The aim of home treatment for acne scars and pimple marks is to reduce the inflammation and swelling if present and to lighten the dark spots. It will improve the appearance of the person, increase self-esteem, and improve skin health.
Acne scars initially start with the development of acne. They are found to occur on the acne-prone areas of the body such as the forehead, cheeks, between the eyebrows, the chin, neck, shoulders, the back, and the buttocks.
Acne form due to the engorgement of the hair follicle, which gets filled with sebum, dead skin cells, and skin bacteria. If left untreated or if picked, the acne gets filled with pus due the formation of infection.
The acne later bursts and in the natural process of healing, scarring appears over the healed acne. Treating acne is a lengthy process and you have to show patience. There is no shortcut and no overnight solution. If acne scars have formed, do be religious and patient with the treatment.
Home treatments will work only for mild superficial acne scarring. Then there are the natural remedies, which are also effective in gradually helping the acne scars to fade. Both these options are useful in mid scarring.
For severe and stubborn cases, it is best to leave it to the dermatologist who will suggest and offer some advanced treatment options.
Then there are certain dos and don’ts that you should follow, which synergistically aid the home and natural remedies to become more effective.
You could initially try home remedies by applying over-the-counter creams over the affected parts. They will also get rid of dark spots formed after the acne heal. It takes about six months for the dark spots to fade away on their own. These home remedies will make them go away faster.
Topical creams for acne scars and dark spots
Cortisone is a steroid with anti-inflammatory properties. You can buy cortisone cream over-the-counter. It does not require a prescription. Apply this cream twice a day after you have washed your face with warm water and mild soap. Pat the skin dry with a clean towel and gently apply the cream over your acne scar area.
Lightening creams help lighten your skin. They will remove the dark spots and lighten the skin color. They are available without a prescription. The best ingredients with skin lightening properties to look for would be:
- Kojic acid, which is derived from the mushroom extract
- Arbutin from bearberry extract
- Ascorbic acid, which is vitamin C
Use a chemical exfoliating cream called glycolic acid twice a week. This will help to lighten the skin over the acne scar and get rid of dark spots. It will also prevent new acne from developing.
Vitamin C oral supplements
Take oral vitamin C supplements. Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the process of skin repair. It plays an important role in the synthesis of collagen, which is required to heal the acne lesion and minimize scarring. It has antioxidant properties that help to maintain healthy skin. Its anti-aging properties prevent wrinkle formation.
Avoid harsh sunlight
Avoid exposure to the sun, especially harsh sunlight. It can increase the dark pigmentation of the skin and make the scars more prominent. Soft morning sunlight is okay.
Sunlight stimulates the formation of the pigment melanin, which is produced by the skin cells. That is why your skin gets tanned due to sunlight exposure.
If you have to go in the sun, use a sunscreen or a moisturizer with a sun protection formula of 15 or more.
Eat more fiber. Whole grains are rich in fiber content. They also contain selenium sulfide which is great for the skin and also recommended as a natural remedy for acne.
Fiber helps to remove waste and toxins from the body. These waste products can clog the skin pores and cause acne to erupt.
Exercise regularly. It detoxifies your skin. It increases the blood circulation throughout the body, including the skin. Increased blood circulation means more oxygen and nutrients to the skin and prompt removal of waste and toxins from the skin through sweat.
Avoid vitamin E topical creams
Do not put topical vitamin E on the scar. It may delay the healing or may even worsen the condition.
Keep your skin hands-free
Do not irritate the skin by over-washing or scrubbing. This can increase inflammation and make the acne worse. Avoid touching the acne area with your hands.
Drink adequate water
Drink an adequate quantity of water – about 10 to 12 glasses throughout the day. This will hydrate the skin and get rid of toxins and waste through urine and sweat.