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My Stretch Mark Story: How to Reduce the Appearance of Stretch marks- Thomas DeLauer
A study in the British Journal of Dermatology investigated what could be causing stretch marks at the molecular level. Researchers studied skin samples from 27 pregnant women who had recently-formed stretch marks, comparing the stretch mark skin to both nearby stretched skin on the abdomen and to less-stretched skin on the hip. Researchers found the elastic fiber network in the dermis gets disrupted in a stretch mark – after giving birth, this network remains disrupted. Elastic fibers give skin its elasticity, or the ability to “snap back,” after stretching – the skin tries to repair the disrupted elastic network but it does not appear to be effective, which in turn promotes the lax, loose skin seen in more mature stretch marks.
Collagen is the protein building block of all your connective tissues, including your bones, muscles, skin, hair, nails and tendons. It plays an important role in the replacement of dead skin, hair and nail cells – around 30% of the protein in our bodies is collagen. Collagen is a protein that binds skin cells together and keeps your skin supple. Your body produces less collagen as you age, resulting in the formation of wrinkles and stretch marks. Extreme stretching of the skin paired with a lack of collagen causes the dermis of your skin to tear.
Study – Published in the journal Skin Pharmacology and Physiology:
Conducted a double-blind placebo study conducted that found that women who took collagen hydrolysate (the peptide form) regularly for 8 weeks saw a 20% reduction in wrinkles:
“After 8 weeks of intake a statistically significantly higher content of procollagen type I (65%) and elastin (18%) in the BCP-treated volunteers (collagen) compared to the placebo-treated patients was detected.”
This means that supplemental collagen helps the body’s own production process improve, as procollagen is the precursor to collagen in the body. Also, this showed that collagen consumption can increase skin elasticity and moisture.
Witch hazel is a skin-healing astringent that’s capable of naturally inflammation and is popular for skin care due its strong antioxidant and astringent properties. Its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties make it a great way to preserve skin’s elasticity – tightens skin and can protect collagen and skin elasticity. More specifically, witch hazel contains tannins are responsible for making witch hazel extract a natural astringent, since they remove excess oil from skin. Also contains compounds called “gallate esters,” which include proanthocyanidins, hydrolyzable tannins (galloylated sugars) and methyl gallate. It’s effective as a “free radical scavenger,” meaning it helps protect against DNA damage.
1) Stretch mark science: What happens to your skin when pregnancy gives you a stretch mark? Most topical treatments currently available are not evidence-based. (2018, April 20). Retrieved from
2) Experts Say This Is The Best Way To Boost Your Collagen. (2017, September 18). Retrieved from
3) Proksch E , et al. (n.d.). Oral intake of specific bioactive collagen peptides reduces skin wrinkles and increases dermal matrix synthesis. – PubMed – NCBI. Retrieved from