Your skin has some excellent elastic qualities. It can, in most cases, return to its original form after being pulled or stretched.
However, during pregnancy, your skin stretches an incredible amount to accommodate the literal living human being inside you.
The sheer amount of stretching your skin does during your pregnancy can take a toll on your skin’s elasticity. This means that you can sometimes be left with loose or baggy skin around your tummy.
While it’s not something to be ashamed of, after all, you literally grew a person, some women feel uncomfortable with this loose skin.
That’s fine too! You should be able to feel comfortable in your own skin. If that means getting rid of some loose skiing then so be it!
In this article, we’re going to dish some tips for dealing with that loose skin. That way you can get yourself feeling comfortable and confident!
One of the best ways to get rid of that loose skin is to start doing some cardio.
Whether you like walking, swimming, jogging, or cycling, those cardio exercises are great for burning fat and toning muscles.
Cardio can’t magic away the skin but it can help your muscles hold that skin more firmly and bring it back into place.
You do need to be kind to yourself when it comes to your cardio. You might have been a distance runner before your baby but your body has been through a lot.
Give it time to heal and work towards more advanced or challenging cardio activities.
Eat Healthy Fats and Proteins
Healthy fats and proteins are ideal for building muscle mass. They are the support team that works behind the scenes in your body while you’re busy with cardio or strength training.
Most people are aware that protein is found in meats but the truth is, we need less of that kind of protein and more plant-based proteins.
The average person needs about 2 servings of protein a day. Those servings should be about the size of your palm.
Most people eat twice as much protein as they need to each day. This isn’t a huge problem so long as you’re getting varied sources of protein.
Below are some examples of protein sources you should try instead of those big juicy steaks!
- Fatty fish
- Coconut oil
- Full-fat yogurt
Cardio is excellent for losing weight and getting some muscle tone. If you really want to strengthen your core and your stomach muscles, you’ll want to start doing some strength training.
To get rid of the belly skin, you’ll need to focus on exercises that work your core. Situps, push-ups, planks, and leg raises help build your core muscles.
When your abdominal muscles are strengthened they are better able to pull the skin back into place. Tighter abs give a tighter look overall making loose skin less noticeable.
Staying hydrated helps your skin retain and regain elasticity. Drinking the recommended 8 cups of water a day can make your skin more elastic and thus more likely to go back to its original shape.
Staying hydrated also helps to reduce the amount of water retention in your body.
It seems a bit counterintuitive but the reality is that when your body is properly hydrated it doesn’t need to hoard water.
Try Plant-Based Oils
Some massage oils can help heal your skin and increase elasticity of your skin. The oils that work best are oils that include plants with antioxidants or anti-inflammatory properties.
Try coconut, jojoba, or almond based oils to help your skin repair and recover its shape.
Skin Firming Products
There is no shortage of skin firming products on the market. Every product claims to offer more advanced or more noticeable benefits than the previous product.
However, there is actually little evidence that skin firming creams or lotions do reduce the amount of loose skin on your belly.
They may make the loose skin appear plumper for a short period of time which can reduce the appearance of loose skin for a time.
What has been proven to have an effect on loose skin is the action of massaging lotions or creams into the skin.
The massaging action stimulates blood flow to the area which encourages healing and the production of fibroblast cells.
These cells play a crucial role in the production of collagen and elastin which are vital for skin elasticity.
One of the most relaxing ways to reduce the appearance of loose skin is to hit the spa and get a skin wrap.
Skin wraps start with a moisturizing and relaxing oil or lotion being applied to the skin. Often these products include sea salt, kelp, or clay. These products are known to detoxify, smooth, and brighten the skin.
Cotton or mylar bandages are then wrapped firmly around the stomach area. The wrap supposedly removes toxins, dirt, and water from the body.
The truth of the matter is that skin wraps can make your skin appear tighter and lighter but this is just a result of compression.
Your skin, when squished tightly in a wrap, takes on the shape of the cocoon it’s wrapped in. After a few days, your skin will go back to the way it was before though it might be a bit softer.
If you’re really struggling with loose skin, you can choose to have elective surgery. Tummy tucks are used to remove excess skin and realign the remaining skin on the abdomen.
These surgeries are not cheap.
In fact, the average cost of abdominoplasty surgery is over $6000 without the additional cost of anesthesia, operating room costs, and recovery costs.
As a cosmetic surgery, abdominoplasty is usually not covered by insurance companies. However, many plastic surgeons do offer payment plans.
When you go through pregnancy you end up with a lot of different gifts as well as your baby! One of those lovely little gifts is the loose skin that can hang around your belly.
You can take steps to reduce this skin by exercising and building up your abdominal muscles. Products and wraps have a limited effect on your loose skin but can help supplement your exercise regime.