As people who are really passionate about skin care, it’s natural that the more we learn about it, the more questions we have! In Skin Care FAQ, our new ongoing series, we’ll be taking every week one of the top-searched skin care questions and bringing it to top dermatologists, aestheticians, and skin care specialists to give you the most complete and accurate answer. This week’s theme is: What’s the fastest way to heal acne scars?
So you woke up and a miracle happened. That horrendous pimple you had for five whole days finally went away! But what’s that you see, now? A huge red mark? That will go away soon, right? Well, we hate to break it to you, but it might not. What you see there is an acne scar, a red mark that lingers on your skin oftentimes after suffering a pimple.
While it may be impossible to prevent acne scars from forming, there are definitely some things you can do to help get rid of them faster. The first thing to do is overload it with sunscreen. “Physical blockers, like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, help prevent pigmented acne scars from getting darker,” says Rebecca Tung, a dermatologist in La Grange, Illinois. After applying your sunscreen formula, try dabbing the scar with Missha’s Signature Essence Cushion. The foundation formula works to cover up the scar as well as protect it with SPF 50.
You might also want to invest in some products that have epidermal growth factors. “These help build collagen back in acne scars,” says Tung. “Try DNA Regeneration Serum, or one with peptides, like the Missha Cell Renew Snail Cream.” You’ll also want to try out a lightening serum that helps fade brown spots, like Goodal’s Double Bright Intense Serum or Skinfood’s Yuja Water C Whitening Ampoule. Another great Korean option is to pamper yourself with the Manefit Bling Bling Hydrogel Mask Whitening Platinum. It’s an award-winning sheet mask that helps fade pigmentation and brighten your overall complexion.
Also, don’t forget to exfoliate. According to Tung, a lot of what sits on your scar is dead skin cells that need to be buffed away. “The Clarisonic Mia is gentle enough to be tolerated by sensitive skin but strong enough to help smooth out irregular texture,” she says. If you’re not a face brush kind of girl, we suggest the Neogen Bio-Peel Gauze Peeling Lemon. It is a heavenly exfoliating pad enriched with vitamin C to provides gentle yet effective exfoliation while leaving skin smoother, clearer, and brighter—and that can be used even on sensitive skin.
And one final word of advice from Joshua Zeichner, the director of clinical and cosmetic dermatology at Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York City: “Think about your pimple like a fire that has been put out and the scar is the hot embers are left behind. Continue treating it with your acne medicine to fully put out the inflammation. Benzoyl peroxide kills acne causing bacteria lurking inside the skin which contributes to continued inflammation and redness.”
+ Share your favorite methods to treat and heal acne scars with us, too!