Acne and acne scars can be a real nightmare.
Don’t waste your time and money on treatments that don’t work!
Before coming to see me, it’s not uncommon for patients to try ineffective methods such as DIY home treatments to spa facials.
Table of Contents
- 1 What exactly is an acne scar?
- 2 What type of acne scar do you have?
- 3 Is acne scarring preventable?
- 4 Who should you find in Singapore for acne scar removal treatment?
- 5 How much does acne scar removal treatment in Singapore cost?
- 6 How much improvement can I expect after acne scar removal treatment?
- 7 What’s the best acne scar removal treatment in Singapore?
- 8 Which acne scar removal treatment should I pick?
- 9 How to get rid of acne scars in Singapore?
- 10 Are Acne Scar Removal Treatment Results Permanent or Temporary?
- 11 Specialised Acne Scar Treatments are Necessary to Remove Every Type of Scar
- 12 Sozo 360º Acne Scar Treatment – Precise & Personalised
- 13 Sozo’s Acne Scar Treatment Price List
What exactly is an acne scar?
Acne scars are permanent depressions or elevation on your skin.
They can result from cystic acne (big, red and tender pimples) or inflamed pustular acne (whitish pus-filled pimples), especially if you pick/pop your pimples!
Post-Acne Marks versus Acne Scars: What’s the difference?
Post-acne marks are not permanent. Whereas acne scars are permanent.
Acne marks are also known as post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH). These dark coloured spots are left behind after a pimple.
These spots can also be red (post-inflammatory erythema). They usually disappear on their own within 4-8 months.
What type of acne scar do you have?
Atrophic acne scars appear as depressions in the skin.
The 3 main categories of atrophic scars are:
- Ice pick scars: Deeper than they are wide, with a narrow opening.
- Boxcar scars: Broad, rectangular depressions with steep, defined edges.
- Rolling scars: Broad depressions that have rounded, sloping edges.
Acne scars can also be elevated. This includes hypertrophic scars and keloid acne scars.
Is acne scarring preventable?
If scarring acne (cystic or pustular acne) is treated early with aggressive treatments, you can avoid acne scars completely.
(Also read: Cystic Acne Treatment in Singapore)
If you think your acne might be starting to scar, see your aesthetic doctor or dermatologist ASAP to get started on the appropriate treatment.
Who should you find in Singapore for acne scar removal treatment?
In Singapore, dermatologists and aesthetic doctors with an interest in skin can help with acne scar removal treatment.
You should ask your acne scar doctor the following questions to ensure that you get the best acne scar removal results:
- How much experience he has with acne scar treatment
- Number and type of scars treatments required
- Realistic expectations of outcomes and improvement – ask to see before and after photos of patients he has treated
How much does acne scar removal treatment in Singapore cost?
This depends on the type and severity of scarring you have.
The average price range of acne scar treatments in Singapore:
- Mild to moderate acne scar treatment in Singapore costs: $1800 – $3500
- Severe acne scar treatment in Singapore costs: $3500 – $7000
For more details, you can read my featured article on Acne Scar treatment costs in Singapore.
How much improvement can I expect after acne scar removal treatment?
In my experience, most patients can expect an average improvement of 50 – 70% after treatment.
For the majority of cases, patients see a 70 – 80% improvement in acne scars.
The first few acne scar treatments often result in the greatest improvements in scar appearance and skin texture.
The amount of improvement also depends on:
- the type and extent of acne scarring you have
- your skin type and skin response to treatment.
For example, dark-skinned patients with atrophic scars may only see improvements of 50%, while patients with ice-pick scars or shallow box-car scars can see improvements of up to 80%.
What’s the best acne scar removal treatment in Singapore?
The best acne scar removal treatments available in Singapore are:
- Laser treatment eg. Edge One fractional CO2 laser
- Radiofrequency (RF) microneedling eg. Venus Viva, INFINI, Intracel, EndyMed
- Chemical peels eg. TCA CROSS
- Punch excision/grafting
- Dermal fillers eg. Juvederm, Restylane, Belotero, Radiesse, Rejuran
The treatment plan recommended by your doctor depends on:
- the type and severity of acne scarring you have
- the amount of downtime after treatment that you are willing to accept
Which acne scar removal treatment should I pick?
To get the best results, you need a tailored approach to target your combination of acne scar with the ideal acne scar treatments.
- Ice pick scars and narrow boxcar scars respond well to TCA CROSS.
- Rolling scars and craters can be effectively treated with fractional lasers and RF microneedling. Punch grafting and dermal fillers are also good options.
- Tethered and anchored scars are best treated with subscision.
Confused? I would be too.
