So save your dollars—and your skin—with these natural remedies to help heal acne scars.
5 Natural Remedies for Acne Scars
1. Rosehip Seed OilIn Chile, rosehip seeds from wild roses are used to make rosehip seed oil. Because it contains vitamin C and essential fatty acids, two nutrients that support the development of healthy skin cells and promote the production of collagen, this natural oil can enhance the texture and appearance of your skin.
Collagen is essential for filling in deep acne scars, reducing hyperpigmentation, and repairing skin tissue to lighten dark spots and red spots.
But it's a nutrient called retinoic acid that really elevates rosehip seed oil to the status of a superfood for your skin.
Retinoic acid is a form of vitamin A, an antioxidant vitamin. When applied topically, retinoic acid can help regenerate skin cells, reduce hyperpigmentation, and reduce the appearance of dark marks. Studies suggest that retinoic acid can also help promote collagen formation, especially in those with photodamaged skin.
The cool thing about retinoic acid is that your skin can absorb it and utilize it right away. You see, other forms of vitamin A, such as beta-carotene, must go through a series of processes to be converted to retinoic acid before it can provide benefits to the skin.
Lastly, rosehip oil is non-comedogenic, which means it doesn’t clog pores and won’t contribute to future breakouts. Rosehip seed oil is safe to use on oily skin because it’s a dry oil, which means it’s readily absorbed by your skin and won’t make your skin feel greasy. For this reason, it’s more similar to a skin serum than an oil.
How to Use Rosehip Seed Oil: Rosehip seed oil is best applied at night after cleansing and exfoliating. Although it absorbs well into the skin, it may still feel oily if applied under makeup.
2. Hemp Seed OilWhile there’s a lack of studies done on hemp oil for the skin, many natural skincare sites feature hemp oil as one of the best home remedies for acne sufferers.
Hemp seed oil is one of the richest plant sources of linolenic acid, an omega-3 essential fatty acid that helps build healthy skin cells, which are needed to fade dark marks and scars. Because they’re a natural anti-inflammatory, omega-3’s, when applied topically, can also help reduce the swelling, irritation, and redness that accompany breakouts.
Hemp seed oil is non-comedogenic, which means it won’t clog pores or contribute to new breakouts and is safe for daily use.
Let’s not forget that hemp seed oil is also a whole food that pairs well with recipes—and that healthy skin also stems from your diet. So, drizzle hemp seed oil on your salads and add it to your smoothies!
How to Use Hemp Seed Oil: For improving the skin’s appearance and texture, hemp seed oil is best used as a moisturizer, massaged into the skin after cleansing and exfoliating. For best results, use daily.
Hemp seed oil is a delicate oil that can go rancid quickly when it’s exposed to heat or light. For this reason, hemp seed oil should always be in a dark bottle and refrigerated. When using hemp seed oil in your beauty routine, take out small amounts as needed.
3. Jojoba OilJojoba oil is extracted from the seeds of the jojoba plant. While it behaves like an oil, jojoba oil is actually a wax ester, which makes it a non-greasy “dry” oil that absorbs into the skin quickly.
Jojoba oil is said to be effective for reducing mild acne scars and redness because it contains vitamin E, which is an antioxidant vitamin that can help regenerate skin cells and improve wound and scar healing.
It’s also included in many anti-acne skin care formulas because of its antibacterial and antimicrobial activity, which can help prevent acne-causing bacteria in the skin’s pores from causing breakouts.
While jojoba oil is a safe natural remedy to use for acne, there are a few precautions to consider when it comes to adding it to your skincare routine.
While some people experience only beneficial effects from using jojoba oil, others experience a “purge” phase, where jojoba oil’s antibacterial properties clean out clogged pores and push out pus that’s formed by bacteria. Initially, this may cause whiteheads or small pimples to form. However, this is simply the cleansing action of jojoba oil at work. After a few weeks of daily continued use, many people credit jojoba oil to a vast reduction in clogged pores.
How to Use Jojoba Oil: Simply add a few drops of jojoba oil to your fingers and massage into your face after cleansing and exfoliating.
4. Exfoliate with Baking SodaBaking soda is naturally exfoliating, which may help fade acne scars and hyperpigmentation by removing dead skin and regenerating a layer of new skin cells.
Baking soda is also effective for preventing future breakouts because it helps remove the trapped dirt and oil under the skin that causes zits.
Exfoliating with baking soda before applying a natural moisturizer or oil (such as rosehip seed oil or hemp oil) will also help open your pores, enabling the oil to be more efficiently absorbed.
How to Exfoliate with Baking Soda:
- Add 2 tablespoons of baking soda to 1 tablespoon of water in a small bowl.
- Mix until a paste forms.
- Massage gently onto your face in a circular motion for a few minutes, focusing on areas that are most affected by dark marks and scars.
- Rinse off with warm water, and repeat 2-3 times weekly.
5. Lemon Juice
Freshly squeezed lemon juice is commonly used as a natural spot treatment for fading acne scars because it acts as a natural bleaching agent. Lemon is also rich in vitamin C, an antioxidant vitamin that helps improve the health of skin cells. Lemon juice may also help prevent future breakouts because it’s a natural antimicrobial.
How to Use Lemon Juice: It’s best to apply freshly squeezed lemon juice to affected areas after exfoliating with a Q-tip or cotton ball. You can leave the lemon juice on overnight or rinse off after an hour. Since lemon juice is highly acidic, it should only be applied to areas affected by dark marks or scars and kept away from areas where the skin has been broken open.
If you have sensitive skin, diluting lemon juice with water will have a milder effect.
Lastly, lemon juice can be drying, so it’s best to follow up this natural spot treatment by applying a moisturizing oil afterwards, such as hemp seed oil.
Lemon juice can also be combined with baking soda, rosehip seed oil, and other natural ingredients to make home recipes for preventing breakouts and treating acne scars.
- Avoid the sun. Lemon juice may increase your skin’s photosensitivity and make you more susceptible to sun damage after being applied. For this reason, it’s best to avoid the sun entirely on the days you apply lemon juice. If that’s not possible, be sure to wear sunscreen.
- Lemon may be too strong of a bleaching agent for darker skin tones. It’s recommended that you do a spot test to see how your skin reacts before using it as a natural treatment to fade your acne scars.