After the long struggle to get rid of your acne, you likely want to breathe a sigh of relief as soon as that last pimple heals. However, the journey may still not be over. In fact, healed acne lesions can leave discoloration behind, sometimes in the form of black pimple marks. As upsetting as this prospect can be, don't let it discourage you. There are ways to remove black pimple marks and to restore your skin to its former clarity.
Wash your face twice a day no matter what. Even if you're tired at night and want to fall asleep in your makeup, don't. Take the time to wash your skin thoroughly with a mild cleanser.
Treat any acne that still remains on your skin. Without getting your acne under control, treating pimple marks is futile, since you'll likely have to repeat these treatments over and over again. Apply a benzoyl peroxide-based cream to your acne to dry it up and to kill the bacteria that causes it.
Apply lemon juice to your black pimple marks. With clean fingers, apply small amounts of lemon juice to the marks. Allow the juice to dry completely before rinsing your face with warm water. Repeat this treatment once a day for several weeks to see your black pimple marks turn lighter and become less noticeable.
Apply tretinoin to your black pimple marks once a day. Obtain this cream by prescription from your dermatologist. Apply a small amount directly to your pimple marks, massaging it into your skin until the cream disappears. Though this cream may cause some irritation, it will reduce the appearance of pimple marks and encourage a more even skin tone with consistent use.
Undergo a mild chemical peel in your dermatologist's office. Glycolic or lactic acid will be used. Once your skin is prepared, the acid will be wiped onto your black pimple marks and allowed to sit for several minutes as it penetrates deeply into your skin. Once the acid is removed, your skin may feel tight and look red for a few days. Your skin may also peel and flake. After a few sessions, your black pimple marks should appear lighter and blend in with the surrounding skin color.
Brenda Barron is a writer, editor and researcher based in Southern California. She has worked as a writer since 2004, with work appearing in online and print publications such as BabyZone, "Cat Fancy" and "ePregnancy." She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from California State University, Long Beach.