Hyperpigmentation. It’s annoying and can seem so stubborn at times, so let’s take a look at what you can do to fix it.
Let’s start with the basics:
What is Hyper-pigmentation?
Hyper-pigmentation is a benign pigmentation that is secondary to an excess of melanin (the brown pigment that produces normal skin color) that deposits into the skin.
So what can you do to improve it?
First, there a few over-the-counter options you can try.
- Vitamin C Creams: These block an enzyme in your skin which normally produces melanin, hence blocking production. But, it does not lighten normal skin, just the pigmentation.
- Kojic Acid: A by-product found in fungi that can also block the production of melanin, but can lighten overall complexion.
- Retinoids: These promote cell turnover quicker which helps with a brighter and lighter complexion
- Low-strength Glycolic Acid Peels: These peels chemically exfoliate the skin and induce the production of new cells underneath
Next, here are some prescription options:
- Tretinoin or Tazorac or Adapalene: All retinoids that all or win combination promote a much quicker cell turnover and collagen production. These improve texture and pigmentation over time.
- Hydroquinone: Can be over-the-counter as well (2%), but 4% and higher can be effective at decreasing the production and increasing the breakdown of the pigment by blocking an enzyme in the skin
- Prescription combinations of tretinoin+hydroquinone+steroids or ionic acid: Can be very effective in conditions like melasma sun spots and generalized pigmentation
Finally, here are some dermatology procedures done in the office to improve hyper-pigmentation
- IPL (Intense pulse light laser): This dermatology procedure can help with pigmentation from photo damage, sun spots, and blood vessels. Multiple treatments may be required but can permanently improve the overall complexion of the chest and face.
- Chemical peels (glycolic, mandelic, lactic, TCA, acids): These dermatology procedures can improve pigmentation, collagen, texture, and scarring based on the depth of the peel. There are various strengths of these peels: Mild, Medium, DeepMild:AHA peels glycol- very superficial and help exfoliate the skin- perfect for melasma, superficial age spots, brown spots, and pigmentation Medium: Higher strength glycolic acids and TCA- Great for acne scars, fine lines, wrinkles, and freckles Deep: Phenols and higher TCAs- Great for scars and deep wrinkles
- Microneedling: Helps to improve pigmentation, scarring, acne scars, pigmentation, wrinkles (fine and deep)— effective in most skin types
- Multiple treatments are great for improvement of scarring and texture
- Can be a Vampire Facial if you decide to add PRP or Liquid Gold in the mix
Keep in mind, of course, that all of these procedures can be used in combination and have an enhanced effect when the correct products are added.
Don’t forget to contact us for any of your dermatology needs!