First let me say that I was worried about stretch marks while I was pregnant. I had seen what happens to a woman's body after giving birth and it is not always pretty. I rubbed on the special stretch mark lotion every night. I didn't end up getting bad stretch marks and now, my skin looks like it did pre-pregnancy. This I owed to my special lotion, or so I thought.
I recently read a small article in a reputable magazine about stretch marks. It was an "Ask the Expert" section. Question- Can anything be done to prevent or treat stretch marks? Answer- The marks- usually appearing during puberty, pregnancy or weight gain or loss--aren't caused by stretching, says dermatologist Eric F. Bernstein, M.D. They're a result of hormonal changes in the skin that cause inflammation. This damages skin's elastic fibers, and increases blood flow (hence the redness). Little can prevent this, but promising treatments now exist. A combo of prescription steroid and/or retinoid cream and alpha hydroxy acid lotion may improve stretch marks' appearance over time. Laser therapy is another option. Over-the-counter Mederma Stretch Marks Therapy cream may help. Whatever your choice, act fast (old marks don't respond well), and avoid sun; it can further break down elastic fibers.
What the heck?!!! Someone needs to tell women about this! I know that I have not heard this before. We are all going around thinking that "stretch marks" are from being stretched. They need to change what they are called! Hmph.