What Are Pitted Acne Scars
Pitted acne scars are a name given to acne scars that are characterized by a hollow, indented impression in the skin. This concave appearance is due to a sudden loss of collagen. Unlike hypertrophic scars , which result from an overproduction of collagen, pitted acne scars result from the damage and inflammation of deep breakouts, which create a small pit-like structure on the facehence the name.
According to Camp, pitted acne scars are often categorized based on their appearance, within three common types: boxcar scars, ice pick scars, and rolling scars.
- Boxcar scars: “Boxcar scars are broad and have sharp, well-defined edges. A good example is a chicken-pox scar,” says Camp.
- Ice pick scars:”Ice pick scars are small, narrow, and deep. Because they are deep, they tend to be difficult to treat,” Camp explains.
- Rolling scars:”Rolling scars are similar to boxcar scars but have smooth, undulating edges that make the skin surface look uneven. They tend to be more shallow,” he says.
Things Your Skin Is Trying To Tell You And How To Respond
Fillers A substance such as collagen, hyaluronic acid, or fat can be used to “fill out” certain types of acne scars. Since fillers are eventually absorbed into your skin, youll have to repeat filler injections, usually every few months, depending on the substance used.
Punch excisions This type of skin surgery removes acne scars by individually excising, or cutting out, the scar. The hole left by the incision can be repaired with stitches or a skin graft. A skin graft uses a small piece of normal skin to fill in an area of scarred skin. Bruising can occur for one to two weeks after the procedure.
Microneedling Also called collagen induction therapy, this procedure involves pricking the skin repeatedly with tiny needles to stimulate the growth of new collagen. This can reduce the appearance of scars. Microneedling can improve the appearance of wrinkles, stretch marks, and fine lines. Skin redness may last a few days, according to the AAD.
Use It At The Right Time
The right time to apply retinol products on your face is at night. This is because retinol and other retinoids make your skin prone to the ultraviolet radiation of the sun. Therefore, applying retinol on your skin in the morning might be a very bad idea.
Not only will the sunburn your skin, but it will also cancel out the retinol on your skin. This affects the effectiveness of the product.
You May Like: Who To Go To For Acne
Related Resources For Acne Scars
* Prescription savings vary by prescription and by pharmacy, and may reach up to 80% off cash price.
Pharmacy names, logos, brands, and other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
This article is not medical advice. It is intended for general informational purposes and is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your physician or dial 911.
How Do You Get Rid Of Acne Scars Overnight
Acne breakouts are common and quite frustrating. They may leave scars on the face and can trigger anxiety in teens and adults. Professional treatment of acne scars has shown excellent results but needs six to eight weeks to work.
There is no magic potion to get radiant, scar-free skin overnight, but there are excellent makeup products that can hide your acne scars.
If you want radiant skin, a regular skincare routine is key. This must be coupled with a healthy diet, a good exercise regimen, and stress relief techniques to avoid acne in the first place and eventually achieve clear and healthy skin.
Below are a few common ways to get rid of acne scars. These will take time to work, so you must be regular and diligent in their application. Always do a patch test behind your earlobe to check if you are allergic to any of these ingredients.
Recommended Reading: Why Do I Have Chin Acne
Give Microneedling With Radio Frequency A Try
Microneedling creates small, narrow, superficial areas of mechanical injury that work to stimulate the repair response, increase collagen production, and improve scar appearance. When combined with radio frequency, it becomes a bit more aggressivewith energy being released deeper within the skin to trigger a more robust inflammatory and collagen response.
What Are The Types Of Acne And What Do They Look Like
Acne presents as many different forms. Whiteheads and blackheads are typical and tend to heal smoothly more often than not. Then there are the types that can lead to scarring:
- Papules: Pink to red bumps that hurt when you touch them.
- Pustules: Pus-filled lesions. Theyre red at the base and white or yellow at the top.
- Nodules: Solid lesions. Theyre larger than papules and pustules and can hurt more because they extend deeper into the skin.
- Cysts: Cysts lie deep within the skin. Theyre painful, full of pus and are most likely to scar.
Recommended Reading: What Moisturizer Is Good For Oily Acne Prone Skin
How Can You Prevent Acne Scars In The First Place
Besides not popping your pimples under any circumstances, what else can you do to prevent acne scars and marks?
It may seem like a no brainer, but the best way to prevent acne scars is by preventing the acne in the first place. Severe cases of acne might require oral antibiotics or Accutane . You might be able to treat mild cases with alternatives, said Dr. Suzanne Friedler, a dermatologist at Mt. Sinai Medical Center inNew York City.
