The Different Types of Acne Scars and How to Treat Them

Different Types

Acne Scarring & How to Treat It

We have all faced it: the issue of acne scars and blemishes on our skin. Regardless of your gender, ethnicity, or skin type, acne can be a real challenge to deal with. But don’t worry — understanding the different types of acne scars and how to treat them can help you take action and improve the appearance of your skin.

Different Types of Acne Scars

Before we dive into the different ways to treat acne scars, let’s first explore the different types of acne scars and their common characteristics.

Ice Pick Scarring. Ice pick scars are small and narrow, with steep edges that look a bit like an ice pick or knife mark in your skin. These are usually caused by cystic acne and can range from shallow to deep.

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Boxcar Scarring. These types of scars are round to oval, shallow to deep depressions that form on the surface of the skin. They often have sharp edges with a wider diameter than ice picks.

Rolling Scarring. Rolling scars are wider, shallow depressions that give your skin a rolling or wave-like appearance. These types of scars are often caused by fibrous bands that form under your skin due to injury, aging, or extreme scarring.

Hypertrophic Scars. Hypertrophic scars are very common when it comes to acne, and are usually raised, red marks caused by an overproduction of collagen. These can be painful, and often occur on areas of the body that move a lot (like the chest or back).

How to Treat Acne Scars

Now that you’re familiar with the different types of acne scars, let’s discuss a few methods you can use to treat them.

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Professional Treatments. Many times the best way to get rid of acne scars is to visit a professional. Professional treatments such as microneedling, chemical peels, and laser therapy can significantly reduce the appearance of acne scars, and your dermatologist can help guide you to the best treatment for your skin type.

At-home Treatments. For those of us who don’t want to commit to a professional treatment (or don’t have the budget), there are still plenty of at-home options to treat your acne. An effective at-home treatment regimen should include exfoliation (either with a scrub or chemical exfoliants like glycolic acid or salicylic acid) as well as topical treatments such as vitamin C and retinol.

Diet and Nutrition. Eating a balanced diet and drinking sufficient amounts of water can help reduce inflammation and promote overall skin health. Aim to eat plenty of colorful fruits and vegetables and opt for foods that are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, and vitamin E — all of which can help reduce inflammation and improve skin texture. You should also avoid processed and sugary foods as much as possible.

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Takeaways on Treating Acne Scars

Whether you choose professional treatments or opt for at-home remedies, there are lots of ways to reduce the appearance of your acne scars. Be sure to speak with your dermatologist to figure out the best course of action for your skin type. And of course, take care of your skin on the daily by eating a balanced diet, avoiding processed foods, and staying hydrated!


  • Acne Scarring
  • Ice Pick Scarring
  • Boxcar Scarring
  • Rolling Scarring
  • Hypertrophic Scars
  • Microneedling
  • Chemical Peels
  • Laser Therapy
  • Exfoliation
  • Glycolic Acid
  • Salicylic Acid
  • Vitamin C
  • Retinol
  • Omega-3 fatty Acids
  • Zinc
  • Vitamin E