Do you have scars that stare back at you in the mirror? Regardless of how you got them, there’s a growing number of effective treatments that can help reduce your scar’s appearance.
But before you go out and buy that “popular” scar cream on Amazon, it’s important to understand what type of scar you actually have, as not all scars are treated equally (pun intended ?).
Stick around and I’ll share with you what to look for in a scar product, based on real medical research and my own years of personal experience dealing with scars (both chest keloids and acne scars).
And of course, I’ll also share my top 10 recommended scar creams (that is why you’re here, isn’t it?).
ⓘ In this post, I’m going to reveal the best scar creams based on real medical research and my own years of personal experience!
Related: How to Get Rid of Acne Scars
What Is The Best Scar Cream?
Here are my top recommendations for the best scar creams:
- Skinuva Next Generation Scar Cream [Best Overall Pick]
- SkinMedica Scar Recovery Gel [Best for Red & Pink Scars]
- Kelo-Cote Scar Gel [Best for Hypertrophic Scars & Keloids]
- Eau Thermale Avène Cicalfate Restorative Skin Cream [Best for New Wounds & Sensitive Skin]
- Glytone Soothing Lipid Recovery Cream [Best for Post-Procedure Scar Prevention]
- Elizabeth Arden 8-Hour Cream [Best All-Purpose Scar Cream]
- La-Roche Posay Cicaplast Baume B5 Soothing Repair Balm [Best for Damaged Skin]
- Bioderma Cicabio Soothing Repair Cream [Best for Skin Discomfort & Scar Itchiness]
- Barker Goods Organic Scar Fade Balm [Best Natural Scar Cream & Excellent Budget Option]
- Pro-Sil Silicone Stick for Scars [Best for Travel Use & Sensitive Areas]
The 10 Best Scar Creams in 2020
1. Best Overall Pick: Skinuva Next Generation Scar Cream
Skinuva Next Generation Scar Cream is a rare product that offers a truly “all-in-one” solution to scar treatment. This cream combines several science-backed scar reduction ingredients, including:
- Silicone Cream: silicone is recommended by the International Advisory Panel on Scar Management for the treatment of both hypertrophic scars and keloids.
- Growth Factors: following an injury to your skin, your body will generate growth factors that promote wound healing and cell regeneration. It’s believed that topical application of growth factors, especially on atrophic scars, can encourage collagen formation and improve recovery results.
- Vitamin C: a powerful skin brightening ingredient, vitamin C helps reduce post-scar discoloration by normalizing melanin production (the root cause of hyperpigmentation).
- Natural Ingredients: Skinuva also includes aloe vera, centella asiatica, and hyaluronic acid for additional scar hydration and skin nourishment, resulting in a healthy-looking complexion.
Skinuva was thoughtfully designed by a team of physicians, including plastic surgeons, and has been shown in company studies to be twice as effective as regular silicone cream.
It should be used for at least 3 months on new scars and 3-6 months on older scars.
2. Best for Red & Pink Scars: SkinMedica Scar Recovery Gel
A respected name in dermatology, SkinMedica’s Scar Recovery Gel helps minimize and reduce the appearance of red and pink scars (very common after cosmetic procedures like laser resurfacing).
This scar gel features the key ingredient Centelline, which is a synergistic blend of:
- Centella Asiatica: a native plant in many Asian countries and commonly known as Gotu Kola. Medical research indicates it may be helpful for minor wounds and burns.
- Bulbine Frutescens: a species of flowering plant found in Southern Africa. Researchers have found that the gel from the leaves of this plant increases collagen formation and maturation.
- Oleuropein: a chemical compound extracted from green olives. Research has shown that this olive leaf extract can accelerate wound healing in a lab environment.
Many customers noted that this product significantly improved their surgery scars and was available at a lower price on Amazon than at their dermatologist’s office.
SkinMedica Scar Recovery Gel should be used twice a day, both in the morning and evening, and for at least 3 months on new scars and up to 6 months on old scars.
3. Best for Hypertrophic Scars & Keloids: Kelo-Cote Scar Gel
Remember when I said that silicone is recommended by an international panel of scar experts for raised scars, like hypertrophic scars and keloids?
Well, the most popular form of silicone-based scar treatment is a silicone gel like Kelo-Cote. These offer more flexibility and ease of use compared to their older cousins, those filmsy silicone sheets. ?
I’ve tried many brands of silicone gels over the years (including ScarAway, NewGel+, and Kelo-Cote) and it’s really helped flatten and gradually fade away my chest keloids and acne scars.
