I hadn’t had cystic acne on my cheek for months! So imagine my disappointment when I got two huge acne cysts on my right cheek right in the middle of my final exams. They hurt like hell, were tomato-red, and were filled with pus (sorry if you’re feeling disgusted), but the worst part was that they left indents after they were gone. After two weeks, I returned home and looked into my bathroom’s mirror, and the lighting was such, that the right side of my face looked scarred and bumpy and just insanely ugly. This was one of those mirrors; the one’s that bring out every imperfection in the most prominent way.
I tried to get over it and ignore it. I tried to tell myself that time would make it better. But despite everything, I was obsessing over these hyperpigmentation. My family members told me they didn’t even notice them, but c'mon they weren’t looking at my face under that bright white light that was in my bathroom. Then I remembered that when I used to have milder acne, I would put on a gel every night before sleeping and that always helped with scars. So I asked my mom if she had any of that gel left. She didn’t, but she gave me something else she had lying around: aloe vera gel.
It’s no secret that aloe vera is one of the most versatile plants! Aloe is called ‘miracle plant’, ‘wand of heaven’ or ‘plant of life’ and they live up to these names!
Always mistaken for a cactus, but it’s actually a succulent and there are actually 400 species of Aloe and 'Aloe Vera' is the most common!
This herbal medicine has been used for over 2000 years. Going farther back than this, 6000-year-old stone carvings of aloe plants were found in Egypt, pretty mind-blowing, huh?
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation or PIH is the medical term for discoloration of the skin that is caused by an inflammatory wound such as a wound, scrape, rash, pimple or acne. It can differ in color from brown, red, pink, purple, depending on your skin type and color. We have to take note though that PIH is flat with discoloration and it’s neither pitted nor raised.
PIH forms when inflammatory wounds or other skin traumas cause inflammation. As our skin heals, it produces too much melanin (a substance in our body that gives skin our color) thus leaving a darker area.
Good news, PIH is actually not true scarring and is often called “pseudo-scarring” since it does not damage the skin’s follicle though it may leave a mark or discoloration for a period of time.
Acne scars occur when there is a loss of tissue causing the skin to appear pitted or depressed. Skin traumas can also cause an excess of tissue causing a raised scar. PIH, on the other hand, will just appear darker than the rest of the skin, it’s not pitted nor raised.
Aloe may not be able to help with acne scars (pitted or raised scars) since this is mainly caused by lack or excess formation of tissue on the skin and may need other forms of acne scarring treatment such as micro-needling that promotes the buildup of collagen deep in the skin to plump pitted scars and even out the skin texture.
Instead, aloe is a great, natural way to speed up the fading of PIH or hyperpigmentation.
Aloe Vera comprises of over 100 vitamins, antioxidants, minerals and active compounds that are all working together to repair the skin from the inside by renewing the development of new, healthy skin cells revealing your healthy skin underneath!
Aloe Vera also contains Aloin which is a natural compound found in Aloe. It is a good depigmentation property so it will help lighten hyperpigmentation or PIH. Due to Aloe’s unique genetic makeup that allows its natural nutrients to penetrate in the deepest layers of the skin for serious healing.
Lastly, since aloe reduces inflammation, it can help post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation from developing in the first place or reduce the chances of it developing.
I put aloe vera on every night before sleeping and washed it off in the morning. My bathroom’s mirror was just terrible to look into so I was avoiding it for a few days. A week after starting the aloe vera gel for acne marks, I happened to look into that mirror, under the harsh light. What I saw astonished me. My skin was much smoother than before (something I wasn’t able to notice in other mirrors)! You might think I am exaggerating, or that I am mistaken, but I kid you not, those marks were visible but incredibly better in texture. Since then, and till now, I have almost never slept without aloe vera gel on my face. That drastic improvement I saw had such a powerful effect on my subconscious, that since then, acne maks don’t freak me out as much as they used to. So I urge all of you with hyperpigmentation to try aloe vera gel!
Each of our skin is different so we may see various results! Some users experienced skin brightness the next day with some seeing lightened acne marks after 7 days of use! Results may vary too depending on the damage to the skin, shape, and size of your hyperpigmentation.
“Aloe Vera Gel has some amazing benefits for acne marks! After I applied aloe vera gel on my acne marks for a week, I saw the texture of my skin greatly improved!”
For topical application or treatment, you can’t go wrong with the natural gel from the Aloe Vera leaf. This is more concentrated and packed with natural vitamins and minerals. You can get Aloe Vera leaf on some groceries or how about getting your own Aloe Vera plant!
To use the Aloe Vera leaf, simply cut a small portion of the leaf, cut it in half and apply directly to the area to be treated. You can save the unused leaf for the next few days!
Harvesting the Aloe Vera gel does not kill the plant, as the center can regrow the lost leaves.
Because of aloe vera's soothing and antiinflammatory properties, aloe is commonly found is cosmetics. You can try these products that have Aloe Vera as a base ingredient, it is more convenient, hygienic and has added ingredients, like Vitamin C that can further help with hyperpigmentation treatment.
Have you tried Aloe Vera gel to help with acne marks? And how else do you use this multipurpose plant? Let us know in the comments below!