If acne is mild then it may be controlled with topical therapies, including topical antimicrobials and retinoids, Friedler told HuffPost Finds.
Reducing inflammation of existing pimples is key because its those deeper, more cystic spots that tend to leave behind permanent scars, according to Dr. Jeremy Fenton of Schweiger Dermatology Group in New York City.
If youre sensitive to hyperpigmentation, time is of the essence when you have a pimple. Fenton recommended using a targeted dark spot lightening cream when the pimple is at its peak before the discoloration starts.
Side Effects Of Microneedling For Acne Scars
Initially, minor side effects are to be expected from this procedure. These include redness, bruising, and inflammation. However, these should clear up within a few days.
During the first few days after your microneedling procedure, youll want to avoid direct sun exposure and rigorous exercise. Exfoliants and alcohol-based skin products can also make side effects worse, so you should avoid these.
Its also possible to experience acne breakouts after skin needling. However, these should be mild and clear up on their own. Avoid picking at your skin, as this can lead to further scarring.
The severity of microneedling side effects also depends on how you prepare for the procedure. Tanning or direct sun exposure can irritate your skin, making inflammation worse. Drinking plenty of water the day before and during the hours leading up your treatment can also reduce the chances of bruising and inflammation. Youll also want to come to your appointment without any makeup on.
Unlike more invasive skin therapies, microneedling is considered quick. Many people choose to go back to work the day after their treatment, depending on their side effects. You can apply a lightweight powder if you want to camouflage any bruises or redness.
Your dermatologist may not recommend microneedling for your acne scars if youre currently experiencing an acne breakout. Its also not recommended if you have rosacea or eczema, as the procedure can worsen your symptoms.
You May Like: What Foods To Eat To Clear Acne
Some Common Acne Scar Treatments Include:
- Microdermabrasion: A specialist machine applies tiny rough particles to remove the uppermost layer of skin.
- Chemical Peel: Probably the best-known treatment, this removes the outer layer of old skin by using a chemical solution, encouraging new skin to grow that is usually less scarred.
- Laser Resurfacing: A laser is used to remove scarred upper layers of skin, thereby encouraging new healthy collagen to grow in its place.
- Microneedling: Under this procedure, small needles are used to create controlled micro-injury to the skin, which helps to stimulate the body’s collagen production & smooth acne scarring.
- Subcision: This economical, simple treatment is for severe acne scarring a needle is used to break apart the fibrous bands of tissue that prevent the skin from laying in its natural position.
- Laser/Light Therapy: An intense yet gentle beam of light treats the acne without damaging surrounding tissue.
- Dermabrasion: This is the surgical sanding of the outer skin layer on acne scars.
- Soft-tissue fillers: A filler is injected directly into the acne scar to improve skin appearance.
- Excision & Punch Replacement Graft: This involves cutting into the skin to remove the acne scar & then stitching the wound. In punch replacement grafting, the scar is removed with a special tool, & a skin graft usually taken from behind the ear fills the wound.
How Much Retinol Should You Use
You should only use peasized amount per routine.A peasized amount of your retinol product is enough to cover the affected skin area.
Using too much of your retinol product at once will cause your skin to get irritated. This may even lead to retinol burn, which is a situation where you have to deal with the side effects of retinol.
You May Like: How To Clear Acne Around Mouth
How We Chose The Best Products To Get Rid Of Acne Scars
To create this list, we asked dermatologists which products they swear by for the different types of acne scarring.
They took into consideration skin type, efficacy of the products, and any safety concerns patients should be mindful of.
Keep in mind that some scarring can be treated at home, but its best to talk with a dermatologist about severe scarring.
Book Microdermabrasion With A Professional
In the salon, acne scars and hyperpigmentation benefit from microdermabrasion, Vargas explains. I use a diamond peelthere are diamonds in the tip of the wand that I use. Its adjustable for your skin type, even if you have super sensitive skin. Regular exfoliation is key to getting more even skin tone and even surface. We do something called a Power Peel which is a fruit acid peel/LED light combo that really helps with scars over time.
You May Like: How To Get Rid Of Dark Acne Scars On Face
How Do I Prepare For Dermabrasion
Before your treatment, your doctor will give you a physical examination, review your medical history, and discuss your risks and expectations. Tell your doctor about any medications youre taking, including over-the-counter medicine and nutritional supplements.
You may need to stop taking them because they could increase your bleeding risk or adversely darken your skin. Tell your doctor if you have taken isotretinoin in the past year.
