When I became pregnant with my first child, my son Hunter, my mom gave me a call with an important tip for preventing stretch-marks: “moisturize, moisturize, moisturize!” I took her tip to heart and set to work creating a DIY moisture-balm that combined some of the world’s most deeply hydrating, collagen-promoting oils and butters, which I used daily as a treatment for improving my skin’s elasticity and preventing those permanent marks. Well, it worked – three pregnancies later, I’m able to say that I don’t have a single stretch mark!
Inspired by the effectiveness of my homemade treatment, I set out to create an even more high-performance version that combined advanced collagen technology with some of those classic exotic butters. The goal was to create an elasticity-supporting balm that helped to prevent future stretch marks, and minimize existing ones. After lots of research and formulation, the Redefining Body Balm is here! It’s a toning, fortifying, deeply hydrating treatment that can be used anywhere on the body, and is especially ideal for use before and after pregnancy.
Let’s talk a little bit about stretch marks. A simple explanation for them is that they’re caused when the body grows too quickly for the skin to keep up, causing the skin’s elastic fibers to break, giving the skin the look of a tear under the surface. Stretch marks occur with growth spurts, rapid weight or muscle gain, and of course, pregnancy.
Genetics play a role in whether or not you’re predisposed to stretch marks, but whether or not they’re in your family, they can be minimized, and you can partially prevent them with a series of healthy-skin strategies. Here are my tips for preventing stretch marks below – these can be used by expecting mothers, or by anyone looking to promote elasticity in the skin at any stage in life.
6 Steps to Stretchmark Reduction
- Moisturize! My mother’s suggestion is an important one. Deep, high-quality hydration helps keep the skin’s collagen fibers flexible and elastic. The drier the environment, the more prone they are to being brittle and to breakage. Moisturize daily, either with a Body Oil, a Body Lotion, or a Body Balm.
- Massage the areas of the skin that are prone to stretch marks. Massaging helps to stimulate microcirculation, bringing fresh nutrients and oxygen to the skin and keeping it at its healthiest. We’d recommend massaging with our new Redefining Body Balm; warming the skin and the product with a slow massage is an excellent way to promote deep penetration of the formula.
- Eat collagen-supporting foods like broths, apricot, tomatoes, carrots, sweet potatoes, and spinach. Maintaining a diet that supports healthy collagen formation from the inside-out can make a big difference in skin elasticity.
- Hydrate by drinking water, juices and herbal teas throughout the day. Just as it’s important to moisturize the outside of the skin, hydrating from within is essential too. Skin requires more water as it grows and stretches, and hydrated skin is less prone to elastic breakdown.
- Exercise! Exercise is literally good for everything; in this case, it helps to keep the skin flooded with fresh blood, and therefore oxygen and nutrients, which not only provides a healthy glow but helps promote elasticity by simply keeping skin at its healthiest. Of course, if you’re pregnant, double check with your care provider before making regular exercise part of your routine.
- Address the appearance of stretch marks ASAP by applying a toning, hydrating product to the skin right away. Stretch marks first appear darker, usually a red or purple shade, and then turn to white or gray; get them when they’re at the darker shade to see the fastest preventative results. Our Redefining Body Balm is perfect for this; apply daily to minimize the look of the forming stretch mark, and to keep it from fully developing.
Tata founded Tata Harper, the eponymous all-natural skincare line, because she was fed up with all of the toxins and carcinogens found in so many skincare lines. Tata’s headquarters–her farm in Vermont, where many of the ingredients are sourced–are also home, where she lives with her husband and three children.