I Tried Platelet-Rich Plasma Injections on My Stretch Marks — Here's What Happened

Aesthetics Hub | 23 May 2018

Let's get one thing straight: I love a good PRP treatment. There's just something about using your own blood in PRP injections to repair and regenerate growth. 

Credit: Shutterstock

Take it from someone who has hopped into a dermatologist's chair for a PRP facial, more commonly known as Kim Kardashian West's "vampire facial," a PRP breast-lift (yup), and even a PRP O-Shot (the [ultimate treatment] for the best orgasm of your life). So, after seeing how PRP was able to give me baby-soft skin; fuller, perkier boobs; and the ability to come from penetration; when I learned that the magical blood-based treatment has been known to minimize the appearance of stretch marks as well, I figured, why not?

If all the tri-lettered talk has you scratching your head, allow me to explain. PRP, short for platelet-rich plasma, is derived from the serum portion of the blood, which contains platelets, says Beverly Hills-based dermatologist Ava Shamban. "The platelets contain high levels of growth factors, which, when applied to the skin, stimulate cell turnover." Before it's applied topically to the skin, the blood is spun in a centrifuge, where your platelets are separated from your red and white blood cells.

Platelets, known for their high concentration of growth factors, have been used in sports medicine for decades, and recently (in the past decade or so) entered into the world of beauty. What started as a facial quickly turned into O-Shots, breast-lifts, butt-lifts, lip augmentations, and, most recently, stretch-mark rejuvenation. And with that information, and my own PRP treatment history under my belt, I reached out to Marina Peredo, a dermatologist and an associate clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, to tell me more.

"PRP is a great, non-invasive treatment for stretch marks because it helps generate the production of new collagen and elastin," Peredo tells 

With that information, a bit more of my own research, and the understanding that millions of people across the world are constantly on the lookout for effective ways to camouflage stripes associated with growth spurts, pregnancy, and rapid weight gain and loss, I made an appointment to see for myself if PRP for stretch marks is really worth the hype.

A close up of my purple-tinted stretchies. Credit: Rebecca Norris

After about 20 minutes she came back with a vile of translucent PRP, pinpointed my stretch marks — which ran from my hips down toward my butt as a result of rapid growth, thanks to a new prescription I both had faith in and swore against all within a few months (PSA: Always ask about side effects, y'all) — and got to injecting. The actual process was pretty painless, with just a few pinches here and there. The only real pain afterwards came from my bruised elbow crease which, in all honesty, was my own fault because instead of applying lots of pressure as instructed, my main attention was on capturing the moment for my story. So, sue me.

Apart from pain, let's talk appearance. Post-procedure, I noticed itty-bitty bruises at all the injection sites on hip and butt areas — nothing major. Over the next few days, those bruises faded, but something else happened. And no, it wasn't full disappearance, instead it looked like my faded, barely there, purple-tinted stretchies had turned full silver.

The appearance of my stretch marks one-week post-procedure. Credit: Rebecca Norris

Now, if you're wondering why I would get injected to begin with then, I simply thought it'd be pretty rad if this treatment, which I love for so many other skin-care concerns, could be a solution for people near and far hoping to ditch the cover-up. After all, I'm an avid beauty writer and firm believer that just about anything, so long as it's not harmful, is worth it for a good story. Point is, don't gasp at a procedure that doesn't turn out they way you want, simply learn from it instead.

That's what I did at least. As soon as I started to notice my stretch marks changing color, I sat down with my pal Google to see what was up. I learned that PRP, while frequently touted for stretch marks, is actually only beneficial if injected while they're still super fresh. According to Patricia Wexler, a New York City dermatologist, that's because platelets can only supply growth factors wherever healing is initiated.

"Unless healing is still going on within the stretch marks, the injected PRP may not be able to produce excellent results," Wexler says. "That's why injecting PRP in fresh stretch marks can work, but will do much better in the presence of microneedling, where we create an active wound made by the needles to activate the PRP growth factors, therefore boosting the production of collagen."

A close-up view of my transformed stretch marks one-week post-procedure. Credit: Rebecca Norris

This could explain why mine, which developed a few months ago and had already started to fade from a fresh burgundy to a subtle tint of purple that could almost pass as prominent veins, didn't take to the PRP injections the way I wanted. It's also worth noting that PRP sometimes takes a few months to work its magic. I've seen this firsthand with both my vampire facial and vampire breast-lift. "There may be some redness and bruising right after, but after that it takes approximately two to three months to see improvement," Peredo says.

Bottom line: If you've tried every product the skin-care world has to offer, injecting PRP may help. Peredo recommends two to three sessions, two to four weeks apart, and says that it can take a couple of months to see improvements.

Each treatment will set you back roughly $1,000, so if you're wary of injections, having your blood drawn, or dropping cash on a treatment that may or may not work for you, you may want to start with microneedling to see if micro-injuries on your own skin can work the stretch mark-fading magic you're searching for.

By Rebecca Norris
This article first appeared in Allure.
Our Panel of Doctor's Services
DR Celine Leong, Astique Clinic
CoolSculpting, $599
The only FDA approved targeted fat freezing treatment in Singapore!
350 Orchard Road, #08-00 Shaw House, Singapore 238868
Dr. Dylan Chau, Celevenus Aesthetic & Wellness Clinic
LipoCryo, $500
Lipocryo is a precisely controlled process using the technology of cryolipolysis that simply targets, cools, and eliminates fat cells without damage to the surrounding skin and tissues.
Liposonix, from $3,500
Liposonix is a non-invasive, high-intensity focused ultrasound technology that can help to permanently get rid of stubborn fat around your abdomen and love handles.
Accent Ultra, from $400 onwards for 1 session
Accent Ultra is a revolutionary face & body contouring system designed to remove fat and improve the face, neck & body’s contours without invasive surgery.
391B Orchard Road #16-03/04 Ngee Ann City Tower B, Singapore 238874
Dr. Terence Tan, Halley Medical Aesthetics
Total Sculpt Programme, Duration: 6 months
Our body contouring treatments use the latest non-invasive, no down-time body shaping programme that works best with our Total Slim Programme to slim and contour areas with stubborn fats. Includes eight sessions of Freeze-Fat-Away Body Contouring Treatment and four sessions of Magic Slim Body Firming Treatment.
Slim Sculpt Programme, Duration: 6 months
Combines Total Slim Programme, our doctor-managed slimming programme, with Total Sculpt Programme, a no down-time body contouring programme, to achieve weight loss and shape and tone your body.
Freeze-Fat-Away Body Contouring Treatment
Freeze-Fat-Away Body Contouring Treatment uses an advanced fat cell elimination system that combines cryo, vacuum, and light-emitting diode (LED) technologies to remove fat cells.
Magic Slim Body Firming Treatment
Combines multi- polar radio frequency (RF) with red light-emitting diode (LED) therapy and vacuum-suction lymph massage to slim, contour, and tighten the areas (e.g. stomach, thighs, arms) that you want to treat.
277 Orchard Road, #03-15 Orchard Gateway, Singapore 238858