I got three different questions today about acne scarring, so I figured it was an appropriate time for a post about it!

Here’s the deal with scars. There are two types:

  1. Pigmentation Acne Scars. These are your typical acne scars and most people are only dealing with this type… they’re basically just red or brown marks after your acne has healed.
  2. Hypertrophic and Atrophic Acne Scarring. This type of scarring is more rare, and it refers to acne scars that cause either an indent in the skin (atrophic) or acne scars that become raised scar tissue (hypertrophic).

Almost everyone gets pigmentation scars after a breakout, and the good news is that these will always fade away with time.

There is a second kind of pigmentation scar called hyper pigmentation, and that is when there is a dark or black mark, or a white or pale mark left at the site of the former lesion.

These are a little more stubborn, and it is best to treat them as soon as possible after they show up as to avoid them hanging around for years, or even permanently.

Unfortunately, if you have hypertrophic or atrophic acne scarring, the prognosis isn’t as optimistic.

You can try natural treatments, but there is a chance that they may not work, especially if the scars are old and deep (or very raised). There are plenty of conventional, cosmetic procedures out there that can help you, but they may be expensive.

Mind you, there are some over-the-counter treatments that are popular – such as Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA), a weak chemical peel. Again, you will have more success with this type of thing if your scars are new and relatively shallow.

Natural Remedies for Acne Scars

For now, I am going to concentrate on some natural remedies that will help you to speed up the healing of your pigmentation scars, and possibly your raised or indented scars as well.

  • Vitamin E – Vitamin E is a well known antioxidant that can stimulate the production of collagen, which is a fibrous protein that helps to make up skin. You can get concentrated Vitamin E oil from any health store. I would probably mix it with some jojoba oil, as it helps to carry the large Vitamin E molecules into the skin. If you don’t, they may clog your pores. And don’t use it on open wounds, wait until the lesion has healed completely, or it may make things worse.
  • Lemon Juice – I remember being a young teenager, putting lemon juice in my hair, and then going out in the sun in order to try and lighten it up. This is because lemon juice has a lightening effect – and it can help to lighten your scars if you put it on your skin. I’d mix it with something soothing like honey or aloe if you are going to use it though, because it can also be kind of drying.
  • Aloe veraAloe vera will help with the inflammation and redness from the acne and scars. It can also really help to prevent acne from turning into bad, permanent scars if you use it while you still have inflamed sores, so I would recommend this at all stages.
  • Manuka HoneyManuka honey is the honey from bees that collect pollen from the Manuka tree – only found in New Zealand. This stuff is special because it has a very high antibacterial quality compared to other honeys and plenty of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. It also promotes tissue growth and protects the new tissue from infection! It’s actually very helpful for healing acne as well as the scars, so it’s all around awesome (I just picked up my first jar of it, so there will be more in depth info about this soon).
  • MSM (Methyl Sulfonyl Methane) – This is a supplement that you can take internally that can help prevent scars as well as heal existing scars. The sulfur in it helps in the tissue regrowth while acne is healing, preventing scars, and once you already have scars, it helps to break up scar tissue. People have had very good success with this. There are also MSM creams that you can apply directly to the skin. Some people have had success with MSM cream even for indented scars.
  • Exfoliation – Gently exfoliating the skin can help your acne scars to go away quicker. This is because it gets rid of the dead skin cells that sit on top of your skin and gets to the new healthier skin underneath quicker. I would avoid too much exfoliation if you still have inflamed acne though, or it will likely make things worse. And even if you don’t have inflamed acne, I only recommend exfoliating a couple times a week in order to avoid irritation. But anyway, when and if I do exfoliate, I like to mix some sort of spice with honey and gently rub it on my face… I’ve used cinnamon before and lately I’ve been using powdered dulse (which is a seaweed that contains plenty of vitamins and minerals).

Alright friends, I hope this has helped you. I made a video some time ago in which I showed you a honey, lemon, and cinnamon mask for acne scars, and people seem to really like it… so check it out!

And remember that the best thing you can do for scarring is to prevent it – which means DON’T PICK YOUR SPOTS!!

photo by Pmltadeo