Left: Sheetal Rawal, scientist (human genetics) & founder of Apsara Skin Care
By: Alex Raffanti and Sheetal Rawal
Acne scars seem impossible to get rid of. The acne is gone, yet there is still an annoying mark in its place. These marks are also called post-inflammation acne scars or blemishes. They leave the skin less than spotless, shall we say, and in many cases can be more bothersome than an active acne spot. This is mainly because these acne scars take much longer to fade, while an active acne spot tends to heal faster.
When acne is a continuous issue, the infection or inflammation does not have time to fully heal before the new acne forms. Thus at any given time, the skin suffers from active acne as well as scars and marks from previous acne. Overlapping breakouts, in general, are more prone to scarring. Or let’s say that the scars and marks are more localized to a certain area of the face (that is more prone to acne) and thus the issue looks more pronounced than if they were more spread out.
Acne scars are not necessarily caused by the actual infection of the acne, but the body’s response to fighting the acne. Scars are the body’s natural reaction to infections or wounds, but sometimes the scars do not have enough time to completely heal before another infection breaks out. Once an active infection subsides, scars and marks are like the sore reminders that nobody likes. The most reliable way to remove and reduce acne scars is the most obvious one. Take a grassroots approach to your skin care and be sure you are addressing the root cause of the issue. In this case, it will mean having a natural daily and weekly skin care routine to address acne. When acne is gone, guess what! Acne scars don’t stand much of a chance either.
If you want to learn more about acne scars as well as a remedy you can use at home, watch this video. Enjoy and please subscribe to my YouTube channel!
Here are some tips and methods to remove acne scars using easily available natural ingredients.
1. Lemon Juice: Lemon juice has skin exfoliation, antioxidant and astringent properties, which makes it excellent for fading acne scars and making room for healthier cells to come to surface. Used as a natural exfoliant, lemon juice helps remove the dead skin cells that built up to form the scar. The vitamin C in lemon juice can help reverse free radical damage to the skin as well.
Squeeze a lemon and mix equal parts lemon juice with aloe vera juice and apply it directly onto the scars. Leave on for about 12-15 minutes. Wash with lukewarm water and then apply your serum and lotion right after.
When using lemon juice, I want to be sure to caution you that it does have skin drying properties when used too often. Every usage of lemon juice must be followed with your serum and lotion to eliminate the chances of dryness, which is only counterproductive as far as recovery from acne is concerned.
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"I have struggled with acne for the majority of my life. I struggled with cystic acne. I found Apsara through a friend and my results have been absolutely amazing!"
2. Cucumber: Cucumber is a natural anti-inflammatory and also a good source of vitamin C. This is great for redness that is associated with acne scars. Cucumber is also known in Ayurveda as a skin cooling agent. Ayurveda relates skin disorders like acne to an overabundance of the fire element in the body (called pitta). Pitta can be pacified by using cooling ingredients both internally as well as externally. This is where cucumber juice (on the skin and consumed internally) can come to the rescue. Apply fresh slices of cucumber to the scarred area and leave them on for about 10-15 minutes and wash your face. Then apply your serum and lotion.
3. Grapeseed Oil: Grapeseed oil is naturally lightweight and very astringent in nature. It cleans out pores at a deep level and also aids in reducing their appearance. Thus acne is addressed at a deeper level and acne scars are not really given a chance to form in the first place. Use a couple of drops of grapeseed oil to massage into the acne-prone areas of your skin at night before bed. You can leave it on overnight or wash it off after 20 minutes.
4. Aloe Vera: Aloe vera is essentially a miracle plant, especially for the skin. Its use dates back thousands of years. In Sanskrit, it is called kumari. It helps aid burns and it also helps minimize acne scarring. It is a natural anti-inflammatory (which is why it is so great for sunburns), which makes it perfect to minimize redness and blemishes associated with acne. It is also extremely moisturizing. It attracts moisture from the atmosphere, which is then made available to the skin. So why is hydration so important for acne scars? Because scars and discoloration look more pronounced on skin that lacks inadequate moisture. Take an aloe leaf (if you don’t have an aloe plant growing, buy some high-quality aloe vera gel from a health food store) and peel the green outer layer, then squeeze some of the gel out of the leaf and apply it to the scars. Let it dry, then apply serum and lotion.
5. Jojoba Oil: Last but by no means the least. This is the superstar that all of us ought to know about. Especially those of us that want to kick acne scars out the door. This oil (really technically a wax) does this like no other ingredient. It does the job like it ought to be done really. It is very close in chemistry to our own skin’s sebum. It travels deep into the pores and cleans them out significantly. It also has natural anti-inflammatory properties. Thus it reduces acne naturally and while doing so not only is the appearance of the current acne scars reduced, the possibility of new ones coming into being is too. Massage a few drops of jojoba oil into the acne-prone areas of your skin (or all over if you wish) at least once a day. A few drops are enough. Be sure to not use too much, because jojoba oil does have some skin purging properties as well. This means that this oil makes the pore clogging material come to surface as it makes its way out. This process can be kept going (but under wraps if you will) when only 2-3 drops of jojoba oil are used each time.
Hope these tips and easy methods come in handy and work their magic for you all. A very important tip we want to leave you all with: do not pop or pick at your pimples! By doing this you can push the pore-clogging material deeper into the skin, increasing the chances of forming a truly stubborn scar. Popping can also spread bacteria around to the other areas of your skin, thus increasing the chances of new acne.
Take the hands-free approach, and yes try these remedies to see which ones work best for your unique skin type.
Questions? Comments? Feel free to share below.
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Go natural. It is good karma!