BEAUTY 911: Meet JWONG, aka SCARFACE, and His Gnarly Man-Wound!

Plus, Dr. Chapas talks treatment options for other scars, too.

Feb 23, 2012 at 3:00pm | Leave a comment

There's nothing I love more than a man with a beauty question, so when work friend, Justin, asked me how to get rid of the scar on his face I was sort of ecstatic. Not that he has a scar on his face, but that he wanted to talk beauty. He even illustrated his story!
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And Justin isn't the only person (male or female) with scar problems. I get questions about unsightly marks, from cuts and burns to post-acne pockmarks--all the time. 

When it comes to body scars (like this one on Cat's abdomen which she is going to be pissed I'm even talking about because she was furious when Jane made her put a picture of it on the internet in the first place) I love Bio-Oil.

I'm not sure clinically how effective it is, but it's a really multi-tasking beauty product, and I like to moisturize with oil, not cream. Ew, even the word disgusts me. Cazwell prefers oil too, but I'll tell you more about that another time.

But we're talking about scarface right now. Since I don't have first hand experience with this, I went to see Cat's and my favorite New York City dermatologist, Dr. Anne  Chapas. Not that I need an excuse; I call her on a weekly basis as is.

First we discussed the preventative stuff that you can do to reduce the likelihood of a scar forming.

"When you have a cut, you want to treat it properly right away," advised Dr. Chapas. "And that involves washing the face and applying Aquaphor twice a day with a Q-Tip." Easy enough.

Once the cut has healed, it's time to focus on reducing the appearance of your wound. If you're left with redness, Dr. Chapas recommends protecting the area with sunscreen everyday (which you should wear anyway) to prevent the redness from getting any worse. She also loves over-the-counter Scarguard MD--a silicone based solution that's applied twice daily.

Now let's say you already have a deep, indented scar--there's still hope! Fillers like Restylane or Juvederm can be injected to pump up the depression from below. Another option is the alblative Fraxel, which works to plump the scar by creating tiny holes in the tissue that then regenerate and fill the indent.

As for JWong's scar, Dr. Chapas explains,"Some scars, especially with younger people, heal too well and actually form a raised scar, or a keloid." With these kinds of scars, Scarguard MD is an option, but a trip to the derm is probably in order as well. "Raised scars often need to be injected in the office with Kenalog, like we use for acne," she says.

Now, if you're all "no thank you, these treatments are far too expensive," think again! Kenalog injections are almost always covered by insurance, and the price of fillers varies. As for laser treatments, yes, these are pricey and take several treatments, but they're an effective option if you can afford them.

If you're taking a strictly OTC approach, Dr. Chapas recommends scar treatments with silicone in them. And remember, act quickly. You have the most likelihood of seeing results within the first six months.

Was that helpful? I hope so. Dr. Chapas really is the best. Keep the skincare questions coming. Also, do you want to date JWong? Send inquiries my way, and I'll work on it. Let's go!

Talk to Julie about skincare and such on Twitter @JR_Schott.