Acne scars are arguably more difficult and frustrating to deal with than acne itself. This is because acne scars often take longer to get rid of, and can accompany the acne before you’ve been able to get rid of it. So no matter what stage of your acne recovery you’re in, those scars are usually still there! When it comes to acne scars, there’s some good news, there’s some “bad” news, and there’s the truth. And the truth is, there is a way to get rid of your acne scars for good- it just depends on the type of scars they are.
The easiest, most straightforward type of acne scars to treat are the darkly colored, hyperpigmentation spots that result from the inflammation of a blemish. The darkly colored pigment is simply your body’s reaction to the pimple, and can be made worse if you pick at it. Why? Because picking means more irritation, which means more inflammation, which means more hyperpigmentation. So, the first order of business as you try to heal those stubborn post-inflammatory pigmentation spots is to absolutely stop picking your face (if you haven’t already). The second order of business is to use skincare ingredients that help your skin to increase its rate of cellular turnover. This is helpful because it brings in new skin cells to the pigmented area, which allows it to return to its natural hue.
Ingredients like this include Alpha Arbutin Whereas Hydroquinone has unpleasant side effects that make it difficult for people with sensitive skin to use. Another ingredient that works is vitamin C. Daily use of a high quality vitamin C serum can do wonders for hyperpigmentation spots.
You can also use the essential oils of immortelle, frankincense and rose otto for hyperpigmentation scarring. Depending on the sensitivity of your skin, you can use them neat (undiluted) on each spot, or mix them with your favorite carrier oil or skincare product of choice. A perfect combination would be to mix these either with your vitamin C serum, or with seabuckthorn oil, which contains alpha-linoleic and linoleic acids- two acids that have been shown to lighten hyperpigmentation when applied topically.
When it comes to post inflammatory pigmentation, all it takes is a little time, effort, patience and trusted botanicals to bring your skin back into radiant, clear balance.
The second type of acne scar that can occur, and that is much harder to get rid of, are the skin indentations known as rolling or ice pick scars. When it comes to these guys, a combination of high quality, botanically active skincare and other, more clinical treatments are usually necessary to help fill in the skin.
Rolling acne scars occur when the skin’s collagen has been significantly damaged to the point that a depression on the surface occurs. While these can happen from a severe case of acne alone, picking the skin often makes these much worse. So, just like for post inflammatory scarring, do not pick your face! It can be tempting, but the consequences are just not worth it.
The good news is that there are things you can do to fill in and smooth out your rolling and ice pick scars. The “bad” news is that you most likely will need to do more than simply use topical skincare products to do so. That’s because the collagen and skin has been so damaged that simple topical products alone probably won’t facilitate enough radical healing for a significant change to take place. You need other treatments for that. And thankfully, other treatments do exist!
For acne scar indentations, the two best procedures are microneedling with PRF, and sublative laser with PRF. PRF is basically your body’s own growth factor. First, your blood is drawn, then the PRF is separated from the blood via centrifuge, and it is then applied to your face during the treatment. And yes, in case you were wondering, they do cost a lot of money and you do need to go to a med-spa to get these done. But if you do choose to go this route and find a reputable, responsible, clean and experienced practitioner, the results can be pretty amazing.
You want to make sure you are applying powerful ingredients to your skin. This means lots of vitamin C, plant based vitamin A, and highly potent botanicals like frankincense & geranium. It also means ingredients like MSM become paramount because of the organic sulfur rich, tissue rebuilding purpose they play. Licorice is also a very powerful brightener. Additionally, ingredients like AHA’s can be extremely helpful as they also help to stimulate cellular turnover and increase cellular hydration, which leads to a more full, plump look that helps diminish the appearance of pitted acne scars.
Consider using a serum, a little goes a long way and serums are the most powerful skincare products on the market. They may be expensive but worth every penny.
You could also incorporate a weekly brightening mask into your skincare routine to help those new cells come to the surface while the old get eaten away. While regular exfoliating products just take off the dead skin cells on the surface, AHA’s promote the formation of collagen beneath the skin, which is extremely helpful for acne pits.
Though there’s not one quick fix for pitted acne scars, high quality skincare with an emphasis on collagen production, tissue regeneration and cellular hydration can help the skin start to repair itself and look and feel more even, plump and smooth.
Aloe & Blooms Product Recommendations for Acne Scarring