The whole process of acne is exhausting. There’s the emotional toll of constantly worrying about your skin acting up, the frustrating run-around of finding the best acne products for your skin type, and then the damage that a nasty pimple leaves in its wake — red or purple blotches and pockmarks that might only be a few centimeters wide (if you were a saint and didn’t pick at them), but that take months to finally vacate your face.
Only discovering miracle pimple products, working with an excellent dermatologist, or being born with genes that love you can get ahead of zits before they happen, and even then nothing’s guaranteed. But there are a few things you can use to smooth out the aftermath, and thanks to the incredibly-named skincare brand Cutie Academy, you can get one super-effective scar remedy for less than $15.
The brand’s Scar Removal Cream currently has 4,588 five-star ratings, with 2,987 reviews praising its stunning effectiveness. Of those, 535 reviews discuss how well the scar removal cream works for acne marks. Shoppers who say they’ve suffered from acne for six years claim that in a little over a month, the cream lightened their substantial scarring and hyperpigmentation, with accompanying before-and-after photos that show the transformation from vivid red marks to calm, clear skin.
If you feel like you’ve tried everything under the sun for your scars, you’re not alone. One shopper in a similar situation wrote that she’d tried everything to help with her adult onset acne, from over-the-counter products and prescriptions like spironalatone and retinol to “old wives tale remedies — you name it and I have tried it.” While the prescriptions helped, she said nothing fully cleared up her acne until she discovered the Cutie Academy cream.
“After using this product for three weeks, my skin is the clearest and healthiest it has ever been,” she wrote. “I have always been one of those women who feels the need to put on concealer and foundation to even leave the house. While I'm not quite ready to let go of my old habits, I could.”
Shop now: $14 (Originally $28); amazon.com
More shoppers back her up, saying that on top of smoothing out “pitted problem areas” and scars — even severe “crater face” situations — they find the cream also prevents new breakouts from surfacing in the first place. After a month of twice-daily use, reviewers say that their scars, once “small hills” unaffected by “everything from microdermabrasion to skin peeling,” are almost completely gone.
Judging from the cornucopia of reviews that say as much, a month is the sweet spot for seeing your acne scars pack up and leave. Though some people say they’ve seen results in as little as a week: One exceptionally impressed shopper expanded on his experience, saying that despite doubting that an inexpensive cream could treat 10-year-old acne scars “better than the hundreds I have spent on treatments recommended by dermatologists,” after a week of using it twice a day, he’s seen “extraordinary” results. “I haven't had this amount of confidence in years,” he writes. “I keep getting compliments from people that haven't seen me prior to using this gel, so I definitely know it's not just me thinking it's working.”
The Scar Removal Cream is currently on sale for 51 percent off, bringing it from $28 to $14. And if the thought of acne’s memory disappearing didn’t convince you, the 1,575 five-star reviews discussing more general scars will. If you don’t mind a little gore, the before-and-afters people post of their once-sliced skin are mind-blowing. I broke my ankle last summer, and have made my peace with the Frankenstein-esque lines on either side of the break. But after seeing the power of this $14 gel, I might just get rid of it for good.