Sparkles & Stretchmarks: A UK Parenting & Pregnancy Blog: The FINAL Bump Watch: Week 38!

Thursday, 21 March 2013

The FINAL Bump Watch: Week 38!

 Well can you beleive it?!

Today I am 38 weeks pregnant!

As my c-section is scheduled for this coming Tuesday, that means this is my FINAL Bump Watch update!!

I have done a bump watch post every Thursday since I was 21 weeks along, but next Thursday - Bean will be out!!! 

There's really not that much left to do now!

My sister and my nieces are arriving on Saturday as they'll be staying here for the week of Bean's arrival - I'm looking forward to them getting here as it will be a nice distraction from worrying about the day of the birth!
My sister & I are planning on having a nice girly day out together on Monday, which should keep me calm. *fingers crossed*

Pregnancy Gripes This Week:

*Hiccups - Bean has had the hiccups a LOT more than usual in the last few days! He seems to get them whenever I've eaten, and they last for around 15 minutes - it can be very distracting when I'm watching tv! lol.

*Pain when sleeping - My hip/thighs really start to hurt when I've been laying on one side for a while, turning over is an ordeal in itself and so its just generally impossible to get comfortable. And when I do sleep, I wake up all crouched up and unable to walk without looking like an 80 year old for about 15 minutes!

*Nausea in the mornings - For some reason I have been feeling really sick when I wake up for the past few days. It passes after an hour or so, but its not pleasant!

*Cravings - This week I have been craving textures a lot! I can't get enough ice (I love crunching on it!) and pickled onions....Mmmmm!!!

*Waddling - I have to sway from side to side just to be able to move. And I need to start off slowly and gather momentum to actually get anywhere - its not attractive. Every little movement has to be pre-planned or else I'll just fall over.

My 38 Week Bump Is Wearing:
Black Heart Jumper from AX Paris
Leggings from Select
Boots from EMU Australia

Nice Pregnancy Things This Week:

*Last "Couple" days out - Jon & I have had a few nice days out this week - we've gone out for meals, gone shopping , etc - and every time we go anywhere, one of us says to the other one "This it the last time we'll do this without a baby!". 

*Had my hair done - I had my highlights done this week so I feel much better and ready for post-baby photos!!

*Booked Christening! - Yes I know its a bit odd to book the christening before the baby is born, but its family tradition to have babies christened in our local village church and since we plan on moving back to Devon within the next 8 weeks - it makes sense to do it while we're here!
And as some of the guests are coming from places like Devon and Newcastle, we needed to make sure they had plenty of notice to make travel arrangements etc - so the Christening is booked for 28th April! :)

*All Prepared for Easter -  I know that I will be in no fit state for Easter shopping as I will only be 5 days post-op on Easter Sunday, so I have made sure I am all sorted! I have bought all the Easter Eggs I need, bought Easter gifts for my nieces, bought Easter cards for everybody including ones from Bean, and bought our gift for Bean! The only thing I need to get now is an egg for Jon and thats it!

*Bought last minute things - My mum picked up the ready-made bottles of formula for the hospital, and we ordered the Snuza Go breathing monitor online!

*Knowing its almost over! - Things are not particularly comfortable right now, so its very nice to know that I am very close to the end! Only 5 more days to go!!!!

Things To Do This Week:

*Pick up some Windeeze for hospital bag - really struggling to find any! Have bought some peppermint tea but still need to try to find Windeeze!
*Decide on Baby Monitor and buy one
*Pick up Pram
*Buy somewhere to store Bean's clothes and get them all laid out ready!
*Go for Pre-Op appointment on Friday

Apotheraderm Stretch Mark Cream Review

As this is my final Bump Watch update, I thought it was the best time to mention an AMAZING Stretch Mark cream that I have been using.

I was sent a bottle of Apothederm Stretch Mark Cream to try about 3 weeks ago, and have been using it every day since.

Now given the name of my blog, it is probably no surprise that I have been asked to try umpteen Stretch mark creams during the pregnancy - I have tried quite a few now and although they have been pleasant, I have to say that nothing I have tried so far has compared to Apothederm.
I will be completely honest - the first thing that struck me about Apothederm was the price tag! At £68 a bottle it is certainly not cheap! I was intrigued to see why the price tag was so high and what the product offered that was different to other stretch mark creams on the market....

Here's what they say:

"Apothederm™ Stretch Mark Cream optimally blends four natural emollients: shea butter,
cocoa butter, olive oil and highly moisturizing meadow foam seed oil for a silky, fastabsorbing
formulation. Adding power-packed action are patented heptapeptide-7,
resveratrol, licorice extract, brightening amino acids, algae extract, sodium hyaluronate
and other advanced ingredients that work to fade the appearance of stretch marks
and nourish the skin."

Key Ingredient Functions:

Heptapeptide-7, a patented SmartPeptide™ that helps boost collagen and
support skin vitality. Peptides applied to the skin perform their function and are
then naturally broken down by the skin’s proteases into individual amino acids.
Heptapeptide-7 consists of seven naturally occurring amino acids that are
commonly found in the skin. This peptide sequence is modeled on natural
sequences found as part of the body’s own defend and repair system such as LL-
37 (the human innate immunity system).

Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), emollient moisturizer that corrects
dehydration and dryness while protecting the skin’s natural moisture balance.

Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, emollient triglyceride composed of
over 98% long chain fatty acids. Also contains naturally occurring antioxidant
tocopherols. It forms a moisture barrier and helps prevent moisture loss.

Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, emollient, helps soften skin.

Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, hydrates and softens skin.

Sodium Hyaluronate, super humectant, can draw 1000 times its own weight in
moisture to the skin and helps maintain hydration balance.

