You can convince yourself that laugh lines around your eyes are not all that bad because it shows that you have had a pretty good life. But what about skin discoloration? What if your skin tone was uneven, meaning certain parts are visibly darker than the rest? You probably will not think too kindly of blotchy skin especially around your face. When your skin is under the influence of hormones and genetics and not forgetting the sun exposure, hyperpigmentation is likely to occur. Many women begin to develop this skin problem when they hit their 40s. Summer ends and your nice summer skin color slowly disappears. That is when the ugly spots become more visible. Although summer is over, but the evidence of sun damage remains. The damages are the result of not only this year but also from the past years of sun exposure.
Of course, using sunscreen lotion helps in protecting your skin from harmful ultraviolet rays. But let’s face it, it still doesn’t block out the sun 100%.
During your mom or your grandmother’s time, women did not think too much about changes to their skin. But today, things are different. People have greater health and skin awareness. Do you despise those dark blemishes? With the right strategies and the help of effective products, you can make them go away forever.
Hyperpigmentation is usually caused by excessive sun exposure and hormonal changes. It usually affects arms, face, and neck. Liver spots resemble large brown freckles and usually become more visible after age 60 or sometimes earlier. Oftentimes, this is due to chronic sun exposure.
On the other hand, freckles can be hereditary. They are very common among young people. Their emergence can also be triggered by the exposure to ultraviolet rays. If you have light skin color, you are likely to have freckles.
The best way to treat hyperpigmentation is stop it from surfacing in the first place. Are you using a broad-spectrum sunscreen lotion? If not you should. That will get you protected from not only UVA rays but UVB as well. Make sure you apply it on sun exposed areas every day to prevent cumulative effect on your skin.
Expectant women with melasma should even more than before put on a sunscreen lotion with at least with SPF30 throughout the first trimester.
There are many skin lightening creams in the market. If you are looking for a natural solution, these are the ingredients you should look for: kojic acid, vitamin C, niacinamide, grapeseed extract, arbutin, licorice extract and azelaic acid. They work to lighten the skin tone by reducing the amount of melanin produced by the skin.
Kojic acid and hydroquinone are reported to be helpful for freckles, dark patches, and acne spots. Kojic acid is claimed to be effective to tackle uneven skin tone and decrease the production of melanin. It is safer and milder than hydroquinone, which is quite abrasive and a skin irritant because it is derived from Japanese mushroom.
Acne marks are known as post inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) and generally will become less noticeable in three months. For speedy fading, you can use skin lighteners. The results would be faster than laser especially if you use hydroquinone creams.
4% hydroquinone is the limit that can be used in any skin care product. This is set by the US Food and Drug Administration. Arguably, it is the gold standard as far as treating hyperpigmentation is concerned. Thus, any ingredient that claims to reduce hyperpigmentation is inferior to it.
However, there are wild rumors that prevent some people from using it. Most of our foods and beverages contain hydroquinone. As long as you don’t deviate from the guidelines issued by your dermatologist, it is safe to use. The need of medical supervision should discourage skin care companies from using it in their OTC products.
You may want to try laser, intense pulse light (IPL) or fruit acid peels for stubborn spots.
When the hyperpigmentation develops on the surface of the skin, lasers like Fraxel tend to be most effective and have the longest-lasting results.
Moreover, ablative lasers can penetrate deeper for stubborn spots, but it needs about 10 days of recovery time as the treatment is more intense.
Many people assume that intense pulsed light (IPL) is a laser but the truth is that it is not. It is used to focus on the pigment. Light waves are emitted to cause melanin pigments to fragment. Just remember, the whole session can be uncomfortable.
Whether you opt for laser or IPL, it is important to know that it requires an experienced and qualified operator. If it is not operated in the right way, you will suffer from burning and scarring. This will get worse for those with very dark skin.
Microdermabrasion uses tiny crystals to peel the superficial layer away. The results are lighter spots and increased cell turnover. However, microdermabrasion cannot remove dead cells that are located deeper in the skin.
Just in case that the affected cells are not fairly close to the epidermis but located deeper, a glycolic or salicylic acid peel can reach and suppress them. After the peel removes the dead cells, your skin will become flaky, red, and dry, but depending on the potency of the peel, the fresh regenerated skin will show itself after approximately a week or two.
Don’t be to excited yet. Whatever treatment you choose, it will not be permanent. Depending upon the amount of sun your skin receives and your genetic predisposition, your spots could show up again progressively over the years or within weeks. The key to stop these spots is to stay out of the sun and apply treatment as soon as you notice them.
Keeping those spots at bay is a daily habit. Every day, you need to apply sunblock and skin lightening creams. If you have completed the dark spot treatment with either laser or vitamin C, you will need to perform these treatments again over the years.
After you have done a depigmentation treatment, it is important to protect your skin with a good sunblock.
This a caution. When you’re seeing patches on your skin, I think you should get an annual skin exam if you have not done so. Each time you observe some changes in the skin, these can serve as the early warning signs for the development of skin cancers. So, I think you will doing yourself a favor by giving your doctor a chance to have your skin examined.
You may experience discomfort as some dark spot treatments are harsh but none of them can assure you that the spots would not show up again. They may be more effective but you have to paid more compared to skin whitening products. On top of that, your skin need at least two weeks to recover fully. Well, you can consider a concealer if you are not happy with the results.
Another way to remove dark spots is to use a good skin lightening cream. Today, there are many botanicals that have the potential to diminish brown spots. You can apply them on your blotches every day to see the difference. Meladerm is a natural remedy to clear your skin from dark spots. It does not contain paraben and is fragrant free. You’ll find in its formula kojic acid, arbutin and 10 other natural lightening agents that target to inhibit the enzyme tyrosinase which is needed for the production of melanin. You can look up on the Internet for Meladerm reviews. It is considered as one of the best solutions for hyperpigmentation.