Dear Derm: How Do I Tackle Acne Scars?

Tackling acne and finding a treatment that works for you can be a rewarding experience, but often the scars left behind can be just as much a knock to the sufferer's confidence as the spots themselves.

From boxcar scars to rolling scars, toothpick scars to keloids, the marks left by acne need careful treatment if you're looking to reduce their appearance over time.

Here, Dublin-based skin expert Ciara Darcy shares advice with Irish Tatler on treating even the worst offenders. 

"Acne scarring appears on the skin in the form of a red mark or pitting, where the skin dips in," Ciara says. 

"Acne starts in the hair follicle; we have around five million hair follicles on our bodies (insane!) Each one contains glands that produce oil.

"If excess oil and bacteria get trapped in the hair follicle, it will start to swell and form inflammatory acne. For some people, when the spot clears up the skin leaves behind a scar. Everyone's skin heals differently so that's not the case for everyone."

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"Microneedling – also known as collagen induction therapy – is based on the skin's natural ability to heal itself. This treatment is the one to look for if acne scarring is something you are concerned with. 

"It speeds up cell renewal to repair the skin much faster than it would on its own. It does this by creating tiny incisions in the dermis using microscopic needles. This stimulates the fibroblast cell which increases cell renewal," she continues. 

"Over time, scarring fades dramatically. I never just treat the area with scarring, I always work on the whole face and neck.

"Microneedling is for anyone with open pores, fine lines or just those of us who want to improve their skin health. Before the treatment, I use a numbing cream so it is pain-free.

"During the treatment, a peptide gel is applied to target each individual's skin concern. Your skin is then three thousand times more absorbent, which is insane! Afterwards, your skin will be red (like sunburn) for the rest of the day.

"Downtime is very short; no makeup, exercise or products the day of having your treatment done. SPF all day every day after – but that's a given!

"The results I've seen with it so far have been amazing! Tara (pictured) had three Rejuvapen micro-needling sessions with me over the space of three months."

So, there you have it – right from the skincare queen's mouth. To book a skin consultation with Ciara, get in touch via [email protected].

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