Uneven skin tone, dark spots, blemishes – regardless of what you call it, hyperpigmentation is a major complexion killer.
If you thought wrinkles were the only battle-ground in the fight against ageing, you’d be mistaken.
Meet the new skin enemy: pigmentation, yes, dark spots, it seems, may actually be considerably more ageing than facial lines.
Hyperpigmentation, which covers everything from freckles to larger areas of discoloration, is caused by excess melanin production.
While the sun worsens all pigmentation, it is not the only culprit for pesky blemishes and, in order to treat it most effectively, you should first identify the cause.
Enter brightening serums, creams and lotions. These products feature such star ingredients as vitamin C, niacinamide, bearberry or licorice extracts, and azelaic acid. These melanin inhibitors target the pigment production phase.
Expect to see good results in about two months, especially if you’re regularly exfoliating and applying good-quality sunscreen.
Freckles, while similar in appearance to sun spots, tend first to appear in young, fair sun-sensitive individuals and fade when UV exposure is decreased, so a good sunscreen is a must.
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) which occur in the area of a skin injury (commonly a breakout, chickenpox, and repeated eye rubbing or picking at your skin) is another usual suspect for discrete brownish spots, especially in the darker skin types. Best fix-it: try at-home glycolic acid peels, to encourage the damaged skin to turn over as quickly as possible.
Melasma, is typically triggered by hormonal changes such as pregnancy, the pill or menopause in genetically susceptible ladies, is the most common cause. Lightening agents are the most effective products, as they work to inhibiting pigment production. Again, serious sun care is key, as UV exposure worsens the condition.