Acne as a Teen? Here Are Some Tips for Clear Adult Skin

Woman applying skin cream to her face Acne as a Teen? Here Are Some Tips for Clear Adult Skin

If you experienced acne as a teenager, your battle with breakouts might not be over. Many people with adolescent acne struggle with acne scars later in life. And in some cases, their acne comes back. Here are some tips to achieve clear skin so you can put your pimple-ridden teenage years behind you.

How to Get Clear Skin as an Adult

Clearing Acne Scars: Try These Treatments

Acne scars are often stubborn. If you had severe acne as a teen, you might be struggling with scars a decade or more later. Fortunately, your dermatologist can recommend acne scar removal treatments. Some of the most effective include:

  • Topical Creams: Topical products are often effective at clearing mild acne scars. Your dermatologist may recommend a retinoid, either prescription or over-the-counter, to boost skin cell turnover. Other exfoliating topicals, like alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and beta hydroxy acids (BHAs), may also fade mild scarring over time.
  • Microdermabrasion: A series of microdermabrasion treatments will remove the outer layer of skin and allow new skin to regenerate. During this treatment, your dermatologist or medical esthetician will use a small instrument to rub or spray crystals onto the skin. Your newly exfoliated skin may also absorb your skincare products more easily.
  • Chemical Peels: A chemical peel is another exfoliating treatment that can help get rid of acne scars. While a light peel is adequate for mild scarring, those with more severe scars might need a deeper peel. You will likely need a series of peels to see results.
  • Laser Resurfacing: Laser therapies can be a great option for treating both acne and acne scars. This treatment works by stimulating collagen and skin cell production. Laser resurfacing is also available to treat skin concerns like hyperpigmentation and fine wrinkles.

Remember, it’s important to see your dermatologist about your acne scars before trying at-home treatments. Many over-the-counter scar removal products are too harsh and may irritate the skin. A dermatologist will help you fade your acne scars safely.

Preventing New Breakouts: Develop a Routine

If you had acne as a teenager, you might still have acne-prone skin. However, curating your skincare routine for your skin type can keep acne in check. For many people, this involves a combination of at-home and in-office treatments.

A gentle foaming cleanser and non-comedogenic moisturizer make up the foundation of your skincare routine. And of course, you’ll want an oil-free sunscreen to wear during the day. These products will balance out your skin’s oil levels and keep acne in check. Your dermatologist may recommend that you include acne medications or preventive products like retinol in your routine.

However, the best serums and treatments will depend on your skin’s unique needs.

Once you have an at-home skincare routine in place, consider talking to your dermatologist about a treatment regimen. Regular chemical peels, microdermabrasion treatments, and facials are some of the ways to prevent breakouts. If you have existing breakouts, light and laser therapies can help with acne removal.


Acne and acne scars are often a decades-long battle. But the team at Pacific Dermatology Specialists can help you clear your skin for good. With offices in Seal Beach, CA and the surrounding communities, we offer a wide range of cosmetic procedures to keep you looking your best. Contact us today to book a treatment at a location near you.

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