With pregnancy comes a myriad of changes to a woman’s body. From thicker hair to a change in shoe size, being pregnant may bring about a host of physical side effects beyond a growing belly. As your body prepares to make room for your growing bundle of joy, your skin will expand and stretch to accommodate the new resident. As the elasticity of your skin tries to keep up with your new shape, stretch marks may appear in areas where the skin has been pulled, leaving white or light colors stripes. Although genetics play a role in determining whether or not you’ll get stretch marks, using a moisturizing lotion designed for stretch marks can help soothe and nourish your skin. This selection of pregnancy stretch mark lotions can be used at any point during pregnancy and may help prevent new stretch marks while eliminating old ones.
The Best Pregnancy Stretch Mark Lotions
(Best non-comedogenic option — $)
Why it’s great: Packed with powerful, natural oils, Bio-Oil Skincare Oil for Scars and Stretch Marks promotes the formation of new collagen to support skin renewal. This stretch mark lotion for pregnancy can improve the appearance of uneven skin as well as repair skin damage from an array of pregnancy-related issues in addition to stretch marks, such as C-section scars. A mix of vitamin E oil, chamomile oil, sunflower oil, and lavender oil not only provide a calming scent, but also fight inflammation.
Keep in mind: The smell can be a bit potent for some women, especially if experiencing heightened sense while pregnant.
Good for: Moms-to-be looking for a stretch mark lotion that won’t clog pores.
(Best for preventing stretch marks — $$)
Why it’s great: This nourishing blend of botanical oils using plant-based extracts and shea butter to prevent the appearance of visible scars and stretch marks that develop through pregnancy. Paraben-free and hypoallergenic, TriLASTIN Maternity Stretch Mark Prevention Cream is safe to use throughout your pregnancy. The specifically designed recipe is moisturizing without leaving a sticky or greasy residue.
Keep in mind: This stretch mark lotion works best on lighter skin tones according to some users.
Good for: Pregnant women who want a lotion they can use immediately to prevent stretch marks.
(Best oil-based option — $)
Why it’s great: Made from a blend of wheat germ, almond, and jojoba oil, Weleda Stretch Mark Pregnancy Massage Oil nourishes dry, stretched out skin. When used as a massage oil, this stretch mark prevention oil can help reduce the appearance of stretch marks while increasing skin elasticity. This option is safe for pregnancy and free from any synthetic compounds or toxic chemicals.
Keep in mind: The bottle comes in a smaller size and may run out quickly if used multiple times a day.
Good for: Moms-to-be looking for a stretch mark prevention lotion that can be used as a massage oil.
(Best budget option — $)
Why it’s great: Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Massage Lotion for Stretch Marks is an affordable option that uses cocoa butter to visibly improve skin’s elasticity while also helping eliminate the appearance of stretch marks. A blend of cocoa butter and shea butter can soften skin while a recipe of argan, almond, and coconut oils moisturize stretched out areas. This stretch mark lotion to be used during pregnancy is dermatologist approved and hypoallergenic for sensitive skin.
Keep in mind: This lotion has added ingredients that are not 100% natural.
Good for: Pregnant women looking to prevent stretch marks without breaking the bank.
(Best plant-based option — $$)
Why it’s great: Specially designed for sensitive skin and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, Evereden Nourishing Stretch Mark Cream is made from 12 nutrient-dense botanicals that moisturize while still being lightweight and fast absorbing. The potent natural actives reduce the appearance of stretch marks while simultaneously increasing skin elasticity. Made from non-toxic and plant-derived ingredients, this stretch mark lotion can soothe itchy, stretched out skin.
Keep in mind: The bottle design makes getting an appropriate amount of the product out a bit challenging.
Good for: Moms-to-be who prefer to implement plant-based products into their skincare routine.
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(Safest option for pregnancy and breastfeeding — $)
Why it’s great: Free of parabens, phenoxyethanol, synthetic color, and fragrances, this stretch mark lotion is plant-derived and safe to use throughout your pregnancy and postpartum journey. The blend of rosehip, grapeseed, jojoba and borage oils are high in linoleic acid, which helps fortify collagen and improve skin’s elasticity. The natural compounds in this stretch mark cream strengthen core connective tissues to help reduce the appearance of stretch marks and other skin imperfections.
Keep in mind: This stretch mark lotion is fast absorbing and may need to be reapplied often to maintain the moisturizing benefits.
Good for: Women who want a stretch mark lotion they can use safely during pregnancy and while breastfeeding.
(Best 100% organic option — $$)
Why it’s great: Glow Organics Belly Butter is not only 100% organic, but also a vegan, gluten, and cruelty-free stretch mark option. This pregnancy stretch mark lotion is a skin conditioning treatment that can prevent stretch marks while also relieving the itch of stretched skin. The soft, subtle scent is designed to not help moms-to-be with heightened sensitivities to smells.
Keep in mind: The blend of oils in this pregnancy stretch mark cream may clog pores on some skin types.
Good for: Pregnant women who prioritize organic ingredients.
FAQs about Pregnancy Stretch Mark Lotions
1. How can I prevent stretch marks during pregnancy?
Although the possibility of getting stretch marks largely comes down to genetics, you can choose a nourishing body cream to help fade the appearance of stretch marks on your skin. Controlling your weight, eating a nutrient rich diet and staying hydrated can also help prevent stretch marks from appearing during pregnancy. Keep in mind that although they may be bothersome, most stretch marks are not dangerous and can be viewed as a badge of honor of the changes your body has been through.
2. What should I look for in lotion for stretch marks during pregnancy?
When looking for a lotion to help prevent or fade stretch marks, keep an eye out for natural ingredients, like aloe, and plant-based oils, such as jojoba or almond oil. Avoid any ingredients that are not safe during pregnancy, such as parabens or phthalates.
3. When should I begin using a lotion for stretch marks?
The best time to begin using a lotion for stretch marks is before any marks have appeared. Consider introducing a stretch mark cream or oil into your routine early on in your pregnancy or even before you’re pregnant to help your skin stay moist and supple as it begins to make room for your little one.
4. Which ingredients should I avoid in a lotion when pregnant?
When pregnant, be sure to avoid any lotions or creams that have Retin-A in it, as well as any unidentified essential oils. Hydroquinone and any lotions that also use chemical sunscreens should also be avoided.
5. Can I use a pregnancy stretch mark lotion postpartum?
Pregnancy stretch mark lotions can be used at any point before, during, and after pregnancy unless otherwise noted on the product. The nourishing and soothing ingredients can help calm and moisturize your skin at any time and may be especially helpful and relaxing after birth.
Stretch marks during pregnancy can be one of the most frustrating parts of a growing belly. Not only can stretch marks leave light colored scars, they can also result in skin that feels tight and itchy. Luckily, this selection of lotions and creams for pregnancy stretch marks can help soothe and moisturize skin while also improving the appearance of these tiger-like stripes. Made with natural oils, vitamins, and calming scents, these pregnancy stretch mark lotions are the perfect addition to your nighttime ritual to moisturize stretched out skin and keep stripe-like scars at bay.