Treatment suggestions for my acne scarring needed please - UK based?
I am new on here, so let me introduce myself and say a little about my acne and acne scarring journey. I am a 36-y-o Caucasian female currently residing in the UK. I have had acne since I was 16, which due to my parents being supportive I kept under control with good medication prescribed by good derms. Unfortunately in my early 20s I decided to go on Diane 35 and after stopping I developed pretty bad acne, which I stupidly left untreated for about 10 months, just covered it with a lot of makeup... Inevitably I developed mild to moderate scarring, as you can see in the photos. I have tried to do stuff to the scars, with mixed results. First there was Dr Schramek's green peel. I swear the beautician gave me more scars by going to aggressive with its. Then a couple years later I tried dermarolling at home, giving myself more scars in the process because of infecting active breakouts (lol). Then, 3-4 years ago, when I was finally earning more money, I decided to do a series of treatments in my hometown - the only thing available and recommended really was CO2 laser of which I did 4 sessions with very little improvement, in fact I sometimes think my skin texture is worse now and I look older now 🙁 Think laxity, enlarged pores etc. (might be also because I am not getting any younger of course and my skincare routine so far has not been the greatest!)
My scars: the worst area is my right temple visible in the photo. Left temple has similar sort of scarring but a bit less. My cheeks are generally better, but there are some wide box scars, maybe some rolling, as well as the odd icepick scar. The skin on my chin is pretty irregular too, but more bad texture than serious scarring.
My question is - is there anything to be done with scars of this severity, which I realise are minor compared to many people on here. Or shall I just accept them and move on with my life? 😀 I do get very self-conscious about them, especially in the summer, where my face is visible in full sun and every little scar is highlighted. I have been reading about TCA-cross and subcision, but I have no idea if my scars are bad enough to do those. Or perhaps I should try anti-aging treatments, hoping that they could make my scars look a tad less visible too?...
Finally, could anyone suggest a good dermatologist / plastic surgeon in the UK, who doesn't charge an absolute fortune and could potentially help? I am also prepared to travel abroad within Europe.
Thanks a lot in advance guys!
Finding someone who's good and generous with pricing is so rare. I can only help with what I found by looking around the internet for advice, and noting down people's experiences hoping it helps mine. And then giving back with knowledge I received hoping it helps someone else. These are all expensive, but I think you should check them out and even check out what clinics and Doctors follow these places in social media. Or even better, who they follow. I know it's a weird approach, but good places tend to attract attention, and it's possible it attracts other doctors trying to do good work themselves. Using this method, I found Health & Aesthetics in the uk. There's Dr. H Consult in the uk..
From just learning about scars, by following Dr Davin Lim on instagram, and Dr. Qazi who is a good follow.
As for pricing, I can only go by anecdote, the only inexpensive place I read that would be a dream for me came from this post for a doctor in Barcelona.
I have no idea if they're good or not, but maybe this pricing is indicative of a trend in Spain and you can look for more doctors there.
[Edited link out]
As to your question can anything be done about your scars, I would say, yes. Yes! I would say from my experience, the problem wasn't just not knowing what to do, who to go to, and what it costs. It's also that I was afraid for so long to ask for help, and educate myself. For example, I found a study that looks like it could be worth a try: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3996784/ On the flipside, it is possible to hurt oneself, make things worse, and go too far. So please stick to seeing experts or trained people to perform such a procedure if you go this route.
In the mean time, sticking with tretinoin, keeping oneself active, getting good sleep, eating well, all things that help collagen production which is key for helping fix the scars as you go on your journey.
Best of luck.