Stretch marks are a type of superficial scarring that occurs when the skin is stretched because of rapid weight gain or loss. During their early stages—when they have first formed—stretch marks are typically red or purple in color. Over time, if left untreated, stretch marks will fade away on their own, and take on a silverish-white color. They will still be visible, but less visible than when they first formed. In fact, when they have faded to white, they are more difficult to treat.
Things You'll Need
- Glycolic acid scrub
- Cocoa butter
Exfoliate daily with a glycolic acid scrub. Rub the scrub deeply into your skin, using a circular motion. Glycolic acid is a member of the alpha hydroxy acid family. It works by sloughing off dead skin cells and stimulating new collagen growth to get rid of purple stretch marks.
Moisturize with cocoa butter. After exfoliating, apply a quarter-sized amount of the lotion onto the affected areas. Cocoa butter helps fade the dark purple color.
Apply a thin layer of retinoids such as Retin-A over the affected area. Retinoids stimulate new collagen production. They are typically available by prescription from a dermatologist. Using these in conjunction with glycolic acid will yield better results.
Get a series of laser treatments. A laser called the Vbeam reduces the appearance of purple stretch marks by targeting swollen blood vessels. Up to six treatments may be necessary before the stretch marks disappear completely.
Begin treatment immediately. Delaying treatment even a few days may ruin your chances of getting rid of purple stretch marks, as they respond to treatment best when it's started as soon as the scars appear. Once they have faded somewhat over time, the glossy white stretch marks may never be fully removed, regardless of treatment.