The Definitive Guide to Treating Stretch Marks
Stretch Marks Treatment Options
(Last Updated: July 2016)
Ever wondered if you could actually make stretch marks go away? There’s more than one way to do it! Here’s our guide to let you know all the ways and means in which you could get rid of stretch marks, and help you pick out the best and easiest of the lot. However it is worth noting upfront that no treatment is immediate. Stretch marks will take a minimum of 2-4 weeks to begin fading and you need to be patient with that.
What will this guide cover? First, we’ll go over the different treatment options available on the market.These include surgical and topical approaches to removing stretch marks.We believe strongly in the use of topical creams to address stretch marks, as surgical and other invasive procedures often pose risks that outweigh their benefits. That being said, we’ll go thorough all the options in detail The second part of this guide provides details on how to select a topical treatment, including what specific ingredients and qualities to look for. For more on product information, please visit our Medication Comparison Page.The third and final page of this guide provides our detailed approach to using a topical treatment to eliminate stretch marks.
Skip to: Topical Stretch Mark Removal, Surgical Stretch Mark Removal, Laser Stretch Mark Removal, Chemical Peel of Stretch Marks, Microdermabrasion
Topical Stretch Mark Removal
Topical treatment of stretch marks involves the use of one or more creams/lotions which are applied directly to affected areas. These topical formulations are aimed at reducing the appearance of stretch marks over time. Topical stretch mark “removal” is not an immediate process. If fact, of the methods presented on this site, topical stretch mark treatment is the slowest. However we recommend this approach because it is the least invasive of all the options and can be incredibly effective in reducing and eliminating the appearance of stretch marks.
- Painless – Topical treatment of stretch marks is completely painless.
- Safe – the risks posed by topical treatment of stretch marks are very low. Skin irritation due to allergy or extreme sensitivity are rare but possible.
- Accessibility – This treatment approach is the most commonly used method of dealing with stretch marks. This means that you’ll find a variety of products as well as reviews and useful information about them.
- Slow – As stated above, the topical treatment of stretch marks is a slow process. Patience is required. he stretch marks become a little less visible with each application, so you might not be able to spot the results on a day-to-day basis. Like at-home teeth-whitening, the results are best observed looking week-by-week and month-by-month.
- Skin irritation might occur due to allergy or extreme sensitivity. This happens in extremely rare cases, but it’s a possibility.
The Stretch Marks Authority is a strong believer in the value and usefulness of topical stretch mark treatment. It offers a completely safe and pain-free way of dealing with stretch marks.
Surgical Stretch Mark Removal
The surgical removal of stretch marks is one of the few ways that guarantee the near-immediate elimination of stretch marks. However this treatment type is only possible for stretch marks found on certain areas of the body – specifically stretch marks found on the mid to lower abdominal region. Surgical stretch mark removal is normally done as part of a (“tummy tuck”) known as a abdominoplasty.
- Complete removal of stretch marks – if the stretch marks meet certain criteria in terms of position on the body they can be completely removed through surgery. Unlike topical treatment and other options, this procedure does not simply fade stretch marks – it directly eliminates them.
- Invasive – Any surgery comes with significant risks and issues. Surgical removal of stretch marks is no different.
- Recovery time – Surgical removal involves incisions and stitching of the skin and outer tissue. Recovery from such a procedure involves a mandated rest period.
- Cost – The expenses associated with an elective surgical process can be very high and are often not covered by traditional health insurance.
We do not recommend or promote the use of surgery for removing stretch marks. Stretch marks are extremely common condition but they are a cosmetic condition which pose no direct health risk to those affected. For that reason undergoing an invasive medical procedure like an abdominoplasty (“tummy tuck”) to remove stretch marks is an unnecessary risk.
Laser Stretch Mark Removal
There are a handful of different types of laser treatments designed to reduce the appearance of stretch marks. We’d recommend careful and thorough research when going this route Different facilities specialize in different types of laser treatment and will often push one form over another based on what they are equipped to provide rather than what is actually best for you and the type of stretch marks you may be looking to treat.
- Effectiveness – Laser treatment of stretch marks has a relatively high rate of patient satisfaction.
- Cost – laser treatments require multiple visits to a specialist and the costs of these treatments can be unpredictable and pretty high.
- Risks – Mishandling of high-powered lasers can result in damage to the skin.
Laser treatment for stretch marks is a viable option for those who are not particularly price sensitive and for those willing to extensively research the local options.
Chemical Peel of Stretch Marks
It is possible to treat stretch marks with chemical peels of the outer skin. However this procedure is usually reserved for those looking to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and age spots. The process works by applying a thin layer of chemical solution which is designed to peel off and remove the top layer of skin, thus promoting the development of new, healthy skin cells. The relative concentration and strength of the chemicals used can vary by skin type and severity of stretch marks. Often this procedure causes pain and a burning sensation.
- Improved skin health – Chemical peels can improve the overall health and vitality of skin, resulting in skin which is smoother and younger looking.
- Effectiveness – Chemical peels are no longer a common way of addressing stretch marks because of their relative ineffectiveness when compared with other treatment types.
We do not recommend chemical peels for the purpose of treating stretch marks. While effective at revitalizing skin, chemical peels are not particularly effective in reducing the appearance of stretch marks.
Similar to chemical peels, microdermabrasion aims to rejuvenate skin by removing the top-most layer, allowing new skin cells to replace old tissue. This treatment type involves the use of an abrasive spray (normally containing crystal powder) which is blasted at the skin. The pros and cons are identical to those of chemical peels.
We do not recommend microdermabrasion as a means of treating and removing stretch marks.
NEXT UP: Selecting a Topical Treatment…
Now that you understand the various treatment options you can see that topical treatment offers the least pain, stress and expense Now, what you need to know is (1) how to select an effective topical treatment and (2) how to then use that treatment and maximize its results.