Removing Ice Pick Scars: Unveiling the Efficacy of Microdermabrasion

Ice pick scars, named for their deep, narrow, pitted appearance, are a common result of severe acne. These scars can be difficult to treat due to their depth and sharp borders. One treatment that has gained popularity in recent years is microdermabrasion. But can microdermabrasion effectively remove ice pick scars? Let’s delve into the science behind this treatment and its efficacy in treating ice pick scars.

What is Microdermabrasion?

Microdermabrasion is a minimally invasive skin rejuvenation procedure that uses a device to gently sand the skin, removing the thicker, uneven outer layer. This type of skin rejuvenation is used to treat light scarring, discoloration, sun damage, and stretch marks. It can also improve age spots and blackheads, lessen the appearance of large pores, and reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

How Does Microdermabrasion Work?

Microdermabrasion works by removing the top layer of skin, the stratum corneum, which is composed of dead skin cells. This process stimulates the production of new skin cells and collagen, leading to smoother, younger-looking skin. The procedure is usually painless and requires no anesthesia. It can be performed in a dermatologist’s office or at a spa.

Can Microdermabrasion Remove Ice Pick Scars?

While microdermabrasion can be effective in treating mild acne scars and hyperpigmentation, it is generally not considered the best treatment for ice pick scars. This is because microdermabrasion only removes the top layer of skin and cannot reach the deeper layers where ice pick scars form. Therefore, while microdermabrasion may help to reduce the appearance of ice pick scars, it is unlikely to completely remove them.

What are the Alternatives?

For deeper scars like ice pick scars, more invasive treatments may be necessary. These can include punch excision, where the scar is surgically removed and the wound is closed with stitches, and laser resurfacing, which uses a laser to remove the top layer of skin and stimulate collagen production in the underlying layers. Chemical peels and dermabrasion are other options that can reach deeper into the skin than microdermabrasion.


While microdermabrasion can offer many benefits for skin rejuvenation and the treatment of mild acne scars, it is not the most effective treatment for ice pick scars due to its inability to reach the deeper layers of skin where these scars form. If you’re dealing with ice pick scars, it’s best to consult with a dermatologist to discuss the most effective treatment options for your specific situation.