Covering or getting rid of stretch marks can be challenging, and sometimes feel impossible.
There are many home remedies that claim to clear up the indented streaks, commonly linked to pregnancies or to people who experiences rapid weight gain.
Here’s an unusual solution some are turning to, if they’re willing to tolerate some pain: a tattoo.
At least one local tattoo artist has shown how he can mask the marks while showcasing some creative designs.
Christian Villela of Lemoore posted Thursday on Instagram a tattoo on a woman’s stomach that, for the most part, hides her stretch marks. The photo attracted about 500 likes in the first two hours of it being shared.
The tattoo is of a wolf’s face. It goes from under the woman’s bra line to her midriff.
“A lot of times, women want to cover the stretch marks over their belly,” Villela said. “Maybe they had a C-section or a tummy tuck and they want to hide it. There’s lots of reasons.
“The key is to be comfortable getting a tattoo and we’ll work with what designs work for you.”
Villela, who has worked professionally for four years, warns that the stretch mark areas are more sensitive to pain, which limits how long a tattoo artist can work there.
The area also is more elastic, which makes it more challenging for a tattoo artist.
“They swell really fast,” Villela said of stretch mark areas, “so you can’t work on them too long. Maybe two hours per session. Depending on the extent of the work, there could be two to three sessions.”
Tattoos costs can vary from $80 to 120 per hour.
Can you live with your stretch mark showing? Or do you to cover it up?
Lemoore tattoo artist Christian Villela
Villela said he spent four hours working on the wolf tattoo, working meticulously to get the details right.
His client still has more work to do, with gray shading to be inked at a later session.
“Every client is different, every design is different,” Villela said. “We start with a consultation and one of the first questions you’re asked is: ‘Can you live with your stretch mark showing? Or do you to cover it up?’ And then we go from there.”