Fact: Roughly 6 percent of all the pimples that appear on your skin will leave scarring behind.. And while acne prevention comes in as the best case scenario in the quest for avoiding scarring as a result, it might not be the case most of the time.. Moreover, the nasty habit of picking, squeezing and trying to aggressively pop existing pimples, makes things much worse than what you may think..
Acne scars come in two types which can easily be identified visually.. And while the culprit is the same, the results might vary.. Identifying the type of scar you could develops halfway into dealing with them afterwards..
1 || Hyper-pigmentation Scarring
Hyper-pigmentation involves the appearance of brown or red marks that replace the blemish spot.. Those are different from one another. The brownish markings left behind are affectionately known as post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation (PIH), whereas red or pink markings are known as post-inflammatory erythema (PIE).
These scars are all typically expected to go away on their own over the course of several weeks to a couple months, and there are definite ways to speed that process along.
2 || Indented or Depressed Scarring
Just as their name implies, yes indented scars are in fact depressing! Those types of scars are the blemishes that actually form topographical cavities on the surface of skin. The indentations in the skin are caused by damage to collagen, the sad news is and contrary to the hyper-pigmentation scars, they won’t disappear on their own.
There are three different types of scars that fall within the “indented” category: ice pick scars, box scars and rolling scars. Ice pick scars as narrow indentations that are smaller than 2mm wide, and extend deep into the skin, giving the appearance of small holes. A box scar looks like a punched hole that can be either round or linear but has distinctive lines. Lastly, the rolling scar has gentle, sloping edges that disappear when skin is stretched.
How to Deal With Each Type Of Acne Scarring…
1 || For the hyper-pigmentation scars the best healing process includes chemical exfoliation and vitamin C.
2 || Chemical exfoliants like salicylic and azelaic acid are incredibly helpful when it comes to dark marks, since they break down the bonds between skin cells, in turn making it easier to slough off dull or pigmented surface cells. Salicylic acid is considered a beta hydroxy acid (BHA) and penetrates deeper into the skin than alpha hydroxy acids (AHA), such as azelaic, so the quicker you want that mark gone, the more heavily you may want to rely on salicylic, if your skin can hold up to that level of exfoliation.
A powerful ingredient most dermatologists turn to in order to fade acne scars.. This world-wide loved antioxidant can repair damage to skin, including hyperpigmentation.
When infused with vitamin C, vitamin E is highly recommended since it also helps to protect skin and bolster it against damaging free-radicals.
# Sunscreen.. Should go without saying..
2 || For the Depressed Scars..
These indented types of scars can be improved upon with the right treatment strategy. A topical retinoid initially comes to mind to stimulate the damaged collagen and spur the production new, plump skin that fills out the scar.
# Fraxel A laser treatment which punches microscopic holes in your skin to create a controlled wound that will heal itself in a more cosmetically appealing manner.
# Microneedling Like Fraxel, microneedling creates small wounds in the skin that encourage collagen production and new skin healing. Unlike Fraxel, microneedling is done with physical metal points rather than laser. If your scars are very deep speak to your dermatologist about dermal fillers, injectibles which can soften the look of ice pick, boxed and rolling scars.
Bottom line? Patience and commitment are key to healing acne scars — no matter what type.