What Can Cause Hyperpigmentation
The list of factors that can lead to hyperpigmentation is endless because any irritation can cause it. Acne, cuts, scrapes, waxing, and rashes are just a few. Dr. Battle says the main culprit of hyperpigmentation is sun exposure, because it can cause irritation to the skin or darken an already present mark. This is why SPF is so important, but well get into that later.
According to Dr. Battle, an acne lesion is slightly swollen because it is inflamed and infected, leading to a series of events that lead to hyperpigmentation.
Any squeezing or picking of acne can cause further trauma to the skin, and therefore, dark spots, which is why we need to learn to keep our hands off our faces.
How Can You Help Prevent Hyperpigmentation
In addition to treating hyperpigmentation, be sure to defend skin from the direct causes of discoloration and dark spots. Follow the steps below to help keep skin looking bright and clear:
- Wear sunscreen every day. Even on cloudy days, UV rays can cause dark spots but using a daily sunscreen can help prevent hyperpigmentation.
- If you have acne-prone skin use skincare products with Salicylic Acid or Sulfur to help visibly reduce breakouts and help prevent post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
- If you do have a breakout, use an acne spot treatment to help visibly clear skin. Avoid picking at or popping blemishes which can increase the likelihood of post-acne marks.
- Apply an antioxidant serum along with a sunscreen with pollution protection to help defend skin from pollution and free radicals.
Consider An Rx For Stubborn Skin Discoloration
If OTC remedies aren’t helping, it’s time to call in the pros. Dermatologists consider prescription-strength hydroquinone, alone or combined with other lighteners, to be the gold standard for fading dark spots because it slows the production of pigment. It’s our go-to, says Dr. Downie, because unlike many of the ingredients in OTC products, it almost always works at eliminating hyperpigmentation. However, she adds, hydroquinone treatment should be closely monitored by your dermatologist because in high concentrations hydroquinone can cause sun sensitivity and may bleach the skin.
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Why Does Hyperpigmentation Occur After Acne
Hyperpigmentation acne marks form towards the end of the healing process or once the acne blemish heals.
Whiteheads and blackheads don’t ‘heal.’ Instead, the dead skin and the oil are eliminated, and the pore quickly returns to its normal state. Cysts and pimples, on the other hand, require some healing. This is where hyperpigmentation steps in.
One of the first steps in the healing process is to increase blood flow to the wound site. And acne, to some extent, fits the definition of a minor skin wound, so blood flow increases when acne forms.
The wound releases certain chemicals that travel through the bloodstream and begin the healing process but also cause inflammation. These chemicals stimulate the cells that produce the skin’s pigment.
Both researchers and dermatologists agree that inflammation plays a significant role in hyperpigmentation. But, there’s a lot more to study what causes hyperpigmentation acne.
As you read earlier, melanin produces pigment and melanin is produced by melanocytes. The longer a wound takes to heal, the longer the stimulation of melanocytes and more the release of melanin. This is how acne turns into hyperpigmentation acne marks.
One of the biggest culprits of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation caused by acne is picking zits. The best post-acne hyperpigmentation treatment is to avoid it in the first place.
When Should You See A Doctor?
If you notice changes in an existing spot, you should have a dermatologist or physician examine it.
What Are The Main Types Of Acne Scarring
There are four types of scarring. Hypertrophic scars that are raised due to excessive healing, boxcar scars which are well-defined deep depressions in the skin, rolling scars which are poorly defined deep depressions in the skin and icepick scars, which are narrow impressions in the skin that look as though the skin has been stabbed with an ice pick, she says.
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Who Should Try This
OTC retinoids may be safe for all skin tones, but you should double-check with your dermatologist if you have darker skin and plan on using these products long term.
Its also important to note that retinoids are more often used to treat wrinkles than hyperpigmentation. This means that retinoids may not be the best first-line treatment.
Karla Keene Founder Of Clarityrx Clinical Skin Care And Licensed Esthetician
It takes time. It takes patience.And it takes the right ingredients.There are many products/ingredients that are currently on the market that over-promise and clearly under-deliver. There are two primary things to consider when choosing products for this unwanted condition: safety and efficacy. What ingredients are considered safe? There is much speculation about the unhealthy side effects for some of the active over-the-counter ingredients such as Hydroquinone, a harsh chemical that suppresses the skins ability to produce melanin/color.”
“I have always believed in the power of plant-based ingredients that are safe yet effective in proper dosages to the skin”
“I have always believed in the power of plant-based ingredients that are safe yet effective in proper dosages to the skin. My ingredient of choice for hyperpigmentation is Alpha Arbutin, a brightening miracle-worker derived from bearberries . Alpha Arbutin inhibits the enzymes that stimulate pigment-producing cells in the skin.It is one of the most stable and effective brightening ingredients available for promoting lighter, more even tone for all skin types and is a remarkable facilitator in the quest for brighter skin.”
As you can see, expensive and risky laser treatments are not the only option when it comes to addressing hyperpigmentation. There are many nourishing, natural options for both treatment and prevention. Below are some of our best product picks!
