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Congratulations on your new upcoming baby! A bunch of well-meaning people will give you a lot of advice from here on out. Some of it, the stuff that resonates with you, keep in your file for later. The rest of it, the crazy stuff you would never do, just smile and nod and remember that YOU have the ultimate say in the end. You are going to be a Mom!!! Let me tell you, I was terrified of the idea of stretching my belly big enough to fit a whole baby in there. As tiny as I was, I couldn't fathom where a baby would fit. Because of this fear, I ended up slathering a mixture of the best butters and oils that I could find, on my belly every single day of my pregnancy (or at least all the days that I remembered to before I passed out in front of the TV).
I didn't get a single stretch mark during my pregnancy...
but you still could. I am pretty sure there are no guarantees that even with a daily routine of rubbing this balm all over your belly, you will not get a stretch mark during your pregnancy, but if you don't rub your baby belly during your pregnancy, you are FAR more likely to end up with stretch marks in the end. Stretch marks occur when the middle layer of your skin is stretched to capacity due to a rapid expansion, weakening the collagen and resulting in scarring the top layer of our skin. Using butters, oils, and lotions daily during your pregnancy can help keep your skin moisturized and more capable of stretching. Many oils and butters contain Vitamins A, E, and C, as well as other scar minimizing benefits. For this recipe, I chose specific oils and butters that are not only great at moisturizing the skin but also have been known to reduce and get rid of scars and stretch marks!
- Mango butter - Rich in antioxidants, Vitamins A, C, & E, mango butter is a natural emollient that helps keep the skin moisturized and promotes cell regeneration, making it great for scars and stretch marks.
- Unrefined Coconut oil - Coconut oil is one of my favorite oils to use in my body butter and salves because not only is it naturally antibacterial and antifungal (making it great for healing salves) but it's also really great for moisturizing skin. This wonder oil penetrates deep into your skin, preventing stretch marks and scars, by strengthening the cell walls and fighting free radicals with its skin-loving saturated fats!
- Rosehip seed oil - Rosehip oil is a fantastic oil for scars and stretch marks because this easily absorbed oil is rich in scar reducing elements such as fatty acids and vitamin C. These healing elements can decrease discoloration and help stimulate collagen production. In addition to softening and moisturizing the skin, the fatty acids in rosehip oil convert into prostaglandins once they are absorbed into your skin. These prostaglandins help stimulate your skin's regenerative powers, working to heal scars and protect against stretch marks.
- Tamanu oil - Tamanu oil has been researched a lot over the last 20 years, and the evidence shows its amazing ability to heal damaged skin, including stretch marks and scars. In fact, BioScience Laboratories conducted a study of Tamanu oil's ability to improve the appearance of scars. The results showed that when Tamanu oil was applied to the scarred area twice daily for nine consecutive weeks, scar length decreased by an average 0.28 centimeters and the and width was decreased by an average 0.12 centimeters.
DIY Bohemi Mama's Belly Butter
This is made just like my Herbal Infused Body Butter and can either be poured to cool or whipped for a creamier texture. This belly butter works great with or without the essential oils! They are an optional addition for extra skin healing and scar reducing purposes. You can sub cocoa butter for the mango butter but I prefer to use mango butter because the cocoa smell doesn't always mix with the essential oils and to a pregnant woman, it can be too much smell!
- 1/2 cup unrefined mango butter
- 1/4 cup unrefined coconut oil (or alternately you could use the amazing skin healing herbal infused oil from my Salvation Salve)
- 1/4 cup rosehip seed oil
- 2 Tbsp. tamanu oil
- 1 tsp. vitamin e
- 30 drops lavender essential oil
- 10 drops neroli essential oil
- 20 drops lemon essential oil
- In a double boiler (or a pyrex/glass measuring cup inside of a pan that has about an inch of water in it boiling) melt the mango butter, and coconut oil, stirring until completely melted. Remove from heat.
- Stir in the rosehip seed oil, tamanu oil, essential oils, and vitamin E. Stir until completely mixed together.
- Pour your mixture into reserved containers and allow to cool/harden before use. Alternately, you can whip this like my herbal infused whipped body butter!
- If stored in a cool dark place, this Belly Balm should keep for at least 12 months. Use as often as often as you like but at minimum 2x a day (morning and evening) throughout your pregnancy.