Scarring is a natural part of the body’s healing process. When you get a scrape or wound, scar tissue forms over the wound to protect it and facilitate healing. There are times, however, when the scar tissue grows far beyond the original site, forming a thick, hard, disfiguring scar called keloids.
Keloids are benign growths, though at times they may feel tender or itchy. They are more often a cosmetic concern than a medical one. They can make you feel self-conscious, especially when the growths are very large or highly visible.
Treating or surgically removing the keloid can be a tricky one. Keloids form as the body’s attempt to heal itself. Hence, removing the keloid might mean that the scar tissue would grow back again.
As an alternative, you can try natural remedies to reduce the appearance of keloids without the risk of the scars growing back. The following are the most common natural remedies used for the removal of keloids.
- Aloe Vera
Aloe vera has anti-inflammatory properties that help inhibit excessive collagen formation that could lead to a keloid. Apply aloe gel frequently and continuously on the scar as soon as the wound starts to heal. Make sure to clean off dead skin cells before each application this can also cause irregular collagen growth.
In addition to its anti-inflammatory properties, aloe vera also has a cooling and soothing effect on the skin that can help alleviate pain. Aloe gel also blocks the entry of bacteria and foreign bodies into the wound.
- Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has long been touted for its skin health benefits, including the capability to diminish keloids and scars. It has anti-inflammatory properties, which helps reduce the swelling and redness of the scar. Apple cider vinegar also contains alpha hydroxy acids that help slough off dead skin cells, thus diminishing the size and discoloration of the keloid.
Apply apple cider vinegar directly on the affected area. Let it dry for a few minutes then repeat the process to speed up the healing. Do this several times a day for 4 to 5 weeks for best results.
- Sandal wood and rose water paste
Sandal wood has long been used for its skin revitalizing properties. It is particularly useful in revitalizing dry, inflamed skin and in preventing the skin from forming unsightly scars. Rose water, on the other hand, is a natural toning and healing agent.
Add enough rose water to sandal wood powder to make a paste. Mix well and apply on the affected area before going to bed. Wash it off with warm water in the morning. Do this procedure for two months or until you see results.
- Lemon juice
Lemon juice’s capability to reduce keloids stem from its rich vitamin C and citric acid content. Vitamin C is an integral component of collagen synthesis, while citric acid is a form of alpha hydroxy acid which helps in the exfoliation of dead skin cells. It also has a bleaching effect on the skin, thereby helping to reduce the discoloration of keloids.
Cut a lemon juice in half and rub the fleshy part on the affected area, making sure that it is covered with the juices. Leave this on for about 30 minutes then wash off with warm water. Do this at least once daily.
Skin dryness can aggravate keloids, causing them to become deeper. Honey provides a wonderful remedy for dry skin as it is a natural humectant, thus keeping the skin supple and moisturized.
Massage organic honey on the affected area at least twice a day. You should see results after some regular use.
- Baking soda
Baking soda can help reduce the appearance of keloids by acting as an abrasive agent when used as a scrub. Mix one part baking soda with three parts hydrogen peroxide to make a paste. Massage the paste on the affected area. Re-apply the paste two to three times a day.
Garlic prevents the production of fibroblast cells, the cells responsible for the formation of keloids. Apply garlic oil on the affected area. Leave it on for 10 minutes then wash it off thoroughly. Alternatively, you can crush a garlic clove and rub this on the scar. Leave it for 10 minutes before rinsing it off with water.
- Fuller’s earth
Fuller’s earth is a popular natural treat met for keloids as well as for scars left by burns, acne and other skin disorders. Mix Fuller’s earth, lemon juice and rose water to make smooth paste. Apply and massage the paste on the affected area. Let it dry for 10 minutes then do it again. Do this regularly until the scar vanishes.
- Castor oil
Castor oil can help improve the appearance of keloids and make them less noticeable by softening and smoothening out the fibrous tissue that makes up the scar. Gently massage castor oil on the affected area to promote circulation and expedite healing.
- Kukui Nut Oil
Kukui Nut Oil or Candlenut oil is rich in vitamins C, D and E as well as antioxidants, all of which have been associated with skin-protecting properties. Kukui Nut Oil also stimulates collagen reproduction and locks in moisture similar to silicone. Gently massage Kukui Nut Oil in the affected area at least twice a day.
- Cocoa-shea butter cream
Cocoa butter and shea butter both contain high concentrations of vitamin E, antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids, all of which have long been regarded as beneficial for the skin. Its rich fatty acid content helps keep the skin moisturized, keeping the keloid from growing deeper. Shea butter has the additional benefit of stimulating collagen formation.
Melt 2 teaspoons cocoa butter and 2 teaspoons shea butter and then add one teaspoon vitamin E oil. Store in a container. The cocoa butter and shea butter will solidify once it’s cooled, but will melt once it’s applied on skin. Use this on the affected area at least twice a day.
- Rose hip seed oil
Rose hip oil has long been used for its skin rejuvenating capabilities, particularly for diminishing scars. It’s rich in retinoic acid and vitamin A, both of which prevent hyperpigmentation of scars, encourage cell turnover and increase collagen production. Massage rose hip seed oil on the affected area at least twice a day to improve circulation and promote healing fast.