Stretch marks. We all have them, even though most of us wish we didn’t. And though we often try to hide it, most women can spend anywhere between $5 and 8,500 in the pursuit of removing their stretch marks.
While stretch marks are often more common in women, men are definitely victims as well.
Yet, all of the products and procedures meant to remove stretch marks are often marketed solely towards women. Whether it be Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula, which has a pregnant woman on the bottle, or Mustela Stretch Mark Survival, which has yet to release a stretch mark product without bubble-gum-pink packaging, it is nearly impossible to find a product made to remove men’s stretch marks.
This is because there is no market for the product, as society has created the idea that it is natural for men to have stretch marks, but that women should try to remove them to achieve the ideal pore-less and wrinkleless skin.
Society has one part of the equation right; men should have stretch marks. However, the idea that women are better without them needs to go.
Stretch marks are a natural side effect of growing, and unless you have found a superhuman way to avoid puberty (in which case, please give us your secrets) and stop yourself from growing, you probably have a few.
However, what is even more ridiculous in regards to stretch marks is the dire need for expecting and new mothers to protect against them. New mothers are responsible for keeping their new child alive and making sure they get proper food, clothing, and shelter. So why are we putting another thing on mothers’ plates by telling them they need to be moisturizing their stomachs with specially made products throughout the entire pregnancy process in order to avoid wrinkles?
This stretch mark shaming needs to go. TMZ recently created an online game entitled “Ready, Stretch, Go!—Stars With Stripes,” where players were encouraged to match the stretch marks to the celebrity. Instead of talking about the great things that women like Lady Gaga, Katie Holmes, and Chrissy Teigen are doing, this game encourages viewers to notice these women for nothing more than wrinkles in their skin. And while there are plenty of men in Hollywood and the mainstream entertainment industry with stretch marks, this game only featured female celebrities, furthering the idea that stretch marks are natural for men and a flaw or imperfection in women.
During puberty alone, 70 percent of girls develop stretch marks. So why are we making these 70 percent of girls feel as if their stretch marks make them less than perfect, because they don’t. They make them human.
Sign Up For Our Newsletter