8 Ways To Make Your Scars Vanish!


Zinhlezonke Zikalala |

We all have scars – they’re a reminder of what we’ve been through. Some wear theirs with honour, while others aren’t quite so fond of them.

This is for those in the second camp. Because, guess what: new advances can help make scars vanish for the night, or for good!

Keloid

How it looks and feels?

Rope-like and reddish or purple-ish, these grow over the wound site. They can range in size from a zit to an orange.

How to cover it?

Choose an opaque concealer specifically designed for scars, such as Black Opal Spot & Scar Concealer (R230 at ) for use on face and body (it also covers tattoos). Concentrated pigments mean you don’t have to layer on a ton of it. Dab on a skin tone shade and blend with sponge applicator to get into hard-to-reach crevices.

Read More: Easy Cover-Ups To Hide Your Scars!

How to remove it?

While steroid injections used to be popular for keloids, they often cause hypo-pigmentation (loss of colour) on dark skin. “Now we have a new treatment called Plexr. It’s an alternative to surgery that uses gas to tighten skin and reduce excess skin folds. It can be used for aesthetic conditions like active acne, acne scarring and stretch marks, and for removing warts, unwanted lumps, non-cancerous lesions and sun spots,” says general and aesthetic practitioner and co-owner of in Cape Town, Dr Jan Nel. Two to three sessions, two weeks apart, are normally enough. Expect to pay R1 500 to R2 500 per session.

Hypertrophic

How it looks and feels?

Usually red, raised and contained to the actual size of the wound, these fade with time.

How to cover it?

A cream formula can help smooth out the bumpy texture – pick a greenish tint to neutralise red tones. Apply with a concealer brush, then layer on a second cream that matches your skin colour. Physicians Formula Concealer Twins 2-in-1 Correct & Cover Cream Concealer (R160) offers the best of both.

How to remove it?

Depending on the scar’s thickness, “pressure garments can be worn and range from R400 to R1 400,” explains Pretoria based plastic surgeon, Dr Liana Volkwyn. In extreme cases, a scar revision can be done. “This entails cutting out the hypertrophic scar and suturing (stitching) again – a procedure that can be done in a doctor’s surgery under local anaesthetic. The estimated cost is R650 to R1 000,” says Volkwyn.

Atrophic

How it looks and feels?

Recessed, like little skin-coloured potholes. The usual culprits? Chicken pox and cystic acne (or picking at either).

How to cover it?

In the past, hiding recessed marks was near impossible. But Dermaflage (R1 500, ) offers a skin-tone-hued silicone putty kit that fills in the recesses. The kit comes with a primer for adhesion and a texture pad that mimics the surface of natural skin. The putty dries in one minute and lasts for up to 36 hours.

How to remove it?

A dermal filler, at R1 500 to R2 500 per session, will help improve the look of the recessed or slightly dented area. “Dermal fillers are not permanent, but the stimulation of elastin and collagen is, so you’d need a repeat filler session every year-and-a-half to two years,” says Nel. “Use the keloid Plexr treatment on the edges of the scar to tighten the skin,” he adds. Two to three Plexr sessions, two weeks apart – with a possible follow-up a year or two later – will help rid you of this scar.

Read More: Q:What Can I Do If I Have Acne Scars?

Contracture

How it looks and feels?

Burns can cause loss of skin. The result is web-like in texture and marbelised in colour.

How to cover it?

Try (R480 to R3 110, depending on the size of the scar). This stick-on fix works by making scar tissue soft and smooth and neutralising the scar’s colour. It also helps flatten raised scars. Scar Fx can be effective on less severe scars too, like hypertrophic and keloid scars.

How to remove it?

Physical therapy helps with range of motion. “Contracture scars are often located around joints or in areas where they limit mobility,” says Volkwyn. The most popular treatment is Z-plasty: a Z-shaped incision is made at the site, which helps remove the scarred skin and muscle tension. “It can be performed as a day procedure and patients should be back to their normal routines within a week. They may require special splints and garments before returning to work,” explains Volkwyn. Burn contracture scar surgeries may be covered by medical aid. If not, prices will depend on the size of the scar and procedure needed – you’re looking at upwards of R5 000.

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