Chicks Dig Scars

They arouse strong sentiment in those who have them and in those who are viewing them. They can elicit pride, fear, or shame in the bearer and emotions just as varied in the viewer. They come in a variety of topographies, resembling canyons or mountains, and sometimes bear the likeness of a country or even a person's silhouette. Surely there are those among the devout who pray for a Virgin Mary scar every time they skin their knee.

Scars are the result of fibrous tissues that replace the original skin. A scar may be tougher than the original tissue, but it does not include sweat glands or hair follicles. Also, if you've ever observed a scar noticeably darkening from sun-exposure, you've experienced its susceptibility to UV radiation. As a wound to the dermis heals a permanent scar is formed from Type I collagen, which will allow for the return of blood vessels. Scars can improve in appearance as new collagen reforms the wounded tissue. Vitamin E and cocoa butter may also be applied to further fade a scar into the surrounding skin, although this is not always the case.

  • Hypertrophic Scar
  • Raised and red in appearance, hypertrophic scars do not generally grow beyond the original wound.

  • Keloid Scar
  • Keloid scars can resemble a benign tumor as they continue to grow indefinitely. Both hypertrophic and keloid scars are more likely to appear on younger and dark-skinned people.1

  • Contracture Scar
  • Results from a permanent tightening of the skin, and may affect muscles and tendons below the surface as well as proper nerve function.2

  • Burn Scar
  • The name says it all; burn scars are the scars resulting from a burn. They can result in the formation of any of the types of scars discussed above, but burns are classified by their intensity as being of the first, second, or third degree. This has obvious consequences toward a scar's formation.

  • Stretch Scar
  • Formed when the skin is stretched beyond the dermal layer's ability to keep up with replacements of collagen. Common causes include pregnancy and weight gain.

  • Emotional Scar
  • While not visible like their physical cousins, emotional scars can cause much more damage in the long run. Just as physical scar tissue does not function as well as the original skin, emotional scars can prevent healthy emotional feeling and expression in an individual.

The word itself is derived from the Greek eskhara. To make sense of the etymology, eskhara can be translated as "scab formed after a burn," but it is more literally translated as "hearth, fireplace." It may have come to be used for any type of wound because of the influence from the Middle English skar, "crack, cut, incision."2

soul crushing artistic rendition