Using essential oils for stretch marks is more likely to help prevent them or to work best on newer ones. Fading older stretch marks is possible but could take six months or longer.
Stretch marks, also called striae, are tears in the elastic tissues in the dermis (the second layer of skin, under the outer epidermis). Most often, striae appear after rapid weight gain or loss, including during pregnancy and during teenage growth spurts, and may be partially heredity.
Other causes of stretch marks include medications or chemicals that interfere with collagen formation and certain diseases, such as diabetes and Cushing disease.
A general measure to help prevent stretch marks during pregnancy and other weight changes is to moisturize your breasts, abdomen, hips, and buttocks three or four times a day with cocoa butter or shea butter.
You can enhance the effects of the cocoa or shea butter by adding a few drops of an essential oil. Essential oils for stretch marks recommended by Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to the Healing Art are:
Caution: Not all essential oils are recommended during pregnancy. Learn more about using essential oils during pregnancy and consult a healthcare professional as appropriate.
Helichrysum combined with rosehip seed oil is the classic aromatherapy recipe for getting rid of stretch marks (and scars). Here's the blend:
Apply to skin 2 or 3 times a day.
Although the following blend is for use after pregnancy, you can also try it for other stretch marks:
Use a loofah daily (for 3 to 6 months) to massage a little of the blend into your skin. Do not use while pregnant.
Source: Advanced Aromatherapy
These blends contain essential oils that generally are safe to use during pregnancy. (Always a good idea to check with your healthcare provider.) Continue using these stretch mark prevention blends until you return to your previous weight after giving birth.
You can start using the next two blends in the second month of pregnancy.
Here's another blend you can use during pregnancy:
Blend all the ingredients in a 4-ounce dark bottle. Shake well. Twice a day, massage some of the blend onto your breasts, abdomen, waist, and thighs.
Source: The Complete Aromatherapy and Essential Oils Handbook for Everyday Wellness
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