Having acne-prone skin can be frustrating. Even after the blemishes are gone, you may be left with residual scarring that makes your complexion look uneven and flawed. While acne scars can be challenging to treat, there are steps you can take to minimize their appearance and achieve a glowing, flawless look. Here are ten tips for getting beautiful skin despite acne scarring:
1. Exfoliate Regularly
Exfoliating your skin a few times per week helps remove dead skin cells that can accentuate the look of scars. Use a gentle scrub with round beads or a chemical exfoliant with alpha or beta hydroxy acids. Be careful not to over-exfoliate, as this can irritate. Focus on problem areas with the most scarring.
2. Use Retinoids
Retinoids like tretinoin and tazarotene work by increasing cell turnover. This helps smooth roughness and improve scar texture over time. Start slowly by applying a pea-sized amount 2-3 nights per week, gradually working up to every other night as your skin tolerates it. Use a moisturizer to combat dryness.
3. Get Plenty of Vitamin C
Vitamin C is essential for new collagen production and skin healing. Eat vitamin C-rich foods like oranges, grapefruits, peppers, broccoli, and strawberries daily. You can also apply a serum with L-ascorbic acid morning and night. Vitamin C works best when combined with vitamin E and ferulic acid.
4. Use Skin-Identical Ingredients
Skin-identical ingredients are naturally found in the skin that can help restore a smooth, healthy appearance. Look for products containing ceramides, fatty acids, hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, and peptides. These nourish skin and give it a dewy, flawless look.
5. Try Microneedling
Microneedling creates microscopic punctures in the skin to spur collagen regeneration. Several professional treatments can help improve depressed acne scars. You can also buy an at-home microneedling tool for maintenance between sessions. Be sure to disinfect properly and avoid picking at the skin after microneedling.
6. Get Laser Resurfacing
Laser resurfacing removes outer layers of skin to reveal new, smoother tissue below. Fractional lasers treat small portions of skin at a time for a more natural outcome. Lighter single treatments often yield subtle improvements, while multiple sessions provide more dramatic changes. Combination laser therapy is often the gold standard scar treatment.
7. Use Silicone Sheets & Gels
Silicone is thought to exert pressure on scars and make collagen fibers lay flat. Silicone gel sheets are worn over scars for 12 or more hours daily. Gels can be applied daily. This step is often used after other treatments to maximize smoothing. Consistency is critical for best results.
8. Consider Injections
For rolling and boxcar scars, injectable fillers like Juvederm and Restylane can temporarily fill in depressions. These are gradually absorbed, so maintenance treatments are required every 6 to 12 months. Cortisone shots may also temporarily flatten raised scars.
9. Embrace Makeup
When you want quick, flawless-looking skin:
- Don’t be afraid to apply makeup to problem areas.
- Choose a full-coverage foundation with a dewy, light-reflecting finish.
- Tap on concealer over any lingering discoloration, then set with translucent powder.
- Avoid heavy powders that emphasize texture.
10. Protect Skin Daily
Wear broad-spectrum SPF 30 or higher sunscreen every day, even in winter. Sun exposure can make scars more noticeable and interfere with healing. Limit direct sun when possible. Reapply sunscreen every 2 hours of UV exposure. Avoid tanning beds, which are highly damaging to the skin.
Living with acne scarring can strain self-confidence, but rest assured, there are solutions. You can achieve stunning, flawless-looking skin with diligent skin care, strategic makeup use, and expert treatments. Focus on accentuating your beautiful features rather than obsessing over scars. With time and TLC, you can minimize imperfections.