Getting rid of acne is only the first step toward achieving clear skin. Acne often leaves red marks and small scars in its wake. Sometimes these traces fade with time, but the scars can be permanent. Many skincare brands sell masks and creams that promise to reduce the appearance of scars, but, usually, these chemical-heavy solutions just make things worse. They aim to quickly shrink the pores and tighten the skin, which can make scars seem temporarily smaller, but lead to severe irritation in the long run. Even the masks that contain natural ingredients are full of preservatives, that allow them to sit on store shelves for months. Making scar-reducing treatments at home guarantees that no harmful or drying chemicals will be mixed in with the ingredients that, actually, help.
1) Lemon juice
One easy and natural skin treatment involves simply rubbing lemon juice over the face with a cotton ball (be careful to avoid any cuts or injuries). It’s best to use fresh juice squeezed from a whole lemon, instead of the condensed juice that comes in a bottle. If it’s too harsh for your skin, dilute lemon juice with water. Apply it on your face for about 10 minutes, then rinse. The mild acid removes dead skin cells, particularly the red, dry patches that are left behind after recent breakouts. Lemon juice also has slightly lightening effect on the skin, it sloughs away the top layers of existing scars and encourages the development of fresh, new skin. You can couple your usual acne scars treatment with lemon juice, but make sure to talk to your doctor before using any homemade treatments. Be aware that lemon juice can make your skin susceptible to sun damage, therefore, make sure to use sunscreen.
A light application of fresh tomato juice works in a similar manner. Tomatoes contain vitamin A, which is a key ingredient in some of the most effective and expensive acne treatments. A facial mask composed of mashed tomatoes and cucumbers (in equal proportions) reveals young skin and closes the pores, when it is used on a regular basis (any remedy needs time to produce results). Apply this mask on your face for about 10 minutes, then rinse.
3) Natural oils
A different approach is to use simple oils to nourish the skin. It might seem counterproductive to apply an oil on the skin, but moisture keeps skin looking youthful and prevents it from creating its own acne-producing oils. When the skin is forced to create its own oil, it’s because skin is not getting what it needs. It’s stressed out and attempting to moisturize itself, as a last resort. The less work the skin has to do to maintain its condition, the more nutrients and energy can be directed toward eliminating acne and healing scars. Olive oil and coconut oil are common natural moisturizers. A small application of either one will remove dirt and makeup while pulling impurities out of the pores. The moisture from the oils speeds cell turnover and helps to create a smooth surface appearance. A weekly facial mask of raw mashed avocados, for example, can naturally and efficiently deliver vitamins and intense moisture.
4) Honey face mask
Raw honey heals blemishes and reduces the scars left by old ones. It acts like a medicine, killing germs and pulling away dirt, removing anything that might get in the skin’s way, as it works to heal itself. One teaspoon of cinnamon stirred into two teaspoons of honey boosts the honey’s healing and antibacterial properties. Diluted apple cider vinegar can be used internally and externally. When applied to the face (diluted with water), it acts like a face toner. Two tablespoons can be stirred into a glass of water and drunk to improve the health of the skin from the inside. This prevents infection and improves the skin’s overall condition.
5) Calming mask
A mixture of equal parts nutmeg and milk can be used as a calming facial treatment. Whole milk soothes inflammation and reduces redness. Nutmeg kills bacteria, speeding up the healing process. This mixture can be left on the face for about 10-15 minutes and then, rinsed away.
6) Green tea
Green tea is something of a miracle food. It’s thought to prevent cancer and eliminate free radicals in the body. When applied topically, it kills germs and slows oil production. To make an antibacterial paste that also fades acne scars, mash a boiled carrot into some freshly brewed green tea. The vitamin A from the carrot will resurface the skin, and the green tea will keep the pores small.
(Make sure to consult your doctor before doing any homemade facial treatments).
What are your tips on how to get rid of acne scars? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.