While it seems dark spots pop up almost overnight on your face, in fact, many of these spots have been years in the making.
Hyperpigmentation occurs when melanin is overproduced in certain spots on the skin. Dark spots tend to appear on the face, hands, and other highly visible body parts that have been exposed to the sun and are hard to hide.
There are many types of hyperpigmentation, but the following are the most common:
Pigment spots or age spots caused by sun exposure begin to appear after 50. You see these on the face, hands, and arms.
The fairer your skin, the more likely you are to suffer these discolorations.
Melasma or chloasma--often referred to as “the mask of pregnancy”, as it affects 90% of pregnant women. It occurs as a result of hormonal influences such as pregnancy, birth control pills, and hormone replacement therapy.
What can I do about these dark spots?
Invest in a series of laser treatments. Lasers can be effective in treating even the most difficult of discolorations. With their far-reaching wave-lengths, they penetrate the skin, heat up targeted brown spots and destroy them by causing the darkened skin to flake and fall off following the treatment.
Most common are IPL and Fraxel lasers. Cost: $200-$800 per treatment. Multiple treatments are usually necessary. Downtime is involved with the Fraxel laser as the skin is noticeably red for about a week.
Beware: Dry skin, redness, swelling and itching. The aggravation of a previously existing skin condition, such as rosacea, can contribute to redness.
Age Spots are often treated with bleaching creams, skin lighteners, pigment gels, and spot treatments or in certain anti-aging products containing Hydroquinone.
Studies have shown that hydroquinone has carcinogenic properties, can be toxic and mutagenic, with the possibility of causing long-term damage to your cells.
A safer alternative?
Brighten up your skin and address age spots with a high potency serum spiked with key brightening ingredients--
Vitamin C, Retinol, glycolic acid, and Niacinamide (Vitamin B3).
At night, use a Retinol Serum. Retinol causes the skin cells to turn over. That begins the process of removing the pigmented cells that are there. As you peel off the dark spots, your skin replaces them with normally pigmented cells.
Sun protection is of utmost importance when investing in laser treatments, chemical peels, or using treatments with Retinol. SPF levels of 30-50 are best.
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We all know our skin ages, sometimes faster than we would like. There are two main reasons our skin ages known as Intrinsic and Extrinsic aging.
Intrinsic or Genetics - contribute to how fast we age. Most of us show signs of aging in our late 40's to early 50's.
Extrinsic or External Factors - These include environmental, free radical sun damage, and stress.
Free radical and sun damage accounts for 90% of early signs of aging. Seriously, it's that high!
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