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Have Acne Scars That You Want Treated?

Updated on March 28, 2013

Lot's of People Have Scars

If you have acne scars, you’re not alone.

There are over 17 millions people in the US (including myself) who suffer from acne. From that number, it’s safe to assume that at least 10,000 people (if not, a lot more) suffer from scars due to their acne going away.

Although acne can cause emotional distress, acne scars is no different.

I know this feeling, because right as my acne went away, I was ridden with acne scars, which still left me feeling unhappy and depressed.

So I decided to do something about my scars. I wanted this emotional journey to end more than anything.

And I did

(See my acne scar results)

So today, I'm going to tell you exactly what I did to treat my acne scars, and what you can do for your scars. Over these past few years, I’ve tried many products and needling, and I’ve come to see which one works the best, and which ones are all a gimmick.

I hope this doesn’t sound like some pitch or something, so let me just say this.

Getting rid of your acne scars is not going to be something that you can do overnight. It takes lots of effort and patience to see results that you want to see.

It took me about 2 years to see improvements that I’m happy with, but I’m not completely healed up yet.

So with that said, if you’re ready to treat your own acne scars, let's identify which type of scar you have.

Categories of Acne Scars

There are 4 types of acne scars: Boxcar, ice pick, rolling, and keloid scars.

It’s important that you identify the type of scar that you have to treat it right. Each of these four scars is different from one another in form of their length, depth, and texture.

I’ll go each of them below.

Rolling Scar
Rolling Scar

Rolling Scars

Rolling scars looks wavy from its appearance due to how inflammation destroyed the collagen between the epidermis and dermis.

Without collagen, our skin would not have much flexibility. Its main responsibility is to keep our skin tissue linked within one another.

Rolling scar is a result from loss of collagen in certain areas, which cases the ‘rolling’ appearance. This scar is usually found around the temple.

Ice Pick Scar
Ice Pick Scar

Ice Pick Scars

Ice pick scars look very deep and narrow from bacteria, white blood cell, and sebum that burst below the surrounding skin.

It goes all the way down to the dermis from pressure that causes even more skin irritation.

Another reason why ice picks may happen is because people pick on the whitehead/blackhead out, leaving a deep hole behind.

Boxcar Scar
Boxcar Scar

Boxcar Scars

Boxcar scars are depressed skin that is often oval or rounded. Usually there will be sides surrounding the skin that causes this appearance. Chicken pox is very similar to how boxcar looks. This scar usually forms at the cheek.

Cyst acne is mostly responsible for the formation of boxcar. It often comes from inflammation swelling of the acne that causes the epidermis to lose collagen and skin tissue.

Keloid Scar
Keloid Scar

Keloid Scar

Keloid scars are skin tissue that rises above the surround skin.

Keloids are unusual due to how it forms. It is a result from an abundance of collagen tissue that continues to heal the site of the inflammation, even well after when the skin has already been healed.

This scar is not cancerous, but rather a lump of skin.

What type of scar did I have?

I personally have boxcar, ice picks, and rolling scar on my face. I have yet to treat ice picks, but for my boxcar and ice picks, I've treated them both with the dermaroller, and it brought great results after the fourth treatment.

if you do happen to have boxcar and/or rolling scars, you don't have to treat them with the dermaroller. I happen to do it because of the budget that I was on.

What type of scar do you have?

Once you've identified the type of scar that you have, you'll be presented with a list of treatments available to you. Here are some of the treatments below for you to decide on.

Treatments Available

Once you identify the type of scar that you have, you'll be presented with a list of treatments available to you. Here are some of the treatments below.


Boxcar Scar

Most people can treat their boxcar with either the dermaroller or the dermastamper. These two tools can be purchased online from Amazon, eBay, or a selected health e-commerce website.

Microneedling (e.g. dermaroller/dermastamper) are by far, the most affordable treatment to do on acne scars. The concept works by having tiny microscopic needles puncturing the dermis in order to promote collagen growth.

It is fairly easy to do, and there are many people on the Internet who can help assist you if you plan on doing this at home.

If you prefer to have a professional treatment done, your treatment options are: punch techniques, dermafiller, subcison, or laser.

Punch technique and subcision are very similar treatments, but they are different. Punch technique involves cutting out the scar and then re-stitching the skin. Subcision on the other hand, involves breaking fiberous between the epidermis and the dermis to help promote collagen production.

Chemical Peels
Chemical Peels

Rolling Scar

Rolling scar is considered one of the easier treatments to do because of its condition.

The most popular treatment is the dermaroller/dermastamper followed by chemical peels

Chemical peels are used to burn the surface of the skin, which helps improve and smoothen out the texture. The old skin will slowly shred away, and new skin will be replaced.

For professional treatments, there are subcision, laser, and chemical peels available at a stronger strength to be treated.


Ice Pick Scar

Ice pick is one of the harder scars to treat yourself. The most known method to treating ice pick is individual needling. It is very similar to microneedling, except with this treatment, you are treating a single scar with a single needle.

Because of the difficulty of this, I highly advise that you seek professional assistant or have prior needling experience. Individual needling ismuch more difficult to do than dermarolling/derastamping.

If you prefer to not do individual needling on yourself, some doctors will offer subcision, microdermabrasion, or punch excision for your options.


Keloid Scar

One of the easiest ways to treat keloid is to apply silicone compression sheet. This works to help push down the keloid scar in order to flatten it. This can be done at home, although it doesn’t always work. (Depending how severe the keloid is)

Other professional treatment involves cortisone injection, subcision, chemotherapy, and radiation.

Cortisone injection helps remove the extra skin collagen inside.

Chemotherapy is the attempt of restricting blood flow around the keloid to stop it from growing any further.

Radiation is the last resort to damage skin cells to prevent the keloid from re-occurring.

Note: Radiation is very risky and should be well considered before performing.


Fabbrocini G, Fardella N, Monfrecola A. Needling. In: Tosti A, Pie De Padova M, Beer K, editors.Acne Scars: Classification and Treatment. London: Informa Healthcare; 2010. pp. 57–290.

Miteva M, Romanelli P. Hypertrophic and keloidal scars. In: Tosti A, Pie De Padova M, Beer K, editors. Acne Scars: Classification and Treatment. London: Informa Healthcare; 2010. pp. 11–110.

Hirsch RJ. “Dermal Fillers.” In: Sadick, Moy, Lawrence, et al. Concise Manual of Dermatologic Surgery.China, McGraw-Hill Companies; 2008. p. 37-45.

Cohen JL, Bar A. “Fillers for Facial Rejuvenation” In: Hirsch RJ, Cohen JL, Sadick N. Aesthetic Rejuvenation: A Regional Approach. China, McGraw-Hill Companies; 2009. P. 71-80.

Alam M, Dover JS. “Treatment of Acne Scarring.” Skin Therapy Letter. Dec 2006-Jan 2007; 11(10).

Goodman GJ, Baron JA. “The management of post-acne scarring.” Dermatologic Surgery. Oct 2007; 33(10):1175-1188.

Jacob CI, Dover JS, Kaminer MS. “Acne scarring: a classification system and review of treatment options.” Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2001; 45(1): 109-117.


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    • DennisDo profile image

      Dennis 4 years ago from Florida

      I personally used the dermastamp, but most people pick the dermaroller. It's all preference.

    • Hikapo profile image

      Seet 4 years ago from California

      I have acne scars as well. Most are box scars and rolling. What did you use?