You should find an acne scar specialist to advise you on the right set of acne scar treatments.
How to get rid of acne scars in Singapore?
1. Laser acne scar removal treatments
Laser treatments can be helpful for both acne scars and acne marks (post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation).
Fractional CO2 laser is effective for treating most kinds of atrophic acne scars.
It has a downtime of 2 – 5 days.
CO2 Fractional Laser is one of the most common acne scar treatments in Singapore.
Common brands of CO2 Lasers include Edge, eCO2, SmartXide, Mixto, Fraxel.
Fraxel Dual uses 2 different wavelengths to treat acne scars and post-acne spots. Fraxel 1927nm wavelength treats the pigmentation spots while Fraxel 1550nm wavelength improves skin texture.
Pico laser is effective in treating both shallow and deep acne scars. This is the latest non-ablative laser that is able to target acne scars with more precision and safety, resulting in a shorter recovery time.
Pulse-dye lasers are useful in reducing the redness associated with acne marks/ post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation, and have minimal downtime.
As you can see, there are MANY types of laser treatments for removing acne scars.
Hence, it is best to consult with your acne scar doctor to understand which laser treatments are the most suitable for your scars and skin condition.
Acne Scars Laser treatment cost in Singapore: Pulse-dye laser costs $250 – $400/session. Fractional laser costs $500 – $1000/session. Both require 3 – 6 sessions for best results.
2. Radiofrequency microneedling
Radiofrequency (RF) microneedling treatments, such as the INFINI system use small micro-needles to deliver heat energy to the skin.
This stimulates collagen production and activates acne scar remodelling.
RF microneedling is ideal for rolling, atrophic, mixed, and tethered scars.
There’s also less chance of hyperpigmentation with RF microneedling than fractional lasers.
Improvements are expected up to 6 months post-treatment.
Radiofrequency microneedling cost in Singapore: Infini costs about $800 – $2000/session in Singapore. 3-5 sessions are normally recommended.
3. Chemical peels for acne scars
In my practise, I like to use a specialised technique called TCA CROSS.
This involves using a toothpick or needle to place TCA solution into deep acne scars, one at a time.
The TCA solution stimulates collagen production, which levels out deep acne scars.
Time-consuming and tedious?
Yes it is, but ice pick scars respond very well to this method.
One treatment generally improves the scar by 30 – 40%.
The deeper and narrower the scar, the better the results.
TCA CROSS chemical peel cost in Singapore: TCA CROSS costs roughly $300/session. 3-5 sessions are usually required for the best results.
4. Subcision of acne scars
Acne scars are sometimes depressed due to fibrous scar tissue that pull down the surface of your skin. In this situation, all the lasers and chemical peels in the world will have limited effect, as your skin surface is “tethered down” by these scar tissue.
With subcision, a small needle is used to release the fibrous scar tissue beneath the scar. As the area heals, the new collagen also helps to push the base of the acne scar up.
Scar subcision works best for shallow scars with a broad base, rather than on ice pick scars.
You’ll see visible improvements in your acne scars after each subcision acne scar treatment.
The downside to subcision is bruising after the procedure, which can last for 2 – 7 days.
Subcision cost in Singapore: Typical prices are around $300-$600/session, for up to 5 sites. For optimal results, you may require 2-4 subcision sessions.
5. Punch excision/grafting
Punch excision involves using a tiny hole-punch like device to cut out the acne scar.
The wound is then sutured close, with the stitch removed within a week.
It’s best suited for icepick scars that have a narrow opening, but are deep.
In punch grafting, after the scar is excised, a small piece of skin is taken from another site on the body (often from behind the ear).
The piece of skin removed is then placed into the hole where the acne scar once was.
Both sites are then sutured closed, or held in place with surgical tape and allowed to heal on its own.
Punch excision cost in Singapore: $200 – $350/session, depending on the number of sites.
6. Acne Scar Fillers: Juvederm, Restylane, Radiesse, Rejuran S
Dermal fillers such as Restylane, Juvederm and Rejuran S fillers are used to elevate shallow, broad-based acne scars.
Although the fillers are temporary, they will stimulate collagen production, which improves your acne scars.
This newly-produced collagen gives permanent scar improvement results.
Bellafill is the first FDA-approved dermal filler for permanently correcting moderate to severe acne scars. It’s unfortunately not available in Singapore yet at the time of writing.
Dermal fillers scar treatment cost in Singapore: Restylane and Juvederm costs about $600 – $1000/syringe. 2 syringes are typically used per session.
Are Acne Scar Removal Treatment Results Permanent or Temporary?
Acne scar removal results are Permanent.