Your doctor will also recommend that you not smoke for a few weeks before and after your treatment. Smoking not only causes premature aging of the skin, but it also decreases blood flow to the skin and slows the healing process.
Your doctor will also advise you about sun exposure. Too much sun exposure without proper protection two months before dermabrasion can cause skin discoloration. You will also be advised to avoid sun exposure while your skin is healing and to use sunscreen daily once healed.
Your doctor may also recommend that you use the following before dermabrasion:
- antiviral medication: use before and after dermabrasion treatment to prevent viral infections
- oral antibiotic: this will prevent a bacterial infection, which is especially important if you have acne
- retinoid cream: derived from vitamin A, this cream helps promote healing
Youll also want to arrange for a ride home after the procedure. The after-effects of anesthesia may make it unsafe to drive.
Give Your Skin A Deep Exfoliating Clean With Salicylic Acid
Salicylic acid is a beta-hydroxy acid that is lipophilic, which means it likes to mingle with oils. This property allows it to penetrate deep into pores and clean them out. Alpha hydroxy acids, like glycolic and lactic acids, are hydrophilic, so they dont penetrate pores as well, but they are effective at exfoliating dead skin and preventing pores from clogging. Camp suggests cleansing with this gentle face cleanser by CeraVe, which contains salicylic acid and can be used to treat acne on the face, shoulders, and back.
Don’t Miss: How To Treat Inflammatory Acne
Is Retinol Good For Clearing Acne Scars
Yes, it is.Using retinol on your acne scars is a good way to clear out acne from your skin. Retinol will help to smooth out your skin to reduce the appearance of the scar.
When you use your retinol product diligently on your face, it will help to even out your skin texture. It accelerates the rate of epidermal turnover to keep your skin smooth and healthy.
From Retinol Serums To Azelaic And Exfoliating Acids These Top Picks Can Help With The Appearance Of Marks That Linger Long After Your Spots Are Gone
Were all striving towards loving our skin no matter our skin concerns, but it’s natural to want to get rid of blemishes and these can sometimes be caused by acne. You may be left with a range of marks, from ice pick scars to post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation .
So, how do you help with the appearance of acne scars once theyve formed? What actually causes each kind of acne scar in the first place? And what skincare products can you use to help reduce their appearance? If youre wondering what the answers are to any of these questions, hopefully our guide can provide a helping hand.
What causes acne scars?
Acne scars are caused by inflammation and damage to the hair follicle and its associated oil-producing gland, says Dr Derrick Phillips, consultant dermatologist at the Cadogan Clinic in London. As the inflammation settles, the skin produces collagen to help repair the tissue damage.
This response can be over-exuberant and lead to elevated scars or depressed scars, known as ice pick scars that can tend to have a pitted appearance. In skin of colour, dark marks may also develop as the inflammation resolves. This is known as post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation and can be more problematic than the acne itself.
How can you prevent acne scars?
The best way to prevent scars is by ensuring the acne is appropriately treated, says Dr Phillips.
What can help fade the appearance of acne scars?
What are the best products for acne scars?
Read Also: How To Get Rid Of Acne Marks
What Causes Acne
An acne lesion grows when bacteria, oils and dead skin fill up and inflame pores, the tiny openings in your skin through which oil and sweat rise to the surface. Some 40,000 cells fall off your skin every hour but, sometimes, those dead cells clog up a pore. Sometimes clogged pores are small and result in whiteheads or blackheads. Sometimes these pores become inflamed and lead to other types of acne.
If you have acne, youre not alone! Acne is the most common skin condition in the world. About 80% of people between the ages of 11 and 30 will have it. Teenagers get acne thanks to their changing hormones. Adults have stress, the environment, menstrual cycles, oil-based products and birth control pills to blame, although hormones can still play a role.
What To Do First
Acne scars are created when skin tissue is damaged. Doing things like picking at and popping pimples can definitely damage your skin and cause scarring. But even if you’re really careful with your skin, scars can still develop.
Severe blemishes, those that are very inflamed, are more likely to scar. And for people who are very prone to scarring, even minor blemishes can leave scars.
If you have noticed some scarring, there are a few things you can do. First things firstacne needs to be brought under control. If you haven’t seen a dermatologist yet, do it.
Don’t waste time using over-the-counter products. If acne is scarring your skin, getting on a prescription acne treatment ASAP will help minimize scarring.
If you’re already being treated by a dermatologist, follow their directions exactly and let them know if you have any concerns. Once your skin is fairly clear, then you can decide on what steps to take next for treating your scars.
You May Like: What To Use For Hormonal Acne
Discover How To Heal Acne Scars Below