Honestly, silicone gels all work pretty well, which is why I recommend the one that offers the best value for your money: the 60g version of Kelo-Cote Scar Gel (it works out to just under $1.00 per gram).
Remember, for the best results, you need to be consistent with your scar regimen and apply the silicone gel twice daily for at least 3 months for new scars and up to 6 months for older scars.
Also allow 1-2 minutes for the gel to dry before wearing clothes or applying makeup.
4. Best for New Wounds & Sensitive Skin: Eau Thermale Avène Cicalfate Restorative Skin Cream
Known for its signature “Avène Thermal Spring Water” from France, products from Eau Thermale Avène are clinically proven to help with skin redness and irritation, and ideal for sensitive skin.
Avène’s Cicalfate product line, in particular, is designed to address wound care and scar care concerns, including recent injuries, accidents, post-op scars, stitches, cuts, bruises, and burns.
The Cicalfate Restorative Skin Cream helps accelerate wound healing processes and provide an optimal environment for skin recovery with its rich and occlusive cream texture (a water-in-oil formula).
The key ingredients of this scar recovery cream include:
- Micronized Sucralfate: helps replenish your skin barrier to assist the recovery process
- Copper Sulfate and Zinc Sulfate: works together to create and maintain healthy-looking skin
- Avène Thermal Spring Water: has unique properties that soothes skin redness and irritation
This product is suitable for infants, children, and adults. It can also be used following cosmetic procedures such as laser resurfacing, dermabrasion, and chemical peels to alleviate post-op symptoms.
5. Best for Post-Procedure Scar Prevention: Glytone Soothing Lipid Recovery Cream
While Glytone is better known for its powerful glycolic acid lotions, the brand also offers a post-procedure recovery cream with a rich emollient formula that helps restore your skin’s natural lipid barrier.
Featuring ingredients like shea butter, camelina oil, amino acids, pro-vitamin A, and ceramides, Glytone’s Soothing Lipid Recovery Cream deeply replenishes and hydrates your skin following aesthetic treatments such as microdermabrasion, chemical peels, and laser resurfacing.
If you’ve ever had laser treatments in the past, you know your face will become a bright red tomato for anywhere from a few days to a couple weeks.
Your dermatologist will most likely recommend using a good moisturizer as part of standard post-procedure care to protect and repair your natural skin barrier (and they’ll probably promote an expensive “brand name” one from their store).
So the next time you have a cosmetic procedure done, save yourself some cash by using a high quality (and affordable) scar recovery cream like Glytone that is specifically designed to prevent post-procedure scars and ensure the most aesthetic recovery results for your skin.
6. Best All-Purpose Scar Cream: Elizabeth Arden 8-Hour Cream
If you’re wondering, “What’s a cheap scar cream that I can keep on me and use just about anywhere?”
Then the resounding answer (from over 80 years of history) is, “Elizabeth Arden’s Eight Hour Cream.”
Created in 1930 by Elizabeth Arden as the very first product of her namesake cosmetic line, the Eight Hour Cream is an award-winning and much celebrated skin protectant that helps moisturize dry skin, relieve chapped lips, hydrate cracked heels and elbows, soothe burns, prevent scars, and much more.
The Eight Hour Cream is petrolatum-based (Vaseline) and includes vitamin E and salicylic acid.
It’s been noted by many customers that applying the cream immediately to new cuts, scrapes, bruises, and burns, can dramatically improve the wound healing process and minimize your scar appearance.
The Eight Hour Cream can also be used to calm irritation, treat wind burns, hydrate nails and cuticles, tame runaway hair and eyebrows, soothe dry hands, and highlight (soon-to-be glowing) cheeks.
7. Best for Damaged Skin: La-Roche Posay Cicaplast Baume B5 Soothing Repair Balm
Sometimes, we need to fix more than just a small scar here and there. If you’re suffering from damaged or compromised skin, as the result of a major injury, laceration, surgery, or burn, you need to take a more holistic approach to restoring your natural lipid barrier for healthier-looking skin.
That’s where La-Roche Posay’s Cicaplast Soothing Repair Balm comes in (yup, it’s got a long name).
Similar to Eau Thermale Avène (which I covered earlier), La-Roche Posay has its origins in the thermal spring waters from a town called (unsurprisingly) La-Roche Posay, France.
