11
Oct

Clearing inflammatory acne & acne scarring

Clearing inflammatory acne & acne scarring

Why it is important to address inflammation first

When we talk acne, we know there are varying grades of severity; some of may experience 1blocked pore while others may be suffering from multiple lesions that are painful, angry and inflamed. Technically speaking, there are 4 grades of acne into which your skin condition could be categorised:

Grade 1 – consisting mostly of blackhead and whiteheads and non-inflamed lesions
Grade 2 – Blackheads, whiteheads, some papules or pustules, redness and inflammation
Grade 3 – Pustular acne, higher volume of all types of acne lesions, inflammation more severe and some scarring present
Grade 4 – Most severe form, characterised by extreme inflammation and swelling, along with nodules and cysts. Likelihood of developing moderate to  severe scarring is high.

Three of the four grades of acne will all possess some level of inflammation and interestingly what many people do not realise is the importance of addressing inflammation within the body and skin. Believe it or not; inflammation is what will lead to and worsen acne scarring.
Not all clients with inflammatory acne will experience significant scarring; in fact, in clinical trials it has been observed that certain people will be more susceptible to scarring even when experiencing the same level of inflamed acne within their skin due to distinctly different cellular activity (namely lower activation of Langerhans cells, the skins immune cells).

As a general rule of thumb; the greater the level of inflammation in the skin, the higher the risk of scarring. When acne is very inflamed the best approach is to avoid high intensity alpha-hydroxy acids, retinol or harsh products for the time being, as these could exacerbate inflammation. Instead begin with low intensity options before progressing.

inflammatory acne

Preventing or lessening acne scarring

Skinstitut’s solution for very inflamed acne is Laser Aid. One of it’s hero ingredients, Canadian
Willowherb, works to reduce the p.acnes bacteria while also relieving inflammation. Laser Aid
can be used as anti-inflammatory mask, light-weight moisturiser or spot treatment.

Once inflammation has reduced, you can then increase the intensity of homecare solutions.

A great solution for pitted acne scarring (and no present active acne) is to mix Vitamin C 100% into Retinol Serum and apply each evening. This combination will assist with collagen production, helping to smooth out the appearance of scar tissue.

If the acne has resulted in Post Inflammatory Hyper-pigmentation then use Even Blend Serum to address the pigmentary changes.

Treatment of the month

Skin Needling

How micro needling assists with acne scarring:

• Mechanical breakdown of existing scarring
• Stimulates the wound healing process
• Remodelling of the scar tissue (increased MMP-metalloproteinase)
• Increases Platelet GF which attracts monocytes into the wound which release interleukin 10 (anti-inflammatory cytokine)

The growth factors that are released as a result of skin needling induce the laying down of woven collagen; as compared the scar tissue collagen seen in acne scars. Additionally, needling itself enhances cellular communication (between keratinocytes and fibroblasts) increasing glycosaminoglycan (GAGs) production which is pivotal in producing further collagen.

The most common type of acne scars treated with skin needling are ice pick and box car types. Do not treat keloid scars.

Ideal treatment protocol will be 6 – 10 skin needling treatments performed every 6 weeks.