These are atrophic scars. They occur when you lose skin tissue and your body can’t regenerate it, so you’re left with a depression. They often stem from a bad case of acne or chicken pox— or having an abnormal mole removed. ERASE THEM Getting rid of these dents depends on the atrophic mark you have. Ice pick scars, which are small, deep, and narrow, are typically treated by cutting them out. “There are vertical bands of scar tissue anchored to the bottom of the scar, connecting it to deeper parts of the skin,” says Dennis Gross, M.D., a dermatologist in New York City. Your doctor will numb the area, cut around and remove the scar, and close the incision with a single stitch. But here’s the catch: This procedure will leave a scar. “You’re trading an ice pick scar for a nice flat scar,” Dr. Gross says. You can also inject the scar with a filler, such as Juvéderm or Belotero Balance. “This will help fill the ‘pit,’ ” says plastic surgeon Sachin M. Shridharani, M.D., founder of Luxurgery in New York City. “But the filler will last for only six to 12 months.” Depending on how many scars you have, filler typically starts from RM2,000. Boxcar scars have steep, defined borders and a flat bottom. One treatment is subcision (From RM450 at Premiere Clinic) which involves popping the scarred skin back up with a needle so the area is no longer depressed. This costs around RM600-RM900), depending on the size, and you could have some bruising for about a week.
Another option: ablative lasers (meaning that they cause damage to the surfaceof skin) called CO or erbium, “which can give you great results,” Dr. Gross says. They both work by making holes in the scar tissue to induce new collagen formation. Most people need three treatments. Lasers can hurt, but a numbing cream takes the edge off. “And you’ll have some redness and crusting for up to 10 days if you had a CO treatment or up to seven in the case of erbium,” Dr. Madfes says.
The last atrophic scar, a rolling scar, is broad and craterlike with rolling edges. “CO or erbium lasers are often used when the scarring is severe, but if scarring is more superficial, fraxel or picosecond lasers can be effective,” Dr. Shridharani says. These nonablative lasers work by tightening skin and stimulating collagen growth. Since they don’t perforate the skin, you’ll just have some temporary redness, and they cost about the same as the CO and erbium.