So it’s a bit of a long, technical word but hyperpigmentation basically describes darker patches of skin. They can be caused by excess melanin (pigment) production but you might wonder what causes this? Well everything from acne scars, sun damage, hormone fluctuation, inflammation or injury to the skin can cause this (including over-treatment with lasers, chemical peels and other skin treatments). And of course hyperpigmentation can be in a small part or parts of your skin or cover a much larger area.
Melanin itself is a pigment that gives your skin its colour and is produced by skin cells called melanocytes. There is a rare condition called Addison’s disease which can produce hyperpigmentation in the most visible areas that get sun exposure (face, hands, neck) and also those places most likely to get friction such as knees and elbows. And indeed pregnancy is known to cause changes in melanin production for some women (this is often called the ‘mask of pregnancy as it tends to be quite symmetrical across the face)
Assuming that the cause of your hyperpigmentation does not need further investigation from your GP then there are things that we can do here at Xodos to assist with the treatment of it.
A good quality, broad spectrum sunscreen ( factor 40) is essential every single day of the year, as this is the initial step in improving most cases of hyperpigmentation. The Alumier one which we prescribe is a physical sunscreen, meaning that it has an active ingredient of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, protecting against UVA and UVB rays, without the use of harmful chemicals. In some cases, dark areas will fade on their own as long as there is good sun protection in place daily.
2. Skincare products
Secondly, we have two pigmentation products that we recommend. The first is EvenTone Brightening serum and the second is Intellibright Complex.
EvenTone serum is a lightweight serum that contains naturally powerful brightening agents that work by different mechanisms to enhance results and resistance to new pigment formation. It contains Emblica which is a plant extract with antioxidants, brightening and anti-aging properties. It evens skin tone and reduces the appearance of hyperpigmentation. In addition, the inclusion of Licorice Root Extract and B-White also decreases the appearance of pigment.
Intellibright Complex is also a lightweight serum that contains naturally powerful skin brightening agents that work by different mechanisms to enhance results and resistance to new pigment formation. Arbutin, kojic acid, licorice and niacinamide brighten skin, even skin tone and improve the appearance of hyperpigmentation.
To boost the effects of these serums, Vitamin C serum is a hugely beneficial antioxidant serum, used in the mornings to protect against sun damage and free radicals, and a retinol in the evening further boosts effects of pigmentation reduction.
3. Chemical Peels
Chemical peels are also useful as they contain acids in stronger concentrations to treat certain areas of the skin and by removing the epidermis the appearance of hyperpigmentation can be reduced. These are treatments which are clinical grade and we only recommend having these done under supervision and a full consultation prior to purchase.
In short, hyperpigmentation is not generally a serious condition but can be emotionally quite stressful if it is severe, however there are treatments and practices that can be put in place to minimise its appearance and maintain results. Pigmentation can be quite a stubborn one, and can return if the original cause returns (e.g. sun exposure, new hormonal changes, over-treatment with chemicals etc). treatment for pigmentation is a journey and a process, but one that is very succesful if the correct advice is followed and stuck with! come and speak to us for more information – you can now book your Zoom Consultation online here!