Camouflaging Stretch Marks with Makeup

By: Emilie Sennebogen

Stretch marks are a part of life. That doesn't mean you have to like them.
Stretch marks are a part of life. That doesn't mean you have to like them.
iStockphoto/Thinkstock

Stretch marks are a grim, all-too-common occurrence for a person who has gone through a period of rapid weight gain. This can happen during periods of stress -- when comfort food replaces normal eating patterns -- during pregnancy or even during puberty. The good news is they're painless, but the bad news is they're rather unsightly. Stretch marks happen when skin stretches too quickly and separates collagen from the skin, which serves to connect and support skin structure. These marks tend to pop up around the breasts, stomach, hips and buttocks. Over time, the skin can repair itself and stretch marks will fade, but that doesn't help you prepare for this year's bathing suit season.

Skin is naturally elastic, but not all skin is created equal. While there are things you can do to minimize the occurrence of stretch marks during weight fluctuations, a lot of it is based on the same thing that gave you your prominent cheekbones and full lips -- your genes. Well-hydrated skin is more resistant to stretch marks, so if you're naturally prone to dry skin, it may be a bit of a battle. Topical moisturizers may help, but there's simply no guarantee. So, if your gene pool has its merits, but skin elasticity isn't one of them, have no fear; there are ways you can camouflage stretch marks with makeup. Read on for tips and tricks that will allow you to confidently bare more skin at the beach.

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Tips for Camouflaging Stretch Marks with Makeup

Don't forget your cream under your makeup to help get rid of those pesky stretch marks.
Don't forget your cream under your makeup to help get rid of those pesky stretch marks.
iStockphoto/Thinkstock

The best way to camouflage stretch marks is to use body makeup, which is a little different than makeup you buy for your face. Body makeup is formulated to work like a foundation, but it has additional ingredients that make it resistant to being rubbed or sweated off. It's typically used by makeup pros, so it's more likely to be found at a department store makeup counter or a specialty makeup store than a drug store. Just as with foundation and concealer for your face, be sure to choose a shade that most closely matches your skin tone.

Before you apply the makeup, cleanse your skin well to get rid of excess oils. Using a cleanser with a mild abrasive, like a salt or sugar scrub, will help remove dry skin cells and expose the freshest skin. Apply the body makeup with a small, soft bristle brush, and then use a sponge to blend it into your skin until you can't see any lines. Try to stay close to the stretch marks -- you don't need to cover the entire area of the body where the marks are located. Set it with a small amount of translucent finishing powder to help keep the makeup in place. Then put on your bathing suit and hit the sand. Just be ready to reapply if the sea or pool takes some of the makeup off.

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Related Articles

  • Borlongan, Josienita. "Makeup Tricks to Hide Stretch Marks." Modernmom.com. June 24, 2010. http://www.modernmom.com/article/makeup-tricks-to-hide-stretch-marks
  • Griffin, Sharin. "How to Camouflage Stretch Marks." Livestrong.com. August 24, 2010. http://www.livestrong.com/article/173607-how-to-camouflage-stretch-marks/
  • "What Causes Stretch Marks?" mom.me. May 21, 2012. http://mom.me/parenting/1062-causes-stretch-marks-pregnancy/?utm_source=ehow_opar&utm_medium=1&utm_campaign=momme1