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Ok, I know the topic of red marks is something that will probably be on these message boards for decades to come, but I've been hearing a lot of different things about the red marks left by acne and wondered what your experiences were. I'm also slightly fed up of my doctor telling me to be ''patient'' with them and wondered how long I'll be hearing her tell me this rolleyes.gif

Have anyone's marks actually faded by leaving them well alone? And if so how long did this take? (2 months/6 months/ a year plus).

Do bigger marks take longer to fade? I guess darker ones do, but I find that my smaller marks seem to change colour more quickly.

I know that there's different treatments you can try, and just wondered what exactly is the tape method?

Thanks very much!

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Hi Lydia,

depending on the severity of your acne and your own healing capacities (which might have been jeopardised by a recent course of accutane, for instance), red marks should have faded significantly on their own within a year, unless they are exposed to a large amount of sunlight, in which case they may have become more hyperpigmented.

The tape method involves applying a piece of scotch tape or sellotape to the skin and then gently removing. It is supposed to help with exfoliation, although there is a lot of conflict over whether it is effective or not. If you have finished accutane recently, you should not try the tape method for at least 6 months due to the fragility of your skin.

There are lots of treatments you can use to speed up the removal of red marks, such as peels (lactic or glycolic), TCA treatment (a more extreme peel), bio oil, puredeming.com's intense gel, copper peptides, and using bleaching agents such as hydroquinone.

There's lots of info on all of these things if you do an archive search of this board.

Good luck,

Paul idea.gif

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Excellent, thanks very much. I haven't been on accutane as my acne is not that severe - so perhaps I'll give the tape method a try. They're just such annoying little (or larger) reminders of the damn spots!

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my red marks on my left cheek went away after 2 months of leaving them alone...let nature do its job and rebuild itself!!!

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Time is unfortunately one of the best remedies out there. Too bad we can't buy more of it. Hyperpigmentation often runs deep into our skin, as when you squeeze you skin, you sometimes break the basal layer, leaving for more scarring/red marks. Even for me, if I don't squeeze my skin, I'm very prone to hyperpigmentation due to my darker asian skin.

Things like TCA peels cause sometimes actually make some of your other hyperpigmentations more apparent, because it strips away the top layer of your skin. I believe that this is why it's best to do TCA peels on your older marks, and not the fresh ones.

The best thing you can do for your skin is to keep healthy from the inside out. Eat a good diet, drink lots of clean water, and perhaps take some supplements. And all the things that Ross said are good for external treatment too.

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Talking of squeezing leaving red marks, I am really annoyed at myself at the moment, as I had had a blackhead on my left cheek for quite a while now - not very noticeable but stubborn and irritating for me. So last night I had the bright idea of squeezing it. I washed with warm water first and used a tissue rather than my fingers, but the force I needed to apply has left a bright red mark which does not look like it's going to go anytime soon. I am so annoyed at myself coz I was on the way to getting rid of all my remaining red marks (on my face at least)

let this be a lesson to everyone that's tempted: do not squeeze blackheads!!!

:angry:

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Noooo! Squeezing blackheads always ends in disaster!!! Resist the urge Paul! Weirdly I think the tetracycline I'm on cleared away all my blackheads :blink: I find ignoring blackheads seems to make them go away quicker, a fool-proof technique!

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Haha - I might try that 'treatment'!

I know, I'm annoyed at myself even more because I KNOW it always ends in disaster but still did it!!! Oh well, I'm gonna be blitzing those red marks with puredming Intense Gel R-ALA tonight. It's great stuff! biggrin.gif

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Haha - I might try that 'treatment'!

I know, I'm annoyed at myself even more because I KNOW it always ends in disaster but still did it!!! Oh well, I'm gonna be blitzing those red marks with puredming Intense Gel R-ALA tonight. It's great stuff!  biggrin.gif

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There's loads of info about the intense gel on the scars board - lots of fans out there. It's great for overall skin tone and for helping with red marks and shallow scarring. You can get it from www.puredeming.com, although it is fairly pricey... :unsure:

I shall certainly not be picking tonight! I've learnt my lesson, hopefully. biggrin.gif

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I have noticed that if you build up a strong immune system the red marks will go away by themselves after a while. It all depends upon the healing capabilities of your body. In my personal research I have found that red marks (hyperpigmentation) will take up to 8 or 10 years to go away under certain circumstances. Again, it all depends on your body's natural ability to heal itself but they will disappear without the aid of any topical treatment 99% of the time.

I think that doing facial peels using acids and using topical treatments to diminish and help reduce marks faster is a good thing. However, it is important to understand that the skin needs to rest from these invasive products. After repeated peeling for a number of months using any acid or topical solution, you should definitely allow your skin to rest and work up strength on its own without any harsh chemicals. During this time you should only use a mild soap-free cleanser and a soft moisturizer. You will notice the skin replenishing on its own. You do not want yoru skin to grow dependent on these chemical products to nourish itself. After you have given your skin its needed rest you can start the cycle again.

