How to prevent and reduce stretch marks during pregnancy

Do you think stretch marks can be removed permanently? Honestly, I don’t… but I do think they can be lightened.

“Studies have shown that more than 70 percent of women will get stretch marks during pregnancy. Many will see the purple or white lines appear on their abdomen, thighs, arms, and breasts. The stretch marks form when the skin rapidly expands and its elastic tissue tears.” Source:

I recently wrote a post – How I’ve learned to love my body. To be honest it did take me a long time to admit to myself that I wasn’t comfortable in my skin because with my first pregnancy I never got any stretch marks on my stomach. I expected it to be the same this time around but it wasn’t… Early in pregnancy, I started getting stretch marks – something I wasn’t really prepared for. It made me emotional, I avoided looking at myself in the mirror.

Can you prevent stretch marks during pregnancy? Yes, you can! I think one of my biggest contributions towards stretch marks was lack of exercise and water.

1. Hydration

Experts suggest pregnant women drink up to 10 glasses of water a day. (I think I’d probably just live in the toilet).

2. Eating Healthy

Eating food rich in Vitamin A, C and E help maintain your skin’s elasticity.

3. Exercising

Did you know exercising can help the skin retain its elasticity by improving circulation? It can also help strengthen your body and flexibility.

Tip: Avoid gaining too much weight, too fast. Do not take the advice “eating for two” seriously. Baby will always get the nutrition and vitamins from you. You don’t need to necessarily double your portions. Eating little throughout the day is better than eating 3 heavy meals.

Home remedies for Stretch Marks

1. Coconut Oil

First mix coconut oil with vitamin E oil then warm the oil and rub it into the affected area as a massage oil. Gently massage it in a circular motion for about 5-10 mins.

2. Turmeric

Combine turmeric with water or oil to create a paste and then spread it on the stretch marks twice a day.

Olive oil contains vitamin E, which restores skin tissue. This combination is perfect to help prevent stretch marks.

Must have products for stretch marks during pregnancy

If you looking for something convenient like me then there’s plenty of products available to prevent/reduce stretch marks. Trying to find the right one can be confusing since there’s so many brands available and they all range at a different price.

During my last pregnancy – Bio Oil was my lifesaver. I used it every day for 9 months and was happy with the end result. It was perfect for my skin during winter. This pregnancy, I decided to try two other brands to see if there is a big difference in these products. Many of the stretch mark creams/oils have similar ingredients, it just depends on what works for you and your skin type.

1. Bio – Oil

This was the first product I bought when I found out I was pregnant earlier this year. It is one of the well-known products for stretch marks and works well if you use it twice a day, every day. Ingredients include Lavandula Angustifolia Oil (Lavender Oil), Anthemis Nobilis Flower Oil (Chamomile Oil), Retinyl Palmitate (Vitamin A) and Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E).

This time around it worked well for the first few months but as soon as we hit winter, things changed. My skin just ended up getting drier.

2. Mio – The Tummy tub butter

This product smells amazing and feels amazing on your body. Definitely a product I would recommend because it isn’t oily on the skin. You basically replacing your body moisturizer with this during pregnancy. One of the ingredients is – Organic Shea Butter which is known to lock in moisture and help build elasticity. As much as I love it, the price is a bit high for me. I’m currently using samples that I received.

3. Be Beautiful earth – Anti-stretch mark oil

The brand contacted me recently asking if I would be keen on trying their range. I only tried two products in their range thus far; the body wash (which I wish was foamier) and the anti-stretch mark oil which quickly became one of my favourite products for pregnancy. I still have lots more products to try in their range.

Let’s talk about the anti-stretch mark oil:

I love that it is a pump bottle – makes it so easy to use when you in a hurry plus it smells great. It has an excellent combination of Grapeseed, Sweet Almond, Hemp, Organic Rosehip and Wheatgerm oils. I’m currently using the product and can already see a difference. My skin isn’t dry anymore.

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Hi, I’m Shan. I’m an entrepreneur and a sucker for good adventures. I was listed in Forbes Africa 30 under 30 2019 and just recently launched my start-up – MomSays.

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  1. 2015-09-04 / 19:29

    The same happened to me! I didn’t get any stretch marks with my first baby, but I was so busy being a mommy with my second that I hardly had time to take care of it, putting lotion on after a shower….how could I when my toddler was crying…but oh well, they are there and they are what they are a sign of motherhood. But yes I do wish to lighten them up if I can.

  2. 2015-09-05 / 03:44

    This is great advice for pregnancy and those losing weight as well. Thanks for the info!

  3. karalewis
    2015-09-05 / 06:38

    I tried so many things with my first baby but exploded into stretch marks the last week before he was born. He was a week over due so I think I was doomed!

  4. Rosey
    2015-09-05 / 14:08

    I love that hydtration is on the list. That can really help and prevent so many things!

  5. Carin Kilby Clark
    2015-09-06 / 05:16

    These are great tips! I wish I had taken more precautions when I was pregnant with my three. But I did use a cream that helped to reduce them after so that was helpful.

  6. Alisha
    2017-05-27 / 10:39

    I used dermalmd stretch mark serum at the very end of my pregnancy, after stretch marks had already developed. I continued to use it and now, 5 months post partum, my stretch marks have faded to the point of being almost unnoticeable.

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