Should I get microdermabrasion or IPL for my stretch marks?

Can someone help me understand if it would be worth it for me to have IPL treatments or microdermabrasion to get help with my stretch marks? I have pretty big ones above my nipples. If I wear a bikini you can see them, and I really just would love a non-invasive way to treat them. I should also mention that I’ve used top rated creams for a year now and they don’t really seem to work that well.


F, 37, New Jersey

Tags:woman age 25-34 breasts nipples stretch marks cream non surgical

Stretch marks tend to manifest on the skin as thin parallel lines that are slightly elevated and initially have a red or purple hue. Over time, they usually flatten out and fade to a much less noticeable white or silver and, in some cases, will disappear completely. Stretch marks are most commonly caused by sudden weight gain or weight loss.

Unfortunately, there is no way to completely eliminate stretch marks — as it stands, the only way to remove them is to surgically remove the affected area of skin. This probably isn’t a viable treatment option for you, given the location of your stretch marks.

You mentioned microdermabrasion treatment in your question, but I do have to advise against this method. As you may know, microdermabrasion works by using microcrystals to exfoliate the outer layer of skin to remove dead skin cells and reveal the underlying healthy skin. This makes it a good option for treating fine lines, wrinkles, and minor sun damage, but the process is simply too superficial to be considered an effective treatment for stretch marks, which occur in a deeper layer of skin known as the dermis.

You also mentioned Intense Pulsed Light (IPL). IPL works by sending a pulse of light to break down stretch marks and stimulate collagen production. IPL can improve skin tone by lightening the color of the stretch marks and making them less visible, but cannot actually remove them.

It’s worth noting that IPL works best for new stretch marks. For old stretch marks, you may need to consider other forms of treatment such as fractionated lasers. Please see a board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon to discuss stretch mark removal treatment options in more detail.

If the stretch marks are red then IPL can be used to decrease the redness.  I think the 3 best treatments for improving the texture of stretch marks  are Fraxel, Intracell (RF micro needling) or regular micro needling.  Intracell and Fraxel work better with Intracell having less downtime.  All of these treatment modalities need multiple sessions and stretch marks are improved not removed.