While becoming a mommy is a joyous feeling, dealing with the stretch marks or “mommy scars” isn’t. First-time mommies have many questions when it comes to how their bodies change and evolve and many of these questions are centered around stretch marks and how to get rid of them. Pregnancy comes with a lot of wonderful changes and not so wonderful ones like stretch marks. In this article you will find the home remedies to get rid of pregnancy stretch marks.
Stretch marks begin to appear when a body part grows faster than the skin can keep up with, causing elastic fibers under the skin to disrupt. This happens most commonly during pregnancy. When individuals put on or lose too much weight, then also stretch marks can appear on their bodies.
An average woman gains around 30 pounds or 14 kilos during her pregnancy. Such rapid growth causes reddish or whitish stretch marks on the stomach and breasts. Other areas like upper arms, thighs, and hips also bear the brunt of stretch marks.
90% of pregnant women get stretch marks in the later stages of their pregnancy. This is when the maximum growth happens.
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Genetics also have a role to play in stretch marks, i.e. if your mother had stretch marks, then you have greater odds of having them too. Stretch marks also vary with your complexion. Women with darker complexion tend to develop dark-colored stretch marks whereas women with lighter complexion develop even lighter marks.
Although the complete prevention of stretch marks during pregnancy is not really possible, you can surely lessen their visibility using these natural home remedies.
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Application of coconut oil is super easy and perhaps the best way to reduce and lighten stretch marks. Massage this oil regularly on your thighs, arms, breasts, belly and abdomen area to reduce the extra marks. You can also try blending different oils to get the maximum benefit such as olive oil blended with coconut oil and cocoa butter.
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It might sound a little messy, but it is believed that the proteins in egg white can do wonders to rejuvenate your skin. So the next time you make an omelette, put some of the white aside for your stretch marks. Apply it around twice a day and watch those marks fade away.
Also Read: 13 Pregnancy myths and facts
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Use the juice of raw potatoes to reduce stretch marks. Potato juice is known to help repair skin cells, provide essential nutrients and reduce the appearance of stretch marks. Simply slice a potato and rub it on the affected area to get desired results.
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Lemon juice is a natural bleaching agent. The natural acids in lemon juice are known to lighten the skin tone and help reduce the colour of stretch marks. All you have to do is slice a lemon, rub it onto the affected area and let it stay for around 10-15 minutes. Rinse off with cold water and moisturize for stretch mark free skin!
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This naturally occurring magical herb can do wonders to your skin. It is gentle enough for daily use and can be a great soothing agent for stretch marks and heat burns. Grow some Aloe Vera in your garden or procure it fresh from the market. Cut it into two halves and extract its gel to apply on your belly, arms and thighs daily to reduce stretch marks.
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Exfoliating the skin is essential to ward off the dead skin cells and get fresh skin that is devoid of stretch marks. Mix some sugar with olive oil along with a few drops of lemon to make a natural scrub that will give you a soothing effect. Use this right before you shower and watch your stretch marks fade away. What’s more, you’ll also smell great!
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Prepare your own moisturizer at home using essential oils. Your DIY moisturizer should have a carrier oil such as almond oil, argan oil, castor oil, or jojoba oil along with essential oils such as avocado oil, rosehip oil, and lavender oil. This combination of carrier oils and essential oils helps since the carrier oils hydrate and nourish the skin while the essential oils provide the much-needed healing compounds and antioxidants to the skin.
Also Read: 11 Food Items to avoid during Pregnancy
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Petroleum jelly helps to lock in the moisture into the skin and it also helps to heal stretched and dry skin. Just massage with a generous amount of petroleum jelly every night for 10-15 minutes before you got to bed.
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Glycolic acid also helps in producing collagen, which is responsible for maintaining the elasticity of the skin. Massage with glycolic acid cream once or twice daily after consulting with your doctor.
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This might sound surprising but coffee beans can help to heal stretch marks. Just mix half a cup of finely ground coffee beans to 2 tablespoons of coconut oil or olive oil and use this mixture to massage the affected area gently using circular motions. Allow the scrub to stay on your skin for 5 minutes and then rinse. The caffeine in the coffee beans helps to revitalize the skin and the oil provides nourishment.
