Four Go-To Treatments for Scarring

Written by Holly Cutler, medical aesthetician and founder of FACE Skincare~Medical~Wellness

 Scarring can be an inconvenience for clients, but it can also be an obstacle for skin care professionals when deciding the best methods to treat it. Clients come in with a variety of needs and wants regarding the length, intensity, and recovery speed of treatments. Professionals know there is no one-size-fits-all solution to scarring and it is important to have a mixed bag of tricks when it comes to treatments options. Here is an introduction into four effective ways to treat scarring.


Microneedling is the most popular method to help scarring. It will take several sessions every two weeks and many individuals need 10 to 12 sessions to see more substantial changes in their skin. Select microneedling devices can control the speed and the depth precisely while needling the skin, and can put 30,000 to 40,000 channels in the skin in less than a 30-minute treatment.

A step up above microneedling would be to add a medium-depth peel at intervals between microneedling, with the strongest option being a trichloroacetic acid (TCA) peel. This medium-depth peel is great for collagen stimulation, evening the skin tone from post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, and clearing any active lesions on the skin.

Another great way to treat scars is with fractional radiofrequency. They have little-to-no social downtime and at most there will be some redness and swelling for a few days post-treatment. The heat causes collagen contraction that microneedling cannot, and fewer passes and treatments are needed – typically three to six sessions at four week intervals. These treatments are great choices for teenagers and those in their 20s who cannot take off from school or work, but are looking for significant results.

For the strongest protocol with the fastest results, laser treatments that are fractional and ablative (removes tissue) are a good choice. Fractional Erbium and CO2 lasers are the general go-to devices for moderate to severe scarring. With these devices, there is about a week of social downtime where the client cannot wear makeup and the skin will go through phases of looking sunburnt and swollen, then crusted with a brownish appearance and tight, to then peeling, and finally fresh skin. The results are significant and can offer clients the confidence they always wanted with their skin. Typically people need just one to two treatments. What was once impossible, or took a month of downtime, is now possible in as little as one treatment.

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