How To Minimize Acne Scars and Have Great Skin

clear skin

Acne is one of the trials of youth.

Unfortunately, the scars it can leave behind can be a reminder of the problem for years to come. Scarring isn’t the only thing to keep in mind, of course. We must make sure we are addressing active acne on the skin and not doing anything to make it worse. Larger, deeper breakouts can lead to scarring more easily than smaller ones due to how much skin breaks when we try to eradicate the little buggers before we step out into civilization. Always try avoid picking at the skin, the more irritation that develops, the more likely the acne is to scar and we don’t want that.

But, whether you’re dealing with red or dark marks or more permanent changes in texture, some products for acne scars can reduce their appearance. Gels and serums aren’t going to magically give you flawless skin—that’s a bit unrealistic. However, resurfacing formulas like retinoids and other dermatologist-recommended acne scar treatments can make a huge difference. 

What Causes Acne Scars?

Some pimples will come and go, others will come—and leave a mark. The likelihood that acne depends on several things. The red, swollen acne and the cystic acne are more likely to scar, though popping a little pimple can cause some damage too. And you can inherit the likelihood to scar, if one of your parents scarred easily, you may as well.

Prevention is key! Always, always wash your hands before touching your face.

Affiliate links are used in this post. If you click on a link and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no additional cost to you.


Retinoids are the most effective topical medications to help improve the appearance of acne scars. Retinoids help cells turn over more quickly and promote more collagen. Retinol and Adapalene are available over the counter. You need a prescription for Tretinoin, it is amazing, ask your dermatologist if it is right for you.

Also helpful, exfoliants, like lactic, glycolic and salicylic acids and can help eliminate excess skin cells and improve texture. Vitamin C can help brighten discoloration and is one of the top skin topicals.

clear skin woman

1. Glytone Enhance Brightening Complex – With 12% Azelaic Acid, 3% Glycolic Acid – Brightens Skin & Reduces Dark Spots

Formulated with a combination of organic acids, it visibly improves the appearance of dark spots for a more even, radiant skin tone. It also doubles as a moisturizer so it makes your skin softer too!

Glytone Enhance Brightening Complex – With 12% Azelaic Acid, 3% Glycolic Acid – Brightens Skin & Reduces Dark Spots – Non-Comedogenic – 1 fl. oz.
  • Daily brightening cream with 12% Azelaic Acid and 3% Free Acid Value Glycolic Acid is clinically shown to visibly improve appearance of unwanted dark spots and overall brightness.
  • Tested under dermatological control, the face cream exfoliates dead skin cells & helps soften & hydrate dull skin.
  • In AM and PM, apply to affected areas on cleansed face & décolleté. In AM, follow with sunscreen.

2. Differin Gel Adapalene 0.1% Gel


Differin is made with a vitamin A derivative called adapalene and used to be prescription only but you can now get it at your local drugstore or on which is great if you can’t get to the dermatologist. It speeds up cell turnover and resurfaces the skin’s texture-and those are very good things!

Differin Acne Treatment Gel, 30 Day Supply, Retinoid Treatment for Face with 0.1% Adapalene, Gentle Skin Care for Acne Prone Sensitive Skin, 15g Tube
  • Clears breakouts where they start (Deep in pores) and prevents new acne from forming, which ultimately restores skin’s texture and tone
  • Differin works differently than other Acne treatments by normalizing skin cell turnover and effectively targets two primary causes of Acne, clogged pores and inflammation
  • Adapalene was created for superior tolerability compared to other prescription retinoid products not containing Adapalene; It is suitable for use as part of your morning or evening regimen
  • Water based formula, oil free, alcohol free, fragrance free, non comedogenic; Helps reduce the risk of scarring and Hyperpigmentation by treating Acne
  • In a clinical study, Differin gel provided up to 87 percent reduction in acne breakouts after 12 weeks, which will continue to improve with further use

3. Dr. Pen Ultima A6S Professional Microneedling Pen

Electric Wireless Derma Auto Pen – Best Skin Care Tool Kit for Face and Body

Want to get serious about improving your skin? The Dr Pen is a less expensive alternative to micro-needling in an esthetician’s office. It isn’t pain free but is bearable for most people. I have used this actual device and seen good improvement. So if you have someone you trust, lie back and let them do it for you so you can relax and think of something pretty. Seriously though, it isn’t that bad, so if you have a little pain tolerance and some lidocaine. A doctor’s office usually charges more $100 per treatment for micro-needling but the results there are even better.

No products found.

