Post Inflammatory Erythema

Post Inflammatory Erythema (PIE): Top 5 effective treatments to consider!

Post-Inflammatory Erythema or PIE is a type of skin reaction caused by an injury that acne might leave behind. Once pimples have smoothed out and healed, the battle with acne isn't always over.  Acne breakouts frequently leave pink, red, and sometimes purple areas on the skin when they heal.

PIE is more common in lighter skin tones, when the capillaries beneath your skin burst; a surge in blood flow is triggered to mend the vascular wound, resulting in these blemishes. In this article, we will come to know about PIE, as well as topical and medical treatments to help you to get rid of it.


What is Post Inflammatory Erythema (PIE)

Before we begin, it's important to note that the phrase "post-inflammatory erythema" is a very new term. Previously, the red marks left by an injury were called "macula." In dermatology, this term describes areas of redness that do not rise above skin level.

Let's take a look at the name: "Post" means "after," "inflammatory" means "caused by inflammation," and "erythema" means "redness," so it's a red, pink area on the skin left behind from an inflammatory process.

When acne is in the healing process, the PIE condition arises. Healing typically takes place in three phases: inflammation, formation of tissues, and reorganization of the matrix.

In simple terms, the blood flow stops at the inflammation stage when the blood vessels under the lesion get damaged or ruptured. Then these pink or red marks appear it can also leave scars when left untreated.

What causes PIE?

Acne lesions, especially those on the face, are frequently inflamed. You may wish to get rid of them as soon as possible. As a result, you resort to squeezing pimples, which can worsen blood vessel damage and result in pink blotches on your face. Additionally, if you can't keep your hands off your face, scarring may result.

How can PIE be prevented?

When treating post-inflammatory erythema, search for skincare ingredients/products that:

  • Restore the barrier function of your skin
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Reduce the dilation of blood vessels.

Topical Treatments

Although PIE normally goes away on its own, there are various topical treatments that can help speed things up. Everything you need to know about it is right here.

1. Vitamin C

Vitamin C Serum

The most prevalent antioxidant in human skin is vitamin C. It is necessary for collagen formation, as well as the reduction of pigmentation and the neutralization of oxidative stress produced by environmental variables (such as UV radiation, pollution, and smoking).

Vitamin C skin ingredient is beneficial for hyperpigmentation, a poor complexion, and premature ageing of the skin. Your skin can benefit from a vitamin C serum. Because of its lower molecular weight, it can permeate deeper layers of the skin, resulting in faster results.

2. Niacinamide

Niacinamide Serum

Niacinamide (nicotinamide) is a water-soluble form of Vitamin B3. According to some studies, niacinamide raises the levels of ceramides, free fatty acids, and cholesterol in the stratum corneum. That can help to stabilize the skin's barrier function, reducing water loss and improving hydration.

The anti-inflammatory properties of niacinamide help reduce skin redness. Simultaneously, it works to reduce acne spots by lightening them and clearing the pores of bacteria with its antimicrobial properties. It comes in a variety of forms, including toners, serums, and even as an active ingredient in moisturizers.

3. Sunscreen

Gel Based Sunscreen SPF 50

Wearing sunscreen every day has numerous benefits. Acne is caused by the sebaceous glands overproducing oil as a result of high temperatures. This is why sunscreen is required to protect your skin from the sun's damaging rays, which not only cause acne but also aggravate existing acne.

According to dermatologists, wearing a decent broad-spectrum sunscreen gives appropriate protection from UV rays and aids in the successful relief of PIE symptoms.

4. Aloe Vera

Aloe vera

If you've ever had sunburn, you've certainly heard of aloe vera, a plant extract that's often used to heal sensitive skin.  Aloe vera includes vitamins A, C, and E, saponins, and amino acids, and has hydrating, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties.

Research studies have shown that Aloe Vera aids in reducing acne-related facial redness and inflammation.

5. Moisturizers

Ultra Hydrating Moisturizer

To compensate for the lack of moisture, dry skin causes excessive oil production in the sebaceous glands. The excess sebum blocks pores, resulting in severe acne and outbreaks. This is why specialists advise keeping the skin hydrated, whether it's oily or dry, to avoid acne and its after-effects (PIE). Because acne-prone skin is so sensitive, it's always a good idea to invest in the correct moisturizer.

If you are dealing with post-inflammatory erythema, choose a moisturizer that is "non-comedogenic," free of mineral oils and parabens, and has oil-controlling characteristics.

If you have dry, acne-prone skin, search for moisturizers that contain components like

You can also consider medical treatments if you aren’t satisfied with topical treatments.

Medical Treatment

1. Laser Treatment

Dermatologists treat PIE with a variety of lasers, including powerful pulsed light and pulsed dye lasers. These function by locating and removing damaged blood vessel regions beneath the skin, reducing irritation and discoloration.

2. Microneedling

A derma-roller with small needles is used to create superficial, controlled skin damage in micro-needling. This causes the skin to create new collagen-rich tissue, which eliminates red patches on the surface. To observe the results, you may need to have micro needling done several times.

Simple tips to prevent PIE

Always keep in mind that prevention is always better than cure. There are a few basic steps you may do to prevent post-inflammatory erythema following an acne infection.

  • Never pick, squeeze, touch, or itch your pimples.
  • Apply sunscreen daily
  • Establish a good skin care regimen.

Key Take-Away

PIE isn't harmful to one's health, but it can linger for several months or even longer if left untreated. Always look for skincare products that have elements that help to relieve inflammation, build the skin barrier, and moisturize the skin. A medicated cleanser, toner, treatment cream, and moisturizer should all be part of your daily routine.

Thankfully, using topical medications in conjunction with preventative measures will help you quickly resolve post-acne erythema.

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