Also, the following is scientifically undocumented but in my personal experience I have found that it helps with skin complexion.

Sea water. Ocean water. I live in South Florida, US and I am 5 minutes away from the ocean. I have noticed that whenever I go into the ocean my face gets so much better. A lot better actually. I try not to catch a lot of sun so I never go to the beach when the sun is high up in the sky. I usually go when the sun is either rising or setting. The results I have obtained from this ocean water treatment have been incredible. The salt water has never caused me to break out but just to be on the safe side, I wash my face off with a non chemical soap (no sulfate) and fresh water when I get back home. If you live close to the ocean, try this. It will help with the red marks and possibly with the scars. I have mentioned this to my dermatologist and he tells that although he is not familiar with any research supporting sea water treatment he has read a few papers where it has been brought up. In one of the papers he read it states that the effectiveness of sea water in helping with blemishes and red marks may be related to the high amounts of natural chlorine and trace minerals like selenium. In this paper he read it mentions that sea water is composed of over 50% chlorine in its natural form along with other trace minerals which may have a positive effect on any type of wound. Also, the bacteria present in sea water has been shown to fight other types of bacteria. Again, this needs to be reserched further. My dermatologist looked into their research library and he could not find any publications on this. In any case, my personal experience has been that it does help. The results I have obtained from sea water treatment has been impressive - for exsiting acne blemishes and acne red marks. I do not recommend you making your own sea water at home if you do not live close to the ocean. Without the proper equipment, you will not succeed in combining the correct concentration of all the required minerals. If you try this you may even aggravate your condition.

Now, about scars... I think that those home peel approaches are very promising. I am sure they certainly work for very superficial acne scarring. Now, I don't recommend high concentration of acids (TCA, Lactic, Glycolic, Retinoid, etc) for home use. Stick to concentrations of about 10% TCA, 40% - 50% Glycolic and Lactic for home use. If you are very brave and willing to take chances (or know exactly what you are doing) you may use higher concentration of TCA (like 25% - 30%) and Glycolic or Lactic (50% - 85%) at home. I have a different approach I will suggest to you. Go to your dermatologist or aesthetician and have the procedure done by them the first time. Ask her/him questions. Learn how the procedure is done. Look at the ingredients they are using. If possible, try to get everything in writing. Pay close attention to each step of the procedure and take notes. Then you may feel more comfortable to perfom the procedure yourself (of course depending on the complexity of the procedure). For other procedures such as laser resurfacing, microdermabrasion, etc, you will need a profesional to carry out the procedure.

Another possibility is to go to a plastic surgeon and get a free consultation. Where I live in South Florida it is very easy to negotiate a free consultation. Cosmetic surgeons will be able to carry out procedures for acne scar removal that dermatologists will not even mention. For a bit over $1000 a plastic surgeon will remove most facial mild to moderate scarring with a downtime of 2 - 3 weeks depending on the scarring condition. Most of the time they will be able to guarantee at least 50 - 75% improvements. In many cases, even 90 - 100% improvement can be guaranteed.

Let me go back and mention that you have to trust your body's ability to heal itself. If you work up a strong immune system by eating a healthy diet free of food additives and preservatives and stay way from intoxicating artificial stuff such as sodas and the like, you will automatically be helping your body clear up your acne. After the acne is gone, you can work on the scars. Time alone will be a great asset. You will find that many of the scars you thought were permanent will either disappear over time or become so unnoticeable that no doctor will even bother to treat them. I remember once going to my derm about two particular small scars and he said he would not even bother with them. He was right. Those were gone after a few months.

One last word of advice. Enjoy life. Your acne will be gone. The aftermath scars will be gone. Your own body and all the treatments available will make your acne scars disappear. You just have to be patient about it. There is a solution to everything.

Sorry this post is so long. I hope it is good info, though.

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The bigger marks seem to take a year or more and the smaller ones take about 6 months or more. Every single zit I get leaves it's mark, I wonder how some people can get them and not have any marks left over. Right now I'm using retin-a and doing some at home peels and they seem to be lightening.

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I agree w/you on the ocean water. However, my daughter went to Panama City for spring break and never got in the ocean water and just being on the beach and in the salt water environment cleared her up tremendously. So needless to say we are goin back for the 4th of July!

She had just started breaking out in Jan or Feb when we went in March and it cleared her up a lot. Since then she has been doing Dan's Regimine, for like 8 weeks now. At this point she has about 6 active acne, the rest are red spots and her skin is getting really dry just in the last 3 or 4 days. But overall the BP seems to be keeping the active acne under control.

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