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Ways To Prevent Future Breakouts
There are a number of ways you can actively prevent acne, including:
Keeping your face clean
Washing your face twice a day will remove any impurities, extra oil, and dead skin cells that can lead to breakouts. Remember to refrain from using harsh soaps or scrubs as you dont want to aggravate or irritate the skin!
Watch what you use on your hair
If you have a fringe or hairstyle where the hair is in contact with your skin, it is best to refrain from using leave-in hair styling products as these can clog pores and irritate the skin.
Feed your skin with targeted serums and treatments
At Kiehl’s, we have expertly produced a range of serums and treatments that are backed by science in order to prevent acne.
Stop touching your face
We all know how tempting it can be to pick and pop pimples, however, this should be avoided at all costs since it leads to spreading bacteria which causes irritation and potential acne scarring.
Use any makeup sparingly
If you usually wear makeup, make sure to check that its labelled as non-comedogenic to prevent blocked pores. At the end of the day, remember to remove the makeup thoroughly by cleansing your skin.
Avoid too much sun exposure
Exposing your skin to UV rays can lead to an increase in inflammation and redness, in addition to an overproduction of sebum that triggers acne and causes post-acne pigmentation.
Best Ways To Get Rid Of Hyperpigmentation
The good news is that there are quite a few options that work to neutralize the excess melanin production and get rid of hyperpigmentation. All types of hyperpigmentation that make up the darker skin tone area can be lightened back to your natural skin tone.
The first option to even out your skin is to use an over-the-counter lightening product for this skin condition. When considering this purchase, be sure to choose a product that contains moisturizing agents in it to avoid dry skin as well as to encourage cell turnover. Ingredients like hyaluronic acid or glycerin will boost the growth of skin cells and can also restore the lipid barrier in your skin to protect it from sun rays.
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What You Can Do
Acne-related hyperpigmentation occurs when dark patches develop after a blemish has healed. Although hyperpigmentation is harmless, it can be frustrating to deal with.
If youre experiencing acne-related hyperpigmentation, you arent alone. Talk to your dermatologist about your options for over-the-counter and professional treatment.
The exact treatment you choose will depend on the severity of your condition, as well as your skin type and tone. Your dermatologist can help you find the best option for your skin.
Read on to learn more about how you can fade this form of hyperpigmentation with OTC products, prescription creams, and more.
Additional Help To Clear Acne Scarring And Pih
As well as the intensive remedies mentioned above, effective daily use Simplicité products that help reduce acne scarring are:
Plant Gel Cleanser (Combination/Dry, Oily Skin – cleanse in the morning and at night, also if possible after strenuous exercise.
One Step Exfoliating Cleanser – use every evening after cleansing . Contains Cinnamon – encourages contraction of skin tissue and contains substances that encourage a protective coating to form on damaged scarred skin Lavender – encourages cellular regeneration and reduces surface scarring.
Sage Face Oil will help to reduce scarring and also to correct excess oiliness. It must be applied morning and night after cleansing – apply with Hydrating Floral Toning Lotion for combination dry oily skin.
Lemon Night Creme applied after Sage Face Oil in the evening will help to reduce the depth of the scars.
As upsetting as acne scars and PIH can be these conditions can be successfully treated with effective natural skincare – the key is patience and consistency.
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Freckles Can Be Cute But If You Have Dark Spots On Your Skin That You Don’t Want There Are Ways To Remove Them
If youre bothered by darks spots due to hyperpigmentation on your skin, one thing is clear: Today there are more options for erasing that harmless but irksome discoloration than ever before.
What exactly is hyperpigmentation? Its any patch of skin that looks darker than your natural skin tone due to overproduction of the brown pigment melanin. According to the American Academy of Dermatology , the most common causes of hyperpigmentation which can affect people of all skin tones in varying degrees are:
- Inflammation Skin trauma such as acne, eczema, bug bites, cuts, scrapes, even scratching or friction from, say, vigorous rubbing can set off inflammation. Inflammation, in turn, can send pigment-producing cells into high gear, leaving behind a dark spot after the injury has healed.
Intense Pulse Light Therapy
IPL therapy is a type of non-ablative laser treatment. Also known as a photofacial, IPL therapy stimulates collagen growth within the dermis. It usually requires multiple sessions.
IPL is used for overall pigmentation issues, but flat spots especially respond to this treatment. It may also help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, spider veins, and enlarged pores.
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Case Study: Treating Acne And Hyperpigmentation
By Dr Simi Adedeji / 09 Jan 2020
Dr Simi Adedeji treats a patients concerns while factoring in a budget
The treatment of acne and hyperpigmentation can pose a particular challenge in many patients, more so in skin of colour where the tendency to form hyperpigmentation is greater.1 Without appropriate precautions, attempts to treat the hyperpigmentation may inadvertently worsen the condition. It is estimated that by 2050, nearly one half of the US population will have skin of colour.2
According to the last UK consensus in 2011, 40.2% of residents in London identified as non-white,3 and 14% of the population in England and Wales is non-white. As the incidence and prevalence of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is likely to continue to rise it is important that aesthetic professionals, especially in and around London, understand how to treat PIH effectively.