4. RescueMD DNA Repair Complex Scar Treatment Serum

PLASTIC SURGEON DEVELOPED  Improves the appearance of skin damage and acne scars by stimulating DNA’s natural reparative process. Includes peptides to help trigger collagen production and botanicals with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits. Helps with all types of scarring: acne, burns, UV exposure and damage from surgical incisions.

RescueMD DNA Repair Complex Scar Treatment Serum, Post-Procedure and Skin Damage Solution, 15mL
  • DNA REPAIR COMPLEX: Dramatically improves the appearance of skin damage and scars by stimulating DNA’s natural reparative process. The most complete scar serum available, DNA Repair Complex helps skin appear healthier, smoother and stronger.
  • EXCLUSIVE INGREDIENT: What makes our skin damage serum unique is lapachol, an exclusive molecule derived from pau d’arco, the inner bark of the Lapacho tree. Lapachol supports the skin’s natural ability to repair and regenerate, all without irritation or sun sensitivity.
  • MOST COMPLETE FORMULATION: DNA Repair Complex is formulated with a bespoke blend including peptides to help trigger collagen production, naturally derived botanicals. Made in California, USA.
  • WHO WILL BENEFIT: Those who have all types of scarring, from acne, burns, injury or UV exposure; plus damage from the most common surgical incisions, such as c-sections, or post-procedure following laser treatment, IPL, laser hair removal & waxing, microneedling, microdermabrasion, chemical peels and tattoo removal. Delicate facial skin also shows improvement when targeting hyperpigmentation, fine lines or sunburn/UV damage.
  • PLASTIC SURGEON DEVELOPED: Dr. Michael Suzman was disappointed with the lack of evidence-based skin care products to support recovery from damage and scars, and so he set out to formulate a new gold standard in skin repair. Originally available by appointment only, DNA Repair Complex is now available to everyone.

5. Mighty Patch

Wake up with better-looking skin without having to pop a single zit! Mighty Patch is an award-winning hydrocolloid sticker that works overnight to reduce the size and redness of blemishes. It’s easy to use – just stick it on before you go to bed, and see the difference in the morning. Unlike old-fashioned methods of acne removal, this unique patch leaves you with clear skin without having to pop a single pimple. Simply stick the patch on overnight and wake up with improved looking skin! Get ready for clear and glowing skin without the hassle. Clearer skin with no fuss – try Mighty Patch, you will love it!


Mighty Patch Hero Cosmetics Original Patch – Hydrocolloid Acne Pimple Patch for Covering Zits and Blemishes, Spot Stickers for Face and Skin (72 Count)
  • 🏆 The Original Award-Winning Acne Patch: Mighty Patch is a hydrocolloid sticker that improves the look of pimples overnight without the popping. Just stick it on, get some sleep, and wake up with clearer-looking skin.
  • ⏱️ Results in 6-8 Hours: Absorbs pimple gunk thanks to our medical-grade hydrocolloid. Clinically tested and safe for all skin types.
  • 🛌 All-Night Adhesion: Strong enough to stay on through a whole night of tossing, turning, and pillow-squishing. Easy to remove in the AM without redness or irritation.
  • ✨ Blends Seamlessly into Skin: The thin sticker with a translucent matte finish keeps your pimple under wraps day or night. You might just forget you’re even wearing it.
  • 🕊️ Peace-Of-Mind Design: Our hydrocolloid patches are UV sterilized, and allergy tested. Each box comes with 72 medium dots (12 millimeters) on easy-peel perforated sheets.

From topical creams to light therapy treatments, there’s something out there for everyone who wants to say goodbye to blemishes for good. Facials, exfoliation masks and laser treatments can also help reduce the appearance of existing pimples and prevent new breakouts from forming.

For those looking for natural remedies, there are plenty of options available to help clear up acne. Apple cider vinegar and tea tree oil can act as astringents, while honey can be used as a natural exfoliator. There are also dietary strategies to consider – eliminating dairy, refined sugars and processed foods from your diet might help reduce the severity of breakouts. And if all else fails, seeing a dermatologist will provide you with professional advice on how to keep your skin looking healthy and blemish-free.

skin care close up

Next Check Out: Beauty On A Budget

Last update on 2024-06-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API



I started Social Kelli as more of a journal than a blog and realized that it could also speak to other women like me leading normal yet unique lives. Women like me, who are not celebrities but are creative, intentional, mature yet experimental, constantly evolving, (over)thoughtful, engaged where they want to be, decidedly disconnected from the noise and of course, purposely comfortable with who they are…