Acne Scars on Cheeks Causes, Pictures, Depressed or Raised

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Do you have acne scars on your cheeks? Whether they are raised or depressed, there is something you can do to get rid of or at least minimize them.  Learn more on their causes, types medical and natural treatments.


Usually, scarring form after severe, big, deep and inflamed lesions such as a pustule, papule or cyst. These inflamed lesions come from when the hair follicle pore or the skin pore gets clogged with excessive sebum (natural skin oil), dead skin cells and the bacteria.

Shallow lesions usually are mild and heal faster. However, deeper lesions will lead to may form noticeable scars especially if it is infected.

Scarring happens while the skin will attempt to repair such lesions by creating new collagen (fibrous protein) fibers. The repair will not usually be smooth hence resulting in scars. Acne scars usually occur when there is too little or too much collagen produced by the skin.

While discussing reasons for the occurrence, bear in mind that, the risk factors will vary from one person to the other.

Risk factors

Before we proceed to reasons or risks factors, we must understand that it is not automatic that if you suffer acne, then will automatically develop acne scars. No, it will depend on the type you have and how severe it is plus other factors we are about to explore. Here are the reasons for scarring:

a). Inflammatory acne

You stand high chances of developing acne scars on cheeks if you experience inflammatory acne on your cheeks. One clear thing is that inflammatory type is that it usually tends to develop deeper into the skin leading to greater damage to the skin. The healing process of resultant lesions will not be smooth and hence leading to blemishes.

Some of the factors that trigger or aggravate existing inflammatory acne on cheeks include:

a). Hormonal imbalances

Hormonal imbalance is a common problem in boys and girls during puberty. It is also common during pregnancy, periods and menopause.

Increase in the levels of hormones such as androgens may enlarge the size of sebaceous glands and hence excess production of oils which will then contribute to the development of inflammatory acne.

Also, the use of oral contraceptives or thyroid disorders can lead to changes in the level of hormones that could trigger inflammatory acne.

b). Diet

Many medical types of research indicate that certain foods can also worsen existing acne. Again dairy products and carbohydrates such as bread, bagels, and chips can also trigger breakouts

Furthermore, chocolate worsens acne breakouts according to medical research carried out recently.

Unfortunately, medical studies are yet to be carried to determine whether acne suffering victims should observe some dietary restrictions

c). Certain medication

Certain medication can also potentially influence the imbalance of hormones that control the production of body natural oil. This can trigger or worsen the already existing one.

Drugs containing corticosteroids, lithium or androgens can worsen acne. Consult your doctor when you just discovered that your acne is aggravating upon taking certain medications.

d). Stress

Stress and depression can have a hand in the surge or imbalance of certain hormones. Stress can exacerbate many skin condition including the acne. Try to leave a very stress-free life and seek a therapist help.

2. Delayed or completely no treatment

When inflammatory acne on the cheeks is not treated in time,  it will worsen and hence digging deeper into the skin causing damage on the affected skin to be it on the cheeks.

Some people choose to ignore inflammatory acne, and untreated cases mean more breakouts as well as more scarring.

3. Picking, squeezing or popping

The risk of scarring may increase if the zits are squeezed, popped or picked. To make matters worse, all these can cause infections which may worsen the pre-existing cases leading to unsightly acne scars.

4. Genetic

Genetic predisposition is also another factor to consider when talking about acne scars. If blood relative is suffering from them, then you are also likely to suffer from the same. According to, genes have a prominent role in the occurrence of acne.

Types notes that “acne scars come in many shapes, sizes and even colors. They can be depressed (pitted) or raised (keloid).” The type formed will depend on the amount of the collagen your skin produces. Here are two major types of acne:

1. Depressed

Depressed or otherwise known as pitted acne scars are the common type. They are a result of inflammatory or papulopustular acne consisting of symptoms such as red blemishes, some pimples, pustules, and papules (zits) and larger swollen lesions (nodules).

Depressed acne scars on cheeks

Such scars sit on the scar tissue rich in collagen which prevents the skin from repairing the depression. The three major types of pitted scars include; rolling, boxcar, and ice-pick scars.

2. Raised

These are less common types though are also due to inflammatory acne. They are very difficult to treat since there is excess scar tissue on the surface. They appear as bumps, and uneven surface. The two main types include keloid scars and hypertrophic scars.

Best way to remove them

Treating acne scars usually depends on several factors. These factors include the age of the scar, the type of the scar, the severity of the scar and the color of your skin. Your dermatologist will advise you during the whole exercise.

