Table of Contents
- 1 Make Those Stretch Marks Disappear
- 2 Ingredients Found in Effective Creams
- 3 Method Is Everything
- 4 The 5 Best Stretch Mark Removal Creams
- 5 While You Wait for Your New Stretch Cream to Arrive
Those red and purple marks may be on your stomach, your legs, your arms, or anywhere you grew in size in a short amount of time. Pregnancy is the most common cause, but gaining muscle mass from weight lifting can give you stretch marks, too. Even just growing taller quickly during puberty could cause them. Unfortunately, some people are more inclined to have them than others are.
So, what are these stretch marks anyway? They are actually tear marks. Rapid growth overwhelms the bands of elastin in the dermis, or middle layer of your skin, and the elastin breaks.
As the years pass, these marks usually fade to white. It’s easier to remove them while they are still brightly colored, but you can treat older stretch marks with the same creams. The key to preventing new stretch marks is to keep your skin pliable or elastic so it can keep up with changes.
Make Those Stretch Marks Disappear
There are two main ways to make stretch marks fade: invasive and non-invasive. Invasive methods include laser treatments, dermarolling, and microdermabrasion. These hurt because they injure your skin in order to force new collagen to grow. New collagen makes your skin plump and smooth, which helps hide scars and stretch marks.
The non-invasive method is using a cream formulated to help your skin become more elastic and pliable. This in turn helps stretch marks fade away. Use these creams with a bit of massage every day and you’re probably going to see results you like. It just takes time.
Ingredients Found in Effective Creams
The ingredients that are often found in creams that fade stretch marks and scars include cocoa and shea butter, hyaluronic acid, aloe, Vitamin E, and argan oil. These are natural components that add moisture to skin and help it become more firm and pliable. That way a cream prevents new stretch marks while you treat the ones you already have.
Another ingredient you may see from time to time is tretinoin, or retinoid cream. This is effective on stretch marks, but potentially dangerous for pregnant women to use. Be sure to read the ingredients list carefully if you’re pregnant.
Method Is Everything
We mentioned massage, and we mean it. Plan on using a circular motion to rub in the cream, and take a few minutes each day to do it. Don’t just slap it on and go. Dermatologists actually recommend massage for stretch marks. It increases blood flow and helps the cream penetrate into the skin.
The 5 Best Stretch Mark Removal Creams
Here’s where we reveal our choices for the top 5 creams. Although most skin types won’t have a problem with these as long as they are used on the body instead of the face, we marked the one that is safe for sensitive skin.
StriVectin SD Advanced Intensive Concentrate for Wrinkles and Stretch Marks
StriVectin recommends massaging their Advanced Intensive Concentrate into your stretch marks and scars both morning and night. They asked users of their product to evaluate how well it worked after two weeks. According to their study, 94% saw a positive difference in their skin.
Their formula is made to hydrate skin and stimulate the growth of collagen. More collagen means less wrinkles and firmer, younger-looking skin. The ingredients list contains glycerin, shea butter, aloe, ginger extract, peptides, hyaluronic acid, and more. It’s literally full of anti-aging components to make you look years younger.
Marc Naturals Strianix Intensive Stretch Mark Complex
Marc Naturals says their Strianix Intensive Stretch Mark Complex was clinically tested against stretch marks, freckles, age spots, and skin discolorations. They report that 100% of the users who participated in the trial reported improvements in their skin’s overall appearance.
Like the StriVectin cream, this one is loaded with natural oil and extracts like cocoa and shea butter, aloe, licorice, and more. It smells pleasant and absorbs quickly. (That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take time to massage it in properly.) Marc Naturals says it’s hypoallergenic, non-comedogenic, and safe for all skin types, but acne-prone individuals should test it first before using it on their face.
Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Tummy Butter
By now you’re seeing a trend, aren’t you? The first three products we’ve listed all contain cocoa butter. Palmer’s Tummy Butter depends on cocoa extract and cocoa butter as well as mineral oil, collagen, elastin, dimethicone, and lavender oil. They warn that pregnant women should test it first because they tend to have elevated skin sensitivity during pregnancy.
Palmer recommends massaging their Tummy Butter into stretch marks three times a day or more.
CeraVe Intensive Stretch Marks Cream, for Sensitive Skin
Let’s take a break from the butter and oil solutions and review one that works for sensitive, acne-prone skin. First off, CeraVe is a brand that is often recommended by dermatologists. The Intensive Stretch Marks Cream is hypoallergenic and has no added fragrances or parabens.
This cream contains hyaluronic acid, ceramides, and argan oil. If you haven’t heard of argan oil, it’s derived from a nut that grows on trees in Morocco. This plant oil contains Vitamin E, fatty acids, and antioxidants so it is naturally anti-inflammatory and nourishing for dry skin. CeraVe says to massage this cream into the affected area at least once a day.
Body Merry Stretch Marks Cream
This product wants you to get happy—it says so right on the label. They say they have a popular formula and that’s no exaggeration. At the time of writing, this cream was ranked #1 in Maternity (Skin Care), and #4 in Scars and Wounds (Health Care) on Amazon.
The Body Merry Stretch Marks Cream ingredients list includes Vitamins E, C, B3 and B5, as well as hemp seed oil, evening primrose oil, and of course, cocoa butter.
Besides stretch marks, use it on cracked, dry skin. Massage it in at least once a day. Body Merry says if you aren’t satisfied in 90 days, they will offer a refund.
While You Wait for Your New Stretch Cream to Arrive
Take a good hard look at those stretch marks. Don’t fear them. You’ll conquer them soon. In the meantime, start moisturizing now. Take a few minutes each day to massage lotion, coconut oil, or olive oil on those marks. You’ll increase blood flow and help soften your skin. You might even notice some improvement.
If you’re concerned that a cream might not be enough to remove your stretch marks, you have other options. Check out this article about dermarollers that eliminate scars, wrinkles and stretch marks.
Read other reviews on the best products in skin care including makeup for sensitive skin and at-home laser treatments for wrinkles.