Stretch marks can chip away at your self-esteem and confidence. They are caused by stretching and tearing of the skin, which can occur during periods of rapid growth, weight gain or loss, or hormonal changes, not to mention the postpartum period. While they are not harmful to your health, they can cause significant distress and self-consciousness, especially when they appear in visible areas such as your arms, abdomen, thighs, and hips. Although there is no complete cure for stretch marks, body oils have been used for centuries to help reduce their appearance and improve the skin’s overall health.
The Channel 46 caught up with Dr Sanchit Sharma, the Founder & Director of Ayouthveda, who discusses the benefits of body oils for reducing stretch marks and overall skin health and recommends some body oils for the same.
3 Benefits Of Body Oils For Overall Skin Health
Recent research has shed light on the effectiveness and mechanisms of action of body oils.
- They moisturise the skin, which improves its elasticity and reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
- They contain essential fatty acids and antioxidants that help to stimulate collagen production, which is essential for maintaining healthy skin.
- Some oils have anti-inflammatory properties that can help to reduce redness and swelling associated with stretch marks.
8 Body Oils Recommended For Treating Stretch Marks
There are several body oils that can reduce the appearance of stretch marks. These include:
1. Sweet Almond Oil
This is a light and non-greasy oil that is easily absorbed by the skin. It is also a good source of vitamin E and other antioxidants.
2. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is rich in fatty acids that improve skin hydration and elasticity. This, in turn, reduces the appearance of stretch marks over time.
3. Olive Oil
This oil is a rich source of fatty acids and antioxidants. It moisturises and nourishes the skin, and also reduces the appearance of stretch marks.
4. Lavender Oil
Lavender oil has anti-inflammatory properties that reduce redness and swelling associated with stretch marks.
5. Argan Oil
Argan oil is rich in vitamin E and essential fatty acids, which improve skin elasticity and promote collagen production.
6. Rosehip Oil
This oil is rich in essential fatty acids and antioxidants. This works wonders in improving skin elasticity and increasing collagen production, much like argan oil.
7. Jojoba Oil
This oil is a natural moisturiser that hydrates the skin and reduces inflammation. This weaves magic on your skin by improving the appearance of stretch marks.
8. Nalpamaradi Oil
Despite the fact that single oils are effective in reducing stretch marks, oils fortified with herbs provide additional benefits due to the properties of the herbs. Herbs are traditionally used in Ayurvedic medicines for their anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and healing properties. These are known for promoting skin regeneration, improving skin elasticity, and moisturising the skin.
For instance, Nalpamaradi oil is a classical Ayurvedic formulation, used for centuries to reduce the appearance of stretch marks. It is prepared using a combination of botanical ingredients, including:
- Curcuma longa (Haridra)
- Ficus benghalensis (Nyagrodha)
- Ficus religiosa (Ashvattha)
- Ficus racemosa (Udumbara)
- Ficus lacor (Plaksha)
- Emblica officinalis (Amalaki)
- Vetveria zizaniodes (Ushir)
- Inula racemose (Pushkar)
- Rubia cordifolia (Manjistha)
- Kaempferia galanga (Choram)
- Aquilaria agallocha (Agru)
- Fumaria parviflora (Parpat)
- Santalum album (Rakta Chandan)
- Til taila murcchhit (Sesamum indicum)
3 Benefits Of Nalpamaradi Herbal Oil
The active ingredients in this oil reduce the appearance of stretch marks by:
1. Promoting Skin Regeneration
These herbs contain compounds that promote the production of new collagen and elastin fibres, which repair the damage caused by stretching.
2. Improving Skin Elasticity
By increasing the production of collagen and elastin fibres, these herbs improve the elasticity of the skin, which reduces the likelihood of new stretch marks forming.
3. Hydrating The Skin
The oils are naturally moisturising and, when fortified with herbs, they keep the skin hydrated and prevent dryness, exacerbating the appearance of stretch marks.
To elaborate on the benefits that some of these ingredients offer, Manjistha contains compounds that reduce inflammation, while Harida is known for its antioxidant properties that protect the skin from free radicals. Rakta Chandan, on the other hand, is a natural skin brightener that reduces the appearance of dark stretch marks. Ushir is known for its cooling and rejuvenating properties that soothe and calm the skin, reducing inflammation and redness associated with stretch marks. It also aids in improving skin tone and texture.
While single oils are also effective in reducing stretch marks, oils fortified with herbs provide surplus benefits such as promoting skin regeneration, protecting the skin from damage, and improving skin elasticity, and hydration for the skin. Reducing the appearance of stretch marks can improve the overall appearance of the skin and boost self-confidence, making it a worthwhile endeavour.
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