Some women find them unsightly, while others look at them as endearing symbols of the baby they carried or the way their body filled out a bit as they entered into womanhood.

If you still want to banish your stretch marks, here are some ways to combat them:

1. Look for products with key ingredients.

Not every item on store shelves can really get the job done when it comes to removing stretch marks, but there are some good old fashioned ingredients that can help diminish the appearance of stretch marks. Wheat germ oil is known as a home remedy that lightens the appearance of stretch marks if used in the early stages. Vitamins A C & E should be your best friend because they all increase skin’s elasticity and moisturize skin to lock in much-needed moisture. Vitamin C helps increase collagen production, and when mixed with glycolic acid can yield great results.

2. Treat them as soon as you spot them

The best time to take action against stretch marks is the first time you notice them. The sooner they’re treated, the more likely they are to respond to treatment.

3. Be patient

While you want to get rid of your stretch marks in time for next week’s vacation, getaway, it’s important set realistic goals. Depending on the severity and age of your stretch marks progress could take months or even up to a year before you really see change. I’ve heard many women, who have successfully treated their stretch marks say that their #1 advice is to remain patient, and to consistently treat them for the best results.

4. Go see a doctor

If you just can’t stand the sight of stretch marks on your body, then you might want to visit your dermatologist to see if there are any medical treatments you can try. Laser therapy is a is a very popular option that many women turn to post-pregnancy to help reduce the appearance of stretch marks and heal skin. Microdermabrasion is a procedure where the top-most layer of skin is removed by chemical or mechanical means. Endermologie is a machine that massages skin to increase circulation and expel toxins. See your dermatologist for the latest information on these methods.

How do you deal with stretch marks, Clutchettes?

-Margaret Francois

  • Wesley Pipes

    Lady in the picture. I would give you more stretch marks.

  • Goody

    I carry mine with pride. Although they have faded a bit since having my son in June and damn right I would do it again

  • open minded

    Embrace them, there is much more to worry about then a darn stretch mark. In my opinion of course, I find it normally is no problem unless a man has something to say about it.. If it really is a concern your suggestions are spot on.

  • amarie

    They aren’t going anywhere, so I’ve learned to just accept them.

  • Missn out

    The stretch marks on my belly I love and have no shame in them. The ones that have been on my hips and thighs since I was nine or ten have held me back since I was first made to feel embarrassed by them. At 33 I still have problems with them. No shorts in the summer t-shirts or cover ups at the beach always. Trying to get past them but a life time of being laughed at and told they are ugly us hard to get past.

  • keepitreal

    Ummmm no! Lol :-) I hated them and got rid of them and for the other ladies who want to do the same, check out Keri renewal stretch mark minimizer, it contains collagen, elastin and Vitamin C and it works, OMG, it works!!!! Got rid of my decade old stretch marks from puberty. Your welcome!

  • http://gravatar.com/mimiandy1683 MimiLuvs

    Just like the first strand of hair that sprouted on my leg or like the first tell-tale sign that I was growing breasts, the first sighting of a stretch mark was the “bee’s knees” for me. Stretch marks, just like the body hair, was a physical sign that womanhood was approaching and I was excited. I love my stretch marks. I know a few women (and some men too) who strongly dislike their markings and have spent thousands of dollars for creams that were supposed to get rid of the marks.

  • C

    I still dislike my stretchmarks, but I have learned to live with them. I realize they aren’t the worst things in the world, and I very am prone to them, so why fight it? I got them on my belly when I had my babies, then had more on my lower back and my triceps when I lost 70 lbs. If I could make them easily and affordabaly go away without applying some cream/oil three times per day for 6 months, then I’d do it.

  • MOE

    nothing works

  • http://ittakesapair.wordpress.com ittakesapair

    Raw Shea butter gets rid off and lightens stretch marks drastically. I was put on to it by a friend. Didn’t believe her. Now I’m spreading the word. Raw shea butter. not the processed packaged cremes and ointments. Try it.

  • http://www.myblackfriendsays.com myblackfriendsays

    I have accepted mine. Mederma helps to smooth them out (I did my own quasi scientific experiment a few years ago,) but it is not cheap. I think it’s better to just embrace them as a part of the story your body. Especially when they are from childbirth. I saw a thing on pinterest that compared them to a tiger that has earned her stripes ;)

  • Box

    how long did it take and what was the process?

  • Kema

    I use to feel the opposite about mine. I was more self conscious about the ones on my stomach. The ones on my lower side have been there since I was 14 and I’m used to them now. But now that I am 31 I have come to accept a lot. Maybe it’s a result of that serenity prayer lol but when it comes to my body I don’t dwell on things that I can’t change. So now I just spend all my time being mad about my love handles.

  • cabugs

    First of all, that lady in the photo is absolutely gorgeous.

    I never had stretch marks till I turned 18. Or at least I never noticed them…until one time when I was 18 I was dressing up looking in the mirror and saw some on the sides of my upper thighs/butt area. I was so surprised that I gasped. They were beautiful. I never wanted stretch marks. I had seen them on other people and just didn’t like the way they looked (I know this sounds really bad :\ ), but just seeing them on me for the first time was a pleasant shock. I was surprised they were there; and I was surprised that I liked them. I went on my facebook and posted (I promise I am not one of those people who posts every minute detail about their lives, but this was big for me!): “My stretch marks are so pretty. They look like zebra stripes”. And they do. I genuinely like them.

  • http://ittakesapair.wordpress.com ittakesapair

    I would say at least 3 weeks you’ll start seeing a difference. I just massaged it into my trouble spots, and kept doing it every time I took a shower and to be honest I didn’t think it would work, and then one day i was like “what the?!” lol. Ever since then i stopped buying regular lotions.

  • MISS_EMCEE

    Naw you’re only giving your hand stretch marks cause you jack off so much your palms have a 6 pack. Fall back like ya hairline and go meet a real woman.

  • Jae Bee

    Meh, I’ve been using raw shea butter mixed with pure vitamin E for at least 6 months now and I haven’t seen any dramatic improvement in my marks. Sure, my skin is softer, but the marks are still there, bright as day.

  • Jae Bee

    I’m gonna have to agree with you. I’ve been plagued with stretch marks since the age of 14 (I’m now 31) and I’ve tried just about every topical creme, home remedy, and I’ve even had expensive laser surgery (Fraxel) and NOTHING has worked! I was even told by the doctor who performed the Fraxel laser surgery that the most it will be able to do is improve the appearance of your marks (which it didn’t), but your marks will never go away and your skin will never be able to repair itself to look the way it did pre-stretch mark.

  • http://ittakesapair.wordpress.com ittakesapair

    interesting. I guess like most products, results vary. I’ll say a shot never hurt, worked for me. Good luck! :)

  • http://gravatar.com/janschild janschild

    While I’m at it, I might as well love my cellulite,too. LOL

  • Revie Maine

    I’ve been using the dr max powers stretch mark treatment, and while it does not 100% remove the stretch marks, i do notice they are lighter…im going to keep using

  • http://lovenotesforyourstretchmarks.eventbrite.co.uk/ ebele

    I feel stretchmarks is one of the things (amongst a plethora of other things) we’ve been messaged to not like about our bodies or embrace – you know, keep it hidden, be ashamed it, get rid of it, tolerate it.

    It’s so common amongst women (and I know some men have them too), and it’s natural, and yet a lot of people are made to feel embarrassed about having them.

    I grew up like that. But I’m learning to celebrate what I’ve got while trying to encourage others to do the same. x

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