If you walk into your local drugstore and ask the pharmacist what to use for reducing your scar, he or she will most likely recommend a product containing silicone gel. Silicone gel is considered to be the gold standard of topical scar treatment products. In fact, it has been usedfor more than 30 years to reduce the appearance of scars, both new and old, due to its proven safety and efficacy.
While there is a great deal of evidence supporting the benefits of silicone scar treatment products, you may still have a few questions about how silicone gel reduces scars. Common questions that we’ve come across include: What exactly is silicone gel? Are there other ingredients that are better for scars than silicone gel? Does silicone gel work for everyone? Keep reading to find out the answers to these questions and more about how silicone gel reduces scars.
What is silicone gel?
In order to understand how silicone gel reduces scars, let’s first discuss what silicone even is. Silicone (not to be confused with silicon, the14th element on the periodic table) is actually the terms for a group of compounds. These compounds are known as polymers, which means they are made of repeating units ofsiloxane, a chain of alternating silicon atoms and oxygen atoms that are often combined with carbon and/or hydrogen. Thus, silicones can also be calledpolysiloxanes.
There are many different types of silicones, but when it comes to scar treatment products only medical grade silicones are used.Medical grade silicones undergo specific testing to ensure they are safe to use in and on the body.
When the skin is injured, whether by a cut, burn, or surgical incision, a complex mechanism unfolds to begin healing the wound. The body must first stop the flow of blood, followed by remodeling of the damaged tissue. During this tissue remodeling phase of the wound healing process, the new layer of skin has ahigh propensity for transepidermal water loss (TEWL). TEWL simply means the loss of water through the epidermis (the top layer of skin) into the environment.
So why does it matter that the skin is losing more water than normal? Well, the body tries to compensate for this state of dehydration. According to a publication in the journalAdvances in Wound Care, various cells in the epidermis are signaled to produce and release more collagen, a structural protein that supports the skin. The newly formed collagen rushes to the scar site, which helps to support the wound but also leads to many of the undesirable physical and aesthetic properties associated with scarring. What’s even worse is when the body produces an excessive amount of collagen, which can lead to raised and discolored scars. These abnormal scars can either be classified as keloids or hypertrophic scars. Luckily, this is where silicone gel can help.
When silicone gel is applied to a wound or scar, it spreads and dries as an ultra-thin sheet that forms an occlusive barrier. This barrierreplicates the skin’s occlusion properties, normalizing hydration of the scar site to that of healthy skin. The best part about silicone gel is that while it forms this occlusive barrier, it also allows the wound to breathe so important elements like oxygen, nitrogen, and water vapors can easily pass between the skin and the environment. The results? A softer, flatter, less noticeable scar.
Based on this understanding of how silicone gel reduces scars, we’ve formulated theScargenix line of treatment products with 100% medical grade silicone gel. But did you know that when silicone gel is the sole active ingredient in a scar treatment product it fails to work forover halfthe people who try it? In our opinion, this is just not acceptable! When you spend your hard-earned money on a product that claims to resolve your scar concerns, the rate of success should be higher. Therefore, to ensure you achieve your desired results we’ve added the breakthrough ingredient pracaxi oil to the Scargenix products.
Pracaxi oil has been used for centuriesin wound and scar management by the indigenous people in Brazil. Upon discovering this traditional use, modern researchers are now studying the effect of pracaxi oil on scar tissue. Multiple clinical evaluations have proven that pracaxi oil can reduce redness and inflammation of wounds and also improve the length, texture, and intensity of scars, both new and old. Thus, when the centuries-old pracaxi and modern day silicone gel are combined, we guarantee that your results will far surpass any other current treatment.
If you enjoyed learning about the science behind how silicone gel reduces scars, sign up for our newsletter to ensure you never miss a post!