Acne scarring is the absolute pits. You can struggle with breakouts your whole life, only to overcome it and be rewarded with another fickle concern to treat.
Don’t lose hope just yet, though. The good news is that there are treatments out there that can help reduce the appearance of marks left behind by breakouts and bring discolouration down.
Here, we’ve rounded up the most effective products and in-clinic treatments that actually work.
First off, it’s probably good to figure out if you have acne scarring or if you’re just dealing with a case of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH).
Basically, acne scars occur as a result of injury to the skin, and often appear as ‘pitted’ or indented skin. Sound familiar?
There are generally four different types of acne scars: ice pick scars (deep indents), rolling scars (shallow indent with smooth edges), boxcar scars (shallow with sharp edges) and hypertrophic scars (thick, raised ‘over-healed’ skin).
While there isn’t exactly one specific cause of acne scaring, there can be several things that contribute to their formation such as skin picking, cystic acne and infection and inflammation due to ruptured breakouts.
Unlike acne scarring, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation doesn’t actually change the texture of the skin. It usually appears as temporary red, pink or brown spots on the skin (depending on the individual skin type) and can be seen quite early after acne.
This kind of discolouration will most likely disappear after some time. Acne scars, on the other hand, will not improve on their own. But that’s why you have us!
Okay. When it comes to minimising the appearance of acne scars, you have a few different options, depending on what kind of route you want to go down.
When it comes to at-home skincare, obviously controlling acne early on and using the correct ingredients to tackle breakouts is your best bets to preventing PIH and acne scars in the first place.
Our Future Advanced Brightening Cream, $100, contains a powerful combination of niacinamide and brightening antioxidants such as vitamin C and diacetyl boldine, which work together to reduce the occurrence of breakouts, improve redness and tackle any dark patches (post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation).
Surface exfoliators such as Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) and Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHAs) can work wonders in promoting a clearer, more radiant complexion – so we recommend using a combination of both.
The AHAs in our Pure Radiance Glow Serum, $70, help with surface exfoliation and cell renewal, while salicylic acid (BHA) found in our Super Clear Clarifying Solution, $66, will penetrate into pores and keep them clear.
If you’re looking for a serious multi-tasker, our Super Clear Essential Cream, $90, is the perfect all-rounder. It contains a powerhouse combination of vitamin A, lactic and salicylic acid to help reduce discolouration, speed up cell renewal and refine skin tone and texture, all while being gentle enough for sensitive skin types.
When it comes to actually clearing acne scars, there’s a range of effective in-clinic options that can help heal and smooth your skin.
However, the right treatment will obviously depend on your individual skin type and the severity of your acne scarring.
Some popular professional treatments include radiofrequency needling and resurfacing lasers, which help encourage new collagen formation.
However, if scars are stubborn, these treatments may be used in combination with surgical procedures such as 'subcision' (acne scar surgery), dermal fillers and chemical peels until the scarring fully disappears.
If you’re unsure what’s the right option for you, it’s always best to consult a dermatologist, who will be able to tailor an in-clinic treatment plan specific to your individual skin type.
Have you ever experienced acne or acne scarring?
What’s your go-to treatments for clearer skin?
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By Gary Williams, Bio