The treatment should also begin by preventing or treating the specific causes of acne. Unfortunately, if you have them already, then try treatments including:

1. Laser Treatment for Acne

A laser gets rid of the damaged top layer of the skin while tightening the middle layer leaving your skin very smooth. This process is faster and only takes 3-10 days to heal. The doctor will lessen the pain by numbing your skin using anesthesia during this acne scar removal process.

2. Microdermabrasion acne scars

This treatment involves rotating wire brush or spinning diamond tool to wear out the skin surface. The skin will heal while the new and smoother skin sprung out replacing the scraped skin layer. The healing process may take a bit long, 2-3 weeks.

3. Fractional laser therapy

Fractional laser therapy is a deep acne scar removal process than laser resurfacing and microdermabrasion. This therapy does not affect the top layer of the skin and thus the healing period is very short.

4. Other treatments

Other treatments include creams for acne scars, Soft tissue augmentation techniques, Punch grafting, surgical techniques and chemical reconstruction of skin scarring. Your doctor will advise you on what will work for your case.

Home treatments

According to some of our customers, treating these scars may be hectic than treating the acne themselves.

While some of the above treatment may offer quick and immediate result, many natural remedies can be used. Try some of these wonderful natural solutions.

1. Aloe Vera Gel

Aloe Vera gel s one of the best remedies for acne scars that have been used for years. It has vitamins, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that help. Above all, aloe gel will help in regenerating damaged tissue hence enhancing the healing process.

  • Take a fresh aloe leaf and cut it into two
  • Squeeze the gel into a cup and then use your hands to apply the gel on your cheek skin
  • Leave the gel to dry on the skin for about ½ an hour before washing it off.
  • The remedy should be repeated twice daily. Within a few days, your skin will start to glow and become tighter

2. Baking soda

This another common natural product for acne scars. It does this by gently exfoliating the upper surface of the skin. The coarse granules of soda mixed with some water will clear the dead skin cells of your cheek skin. The better part of it is that the whole process will not lead to any inflammation during application.

  • Add some baking soda to water to form a paste
  • You can then gently massage the paste on your cheek, i.e., on the affected area for about two minutes.
  • Leave it there for about 10 minutes and wash off using warm water
  • Apply any perfect moisturizer,
  • Repeat the procedure 2-3 times a week

3. Tea tree oil

Tea tree oil an excellent antiseptic, antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral essential oil. We must bring to your attention that tea tree oil is not only effective in healing scars but also acne itself. It is believed to be very effective for hypertrophic scars (generally raised).

Also, tea tree oil has wonderful anti-inflammatory and hydrating properties that deal with the scarring. Below is how to use this remedy.

  • Add three to four drops of tea tree oil to water
  • Dip a cotton ball into the diluted tea tree oil
  • Apply this solution on your cheeks
  • Repeat the process 2-3 times in a day

Remember, tea tree oil is usually too strong for any sensitive skin. Make sure you dilute it before applying it on your skin.

4. Apple cider vinegar

It contains astringent and a natural disinfectant that makes it perfect for healing skin blemishes. It also balances the skin PH level and thus can balance the production of sebum that contributes to their formation. More properties include anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory characteristics.

Apple cider vinegar works since it has ingredients such as vitamins, minerals, carbolic acid, ketones, aldehydes, amino acids, anti-oxidant, acetic acid, among others.

  • Add some apple cider vinegar in water
  • Dip a cotton ball in it
  • Apply on your cheeks
  • Use this remedy once in a day

5. Honey

Honey is also among the best product for healing acne scars. It is a good moisturizer and will also nourish your skin. Follow the procedure when using honey.

  • Get good quality of honey may be from a good local farmer
  • Simply massage the honey on the scars. For very effective result mix about one teaspoon of ground cinnamon per two tablespoons of honey
  • Leave the mixture to rest for about 10 minutes
  • Use the remedy severally until you attain the desired results.

The remedies we have discussed above are not the only natural solutions. More natural products can be used include:

  • Cucumber
  • Lemon Juice
  • Potato Juice
  • Rosehip seed oil
  • Sugar Scrub
  • Vitamin E
  • Olive oil
  • Raw tomatoes

In summary, acne scars are unsightly and very embarrassing when they occur where they are easily visible. When you try to treat them using over the counter product or the above natural products, and the condition does not improve, visit your dermatologist as soon as possible.

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