Smart Textile Technology

Understanding how stretch marks form

To understand the science behind Secret Saviours textile technology, it helps to have a heads up on stretch marks and what gets them started – although if you’re squeamish you may want to skip this bit.

Our skin is laid down along predictable lines, known as Langer’s lines. They are named after Karl Langer, an Austrian with a thing for anatomy who used a mini ice pick to puncture corpses to see what type of hole it made in the skin. He noticed that the oval shapes ran along lines – which we now know as Langer’s or cleavage lines – and he used them to map the human body in much the same way as the topographical lines on a map show hills and valleys. If you need an operation, your surgeon will probably cut along one of these Langer’s lines as this will minimise scarring. 

Diagram showing Langer's lines on a female

Doctor Stephen Barker, vascular surgeon, inventor and director at Secret Saviours, worked with a renowned professor of tissue engineering to discover that stretch marks always seem to run at right angles to the body’s Langer’s lines.

That got them thinking. What if stretch marks form in the same way as stress fractures occur in metal?

They suspected that problems stemmed from stresses and strains building up at a specific spot in the dermis, the middle layer of the skin, which is made up of a flexible network of interconnected fibres.

Imagine the dermis is like a piece of paper. If you hold a sheet of paper between the forefinger and thumb of both hands and try to pull it apart without twisting, you’ll find it’s actually surprisingly strong.

Now make the tiniest tear on the edge of the sheet and pull it apart in the same way. As you’ll see, it takes much less force to turn that nick into a substantial tear.

Our experts suspected the dermis was like that sheet of paper and as it adjusts to the stresses and strains of a developing pregnancy, tiny little micro tears begin to form at pressure points and eventually, if the pressure continues, the dermis is partially torn.

The top layer of the skin, known as the epidermis, keeps everything together – but there’s no hiding damage to the dermis, those itchy red lines we know as stretch marks.  

How Secret Saviours smart textile technology prevents stretch marks

Having worked out what happens when stretch marks form, our inventors began experimenting with ways to reduce the chance of them spreading. Perhaps something which gripped and supported the skin evenly on the surface could equalise the stress points that were forming underneath, in the dermis.

And that’s how they came up with a system of tacky pads, arranged in a clever pattern designed specifically to dissipate stresses and strains on skin as its stretches. We call this revolutionary system of pads “Secret Saviours Dermal Support Technology™”. There is nothing else like it!
Our innovative, patented 3-step system consists of a comfortable Stretch Mark Prevention Band (or newly introduced Full Briefs) lined with our revolutionary pads, The Day Gel, essential in allowing the pads to gently grip the skin, and The Night Cream, a powerful moisturiser to nourish the skin as you sleep.

Find out more about our 3-step system 

If you have any further questions about the science of stretch marks or how Secret Saviours Dermal Support Technology is so effective, please email Dr Stephen (