Stretch Mark Camouflage – All You Need to Know
Stretch mark camouflage treatments help you feel your best. Find all the info on these procedures in this guide!
It is estimated that 50-90% of women develop stretch marks over the course of their lives, either as a result of a growth spurt, pregnancy or weight gain. Yet, many feel self-conscious about them.
The micropigmentation industry has developed medically safe solutions for women to feel more confident in their skin. Stretch mark camouflage is an effective way to conceal stretch marks by combining various semi-permanent tattoo techniques to make them less noticeable.
Read this guide to find answers to what stretch mark camouflage is and learn more about the treatments available today.
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What Is Stretch Mark Camouflage?
Stretch mark camouflage is a term that combines several cosmetic treatments specialized for minimizing the visibility of stretch marks.
Its purpose is to cover up or disguise discoloration, or areas of the skin lacking pigment or color.
Stretch mark camouflage treatments most often fall under the category of Medical or Paramedical tattooing, where flesh-toned cosmetic pigments are injected into the skin with an electric tattoo device to create an evenly toned and textured surface.
Stretch mark camouflage is all about color matching and choosing the perfect pigment shades.
If the shade is not well matched, with the cover up tattoo stretch marks will still be visible, even more so. This is one of the reasons why going to an experienced artist or technician is strongly recommended.
But there are also related treatments which actually treat the stretch marks instead of disguising them.
Image source: Instagram @newimagebeautybar
Can All Stretch Marks Be Camouflaged?
Only completely healed stretch marks that have faded into a shade noticeably lighter than your skin tone can be camouflaged. If your stretch marks are red or purplish, this means that they are relatively newly formed and as such, are more challenging to cover up.
Regardless of color, the stretch marks have to be healed.
In order to achieve the most natural-looking result, tattooing should be done on a light, flat surface, so stretch marks or scarring that is less than 2 years old probably won’t be a good candidate.
Who Should Avoid Stretch Mark Camouflage?
Stretch mark camouflage treatments are considered non-invasive, however, people with certain chronic diseases and medical conditions are advised against them. Let’s take a look at who should avoid getting stretch mark tattoo camouflage:
- Pregnant and nursing women
- People prone to keloids
- Those with cardiac disease
- Those with active skin cancer or who are undergoing chemotherapy
- People with uncontrolled diabetes (consult your GP)
- People with any bleeding disorders
- Those with transmittable blood conditions like HIV or Hepatitis
This list is not final. If you suffer from any medical condition, consult your doctor before booking the treatment.
Does Stretch Mark Tattoo Camouflage Hurt?
Getting a stretch mark camouflage tattoo is very similar to getting a traditional ink tattoo when it comes to that scratching sensation. It doesn’t necessarily fall in the painful category, but it can be a bit uncomfortable.
Unfortunately, numbing creams are usually not used during stretch mark camouflage treatments since the treated area tends to be quite wide, plus they can interfere with the skin texture resulting in unevenness.
Image source: Instagram @falconartistry
Which Stretch Mark Camouflage Treatments Are Available?
As previously mentioned, stretch mark camouflage is a term that refers to various techniques that can blend stretch marks and scars with the surrounding skin, making them less prominent.
Here’s a look at some of the most popular stretch mark camouflage treatments:
Stretch Mark Tattoo
Stretch mark tattoos are a form of micropigmentation, performed with an electric permanent makeup machine. This machine is used to deposit micropigmentation pigment into the skin, matching it in color with the surrounding area of the stretch mark.
The results of stretch mark tattoo are not permanent, since specialized cosmetic pigments are used that our body gradually breaks and absorbs over time.
It is also important to note that this treatment can be performed only on stretch marks that are 2 years or older, white in color, and flat in texture.
To achieve the best-looking results, we recommended doing a microneedling treatment beforehand, to first diminish the scars as much as possible, and then proceed to camouflage them.
Image source: Instagram @twenty2_institute
Brazilian Stretch Mark Camouflage
Brazilian stretch mark camouflage is a relatively new technique developed by Rodolpho Torres, a Brazilian permanent makeup artist. It is very similar to traditional tattooing since this technique uses tattoo ink instead of micropigmentation pigments for cosmetic tattoos.
This treatment can be used for the re-pigmentation of scars, stretch marks, and vitiligo, and has long-lasting results in contrast to semi-permanent treatments like stretch mark tattoo.
Image source: Instagram @fresnoflawless
ISR (Inkless Stretch Mark Revision)
Inkless Stretch Mark Revision or MCA Dry Needling is a form of Collagen Induction Therapy, a treatment that uses tattoo needles to cause more targeted and precise trauma to the skin which helps in the absorption of regenerative serums used to smooth and repigment stretch marks and scar tissue.
During the procedure, your technician will use natural botanicals, a mix of serums, organic oils, and vitamins to improve cellular turnover and achieve reconstruction and rejuvenation of collagen, elastin, and fibroblast cells, resulting in smoother, flatter stretch marks.
This treatment can be used to camouflage stretch marks of any color, including red and purple, as long as they’re healed.
Image source: Instagram @invisimark
How Long Do Stretch Mark Tattoos Last?
The longevity of your stretch mark camouflage depends on your chosen treatment.
In the case of stretch mark tattoos and Brazilian stretch mark camouflage, the skin is broken by using needles, and pigments are deposited into it.
Scar tissue cannot break down the pigments or ink as quickly as undamaged skin, so the results can last 3-5 years for semi-permanent, mineral pigments, and about 7 years or longer for permanent ink.
MCA dry needling can give more permanent results.
Before booking a touch-up appointment, it is important to wait at least 60 days after the initial procedure, or as long as your skin needs to be fully healed.
Are There Any Risks to Stretch Mark Tattoos?
Stretch mark tattoos are a great way to gain back lost confidence by covering pregnancy stretch marks or injury and surgery scars.
However, stretch mark camouflage can be tricky in the long run, since these procedures have several downsides to look out for:
- It fades over time – The ink or semi-permanent pigment color can turn white over time, as it fades and reacts with your system.
- It may make your stretch marks look more prominent – Stretch mark tattoo basically injects color into the skin without improving skin texture, so if your artist chooses a color that is slightly off, it can result in a more visible stretch mark.
- Tanning may be problematic – Since the marks are tattooed to match your skin tone, as soon as you get even a slight tan, your stretch mark tattoo becomes visible. However, it will be less visible than your initial stretch marks, which were even lighter.
Stretch Mark Camouflage – Main Takeaways
Stretch mark camouflage can be a life-changing procedure for women whose bodies have changed through pregnancy and weight gain, giving them more confidence on a daily basis and helping them fall back in love with their skin.
Choosing an experienced artist is essential to get the most natural-looking result, especially when opting for procedures like stretch mark tattoo and Brazilian stretch mark camouflage since these treatments imply injecting colored pigments into the skin.
If you’re looking for the best way to improve your skin texture as well as camouflage your stretch marks, inkless procedures like ISR guarantee significant improvements plus you can go tanning without worrying about your stretch mark tattoos becoming prominent again.