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There are many stretch mark ointments being sold today that promise to eliminate or reduce stretch marks, and you may not know which one is best for you. None of these products are scientifically proven, but there is a lot of anecdotal evidence that these creams and lotions reduce and prevent stretch marks. Here, we’ll review what these various creams claim to do.
Most over the counter stretch mark creams contain cocoa butter, and a mix of vitamins A and E. These promote the health of the skin, and improve its appearance. Cocoa butter hydrates the skin, improving its elasticity which will aid in the prevention of stretch marks. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that protects the skin. Retinol, or vitamin A, is also beneficial to the skin.
Most prescription stretch mark creams have a higher concentration of vitamin A. They are much stronger than the over the counter preparations, therefore they are generally more successful. Their success generally depends on the age of the stretch mark, and overall skin condition.
Shea butter is a recent addition to the mix. It helps with cell replenishment, and is a natural barrier to UV skin damage. Alpha hydroxy acids are also common in stretch mark ointments, also promoting cell regrowth. Your skin might feel a bit dry when you start using them, because dead skin is being removed.
Shea butter is another addition to stretch mark creams that has become more common. It can help promote cell regeneration and circulation as well as provide a natural protection against ultraviolet damage to the skin.
The application of a stretch mark cream will also help to increase circulation to all layers of the skin. The massaging motion stimulates blood flow. If consistently done, the improvements can be long lasting. Collagen production will be improved, along with cell regeneration- preventing and reducing stretch marks.
Most stretch mark creams can’t remove them completely because they work on the epidermis only. Most stretch mark damage is in the epidermis and the dermis. Topical creams can’t go deeply enough to eliminate stretch marks, but they can make them look better. They can also prevent them by improving the health of the skin.