Pichia/Resveratrol Ferment Extract, antioxidant, helps to reduce pigmentation

Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, anti-irritant, helps to reduce

Bisabolol, anti-irritant and anti-inflammatory ingredient to help soothe red,
irritated skin.

Key Benefits:
• Impressive results seen in just 2 weeks & continued improvement at week 12
• Improvement in texture & smoothness
• Visibly reduces the appearance of both red & silver stretch marks
• Helps support & firm the skin
• Leaves skin soft & moisturized
• Elegant, fast absorbing, non-greasy formulation
• Fragrance & paraben free

What I thought:

The directions advise you to apply the cream to the affected areas once in the morning and once in the evening, using circular motions to rub in and allowing to dry before putting on clothes. Simple enough!

The cream is quite thick, so it doesn't run upon application - which was actually a nice change from other stretch mark creams I have used!

A little of it goes a long way, so about 4 amounts the size shown in the picture above is enough to cover my bump, my sides and my inner thighs (where Stretch marks appeared about 3 weeks ago!)

Since using the cream, the stretch marks on my bump and sides look far less "red" and angry - they are still visible but they have faded quite substantially. These stretch marks appeared around 10 weeks ago.

The stretch marks on my inner thigh appeared about 3 weeks ago, so roughly around the time that I received the Apothederm cream and started using it - those stretch marks are now almost completely invisible!!

So I certainly think that it makes a real difference if you start using the cream early on before the stretchmarks have really taken hold - I'm very impressed by how well its worked on my newer stretch marks!

             The stretch marks on my sides have faded a lot.

I guess only time will tell how well it will work on my more established stretch marks, but it has certainly made them fade in the 3 weeks I have been using it - the information that accompanied the cream stated that:
•70% of participants in clinical trials had visible improvement in stretch marks in 14 days
• Over 90% saw overall improvement after twelve weeks of continued use. 
So I am very hopeful that with continued use, the appearance of the stretch marks will improve further!

The stretch marks before using the Apothederm cream.

The stretchmarks on my bump after 3 weeks of use

I know that the price tag is quite high, and had I not tried this myself I may be reluctant to pay so much - but now that I have seen for myself how effective it is, I wouldn't think twice about purchasing it early on in future pregnancies - I think its worth the cost to avoid having unsightly marks and I would much rather pay more for a product that works than continually pay smaller amounts for something which isn't working at all!

Apothederm cream is available from


  1. I am almost 27 weeks pregnant with my first, and I have enjoyed reading your posts since I came across your blog. All the very best with the arrival of your Bean, and I hope to soon see some baby posts of your gorgeous little bub,as well as some great baby tips for a first time mum!

    1. Aww thank you :)
      I will definitely be back with baby posts and tips! Good luck for the rest of your pregnancy :)
      Do you know what you're having?

  2. All the best with the new arrival!!

  3. Good luck for tuesday, I csn't wait to see photos!

  4. Oh gosh, I'm crying because it's your final bump watch! Blooming hormones lol.

    I'm 34 weeks today and have noticed that bump seems to get lots of hiccups these days! How are you finding sleep? I have one good nights sleep to every three bad ones "/

    Anyway, good luck with everything. I'm sure it will all go well :)

    Louise x

    Confessions of a Secret Shopper

    1. Aww bless you Louise! lol!

      Sleeping can be ok sometimes (its definitely got easier in the last few weeks) but some nights my hip/thighs absolutely throb after laying on one side for more than 10 minutes, which is a nightmare! :/

      Thanks :)


  5. Gosh, you're almost all done! You must be very excited / terrified! Good luck!

  6. Aw this is quite an emotional end to bump watch *sobs* I love these posts and knowing what you have gripes with and want to eat lol... cannot wait to see Bean though xx

    1. Lol! Well I'm planning on turning Bump Watch into Baby Watch, so they'll continue in another form lol!


  7. wow i wish i knew about this when i was pregnant because to be honest i haven't found one i think actually makes any difference yet but this looks really good! Good luck for Tuesday, i bet you can't wait! x

    1. I know, I've really struggled too but this one definitely works!!
      Thank you! :) xxx

  8. So exciting!! Wishing you all the very best hunni! Can't wait to see photos of bean! Your blanket is about half way there now I will contact either yourself or Jon on facebook once it is finished to get your address.

    Great post, that cream does look effective, I would definitely be put off by the cost though :S


    1. Thank you! :)

      It is pricey but I'd rather pay more for one that actually works, than pay less for ones that do nothing - false economy! lol!


  9. Wow you're almost there, so exciting!!! I had a c-section with my daughter too and it was an amazing birth. Good luck!

    1. Thank you!! Its nice to hear some positive c section stories :)


  10. Good luck with everything xxxx

  11. Wow! I really can't believe that this is your last bump update!!
    I wish you the very best of luck with your c-section and soon-to-be new arrival! I hope everything goes as planned for you.

    Bump to Baby

  12. Wow! How exciting! All the best for Tuesday, I'll be thinking of you. Can't wait to read your introducing baby post!

    Kate x
    Just Pirouette and Carry On...

  13. This is such a great blog, I'm glad to be here. The presence of stretch marks can come as a shock to many. It would seem that one day the skin is completely clear and then there are troubling discolorations and scars on the surface. The truth here is that stretch marks do not appear overnight.

  14. Hi Hayley,

    Just browsing through your blog. Are you still using this cream? Has it continued to work?



If you're feeling generous, please consider leaving me a comment as they brighten up my days and make me feel all warm inside!

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to e-mail me at or tweet me @sparkles_blog