Tackling acne is the most researched subject and so far there is no permanent solution for it. In this skin condition the tiny pores connecting the sebaceous follicles (hair follicles) to the skin surface get clogged. An increase in testosterone and the resultant androgen stimulation causes certain changes in skin structures consisting of a hair follicle. It leads to hyperkeratinization and formation of plugs of keratin and sebum leading to blockage of follicles and blemishes.
The clogged pores can cause enlargement of sebaceous glands and pave the way for inflammation and infection. Propionibacterium acnes, a naturally occurring commensal bacterium on the skin, can grow rapidly in such conditions and cause pimples and cysts. It usually affects the areas of hyper sebaceous glands activity like face, neck, chest and back.
The inflammation and infection of the acne is followed by follicular rupture and perifollicular abscess formation. Then the healing process sets in with granulation tissue formation and matrix remodeling. In the new matrix, collagen protein has different fiber composition and alignment from that of damaged original protein of the tissue. Hence it stands out differently from the rest of the skin as scars, blemishes and hyperpigmentation.
Hormonal imbalance, harsh chemicals and environmental elements and general stress are some of the acne triggering factors. Homemade skin treatments can alleviate the acne and lighten scars and blemishes.
Types of acne scars
Acne scars and blemishes are brought about by the tissue repair mechanism. Depending upon the level of tissue damage and inflammation two different types of blemishes occur. Hypertrophic blemishes occur due to net increase in tissue formation resulting in raised thickened tissue on the skin. Atrophic types of blemishes with depressed areas of skin occur when there is net loss of tissue.
For more information read 'Types of acne scars'.
Natural remedies for acne scars
Proper exfoliation and inducing formation of new stratum corneum with natural products are the primary correctional methods. Fruit enzymes, alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) and beta-hydroxy acids present in natural products are used for the exfoliation. On reaching dermis, alpha-hydroxy acids and beta-hydroxy acids have been found to induce increased production of mucopolysaccharides and collagen and thereby increase the thickness of skin and remove blemishes.
For more information read 'Natural remedies for acne scars'.
Honey for acne scars
Honey is an excellent moisturizer. The high sugar supersaturation of honey makes it a difficult medium for bacteria to thrive in. Honey has exceptionally high antibacterial activity. Honey can be used as such for lightening blemishes or it can be blended with other kitchen ingredients like lemon juice, cinnamon powder, oatmeal or sandalwood powder. The ingredients help in exfoliation and honey induces new cell growth.
For more information read 'Honey for acne scars'.
Manuka honey for acne
Skin moisture and exudation, help and set in motion glucose oxidase enzyme reaction and the resultant hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) production. Slow release of H2O2 provide antimicrobial activity without damage to living tissue. Apart from the antimicrobial hydrogen peroxide activity, manuka honey has high levels of antibacterial methylglyoxal (MGO or C3H4O2) and a synergistic component.
For more information read 'Manuka honey for acne'.