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A great moisturizer, shea butter is known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Regular use of shea butter on the skin helps to repair damaged cells and eliminate stretch marks.
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The retinoid in Vitamin-A moisturisers makes the skin healthy and smooth. It facilitates the growth of new cells and hence, lightens the stretch marks. Massage a Vitamin-A moisturizer on your skin and see your stretch marks disappear.
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This moisturizer made of vegetable fat is non-greasy. It not only helps to remove stretch marks but also increases the elasticity of the skin. It penetrates the skin and hydrates it very well.
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This herb is rich in vitamins E and K and also contains various amino acids that not only help to reduce stretch marks but also improve your skin tone. Just grind some alfalfa leaves and mix with a few drops of chamomile oil to form a smooth paste. Apply on the affected area and allow it to dry. If you don’t have access to leaves than get Alfalfa powder from a medical store and make a paste of that and apply.
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Grapefruit seed extract facilitates the production of new collagen and removes the collagen that is damaged. Just mix 1 tbsp of grapefruit juice with 3 tbsps of coconut oil and massage on the affected areas to see your stretch marks reduce.
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Both basil leaves and oatmeal are very effective in treating stretch marks. Mix grounded oats with 3 teaspoons each of honey and apple cider vinegar along with some basil leaves and apply on the affected areas. It works miraculously to reduce stretch marks. Don’t believe us? Try it yourself and see!
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Another natural way to get rid of stretch marks is, by applying mink oil on the problem areas. Mink oil has omega-7 monounsaturated fatty acid, which matches the natural oil of skin. Just massage on affected area for 10-20 minutes every day.
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Baking soda is very effective in exfoliating the skin and lightening stretch marks. A scrub of baking soda and water can be applied to areas where you have stretch marks. Just mix 1 tbsp of baking soda to the juice of one lemon. Apply this paste to the affected area and cover it with a cling wrap. Wash off with lukewarm water after half an hour.
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Bentonite Clay or Multani Mitti is known to possess healing properties. Women have been using this as a beauty mask since ages. You can apply a smooth paste of clay and honey on your stomach as well to eliminate stretch marks from the skin.
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One of the most common household ingredients used in Indian kitchens is haldi or turmeric. It is a powerful antioxidant and also contains anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties. Just prepare a paste of turmeric and water and apply to the affected area twice daily to make your stretch marks vanish. You can also add besan or Bengal gram flour to it.
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An apricot mask is a trusted recipe for stretch mark removal. Cut an apricot, deseed it and mash the fruit to get a smooth paste. Now apply this paste to the affected area and allow it to stay for 15-20 minutes and then rinse off with warm water.
You should also remember the following important points which will help you to reduce stretch marks.
Nutrition plays a key role in the appearance of stretch marks. Indulge in a balanced diet rich in Vitamin E, C, zinc, silica, folic acid and other nutrients essential to keep the skin hydrated and glowing.
Vitamin E serves as an antioxidant that is essentially important in protecting the skin fibers from any damage. Eat foods like almonds, spinach, pumpkin, olives, and avocados to get your share of this skin protecting vitamin.
This one is a no-brainer. Water is that extraordinary tonic for our skin that can restore skin cells, rejuvenate and provide a healthy glow. Drink around 10-11 glasses of water throughout the day to maintain the elasticity of your skin and prevent breakage. At the same time, avoid things like alcohol that dehydrate your body.
Vitamin C helps to produce collagen, which is the natural protein of the body and helps to lighten stretch marks. You may take oral supplements of Vitamin C after consulting your gynecologist. Natural sources of Vitamin C are lemon water and juice of citrus fruits.
When your stomach expands during pregnancy, the skin becomes dry and itchy that leads to the tendency to scratch. Scratching the skin can worsen the situation so avoid doing that. Instead, whenever you feel itchy, rub a moisturizer to hydrate the skin.
Using these home remedies you can expect results to show in 2-3 months – but this may vary from person to person. Many women use these home remedies to rid stretch marks after pregnancy. Ideally, you should start applying them from the 5th month of pregnancy itself so as to keep the skin hydrated and prevent the occurrence stretch marks itself.
Also read: Importance of folic acid during pregnancy
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