Stretch marks are visible lines on the skin surface, with an off-color hue. It can be small as well as big to cover large areas of the boy. Stretch marks can make you feel self-conscious and uncomfortable about your appearance.
When skin is stretched, the collagen is weakened and its normal production cycle is interrupted and damaged. This leads to the fine scars under the top layer of the skin. Initially the marks look pink or red, but over time a thin, silvery line appears on the skin surface.
Stretch marks are mainly found in the abdominal wall, but can also occur over the thighs, upper arms, buttocks and breasts. The major cause of stretch marks is pregnancy. Other causes can be sudden gain or loss in weight, rapid growth, heredity factors, stress and changes in physical conditions.
Here are 10 home remedies to reduce the appearance of stretch marks.
1. Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera is one of the most well-known remedies for stretch marks. Its healing and soothing properties can be used to get rid of stretch marks. It also contains plant collagen which immensely helps repair the skin. Collagen is one of the most important proteins that make our skin elastic, supple and youthful. Collagen is really beneficial to the skin as they help to reduce wrinkles, fine lines, reverse age of skin, tighter skin, plump up skin and also improve the elasticity of skin.
- Directly rub aloe vera gel on the affected skin area, leave it on for 15 minutes and then rinse the skin with lukewarm water.
- Make a mixture with one-fourth cup of aloe vera gel, oil from 10 vitamin E capsules and oil from five vitamin A capsules. Rub this mixture onto the skin until fully absorbed. Repeat this process daily.
2. Lemon Juice
Lemon juice is one of the most well known stretch marks removal home remedy. It is a great source of alpha hydroxy acids (AHA) and Vitamin C. Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid which ensures the production of collagen. Collagen is a protein made up of amino acids and produces almost 30% of the proteins with in the body. They are found in strong structures of the body like in tendons, bones and ligaments. It helps the growth of cells and blood vessels and aids immensely to maintain the firmness and strength of the skin.
- Rub fresh lemon juice gently onto the stretch marks using circular motions. Allow the lemon juice to soak into your skin for at least 10 minutes before rinsing it off with warm water.
3. Cocoa Shea Butter
Cocoa Shea butter is effectively used for stretch marks removal. It is rich in antioxidants and Vitamin E. Antioxidants protect skin by limiting the production of free radicals which can damage skin cells. Vitamin E is one of the most powerful antioxidants that neutralize free radicals and also helps prevent cellular damage from occurring. Being natural moisturizer, it also protects and repairs the skin.
- Apply Cocoa Shea butter over the affected area at least two times a day for a few months.
- Make a mixture using half a cup of cocoa butter, one tablespoon of wheat germ oil, two teaspoons of grated beeswax and one teaspoon each of apricot kernel oil and vitamin E oil. Heat this mixture until the beeswax melts. You can store the mixture in an airtight container in the refrigerator and apply it to your stretch marks two to three times a day. This mixture will make your skin more hydrated and smooth.
4. Castor Oil
Castor oil acts as a natural remedy for stretch marks, sun burn, and dry skin. Castor oil stimulates the production of collagen and elastin. Elastin is a protein in connective tissue that is elastic and allows tissues in the body to resume their shape after stretching. It also helps skin to return to its original position when stretched.
- Apply some castor oil to the stretch marks and gently massage the area in circular motions for 5 to 10 minutes. Wrap the area with a thin, cotton cloth. Using a hot water bottle or a heating pad, apply some heat to the affected area for at least a half an hour. Repeat this process daily for a minimum of one month to notice positive results.
5. Egg Whites
Egg white is rich in Vitamin A and collagen. Collagen is the main structural and the most abundant protein found in animal connective tissue and contains specific amino acids like glycine, praline, hydroxyproline and arginine. As it gives our skin firmness, suppleness and helps in the constant renewal of skin cells, it is really essential for our skin.
- Whip the whites of two eggs gently with a fork. Clean the affected skin area with water and then apply a thick layer of egg whites with a makeup brush. Allow the egg whites to dry completely and then rinse the area with cold water. Finally apply some olive oil on the skin to keep it moisturized. Repeat the process daily for at least two weeks and watch for positive results.
6. Potato Juice
Potato contains starch, a product with emollient properties that soothes the skin. The presence of antioxidants in potatoes helps remove stretch marks. Antioxidants are chemicals that transfer electrons or hydrogen from a substance to an oxidizing agent and they can prevent or slow cell damage. Potato is a great source of Vitamin C, potassium, thiamine, riboflavin, folate, magnesium, phosphorous, iron and zinc.
- Cut a medium-sized potato into thick slices. Take one of the potato pieces and rub it gently on the stretch marks for a few minutes. Make sure the starch from the potato covers the affected area. Allow the potato juice to dry for some time and then wash it off with lukewarm water.
7. Olive Oil
Olive oil contains four major antioxidants which allow it to work as a cleanser, moisturizer, and protector of skin. Among these antioxidants are Vitamin A and Vitamin E. Vitamin E helps to neutralize the oxidant effect of free radicals that damage collagen and it is the main reason of wrinkles, fine lines and skin dryness. Vitamin E reduces the chain reaction of free radicals. Vitamin A thickens and stimulates the dermis and reduces wrinkles and fine lines naturally and increases blood flow to the surface of the skin.
- Massage slightly warm extra-virgin olive oil into the affected skin area. This will improve the blood circulation and reduce the stretch marks to a great extent. Leave it for half an hour so that the vitamins A, D and E present in the oil are absorbed by the skin. You can also mix olive oil with vinegar and water and use it as a night cream. This will keep your skin stay moisturized and also exfoliate the skin.
Alfalfa leaves contain eight essential amino acids which are good for overall health of the skin. It is rich in Vitamin K, Vitamin E and amino acids which helps to nourish the skin. Vitamin E helps neutralize the oxidant effect of free radicals that damage collagen which is the main reason of wrinkles, fine lines and skin dryness. Vitamin E reduces the chain reaction of free radicals. Amino acids help to nourish the skin, hair and nails.
- Mix some alfalfa power with a few drops of chamomile oil to form a smooth paste. Massage the paste into the affected area two to three times a day. Repeat this daily for a few weeks and you will notice great improvement.
Sugar is one of the best home remedies to get rid of stretch marks. Sugar is a natural source of glycolic acid, an alpha hydroxic acid that stimulates the skin and helps generate younger and fresher looking skin. Sugar’s small particles are used in a number of body scrubs to exfoliate skin and remove dead skin cells. Alpha hydroxic acids are used to treat extremely dry skin, a condition that causes darkening of the skin. It reduces acne and sun burn.
- Mix a tablespoon of raw sugar with some almond oil and a few drops of lemon juice. Mix it well and apply it on the stretch marks and other skin areas. Gently rub the mixture on the skin for a few minutes every day before taking a shower. Do this for a month or so and watch your stretch marks become lighter.
10. Vitamin E
Vitamin E has been in use for thousands of years, and many women swear by it as a way to reduce or prevent stretch marks. Vitamin E oil combats stretch marks by promoting skin elasticity. When your skin is more elastic, it’s able to stretch more, which minimizes the tissue tearing that leads to unsightly stretch marks. Once you develop stretch marks, the tissue damage has already occurred, so vitamin E oil most likely won’t remove marks completely from stretched skin. So use it before stretch marks become worse which helps to reduce the marks.
- Combine vitamin E oil in any of your favorite moisturizer, which acts as a carrier base. Apply vitamin E oil to your stretched skin twice daily, in the morning and evening.