The Cicaplast Soothing Repair Balm has been hailed by its fans as the “Holy Grail” for damaged skin, sensitive skin, post-procedure (including laser treatment) redness, and minor cuts, scrapes, or bruises.
As one happy customer described it, “I’m pretty sure it’s crafted wth angel tears and unicorn magic.” Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.
The cream has received overwhelmingly positive customer reviews on Amazon.
In terms of ingredients, La-Roche Posay Cicaplast includes:
- Shea Butter & Glycerin: for deep skin hydration and nourishment
- Panthenol: provides a gentle soothing effect for dry skin
- Madecassoside & Copper/Zinc/Manganese: helps improve the appearance of irritated skin
- La-Roche Posay Thermal Spring Water: contains unique properties that relieves redness, irritation, and skin sensitivity
Best of all, Cicaplast is extremely affordable at just $15 right now for a 1.35 oz tube.
8. Best for Skin Discomfort & Scar Itchiness: Bioderma Cicabio Soothing Repair Cream
While better known for its bestselling micellar water, Bioderma offers an ultra affordable scar cream called the Cicabio Soothing Repair Cream.
Bioderma Cicabio helps restore a healthy epidermis (the topmost layer of your skin) by deeply moisturizing your skin and reducing the urge to scratch with innovative active ingredient Antalgicine.
This scar cream helps repair an irritated and weakened skin barrier through a combination of resveratrol, copper, and centella asiatica for high-quality skin cell regeneration. Zinc is also included to maintain an optimal environment for wound healing during your skin’s renewal phase.
Overall, Bioderma Cicabio effectively relieves common scar symptoms like discomfort and itchiness, all while improving your recovery results and offering exceptional value for money.
9. Best Natural Scar Cream (& Excellent Budget Option): Barker Goods Organic Scar Fade Balm
If you’re looking for an organic and all-natural scar cream, then look no further! This scar fading balm by Barker Goods uses only USDA Certified Organic ingredients, including:
- Organic Olive Oil
- Organic Beeswax
- Organic Coconut Oil
- Organic Carnauba Wax
- Vitamin E
The combination of these 5 simple ingredients is an organic balm that reduces your scar appearance, relieves itchiness and discomfort, and alleviates skin redness and irritation.
In addition, this product is made in the USA and customers have reported good results for minor scars, scratches, and bruises (and they all loved that this product uses only organic ingredients ?).
10. Best for Travel Use & Sensitive Areas (Such As Lips, Ears, Nose): Pro-Sil Silicone Stick for Scars
Last but not least, what if you need a scar cream that’s convenient for traveling? And as a bonus, can be used on sensitive areas like your lips, ears, nose, and eyelids?
Fortunately, the answer lies in Pro-Sil, a type of silicone stick used for scar treatment.
Essentially, it’s like a chap stick for your scars that is instead made of 100% silicone (which is recommended by the International Panel on Scar Management for hypertrophic scars and keloids).
Pro-Sil is easy to carry around in a purse or pocket, for traveling and going through security, and for on-the-go scar treatment. Some people like to apply Pro-Sil multiple times a day to ensure continuous silicone coverage over their scars for the best recovery results.
Finally, because it’s not a cream or gel, Pro-Sil will not get into your eyes or cause any skin irritation. It can safely be applied on scars or wounds on your lips, ears, nose, and eyelid areas.
The Different Types of Scars
Raised scars, such as hypertrophic scars from surgical procedures and burns, are characterized by red, bumpy, and elevated bands of scar tissue.
Silicone-based gels, sheets, and creams are the most effective way to soften raised scars, including keloids.
For older or more stubborn raised scars, speak to your dermatologist about corticosteroid injections, a stronger option that helps flatten scars by breaking down excess collagen fibers.
Atrophic scars, also called depressed or indented scars, look like shallow “pits” or “waves” as a result of lost collagen from the initial insult to the skin.
These types of scars are common souvenirs left behind by cystic acne, severe injuries, chickenpox, burns, eczema, etc.
While more difficult to treat, scar creams and serums that contain growth factors or moisturizing bases can help encourage collagen production, which in turn “plumps up” the appearance of atrophic scars.
For deeper and more severe scarring, treatments such as microneedling, dermabrasion, and of course, laser resurfacing, are additional avenues to consider with your dermatologist or plastic surgeon.
For more information, I cover an extensive list of scar treatments in my complete guide to acne scars.
Whelp, that’s all she wrote!
I hope you enjoyed my review of the best scar creams in 2020. Let me know if you think I’ve missed any products that have worked well for your scars!