For many people, acne is an uncommon annoyance that is quickly treated with an over-the-counter remedy. However for others, persistent acne breakouts are an embarrassing part of everyday life. Just search the Internet and you’ll find many acne blog sites about the various methods people have tried in treating these annoying skin imperfections. In an effort to quickly get rid of acne, many people simply pop, poke or rub the blemish. Although this can temporarily reduce the appearance of a pimple, manually squeezing your blemishes can leave behind unsightly scarring. Many sufferers think the only way to reduce the appearance of acne scarring is through expensive dermatological intervention, but there is another way. It’s possible to reduce the appearance of your acne scars using natural, inexpensive treatments.
What Causes Acne Scarring?
Scarring is part of your body’s natural healing process. When it comes to acne, scarring occurs when an inflamed papule, cyst or pustule is ruptured, either from popping, poking or even cutting. Much like after a cut, the body begins to produce excess collagen fibers to repair the damage. If the body produces too much collagen, a raised amount of tissue appears on the skin’s surface. This is what we call an acne scar.
How to Prevent Acne Scarring
Far and away, one of the easiest and most effective ways to prevent scarring is to keep your fingers or tweezers away from your acne blemishes. However, there are times that acne scarring occurs even if you don’t squeeze or pop the pimple. In this case, the scarring is caused when the acne blemish becomes inflamed. Cutting down on and avoiding irritating this inflammation is the best way to prevent scarring. This is accomplished by gently washing your face and treating the inflamed, red acne with a safe product, such as witch hazel or tea tree oil.
Treating Acne Scarring Naturally
Unfortunately, even your best efforts cannot prevent some acne scarring from occurring. If you’re suffering from both new and older acne scars, it is possible to treat them without resorting to potentially irritating and even dangerous chemicals. Here are some safer remedies to try:
- Aloe Vera. Applying a thin layer of aloe vera gel to your acne scars daily not only helps heal and diminish their appearance, it can also prevent new breakouts from occurring. Another option is to grow your own aloe plant and remove the gel that naturally oozes from its leaves.
- Tea Tree Oil. Extracted from the leaves of Melaleuca altemifolia, tea tree oil is an amazingly versatile product that once again can treat existing acne scars while preventing future breakouts. If you’re unaccustomed to tea tree oil, be aware that it’s slightly pungent odor is sometimes off-putting. If this is the case, try aloe vera gel instead.
- Olive Oil. Extra virgin olive oil has a multitude of uses, both in and out of the kitchen. For treating problem acne scarring, simply massage a small amount of olive oil into your acne scars daily. If your scarring is extensive, consider applying a daily olive oil facial mask. Combine 1/4 cup olive oil, 1 cup plain yogurt and 1/2 cup rolled oats. Mix the ingredients and apply the mask to your entire face, or areas that feature prominent acne scars. Allow the mask to sit for 10 minutes before rinsing it away with lukewarm water.
- Ice Cubes. Ice can help reduce the redness and inflammation that often accompany newer acne scars. Wrap two to three ice cubes inside a wash cloth and then hold the ice wrap over your newer acne scars for at least 10 to 15 minutes.
- Tomato. Many women and men turn to vitamin A cream to treat both old and new acne scars. Instead of wasting your money on an expensive store-bought product, simply grab a can of tomato paste or juice from your pantry or refrigerator. Tomatoes are naturally rich in vitamin A, and are a sweet smelling way to treat acne scarring. Simply massage a small amount of the tomato juice or paste into your acne scar for three to five minutes, once-a-week.
Acne scarring is a common issue that’s easily resolved without resorting to expensive creams, potions, lotions or trips to the dermatologist. Remember prevention is always the best option, but if you’re suffering from acne scarring, try treating the issue with a safe, natural product.