If you notice that some parts of your face have a different skin tone, you might be suffering from hyperpigmentation.
Hyperpigmentation is not a serious condition that requires medical attention. However, it can make your skin look dull and unattractive. It can get quite distressing when one has dark patches on the face. Hyperpigmentation can occur to anyone regardless of gender, race, or age. Contrary to what most people think, hyperpigmentation is not difficult to treat and restore your flawless complexion.
What Is Pigmentation?
There are two types of pigmentation that can cause some parts of your skin to turn a different shade from the rest of your skin. This is due to the presence of melanin which is found on the surface of the skin. Melanin is produced by melanocytes and it protects your skin from UV damage.
HYPERPIGMENTATION This is usually the darkening of certain areas of the skin. This happens because of overproduction of melanin. These spots may appear brown or tan spots on the skin, and they are commonly known as melasma.
HYPOPIGMENTATION On the other hand, hypopigmentation occurs when melanin production slows down and certain areas of the skin becomes lighter than the rest of the skin.
Causes of Hyperpigmentaion
Hyperpigmentation is more common in women than in men. Hyperpigmentation starts to occur between age of 20 and 40 years and it is more common in people with naturally brown skin as compared to those with fairer skin or black skin.
Cause of hyperpigmentation is complex. Some of the common causes are listed below:
SUN EXPOSURE This is the most avoidable and also the most common cause of hyperpigmentation. Age spots are usually caused by sun exposure. The darkening of age spots are specifically caused by UVA rays which penetrate deep into the skin and cause the formation of age spots.
PREGNANCY Pregnant women commonly suffer from hyperpigmentation around the upper lip, nose, cheekbones, and forehead. They may also appear on your forearms and other parts of the body that are commonly exposed to the sun. These changes are triggered by hormonal changes during pregnancy, which stimulates an increase in your body’s production of melanin.
HORMONE THERAPY Many hormone replacement pills and oral contraceptive pills may trigger the production of melanin in your body to develop hyperpigmentation on your skin.
MEDICATION AND SKIN CARE PRODUCTS There are some treatments for cancer that may cause hyperpigmenation in your skin. Some chemotherapy drugs that are associated with temporary hyperpigmentation include Melphalan, Busulfan, Cyclophosphamide, 5-fluorouacil, doxorubicin, dauorubicin, bleomycin, BCNU. Some scented soaps and cosmetics may also cause phytotoxic reaction that can trigger formation of hyperpigmentation.
Treatments for Pigmentation
There are several treatments that are available for pigmentation, from cheaper remedies to more costly ones. The effectiveness of the treatments also depend on several factors such as type of pigmentation, location of pigmentation, size of pigmentation and the type of treatment you choose.
CHEMICAL PEEL This strips away the outer layer of dead skin cells to stimulate the growth of healthy new skin. This inexpensive treatment is effective for people with budget constraint. As the chemical peel is a rather strong acid, there is always a risk that your surrounding skin may get burned. Always get a certified medical doctor to perform this treatment for you.
IPL Hyperpigmentation can also be treated with IPL. Flashes of light from a high-energy lamp is targeted on the pigments to selectively destroy the pigment cells. This affordable treatment is safe and effective.
LASER TREATMENT Our personal favourite is to use pigment laser to remove hyperpigmentation from the skin. Unlike traditional pigment lasers, Ruvy Touch Pigment Laser uses red pulses of laser energy to specifically target epidermal pigments such as age spots with great precision. Because this is handled by a medical doctor, you can be sure that you are in safe hands. Your hyperpigmenation will be lightened significantly without any damage to the surrounding skin.
SKIN CARE PRODUCT If you are not keen to see a doctor to treat hyperpigmentation, PerfectGlow Skin Illumination Creme will be the perfect solution for you. This multi-action skin brightening moisturizer contains ReviWhite, Arbutin, and Kojic Acid that works synergistically to reduce pigment deposits and protect your skin from dullness. It also hydrates and brightens the skin and boosts skin radiance.