Red scars and discolorations can be the result of acne or other skin conditions. Red scars are typically flat and have the same texture as the surrounding skin. While cosmetics can cover scarring and skin color irregularities, a variety of treatments are available to give you the smooth, clear skin you desire.
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Red, purple or brownish marks, or an erythematous macule left from acne are not actually scars, but they still can be an unpleasant reminder of breakouts for several months. Acne scarring is typically a wider shallow depression in the skin or a deep, narrow depression, according to KidsHealth.org. Pitting and scarring from acne will not fade or improve over time without significant treatment to improve the texture of your skin.
Red marks or dark discolorations from breakouts do go away without treatment. If left alone, these marks will fade over time. Typically, red marks from breakouts fade in four to six months, according to Acne.org. Depending upon your complexion, however, it may take more than 12 months for discolorations to disappear, reports KidsHealth.org. Treatment can help to speed the fading process and improve the overall tone of your skin.
You can prevent red marks with appropriate acne treatments and care. Avoid picking or squeezing pimples, recommends KidsHealth.org. Treat your acne with medications recommended by your dermatologist or with a gentle cleanser, benzoyl peroxide cream, and light moisturizer, as suggested by Acne.org. More severe acne, particularly cystic acne, is likely to cause not only redness, but also serious scarring and should be treated by a dermatologist.
Sun exposure may worsen red spots and discolorations on your skin, making them darker and more noticeable, according to SkinCarePhysicians.com. Choose a broad spectrum, oil-free sunscreen and wear it daily. Apply sunscreen at least 20 minutes before sun exposure and select a sunblock with an SPF of at least 30. You should wear sunscreen whether you are fair or dark-skinned.
Your dermatologist can treat the discolorations or hyperpigmentation caused by acne. Light chemical peels or microdermabrasion remove the upper layers of skin, leaving new, unaffected skin visible. Lightening or bleaching creams are available by prescription or over the counter and may treat brown spots. These products may cause excessive lightening of the skin and should be used with caution, according to SkinCarePhysicians.com. Laser treatments may be used in severe cases. Your dermatologist can help you create an appropriate treatment plan.