We are often asked about a natural remedy for stretch marks. People want to get rid of stretch marks but at the same time, many people are reluctant to undergo expensive, painful-sounding procedures like microdermabrasion (in which the top layer of skin is essentially sanded away), chemical peels (in which chemicals are used to burn the top layer of skin so that it peels away) and laser surgery. Natural remedies sound like a good alternative, but unfortunately, many just don’t work very well.
Here is just a sampling of the natural remedies sometimes suggested for stretch marks. We don’t think these are very likely to actually work, though, and we’ll tell you why. We’ll also tell you what we recommend if you are interested in trying a natural remedy for stretch marks.
Alfalfa Paste – This natural remedy for stretch marks involves mixing powdered alfalfa with a bit of chamomile oil to form a paste, which is then applied to the stretch marks. Alfalfa contains antioxidants, which do benefit the skin, as well as high amounts of vitamin E, vitamin K and protein, all of which are necessary for healthy skin. We’re not sure applying it topically would help stretch marks, though. Your skin might benefit from eating some alfalfa, but eating it isn’t likely to help your stretch marks, either. Stretch marks are similar to scars; they aren’t a sign of unhealthy skin, but of skin that has been stretched to the point of tearing some of the fibers in the dermis.
Egg Whites – Egg whites are applied to the skin like a face mask, allowed to dry, then rinsed off. This might leave your skin feeling tighter and better toned, but it probably won’t fix your stretch marks. Stretch marks are not caused by lack of skin tone, they are caused by torn collagen and elastin fibers in the skin.
Lemon Juice – Lemon juice is, of course, acidic and astringent, so it might leave your skin feeling tighter and toned. It’s unlikely to actually improve the appearance of stretch marks, however.
Olive Oil – Applying olive oil will moisturize your skin and may be helpful if you have very dry skin, but there is no evidence that it will help your stretch marks in any way (1).
Potato Juice – The juice of a potato is applied to the stretch marks or slices of raw potato are rubbed on the affected area. As far as we can figure, though, this is unlikely to benefit your skin in any way whatsoever.
Sugar Scrub – White sugar is mixed with olive oil to make a scrub which is then used to exfoliate the affected area. While this probably will do a good job of exfoliating and then moisturizing your skin, it’s unlikely to have much of an effect on your stretch marks.
Tea Tree Oil – Extracted from the leaf of a plant that is native to Australia, tea tree oil is used to treat of variety of infections, including skin infections like acne, ringworm and athlete’s foot. While studies show it is at least moderately effective for those things, stretch marks are not caused by an infection and there are no studies that show tea tree oil is effective at removing stretch marks.
One of our favorite natural remedies for stretch marks is Insta Natural Stretch Mark and Scar Cream, which contains a number of natural ingredients such as evening primrose oil and rosehip oil that work together to reduce the visibility of stretch marks and help heal and repair damaged skin. It makes the stretch marks less noticeable and it gets excellent reviews from most people that try it. To learn more about Insta Natural Stretch Mark and Scar Cream and read reviews from others than have used it, just follow the link.
(1) Mayo Clinic: Alternative Medicine