Laser skin resurfacing offers potentially permanent results, depending on the laser method used and the number of treatments completed. Results are permanent, but will be affected by the natural aging process and if proper skin care is not followed after treatment such as avoiding sun exposure.
In other treatments like subcision and dermal skin filler procedures, results are usually permanent but affected by other factors, including improper aftercare, and failure to complete the proper amount of maintenance treatments.
To sum up, treating acne scars is a complex field.
I often see patients come into my practise requesting for one particular acne scar treatment that they had researched extensively.
It’s important to bear in mind however that acne scar treatment is not “one size fits all”.
The best outcomes usually result from a combination of different methods, individualised to your skin type and scar.
Specialised Acne Scar Treatments are Necessary to Remove Every Type of Scar
Your scars are unique.
Dr Justin Boey treats each individual scar using a customised combination of treatments for best scar removal results.
Sozo 360º Acne Scar Treatment – Precise & Personalised
I believe in Precise and Personalised treatment for each and every scar.
With a full suite of more than 8 Acne Scar treatments, I use a customised combination of the latest lasers and technology to ensure that each scar will have the most optimal treatment.
I commonly combine up to 3 types of treatments in 1 session for faster and more effective acne scar removal results.
Patient Case Study #1
32 year old asian male executive with generalised acne scarring who is keen on improving skin texture.
Not keen for downtime of more than 2-3 days. He is an active weekend athlete who has ongoing sun exposure over the weekends.
He also has an important meeting in 1 weeks’ time.
This was the customised plan that I prescribed him:
|Ice pick scars||TCA peel||3|
|Subcision + Filler||2-3|
|Rolling scars||Infini RF||3-5|
|Boxcar scars||Fractional CO2||3-5|
Considering his busy schedule, I used a combination of 3 or more types of treatments in 1 clinic visit and prioritised treatments with less downtime for his first session so that he is fully recovered for his important meeting.
Patient Case Study #2
29 year old female with rolling scars and box car scars, keen to improve skin within 4 months for her wedding.
Not keen for down-time of more than 2-3 days.
For this lady, I came up with the following treatment plan:
|Rolling scars||Infini RF||2-3|
|Boxcar scars||Fractional CO2||2-3|
|Nano Fractional RF||1-2|
As she is most concerned about recovery time, I selected treatments with less downtime while ensuring that she gets her desired results by her wedding.
While both patients have acne scars, you can see that their treatment plans are COMPLETELY different!
“But Dr Justin, if this 360º approach is so effective, why isn’t it more widely practised?”
1. Time-consuming process requires a meticulous doctor
The 360º Approach to Acne Scar is time-consuming – from consultation all the way to treatment and recovery.
Detailed consultation to understand your goals, lifestyle and preferences.
Scars need to be felt instead of just seen. Scar assessments require manual palpation of the scars to determine how deep the scars are.
Lasers are also faster to perform than subcision – except 1. I take more than 3x longer for subcision as compared to a Fractional CO2/Erbium Laser.
INFINI Fractional Micro-Needling is the only other energy based device that takes as long as subcision – this is because multiple passes at different depths are needed.
The regenerative healing compounds like Rejuran S are also injected in micro-droplets by hand.
2. Heavy Investment in acne scar lasers/technology
Most clinics only have 1-2 types of Lasers.
An Acne Scar clinic has to be well-equipped with the latest acne scar lasers, peels and fillers.
Such technology is expensive and most clinics won’t have the full range unless they specialise in treating acne scars.
Begin Your Acne Scar Treatment Journey with the following photos for Self-Assessment of your Skin!
Types Of Acne Scars
Treatment of choice for post-inflammatory erythema in Singapore:
Sozo’s Acne Scar Treatment Price List
|360° Acne Scar Treatment Program||Combination of the most suitable treatments||All||Ask Now|
|Lutronic Fractional PicoPlus||Fractional Non-ablative Laser||Shallow Rolling, Atrophic scars||From $450|
|INFINI Fractional RF||Microneedling Radiofrequency||Deep Rolling, Atrophic scars||From $850|
|EndyMed Nano-Fractional Radiofrequency||Nanofractional Radiofrequency||Shallow Rolling scars||From $500|
|EdgeOne Fractional CO2||Fractional Ablative Laser||Shallow Rolling, Boxcar scars||From $450|
|Subcision + Filler||Mechanical Breakdown of scars||All Scars||From $400|
|TCA Cross||Chemical Breakdown of Scars||Deep Ice pick, Boxcar||From $300|
|Enerjet 2.0||Jet Pressure Subcision||All Scars||From $800|
|Injectable Collagen Stimulator||All Scars||From $500|