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How to Get Rid of Acne Scars

Find out what experts advise to reduce the appearance of acne scars, as well as how to get rid of them forever!

Author: Melody Day & Sam Pennington

Reading time: 9 minutes

How To Get Rid of Acne Scars

When it comes to acne scars skincare, no one single treatment is best. It's best to try a range of acne scars skincare, as well as specialised skin treatments. Firstly, throw out any products that damage the skin barrier, and keep your pores clean with a good cleanser. Ingredients such as salicylic acid, lactic acid, glycolic acid, niacinamide and vitamin A work well in combatting stubborn scars caused by acne. Additionally, it's always best to wear a sunscreen daily to prevent your scars getting worse.

Find out more in-depth information on how to clear acne scars below.

What Are Acne Scars?

Acne scars are unfortunately a common companion to acne itself. They are caused when acne finally bursts through the walls of the follicles, which leaves a minor lesion. Acne scars are extremely common but luckily usually require little to no treatment.

However, if you suffer with quite serious acne, or have a compulsion to pick at your spots, acne scarring can occur more intensely and become more prominent. If this is the case for you, acne scars may affect your self-confidence and your ability to achieve everyday goals.

This article dives into the different forms that acne scars take, and we'll also offer expert advice on how to clear acne scars using acne scars skincare.

Do Acne Scars Fade Over Time?

Acne scars can unfortunately often leave a red or brown scar on the face. Furthermore, depressed acne scars often become more noticeable as we age, caused by a loss of skin collagen.

However, while acne scars may not go away entirely on their own, they will fade over time. There are a number of things you can do to speed along the process, as well as dedicated acne treatments to clear acne scars.

How Long Does It Take for Acne Scars to Fade?

The good news is that on average it takes around 3-6 months for an acne scar to fade. Therefore, the majority of acne scars will require no intense cosmetic treatment to help them fade away. However, if your acne is severe, it can lead to more prominent scarring. If your acne scarring is causing acne holes, acne craters or bumps to form on to the skin, this could be a sign that the damage is a lot more serious. This also suggests that the acne is forming deeper into the skin.

Is It Possible to Remove Acne Scars Permanently?

When it comes to acne scars skincare, there is a collection of cosmetic laser treatments available. These help reduce the overall appearance of excessive scarring. However, these treatments are not available through the NHS, as they are viewed as a non-essential cosmetic treatment. Therefore, some treatments unfortunately cost between £500-£1,000.

One of the laser treatments used to remove acne scars is dermabrasion. This involves removing the upper layer of your skin using either a laser or wire brush.

Another type of laser treatment is referred to as ablative laser treatment, which uses lasers to remove a small section of affected skin. This, in turn, helps a new, smoother section of skin to appear.

A third type of acne scars skincare is non-ablative laser treatment. This treatment uses a collection of lasers to promote collagen production within the skin, to help increase cell turnover and give you a more attractive complexion.

Although these treatments may not remove acne scarring permanently, there are a wide selection of successful treatments and remedies available to help improve your skin and overall confidence.

It's important to remember that acne scars are very commonplace and explore the story that your body went through as you were growing up. If you can afford cosmetic treatments, such as laser treatments, be patient and the beneficial results will eventually shine through.

There is a wide selection of successful treatments and remedies available to help improve your skin and overall confidence.

Types of Acne Scars

There are three types of acne scars that are commonly found amongst the general population.

The first type of acne scar is called an Ice Pick Scar. This acne scar is composed of small, deep holes that cover the surface of the skin.

The second type of acne scar is referred to as a Rolling Scar. These acne scars are formed underneath the skin, giving the skin an uneven texture.

Finally, the third type of acne scar is named a Boxcar Scar. This particular scar creates round indents within the skin, giving the appearance of craters on the skin’s surface.

How to Get Rid of Acne Scars - Home Remedies

Luckily, there's a variety of home remedies to help clear acne scars, as well as nourish your skin as a whole. Whether it's switching up your acne scars skincare routine or getting a facial, there's a host of acne scars treatments available.

1. Throw Out Old Skincare Products That Damage the Skin Barrier

As much as you might hate to admit it, your favourite skincare product might be doing more harm than good. Some products may be too abrasive or irritating for your skin. This in turn can cause skin to become inflamed, red or overly sore.

