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Skin Solutions: Scarring

What is the most effective method to lighten scars?

Dare to bare your knees in a pair of shorts! Scars are no longer a life sentence! Dr. Jacqueline So, MD, a dermatologist we consulted at Skin Inc., gives us the lowdown on our beauty issues.

Question: Is there a way to lighten or completely remove pesky old scars?

Dr. So: First and foremost, you can’t totally remove scars because the skin on top has already changed, and the skin texture and collagen have already been damaged (scars have thickened collagen underneath).

The best method to remove scars is to use fractional laser therapy. That’s the only way you can correct the collagen underneath without damaging the skin too much. It’s ideal for patients with darker skin tones, especially Pinays and Asians.

If you're thinking of a scar in terms of hyperpigmentation (darkening), you can do a series of peels, and that will help push the pigmentation to the top to be lightened and removed. But sometimes, when the pigmentation gets trapped underneath the collagen, you need something to loosen it up. In that case, I would use the fractional laser to push up the pigmentation. Then, I would peel it off, and lighten it.

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