As an instructor, I have new students ask, “what about getting rid of stretch marks with Microdermabrasion?”
I remember years ago in my early twenties being at the lake and this beautiful blonde girl was dating a friend of mine. She was an aesthetician.
She very kindly approached me about my stretch marks. She said she had this microdermabrasion machine that would get rid of them. I was blown away with excitement. I could not believe that after all these years of these embarrassing scars left from childbirth I could see freedom of my stretch marks.
Still, as a single mom with two kids at home, how in the heck was I going to afford this it sounded expensive. Well, it was.
The next week, I started calling places all over town asking about this microdermabrasion process. This girl had told me the same thing that these other people were telling me on the phone. The cost at that time was $150 per treatment and needed to be done every 3-4 weeks. They should be gone in a few months.
They were eventually gone. But it was well over 15 procedures later that—had I not been in the industry—would have a total retail cost of approximately $10,000.
So, does that mean I CAN use Microdermabrasion to get rid of stretch marks?
Allow me to answer this question for you.
NO, Microdermabrasion will not get rid of your stretch marks. If you have extremely minimal marks it will likely smooth them.
However, my marks were very deep and purple in tone. I have had to be extremely aggressive with my treatments due to the depth.
Over the years with flexibility to utilize so many different machines and learning about how tissue works, I found the best results came from using a 2940nm ablation depth 15microns followed by 2940 fractional at 300 microns at 11% density.
Here is the laundry list of laser treatment that I have performed on stretch marks. 3-Fraxel, 2-Pixel, 1-pearl, 3 -1540 Fractional, 2-2940 Venus, 2-e-matrix fractional, 3-2940nm ablative followed by fractional. There you have it 16 laser procedures that are not including chemical peels, microdermabrasion’s and just about any other treatment I could be a guinea pig for.
How do I look now?
I think amazing, you can barely see them now. Lasers absolutely can disguise your stretch marks but let’s be real. There is nothing like the knife and surgery to “remove” some kind of imperfection we think we have.
What your treatment provider should be doing is giving you reasonable expectations and a reasonable number of treatments to plan on.
I am by no means am saying that everyone’s case will need as much as mine. But to put it into perspective, I was originally told “a few microdermabrasion’s and they will be gone.”
Can you imagine my expectations? Can you imagine what my disappointment would have been after spending that kind of money?
I encourage my patients by giving realistic expectations based on their specific situation. In fact, I always quote a few more treatments than what I think.
When It comes to scars you just cannot predict how the tissue will behave. You have to be very mindful of properly skin typing and preparing the tissue for the extra heat.
With bleaching cream, sunscreen is a must plus making sure your client stays out of the sun to avoid hyper- or hypo-pigmentation.
I recommend spacing your treatment at least 5-6 even 8-10 weeks apart to allow wound healing. This will help to avoid coloring coming into the stretch marks.
Keep in mind that with all my treatments I was not as aggressive until the last 4-5 treatments. My last two treatments doing the full field resurfacing is where I saw my biggest improvement.
Today I can say very confidently I am very happy with the way they look. However, getting rid of stretch marks with microdermabrasion is very individualized.
My advice? Be sure you meet with a competent professional who has a proven track record.