The aftermath of acne can be frustrating, with permanent acne scarring and dark spots left behind on your skin after breakouts. While scars are more permanent and difficult to minimise, the appearance of dark spots on the skin does fade over time. Here is the great news – you can speed the healing process up with these highly effective dark spot treatments. Keep reading to find out how to get rid of dark acne scars.
- What Causes Dark Spots After Acne Breakouts?
- What Is The Difference Between Dark Spots And Acne Scars?
- How Do Dark Spots Form On Your Skin?
- How To Reduce The Possibility Of Getting Dark Spots After A Breakout
- Home Remedies For Dark Spots On The Skin
- When To Consult A Medical Professional For
What Causes Dark Spots After Acne Breakouts?
It’s bad enough having to deal with an acne breakout, but after the actual pimples have gone often you can be left with dark marks on the skin where the pimple used to be, and even though the pimple has healed you find yourself still having to use makeup to cover up the blemishes left behind.
It might seem like these marks are permanent, seeing as there is nothing left to heal, but don’t worry, because the dark area do fade gradually. For some people the very gradual natural process of their skin fading back to normal is still stressful and depressing. It can feel like your skin will never be as clear as it once was again.
The good news is that there are a variety of ways that you can speed up the fading process. Some of these methods are inexpensive and can even be done at home.
But before we look at these natural remedies and medications it is important to know what kind of marks on your skin we are really talking about. The treatment for dark spots and the treatment of actual scarring are quite different.
What Is The Difference Between Dark Spots And Acne Scars?
There are a few differences between dark spots left on the skin after an acne breakout, and acne scarring. The most relevant difference being that acne scarring causes permanent damage to the skin that made fade over time but will always be there. Dark spots on the other hand will fade away completely over time. This is because the skin hasn’t been permanently damaged beyond repair. Let’s take a closer look at this main difference.
Scars require the tissue of your skin to be damages or overgrown. A lot can be done to minimise the appearance of this damaged tissue, but the scar will always remain somewhat visible, no matter how much treatment can reduce the appearance of it.
Dark spots, unlike scars, lay flat against the skin. They are not raised or pitted. This means that there is no long-term damage to the skin cells, the pores or the follicles. Essentially, nothing fundamental has been changed except the colour of the skin. The time it takes for these dark marks to disappear naturally can very widely from three months to two years!
How Do Dark Spots Form On Your Skin?
When you have a breakout the pimples that appear is a kind of inflammation. New skin cells begin to form when your skin starts to heal. Unfortunately sometimes the skin cells that are sent to help restore your skin’s surface can contain too much melanin, which doesn’t match the tone of the surrounding skin.
Melanin is what determines the colour of your skin. Darker skinned people have more melanin in their skin cells. This is why you can end up with dark spots on your skin. The name for this condition is post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
How To Reduce The Possibility Of Getting Dark Spots After A Breakout
The chances of getting post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, or dark spots after an acne breakout can be greatly reduced during your breakout depending on how you handle your skin.
When pimples show up on our faces it is incredibly difficult to fight the urge to touch, pick or try to squeeze them. Unfortunately anything that increases the amount of time that inflammation on the skin lasts also increases the chances of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
The more you look in the mirror and mess with your face the more likely you will be to end up having to deal with the dark marks left behind when your breakup has finally cleared up.
Home Remedies For Dark Spots On The Skin
To help with post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation you can start during your breakout by leaving your pimples alone, and doing what you can to reduce any inflammation.
The following home remedies are known to help reduce inflammation in acne breakouts and also speed up the fading process of dark spots:
- Aloe Vera – Know for its powerful healing properties, aloe vera can help to heal your skin of dark spots. In fact, studies have suggested that when used consistently it could even potentially stabilise melanin in the cells. Read more about how aloe vera can help acne.
- Vitamin C – Your can find vitamin C in lemons. When applied to your skin this fruit can have a brightening effect and help to even our your skin tone, which can be useful during a breakout. More importantly, vitamin C has depigmentation properties effectively decreasing the formation of melanin.
- Grapeseed extract – Similar to lemons, grapeseed extract could be used to help lighten dark spots. Studies have shown that when taken orally it has help people with skin conditions that are similar to post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
- Sunscreen – It is vital that you protect your skin from the sun. A minimum SPF 30 should be worn daily on both sunny and rainy days in order to prevent further skin damage.
When To Consult A Medical Professional For
There is no need to see a dermatologist for dark spots on the skin, as there are plenty of over-the-counter medical products that you can try to help your marks to fade more quickly. It is always a good idea to get a doctor’s advice on which products to use.
Some of these include products containing the following ingredients:
- Azelaic acid
- Alpha hydroxy acids (AHA), For example, mandelic acid
- Kojic acid
- Retinoids (vitamin A)
- Vitamin E (tocopherol)
If you have discovered that you are in fact dealing with more serious acne scarring, and after trying a number of home remedies or over-the-counter treatments you are not satisfied with the results, then a medical professional can aid you in your treatment.
There are many options available to suit different budgets and different types of acne scarring, and it is always the best option to talk to a professional about what might be best for your skin before you try any treatments at home.
Despite the fact that the dark spots left behind after acne breakouts are disfiguring and can affect your self-esteem, it is important to hold onto the fact that are not permanent.
Armed with the knowledge found in this article you will know how to treat your skin in future incidents of acne breakouts in order to minimise the aftereffects.