3 Superstar Ingredients For Fading Acne Scars


If your knee jerk reaction to a new pimple is picking, poking, prodding and squeezing – we are right there with you. 

Or perhaps you’ve experienced a case of uninvited acne that’s since come and gone, and – just as rudely as it entered – left behind a mess in the form of pigmentation and scarring. 

If your skin has red and brown discolouration where active acne once lived, this is a result of overactive melanocyte cells that have been working in overdrive to heal inflammation. This overproduction of the amino acid, melanin, is responsible for the production of pigment in our bodies, and, in turn, why post-pimple scarring can present itself as pigmentation. 

While pigmentation will typically fade over time, if you’d like to speed things up, there are a few potent, fast-tracking ingredients to get the skin clearing moving. 


Whether you’re using a glycolic, lactic or salicylic acid, these chemical exfoliators work to resurface the skin and promote cell turnover, and as a result, help to fade pigmentation.

Our top pick: Alpha-H Liquid Gold

We say: Beloved by the beauty industry and consumers alike, the Alpha-H Liquid Gold skin resurfacing treatment has truly earned its cult status. And with a 4.5 star rating from over 175 reviews, the beautyheaven community certainly gives it a thumbs up, too. Formulated with five per cent cosmetic grade glycolic acid, licorice extract and silk proteins, this treatment will have your skin glowing.

You say: “I have used liquid gold for years and I still appreciate it every time I use it. I apply it once a week at night and put nothing over it. In the morning, I notice my skin is radiant and soft. It keeps my pimples at bay and helps with my acne scarring. It has a very slight tingling feeling on the skin but causes no irritation. The bottle lasts a very long time and is a worthwhile investment for everyone. I cannot recommend this highly enough.” – Rk2002

$59.46 at Adore Beauty


Another star ingredient for accelerating cell turnover is vitamin A, otherwise known as retinol. Best used as part of a nighttime routine, this gradual scar-fading treatment will result in a more even and smoother skin tone. If you’re new to retinol, it’s best to ease into it. Start with a gentle dose once a week and slowly build up a tolerance. 

Our top pick: SkinCeuticals Retinol 1.0 

We say:  The SkinCeuticals Retinol 1.0 helps to stimulate cell regeneration and build collagen to diminish the appearance of age spots, pore size, blemishes and blotchiness. 

You say: “I feel this is working. I don’t use any exfoliation because I feel this is enough.This has no scent and I love the efficient packaging. I use this three times a week” – bebebeautifu34

$127 at Adore Beauty

Vitamin C 

For all your brightening and lightening needs, vitamin C is your first port of call. Remember melanin? The pigmentation-causing amino acid we were talking about before? Well, vitamin C actually inhibits the skin’s ability to produce it all together. So you can expect significant fading of pre-existing pimple pigmentation but also the prevention of any future formation. 

Our top pick: La Roche-Posay Pure Vitamin C10 Serum

We say: The La Roche-Posay Pure Vitamin C10 Serum has been formulated with a high concentration of 10 per cent pure vitamin C, salicylic acid and soothing neurosensine to instantly help the skin feel smoother, softer and more hydrated. And as if transformed skin texture wasn’t enough, it also helps tone appear more uniform, even and refined.

You say: “This is the best vitamin c serum I have tried. It’s amazing. I have sebberhoic dermatitis and rosacea and this actually helped. Very pleasantly surprised and I will never stop using this!!” – Maud96

$48.99 at Chemist Warehouse

In-Salon Treatments:

For acne scars that have left behind scarring that is more textural, the above ingredients will work best when complemented with a professional-grade treatment such as skin needling, chemical peels and light therapy.

Main image credit: @mandymadd

Have you found any holy grail products for minimising acne scars? If so, what are they?

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Comments 10

  1. I keep hearing about the La Roche Posay Vit C Serum – I’m really keen to try it. I’ll defo be buying once I run out of my current Vitamin C mixing crystals

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