Hyperpigmentation, especially when it affects the face, has a social stigma attached to it and can cause the sufferer significant psychological distress as it can take years to resolve,1 thereby impacting on confidence and quality of life.4
27-year-old patient before and after six treatments. Products used included: pHformula, Cliniccare, Déesse Pro and Clinisept Plus.
What Is Acne Scarring
Acne can lead to inflammation of the skin. When the skins tissue becomes inflamed, the result is damaged skin and breaks in the tissue, says Dr Fabusiwa. The skin attempts to heal the damage by laying down collagen fibres at the site of the tissue injury and this dysregulated healing process leads to uneven skin and scarring.
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How Can I Reduce Existing Pigment Spots
While prevention is best, once you have pigment spots there are steps you can take to help fade them and prevent their reappearance
Dermo-cosmetic solutions for hyperpigmentation
If you are concerned by hyperpigmentation, look out for skincare products that have been formulated to address this concern and that are clinically and dermatologically proven to be effective.
The Eucerin Anti-Pigment range has been specially formulated to reduce hyperpigmentation for more even and radiant skin. All four products in the range a day cream, night cream, serum and spot corrector contain Thiamidol, an effective and patented ingredient that acts at the root cause of hyperpigmentation by reducing melanin production. It has been clinically and dermatologically proven to reduce dark spots and prevent their re-appearance. First results are visible after two weeks and improve continuously with regular use.
Furthermore, with SPF 30 and UVA filters, Eucerin Anti-Pigment Day offers effective protection from the sun and prevents the formation of additional sun-induced pigment spots. The Dual Serum now comes in a mono-chamber pack, making it even easier to apply. The formula still has the same proven efficacy as it combines active ingredients Thiamidol and Hyaluronic Acid to prevent and reduce pigment spots.
Tips For Clearing Acne In Skin Of Color
How to treat acne in skin of color
For people with skin of color, acne is often accompanied by dark spots or patches called hyperpigmentation. Fortunately, there are plenty of things people with skin of color can do at home to help clear their acne, as well as the dark spots that linger afterwards.
The term skin of color refers to diverse skin types and complexions. It includes people of African, Asian, Latino, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and Native American descent.
People who have skin of color share some common skin-care concerns. Near the top of this list is how to get rid of acne and the dark spots that often appear when acne clears.
The secret to seeing clearer skin lies in knowing what really works when it comes to treating darker skin types. Below youll find 10 tips that science shows can lead to clearer skin.
1. Treat both the acne and the dark spots.Many people seek a dermatologist’s help for the dark spots, which can last much longer than the acne. It’s important to treat the acne, too. When you get rid of the acne, you eliminate what’s causing the dark spots.
Acne and dark spots
Dermatologists recommend treating acne and dark spots at the same time.
Spots and patches of darker skin
Keloids, a type of raised scar
Do not pop pimples
If you pick, pop, or squeeze acne, you increase your risk of getting a scar.
Retinol: This can unclog pores and fade dark spots.
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How Is Hyperpigmentation Treated
When it comes to recommended treatments for hyperpigmentation, Dr. Lent says, Because hyperpigmentation isnt dangerous, treatment isnt necessary, but if patients are unhappy with the appearance of dark spots, they can choose to seek treatment to improve the appearance of hyperpigmentation. In most cases, the available treatment options are conservative, and many effective treatments are available over-the-counter.
Commonly recommended treatments for hyperpigmentation include:
How To Get Rid Of Hyperpigmentation
December 25, 20196 min read
Hyperpigmentation is also known as dark spots, sun spots, or melasma. It is a harmless skin condition that many people have, but the fact is it can cause distress for people and many may want to fade it faster. We’ll be diving into many of the different ingredients, products, and remedies that can get rid of hyperpigmentation faster.
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How To Get Rid Of Post
When it comes to brightening dark hyperpigmentation, vitamin C should be a key weapon in your skincare arsenal. “I absolutely love it for many reasons. Its benefits are endless, including revitalising and brightening the skin while stimulating your bodys natural production of collagen,” says Dr Gross. “Not only does it help to lighten and break up pigmentation you might already have, but it also prevents dark spots from forming in the future.
Light as water, this potent vitamin C serum is ideal for layering.
What Are The Best Skincare Ingredients For Hyperpigmentation
To help visibly fade hyperpigmentation and discolorations, look for skincare formulas with ingredients proven to help brighten skin.
- Vitamin C Vitamin C is an ingredient known to help brighten skin. Activated C is a Vitamin C derivative that effectively penetrates skin and remains active on skin for a longer period of time than some other forms of Vitamin C, making it ideal in brightening skincare products. Within Kiehls formulas, Activated C helps decrease skins melanin production, prevent the formation of new melanin clusters, and even slow the melanin transfer to skins surface. It also helps visibly fade existing dark spots for a brighter, more even skin tone.
- Salicylic Acid Salicylic Acid is another ingredient often found in acne skincare products that can also benefit skin with hyperpigmentation. While using an acne skincare routine can help visibly diminish blemishes which can lead to dark spots, Salicylic Acid is also known to help lessen the intensity of hyperpigmentation and reduce the appearance of dark spots.
- Peony Root Extract
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