Stretch marks – do you care?

stretch marks in pregnancy via Compfight cc

Becoming a mum is such a huge milestone. There are so many things to think about, so many worries and concerns and so many new things you discover – both about your baby and yourself.

When I first became a mum, there were so many things I wasn’t expecting. During pregnancy, I experienced the joys of heartburn, swollen ankles and a clunky pelvis which didn’t appreciate the extra weight. I can’t say I relished any of these things much, although I certainly embraced them as a part of my pregnancy, and knew they were all a normal part of growing a tiny human. One thing I actually did relish were my stretch marks. OK, I know that probably sounds really odd to some of you, but to me they were like my tiger stripes – a badge of honour, a sign of how well my body was adapting to this new job. Even after my babies were born the stretch marks didn’t bother me – they are a reminder of what grew there, a reminder of how lucky and privileged we are to have 3 happy, healthy children.

Sadly, some women actually see stretch marks as one of the worst aspects of being pregnant – with almost one in five (18%) admitting that stretch marks have made them feel depressed, and a further 31% of women saying that stretch marks have caused them to lose confidence in their bodies, according to research by baby skincare experts, Bayer HealthCare, makers of Bepanthen Stretch Mark Cream. Some new parents have even said that their negative feelings towards stretch marks would make them seriously reconsider having more children.

Isn’t this just so sad? As new mums, we should be celebrating just what our bodies can do. You created and nurtured a whole new life, nourishing it from day 1, keeping it safe from harm and providing the best possible start in life. There is no greater super power than that. During pregnancy, I used to love massaging my bump with creams and oils – not to prevent stretch marks but to bond with the baby inside me. You can feel their movements and they can feel your soothing hands stroking over them. It’s a lovely way for Dads to be involved too – they can also bond with their baby. It must be a lot harder for them sometimes, as they cannot feel the movements in the same way we can.

Bump care routine

Dr Faye Kennedy, GP has said: “Mums-to-be should look for a stretch mark cream that can actually help strengthen the skin before stretch marks appear – rather than just trying to remedy the situation afterwards.  Look for a product that not only moisturises the skin – but one that can encourage collagen production, as a lack of this is a known root cause of stretch marks.  Looking after your bump when pregnant is also a great opportunity to ensure that you are bonding with your baby before the birth.”

Using stretch mark cream in this way during and after pregnancy could help to prevent stretch marks, if it really does worry you, but please do concentrate more on that little person, and just what you are doing for them right now. No one else can do what you are doing for your son or daughter  – you are amazing.  

This is a sponsored post.



  1. Kohl Mama
    October 27, 2014 / 8:24 pm

    Well said! There are some fabulous products out there as like with most things, prevention is key. I’m fortunate in that I didn’t get any stretch marks, but I would probably feel differently if I suffered badly, I know of someone who had them so badly, the skin cracked and bled :/

    • kate
      October 27, 2014 / 8:26 pm

      Ouch, that must have been terribly uncomfortable!

  2. October 27, 2014 / 9:34 pm

    I’m not keen on my stretch marks however I have never used any creams for them! I am just so used to them now x
    Beth recently posted…Blue Cupcake RecipeMy Profile

  3. October 27, 2014 / 9:34 pm

    Fab post. There’s definitely a growing backlash against all the airbrushed/Photoshopped images we see in magazines and in brand advertising, but not before time! I recently wrote about The Body Confidence Awards on my blog here and I’m truly heartened by such initiatives to change attitudes to body image. Judging by the feedback I got to the post it seems a lot of us feel the same way. It’s great that you embraced your stretch marks from the very start and are talking about it here. While there are still a lot of women who feel embarrassed about their lines, hearing others talk openly about theirs can only help such women feel better about themselves. Tx
    Tracey recently posted…Shiffa Healing Balm – Dry Skin SOSMy Profile

  4. October 27, 2014 / 10:44 pm

    I totally agree. I didn’t get stretch marks until days after birth and they were very faint and although noone else can see them I can and I like them – they remind me of Molly being protected in me.

  5. October 27, 2014 / 11:32 pm

    I have stretch marks and I’m not fussed by them – I’m not going to start showing them off to world or celebrating them but I’m not upset or miserable about them either. I have them and that’s just fine x
    Donna recently posted…Foodie Product Round-UpMy Profile

  6. October 29, 2014 / 1:51 pm

    I have a complicated relationship with my stretchmarks. I got them quite badly in my first pregnancy, all over my bump and at the top of my legs – I did get huge, my son was nearly 11lbs. Sadly he was stillborn at 41 weeks. I hated my post baby body (not surprisingly really) I was only 21 and the marks felt like a visible reminder of everything I had lost.
    I have happily gone on to have two beautiful daughters, I didn’t get any further stretchmarks in my subsequent pregnancies, possibly because I used such a lot of cream/oil on my bump.
    It’s been 12 years since I lost my son and my stretchmarks have faded considerably but I still hate them – would I hate them if he had lived? I don’t know. They were pretty bad and that felt devastating at such a young age.
    Prevention is definitely key. Great article with some excellent advice.
    JoyandPops recently posted…5 Ideas for Happy Family WeekendsMy Profile

  7. October 29, 2014 / 2:39 pm

    They are less prominent now now that my son is 4. The first time I saw them I almost cried cuz not only is my tummy ugly there are marks that made it uglier. But I slowly got to accept it and I am okay with it now =) #mmwbh
    Merlinda Little (@pixiedusk) recently posted…Pumpkin Carving in our Little HouseMy Profile

  8. Mackenzie
    October 29, 2014 / 2:27 pm

    Well said Kate! Seems crazy to worry about those things when a little person needs so much focus and attention instead, and mumma is so wonderful and beautiful to them. Thanks for the reminder xx

  9. October 29, 2014 / 5:11 pm

    It is interesting and like you say, quite sad that stretch marks would put someone off getting pregnant again! With Monkey I got horrible stretch marks, not on my tummy where I had been slapping on creams, but my boobs and worst of all my legs, almost down to me knees in fact, even though my legs hadn’t got much bigger, pesky hormones! I’ve never like my legs but this made it worse and I will admit I was quite depressed about them. Thankfully they have faded away to almost nothing now and this pregnancy I have been slapping creams and oils on all over and have barely any new stretch marks at all! Xx #mmwbh
    Caroline (Becoming a SAHM) recently posted…Monkey is a Big BrotherMy Profile

  10. Louisa
    October 29, 2014 / 8:07 pm

    I am not too bothered by my stretch marks but the mess left by my c section does upset me if I am honest because it restricts what I can wear. If I was able I’d have another baby in a heart beat though!

  11. October 30, 2014 / 12:20 am

    I have loads and I hate them! It wouldn’t be a reason not to have another baby for me, but we are not having another child anyway. I had them before I got pregnant, but they were silver and I have always tried to cover them. The post Baby ones are awful, massive and red. I would love not to have them as they do nothing for your self esteem x #MMWBH
    You Baby Me Mummy recently posted…Baby’s Konfidence has a wobbleMy Profile

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