Acne scars are permanent. They don’t fade with brightening treatments like dark spots or soften with anti-wrinkle treatments like fine lines. Nope, the only options for acne scars are serious, time-intensive procedures with so-so results. Until now. Just months ago, the FDA approved a new treatment for acne scars that—get this—works and delivers lasting results. So naturally, we jumped at the chance to pick the brain of one of the lead researchers involved in bringing the first and only dermal filler approved for the correction of acne scars to the market, Beverly Hills–based dermatologist Dr. Ava Shamban.
Keep reading to find out about the product that’s changing the game for acne scar sufferers!
Bellafill is a collagen-based dermal filler with tiny polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) microspheres suspended in it. There are other collagen-based fillers on the market, but it’s the PMMA that makes Bellafill different. Our bodies don’t have the enzymes needed to break down PMMA, so those itty-bitty little beads stay exactly where they are. So instead of shifting, like other fillers have a tendency to do, this one creates a structure right underneath the scar to lift it up and keep it in place. And over time, the collagen is reabsorbed into your body, stimulating your own collagen production, which means smoother-looking skin.
Dr. Shamban says Bellafill works on all skin types (male and female, dark and light), unlike other treatments like lasers, which aren’t an option for darker skin tones. However, if you do want to use Bellafill in conjunction with laser treatments, you’re totally safe to do so.
The treatment only takes a few minutes, and you will be numbed first. Dr. Shamban says it takes about three to four treatments, spaced four to six weeks apart, to see full results, and then you’re done forever. That’s the best part—the results are immediate (you’ll see a lift in the skin right away) and lasting—semi-permanent, to be exact (it hasn’t been around long enough to see if the results are permanent). We saw a patient from the clinical trials who was four years out, and his results looked just as impressive as the “after” photos from four years ago.