If you pick the skin on your face, we feel for you. It’s not a fun thing to have to go through.
But we’re not here to talk about why you do it or how to stop. We’re going to assume you’re already working on that.
In this article, we’re going to talk about how to fix the damage you’ve already done.
What is skin picking disorder?
The first step is understanding what you’re dealing with. Skin picking disorder, also known as dermatillomania or excoriation disorder, is a mental health condition that causes people to compulsively pick at their skin.
This can include picking at pimples, scabs, blackheads, or anything else on the skin.
People with skin picking disorder often pick at their skin to the point of injury. This can lead to bleeding, infection, and scarring.
The condition is often related to other mental health conditions, such as anxiety, depression, and OCD.
Treating skin picking disorder can be difficult, but it’s important to seek help if you aren’t already.
How to start the healing process
Now that we’ve talked about what you’re dealing with, let’s talk about how to fix it.
Try laser treatments
Laser treatments can be an effective way to reduce the appearance of scars.
Laser treatments are also a common method of getting rid of spider veins in the face. They work by targeting the melanin in the skin, which helps to break up the pigment and make the scars less visible.
There are a few different types of laser treatments, such as:
Fractional laser therapy
This type of laser treatment is done in a series of sessions. A small fraction of the skin is treated with the laser each time. This helps to minimize the risk of side effects and speeds up the healing process.
Ablative laser therapy
This type of laser treatment removes the top layer of skin. It can be effective at treating deep scars, but it also comes with a higher risk of side effects.
Non-ablative laser therapy
This type of laser treatment works by heating the lower layers of skin. This helps to stimulate collagen production (similar to a dermaroller), which can reduce the appearance of scars.
Talk to your doctor about which one would be best for you.
Use a salicylic acid cleanser
If you have pimples, you might want to try a salicylic acid cleanser. This can help to reduce the inflammation and redness associated with acne.
It’s important to talk to your doctor before using any over-the-counter products, as they can sometimes make things worse.
Exfoliate your skin
Exfoliating your skin can help to remove dead skin cells and improve the appearance of scars. There are a few different ways you can exfoliate your skin, such as:
You have two types of exfoliation: physical and chemical.
Physical exfoliation involves using a physical object to scrub the skin. This could be done with a loofah, brush, or cloth.
Chemical exfoliation involves using a chemical solution to remove the top layer of the skin. This can be done with products that contain glycolic acid or lactic acid.
Remove acne scarring with microdermabrasion
Microdermabrasion is a type of exfoliation that uses small, abrasive particles to remove the top layer of the skin. This can help to reduce the appearance of scars.
It’s important to talk to your doctor before getting microdermabrasion, as it can sometimes make things worse.
Use a retinoid cream
Retinoids are a type of vitamin A that can help to improve the appearance of scars. They work by stimulating collagen production and increasing cell turnover.
There are a few different types of retinoids, such as tretinoin, adapalene, and isotretinoin.
You can get retinol creams over the counter or by prescription. It’s important to talk to your doctor before using any retinoids, as they can sometimes cause side effects.
Try silicone gel sheets
Silicone gel sheets are a type of bandage that can help to reduce the appearance of scars. They work by providing a barrier between the scar and the surrounding skin.
They’re typically worn for 12 hours a day and can be left on for longer if needed. These typically aren’t used for the face, but if you are going to be at home for a few days, there’s no reason why you couldn’t use them on your face as well.
Use vitamin C serum
Vitamin C is an antioxidant that can help to reduce the appearance of scars. It works by stimulating collagen production and improving the skin barrier.
There are tons of vitamin C serums out there, many of them also with other beneficial ingredients like hyaluronic acid and even retinol.
Start a good skin care routine if you haven’t already
If you’re not already using a good skincare routine, now is the time to start. This can help to improve the appearance of scars and prevent new ones from forming.
A good skin care routine should include:
You should cleanse your face twice a day, once in the morning and once at night. This will help to remove dirt, oil, and makeup that can clog pores and lead to breakouts.
You should exfoliate your skin at least once a week. This will help to remove dead skin cells and improve the overall appearance of your skin.
You should moisturize your skin every day, even if you have oily skin. This will help to keep your skin hydrated and prevent dryness, which can lead to breakouts.
You should wear at least a thin layer of sunscreen every day, even if you’re not going outside. This will help to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays.
Use benzoyl peroxide
When it comes to severe acne, this is benzoyl peroxide is what you’re going to want to use.
Benzoyl peroxide is a type of acne medication that can help to kill the bacteria that cause breakouts. It can also help to reduce inflammation and redness.
You can get benzoyl peroxide over the counter or by prescription. It’s important to talk to your doctor before using any benzoyl peroxide, as it can sometimes cause side effects.
It’s also important to start with a lower concentration and increase it gradually as your skin gets used to it.
Probiotics are live bacteria that are good for your gut health. They can also help to improve the appearance of your skin.
There are tons of different probiotic supplements out there. You can also get them from certain foods, such as yogurt and sauerkraut.
While they don’t have an effect on healing scars from face picking per se, they will improve your overall health – which will speed up the rate at which your skin cells turnover. So think of it like an indirect fix.
Increase collagen production with microneedling
Microneedling is a type of treatment that involves using a device to create tiny punctures in the skin. This can help to stimulate collagen production and improve the appearance of scars.
You can get microneedling done by a dermatologist or aesthetician. Or you can do it at home if you’re comfortable with it.
Another benefit of microneedling is that any products you apply to your skin afterward will be better absorbed, thanks to the thousands of tiny holes you just poked into your skin.
If you’re going to do this, be sure you don’t have any open wounds on your face.
Use makeup brushes for gentle exfoliation
If you’re gentle, you can use makeup brushes to help exfoliate your face gently. This will help to remove dead skin cells and improve the overall appearance of your skin.
Be sure to use a brush with soft bristles and avoid scrubbing too hard. You should also clean your brushes regularly to prevent bacteria from building up.
A similar technique for this is to do a technique called “dry brushing.” This is where you take a brush and gently exfoliate, but no makeup is applied.
Go see a board-certified dermatologist
If you’re struggling to get your skin under control, it might be time to see a dermatologist. They can help to diagnose any underlying conditions and provide treatment that can improve the appearance of your skin.
New treatments are coming out all the time, so it’s possible that they could recommend something lesser-known.
Get help for your obsessive-compulsive disorder
All the facial healing treatments in the world won’t do any good if you continue to pick at your skin. If you can’t seem to stop, it’s important to get help for your OCD.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a type of therapy that can be very effective for treating OCD. If you think this could be helpful for you, talk to your doctor or therapist about it.
Stop picking at your skin!
Okay, we know we promised we wouldn’t lecture you. But if you’re still picking at your face, you need to stop. It’s not doing your skin any favors.
If you can’t seem to stop, talk to your doctor or therapist about it. They might be able to help you find other ways to cope with your anxiety or stress.
Picking your face can be a difficult habit to break. But it’s important to remember that it can cause serious damage to your skin. If you want to heal your skin, you need to take care of it.
Start by using a good skincare routine and using products that contain benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, or retinoids. These can help to speed up the healing process.
You should also eat a healthy diet, get enough sleep, and take probiotics. And if you’re still struggling to get your skin under control, talk to a dermatologist. They can help you find the right treatment for your individual needs.
With the right treatment, you can heal your skin and get it back to looking its best. It’s just a matter of time!