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The road to acne scar revision

Cystic acne is the main culprit of acne scars, because it creates a bag of pus within the skin. When the pus resolves, the hollow space it leaves behind forms a crater on the skin. When one has cystic acne flares, acne scarring ensues.

There are numerous modalities that can improve acne scars and large pore size. As dermatologists, we follow guidelines as to what modality to use to treat a certain type of scar. But we must also remember that the results of same treatment may vary from person to person. 🧐

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Cleopatra’s legacy (the secret of chemical peels)

Chemical peels have been around long before any lasers and other technological advances in dermatology… and it’s still being actively used by medical professionals all over the world today.

The beautiful Cleopatra (c.69 BC) was known to bath in sour milk. Sour milk produces lactic acid. Lactic acid, an alpha hydroxy acid, is one of the milder chemical peel solutions that effectively exfoliate the skin, making skin look brighter and smooth.

Today, there are many varieties of chemical peel solutions that can address a multitude of skin concerns. Mind you, lactic acid is still being used today for those with sensitive skin, to address issues in areas with thin tissues, and as an entry point for a progressive chemical peel treatment program. Other chemical peels that I love using are mandelic acid peel and trichloroacetic acid peel.

Mandelic acid is a a gentle peel that can address skin pigmentation, fine lines and acne! Discomfort and flaking are minimal, that’s why this is a crowd favourite!!!

Trichloroacetic acid, depending on the concentration, can beautifully rejuvenate the skin and is the chemical peel of choice for acne scars (i.e. TCA CROSS). This peel can also improve pigmentation, but caution should be exercised when using this on Asian skin as we are at higher risk of post-peel hyperpigmentation. Tip: best to start with low concentration peels and slowly work your way up!

Today, there are peels that combine different active ingredients to address a wider variety of skin issues with just one treatment. Your dermatologist will evaluate your skin condition and determine which chemical peel solution will best address your concerns.

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If you have moderate to severe acne…

Acne vulgaris is a common condition yet still very challenging to treat. There is no single perfect formula in treating acne. Each person is unique and responds differently to the same medicine or treatment. 👨‍⚕️👩‍⚕️ The key is finding a dermatologist to work with you. It may take a while to find the right treatment, but in your journey, you can be sure that your dermatologist’s got your back! ✌🏼 For Acne Power Peel, we use a chemical peel specifically made for acne vulgaris. Extraction and intralesional steroid injection of each pimple is included in the treatment. I can’t tell you how much I believe in this treatment… so here’s a photo for you 📸