Here is a totally non-embarrassing pic of me and my acne scars (which may or may not be cropped to only show me... C'mon we've all done it!).
And, while my skin is not airbrushed-flawless, I know it will never be, and that's okay. It's healthy, thriving on its own, and getting clearer every day.
Now, this was not always the case, believe me. If I could show you the disaster that was my skin a few short years ago, you would be SHOOK!
Seriously, after dealing with everything from cystic acne to enormous acne scars and hyperpigmentation, I became a specialist in trying a million and one things to try to get my face under control.
So, I get it, friend. Acne scars are no joke, and the frustration is real, but in my 12 years of dealing with them, I found some tips that completely changed the game for my skin, and I know it can do the same for you!
Here is a crash course to start you off right!
The Skinny on How Acne Scars Happen
First, let's start by spittin' some facts. The myth that acne scars are a rare thing that only affects a select group of people is entirely FALSE.
Studies have shown that most people deal with acne at some time throughout their lives, and at least 33% deal with acne scars.
Second, acne scars don't just happen overnight. Here is a short explanation of how acne scars end up on your face:
When dead skin cells, bacteria, and excess oil combine in the pore, it creates a buildup of yuckiness that results in inflamed skin. This inflammation and irritation goes on to form an acne lesion, which includes whiteheads, blackheads, cysts, etc.
And, this is where acne scars come in. Acne scars can be the product of that inflammation trapped in the skin which can cause your pore to swell to the point of the follicle wall breaking and Voila! You have an acne scar.
So, for a person trying to figure out how to get rid of acne scars, there are two main priorities:
- Make sure that your skin doesn't fall into the acne cycle over and over to prevent new scarring.
- Take care of the scars that you already have.
Now that you understand how it works, it's time for me to pass on my holy grail of acne scar tips to you!
5 Surprising Ways to Get Rid of Acne Scars
After trying everything, I gained a good amount of knowledge on the acne scar topic. If it weren't for some of the tips below, I honestly would have never seen my skin clear up and would still be wondering what the outside world looked like.
While they may seem simple, don't sleep on them. Guard these tips with your life!
... Okay, maybe not your life, but pay close attention.
1. Use All-Natural Products
I know that this may seem like a no-brainer, but many people don't invest in their skin as much as they should. Having a clear skin regimen that helps with breakouts, heals skin, and reduces inflammation is vitally important if you want to see the disappearance of scars. Also, some natural products are specifically designed to help fade scars and stimulate new cell growth, which can help with indentations in the skin (like the Luminous Clear Skin Kit).
That is why I suggest ditching those old non-effective products and aiming for all-natural skincare with naturally-based ingredients that won't cause harm to your skin. This will provide that sweet face with a fighting chance!
2. Stop the DIY's, Seriously
From lemon juice to do-it-yourself masks of turmeric and banana peels, we've tried it all. But the funny thing is none of them have worked...like EVER. While taking ownership of your skincare treatment may be appealing to many (like those searching on Pinterest right now for the next at-home remedy), it's likely doing you more harm than good.
Dermatologists Julia Tzu and Ted Lain believe that DIYers can get a little crazy and do more harm to their skin which could cause the skin to become super irritated and create a bad situation for acne. They believe that due to "a lack of knowledge and experience", those that are doing at home remedies can create additional issues that are just as difficult.
So, let's just stop while we're ahead. Okay?
3. Increase Your Vitamin C
Has anyone told you lately that vitamin C is essential to your whole acne scar journey? Well, if they haven't, here's the 411. Dermatologist Dr. Dennis Gross explains that vitamin C is a key to seeing dark marks disappear. While the benefits are truly limitless, the effect that vitamin C has on collagen production and brightening difficult marks is super unique. Not only can vitamin C combat scars, but it has the ability to help prevent new ones from forming.
For those dealing with a loss of collagen, dark marks, or hyperpigmentation, vitamin C is especially essential. It's seriously one of the most amazing products that you can use on your skin. There's no reason to wait, start incorporating vitamin c today.
4. Don't Forget Your Sunscreen
If you could choose your most perfect day, what would it be?
I would love nothing more right now than to be chillin' on a California beach, letting the sun kiss my face with its radiance and having all of my troubles just fade off into the distant horizon.
Sounds nice, right? Well, there is one crucial thing that I left out…
While most of us love the sun, the sun doesn't always love us. UV rays are real and we need to protect ourselves at all costs. For those dealing with acne scars, this is especially the case.
Dermatologists say that sun exposure of any type can make scarring actually worse by further darkening them which can slow the healing time or cause scars to not fade properly at all.
Also, the sunscreen found within many moisturizers or makeup is often not enough (or the measurement is off). That is why a separate, lightweight SPF is a must-have in your skincare routine.
Here are the things you should look for:
- An SPF of at least 30 or higher
- Preferably all-natural
5. Be Kind To Your Skin
Stress: Just spelling the word out is stressful. Whether it's from work, your personal life (I mean, isn't it always), or even just that tiny nagging feeling in the back of your head that something is wrong, so many of us deal with stress daily.
Here's the thing though, stress can serve a purpose in your body through acting as a trigger, but too much stress can be a serious problem. Stress can compromise your health, well-being, mental stability, and the health of your skin. This six-letter word has wreaked too much havoc for far too long.
A case study even showed that 80% of participants felt that stress was the cause of their breakouts. And, while the relationship between the two is not entirely understood yet, it is worth noting that when a person experiences stress, the level of stress hormones rise, ultimately leading to acne.
So what is the point?
Stressing about your skin can lead to you becoming fixated about it which can mess with your stress hormones, cause more pimples, and cause you to start picking at your skin increasing the chances of more scarring.
But, today the vivacious cycle stops! It's time to let your skin thrive by using all-natural products that work and giving your skin time to heal.
With just a little bit of patience and a whole lot of lovin', flawless skin will be your new reality!