If that's the case, try using skincare products with soothing agents such as aloe vera, such as the PCA Skin Facial Wash. Aloe Vera products help to achieve a calmer, more even complexion.

2. Keep Your Pores Clean With a Good Face Cleanser

Acne develops when our pores become clogged with oil, dirt, hair or other toxins. Thus, it's important to keep your pores clear to prevent future breakouts, and indeed, scarring.

However, it's important to cleanse the face with soothing ingredients so that our skin doesn't become overly irritated or damaged. For example, the Deep Clean Detox Cleanser from Osmosis, is the perfect cleanser to help reduce acne scarring. This product removes makeup, dirt and oil from the skin, helping to clear your pores and reduce the risk of acne breakouts.

How Can I Remove Acne Scars?

3. Salicylic Acid and Lactic Acid for Sensitive Skin

Is salicylic acid good for acne scars? Yes! Salicylic acid is a beta hydroxy acid (BHA), which is an oil-soluble acid, often used to treat acne. This is because salicylic acid helps to remove dead skin and bacteria from the surface layer of the skin. Therefore, this product helps exfoliate and purify the skin, to keep pores clear. This also means that acne is less likely to form. The Acne Gel by PCA Skin uses 2% salicylic acid to clear existing breakouts and blemishes, as well as preventing future breakouts.

If you have sensitive skin, you may find lactic acid more suitable. Lactic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA), meaning it is a water-soluble acid. Like salicylic acid, lactic acid helps to remove toxins and dirt from the upper layer of your skin, helping to further cleanse your pores. The reason that lactic acid may be more suitable for sensitive skin is that it's less abrasive, yet is still able to penetrate deep within the skin’s surface, giving you effective results. The PCA Skin Facial Wash Oily/Problem is a great lactic acid product for acne-prone skin.

4. Sometimes Glycolic Acid Is Necessary to Tackle Acne Scars

Glycolic acid is similar to salicylic acid, in the sense that both products help clear the pores of unhealthy bacteria and dead skin. Glycolic acid breaks down dead skin in order to make way for the skin’s renewal process. This gives rise to clearer, revitalised skin, without an acne scar in sight. However, glycolic acid can be quite potent, so try using a higher concentrate just 2-3 times a week, to reduce the chances of your skin becoming overly sensitive or damaged.

5. Stimulate Skin Cell Turnover With Vitamin A

Vitamin A, otherwise known as retinol, is a powerful antioxidant that aids in boosting collagen production within the skin. Retinol also helps to unclog affected pores, which helps other acne treatments to become more effective. With clearer pores and increased cell turnover, your skin appears more youthful and plumper. We recommend the Retinol Skin Booster from MZ Skin.

6. Look For Products With Niacinamide

Niacinamide is an essential nutrient within the body and is a form of vitamin B3. This nutrient helps to regulate healthy functioning in the skin, kidneys and brain. By incorporating this ingredient into your skincare routine, your skin barrier will be better supported. Niacinamide helps to reduce the size of pores, and improves the skin’s overall texture. As well as this, it also balances oil control, helping to keep pores clear and breakouts at bay.

7. Wear Sunscreen and Allow Your Skin to Heal

Sunscreen is a vital product that contributes to the wider health of our skin. Yet, many of us only wear it when we are sunbathing. A good SPF, such as the Heliocare range, should be worn daily! Sunscreen protects our skin from the damage caused by UV rays, helping to keep it hydrated, clear and healthy. By using sunscreen everyday, your skin becomes less inflamed, as well as protecting against skin cancer and other illnesses.

8. Keep Your Skin Clear From the Inside Out With Skin Supplements

Skin supplements have revolutionised the skincare industry by allowing us to tackle skin issues at their root cause. Try using a supplement which includes vitamin C, to boost collagen production deep within the skin. In turn, a boost in collagen helps to improve cell turnover and create a new skin surface. This will help to reduce any acne scar.

The Next Steps

Although acne scars can be a minor issue for many of us, they can still affect some people greatly. Fortunately, there are a variety of accessible treatments and acne scars skincare products available at a selection of price points.

So, if you feel that facial scars are holding you back, try exploring the collection of treatments we have discussed in this article and gain your confidence back!

If you have any further questions regarding your acne scars skincare, you can book a free 15 minute skin consultation with Dermoi's Chief Scientific Officer Eve Casha. Discuss your concerns, as well as the best path to take to revitalise your skin and get rid if acne scars for good.

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