Acne Scar Guide
Active breakouts can already be challenging enough but Acne Scars can be absolutely frustrating – Let’s improve them together.
But before you get your hands on new treatments, lotions, serums and other things tackling the scar tissue for you, you have to get rid of active acne first since new breakouts, you guessed it, can lead to new Acne Scars.
Some of the scar treatments can’t be combined with active acne treatment and the inflammation that’s caused by breakouts can also reduce treatment effectiveness. So, give it some time until your skin has calmed down and the irritated skin is calming down and starting to heal.
Broken down your skin is structured in three main layers. There are even more layers but we focus on these right here for easier understanding.
- the outer layer of the skin
- is avascular (contains no blood vessels)
- is entirely dependent on the underlying dermis for nutrient delivery
- produces pigment and protects your immune system from the outside world
- forms the inner layer of the skin and is thicker than the Epidermis (1-5mm)
- it sustains and supports the Epidermis
- protects against irritation, allergens and water loss
- it works like a pillow to protect the deeper layers of your skin and body from physical injury
- plays an important role in wound healing
- is the subcutaneous layer lying below the dermis
- consists mostly of fat tissue
- provides the structural support for the skin, as well as insulating the body from cold and helps to absorb the moment when you bump your skin the 50th time against that table
- interlaced with blood vessels and nerves
Causes of Acne Scars
As with every new skincare treatment, it’s important to be seen by a dermatologist or aesthetician. They can help you determine the best treatment and also make sure that the marks on your skin are actually scars and not another medical condition.
Your body is 24/7 trying to combat any inflammation in your body. Due to diet, stress or in this case, due to an acne breakout. A pimple is still an inflammation that requires healing with the help of your body.
The process of repairing skin is broken down quite simple and requires the production of additional collagen. It’s a protein your body creates naturally and makes up about a third of all of the protein in your body. It’s essential for your joints so you are able to move your thumb for example scrolling down this article and it keeps your skin subtle and elastic.
As with everything: Too much of one thing is never good. If there’s too much collagen in your skin while trying to repair a breakout, then scars can even appear raised instead of dipped in.
Another scarring, let’s say ‘malfunction’ is caused by the loss of tissue or collagen in this case, which creates indentations in the skin that we all know about and want to get rid of asap.
Different Types of Acne Scars require different types of treatment
- wide, U-shaped scars that have sharp edges
- can be shallow or deep
- the shallower they are, the better they respond to skin resurfacing treatments
Look into AHAs or BHAs depending on the depth of the scars
- narrow, V-shaped
- can go deeper into the skin
- can look like round or oval holes
- difficult to treat because of their depth
Look into BHAs, Retinoids and Vitamin C due to the depth of the scar to support collagen production
- These are wide indentations that have rounded edges and an irregular shape
Look into AHAs, salicylic acid
- most common in chest or back acne
- they protrude above the skin surface and are caused by too much collagen during the healing
Look into Silicone gel sheets at an early stage and massage the area when it starts to heal
- darker spots or discolouration after inflammation of breakouts
- can either be dark brown on darker skin types and pink or red on lighter skin types
Look into AHAs, Arbutin for darker skin types and AHAs, Retinoids for lighter skin types
If you want to learn more about the active ingredients that can be beneficial to treating acne scar tissue, check out our article.
The best treatment for all Acne Scar Types
It’s vital to wear sunscreen every day over scars. Sun exposure can darken scars or make them more noticeable and prevents them from healing quicker.
Your Expectations have to be realistic
With any acne or skin treatment, it is crucial to understand that there is no one-time fix/one size fits all.
Because even if you might have the same scar type as me or them, your diet, lifestyle and healing ability of your body determines how far you can push the results of improvement. Therefore skincare and remedies should always be personalized to work best. The easiest would be to see a specialist such as your dermatologist or aesthetician as they will be able to talk you through the options available that could apply to your current skin condition.