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18 Best Acne Scar Treatments for Smooth Skin

Last Updated: April 11, 2022

Looking for a way to fade acne scars? We did some research and found the best acne scar treatments on the market.

Acne scars are often the result of the skin’s healing process after a blemish goes away, and it’s important to keep in mind that there are different types of scars: atrophic scars (often known as “ice pick” scars), hyperpigmentation, and hypertrophic scars.

Some products will contain ingredients to help fade hyperpigmentation, fill in texture, even out skin tone, or all 3. Finding the correct treatment can be difficult with a large number of different products available. That’s why we searched for the right products so you don’t have to. Here are our picks of the 18 best acne scar treatments that will get you closer to smooth skin.

Best Acne Scar Treatments

Murad Invisiscar Resurfacing Treatment

This is a serum treatment that treats both new and old scars as well as dark circles under the eyes. It contains salicylic acid and vitamin C to reduce the appearance of scars. Plus, vitamin E helps protect against harmful UV rays. 

This treatment has been clinically proven to reduce the appearance of scars in size, depth, texture, and discoloration in 8 weeks. It can be used on all skin types, but it does contain fragrance which may cause skin issues for sensitive skin.

Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Peel

This two-step system helps keep pores clean and is followed by retinol that evens out the complexion and smooths the skin. Plus, it’s made with glycolic acid to remove the top layers of the skin, revealing a brighter and fresh complexion. 

In addition, it also contains a combination of acids such as lactic, malic, citric, and salicylic. There are many positive reviews of the product, but use caution if you have sensitive skin.

Differin Adapalene Gel 0.1% Acne Treatment

Differin is an award-winning treatment that prevents breakouts and improves scarring. Although it is called an acne treatment, it can also be used for treating acne scars and dark marks. 

Plus, it contains retinoid adapalene to prevent breakouts and improve the look of scarring. It is recommended to use a few times a week in the beginning and increase the frequency based on how well the skin tolerates the product.

RELATED: 14 Best Drugstore Acne Products

EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46

Sunscreen is an essential step in a skincare routine for all skin types, but it also helps scars from getting darker. This one especially is made with niacinamide to calm, soothe, and improve discoloration. 

In addition, it also contains lactic acid to exfoliate the skin and hyaluronic acid for hydration. Recommended for acne-prone skin, hyperpigmentation, and rosacea.

Neutrogena Rapid Clear 2-in-1 Fight and Fade Toner

Here is an affordable option that treats acne and fades dark marks. It contains salicylic acid to eliminate dead skin cells, help improve hyperpigmentation, and improve tone and texture. 

However, it does contain alcohol which can dry out the skin, so use with caution.   

Dermologica Age Bright Spot Fader

This is a multi-tasking treatment that helps clear breakouts and stops the appearance of new ones. It’s formulated with salicylic acid, niacinamide, and hexylresorcinol to treat pimples and prevent dark spots or hyperpigmentation. 

Recommended for oily, combination, and normal skin types. 

SkinBetter Science AlphaRet Overnight Cream

This overnight cream contains a retinoid to help promote collagen production and smooths skin

This formula is an effective and gentle exfoliating solution to treat discoloration. Plus, it is ideal for all skin types, even sensitive skin.

Ambi Fade Cream for Normal Skin

This cream helps fade unwanted dark marks without altering skin tone. Although, it does contain 2% hydroquinone to treat dark marks, which is controversial for its safety. It’s not recommended for pregnant women, and you should talk to your dermatologist before beginning. 

However, if you’ve tried everything else, this might be the option for you. 

Skinceuticals C E Ferulic

This is a serum packed with vitamin C, an ingredient that has been shown to brighten dull skin and fade dark spots. This serum also contains vitamin E, which helps repair damaged skin and improve the appearance of scars. 

This is a high-quality formula that works on dry, normal, combination, and sensitive skin.

SkinMedica Retinol Complex 1.0

Here is a retinol cream that helps lessen the appearance of acne scars by improving cell turnover. It also improves elasticity in the skin.  

This retinol is ideal for skin types pre-conditioned to retinol treatments. When first applying the product, it is recommended to apply twice a week at night then gradually increase usage as your skin tolerates it.

The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%

A great alternative to using products that contain hydroquinone is to look for products that contain azelaic acid.

This Ordinary product contains a strong dose of azelaic acid that helps fade scars and prevents future breakouts.

Isdin Melatonik

This serum works to treat discoloration and evens out skin tone. It contains vitamin C to defend against UV damage, reduce dark spots, and brighten the complexion. 

Plus, it contains bakuchiol, an organic alternative to retinol that helps to repair, revitalize, and replenish skin over time.

Topicals Faded Brightening and Clearing Gel

This is a gel-like serum that helps fade the look of acne scars, dark spots, and patches while also helping treat acne. 

In addition, it contains tranexamic acid and niacinamide to fight discoloration and even tone. And, the azelaic acid helps brighten and improve skin texture.

Naturium Tranexamic Topical Acid 5%

This treatment contains a combination of tranexamic acid, kojic acid, niacinamide, and licorice root to fade the look of dark spots and hyperpigmentation.

 It is recommended for sensitive skin types and problematic skin.   

Alpha-H Beauty Sleep Power Reel

This is a multifunctional overnight leave-on mask that exfoliates, smooths, and hydrates skin.

This peel combines 0.5% retinol and 14% glycolic acid to produce firmer and smoother skin while accelerating the skin renewal process to enhance luminosity and clarity. 

Allies of Skin Mandelic Pigmentation Corrector Night Serum 

Here is an overnight serum that treats enlarged pores, melasma, blackheads, hyperpigmentation, breakouts, and uneven texture. It contains two AHAs, mandelic and lactic acid, to clear acne and wipe away dead skin cells. 

In addition, it also contains bakuchiol, an all-natural replacement to retinol with the same benefits. It is suitable for all skin types.

iS Clinical Super Serum Advance+

A super serum indeed as this product contains the highest levels of antioxidants of any of the brand’s products. It contains a blend of natural ingredients like vitamin C, copper-tripeptide growth factor, Centella Asiatica, and zinc sulfate. 

This is an effective treatment that treats breakouts, scars, reduces the appearance of stretch marks, scar tissue, and uneven pigmentation.

Jan Marini Luminate Face Lotion

This is a face lotion that helps treat texture and scarring simultaneously. Plus, it’s made with a peptide base to strengthen the skin while also helping with collagen production. 

The lotion is lightweight and colorless which helps it work quickly to reduce dark spots and brighten skin tone.

In Conclusion

Although all skin is good skin, you might be seeking out the best acne scar treatments to improve your skin’s overall look, which is why we created this list. 

We hope these products are the solution to your problems, but just know that you don’t need perfect skin to be happy or beautiful!

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