Hyperpigmentation is a condition that causes the skin to darken. It can occur in small patches. And it can cover large areas or affect the entire body. This condition usually isn’t harmful, but it can be a symptom of another medical condition.The main causes of uneven skin tone are hyperpigmentation, sun spots, hormones and discolouration due to acne scarring. An excess of melanin or pigment in the skin due to sun exposure creates freckles and eventually, isolated dark spots. Women also tend to develop dark spots from taking the contraceptive pill or due to hormone fluctuations during pregnancy. Your skin can also sustain damage cumulatively, from exposure to pollution and other environmental factors.
There are several types of hyperpigmentation:
- Melasma is believed to be caused by hormonal changes and develops during pregnancy. Areas of hyperpigmentation can appear on any area of the body. They appear most commonly on the abdomen and face.
- Sunspots, or solar lentigines, are common. They’re related to excess sun exposure over time. Generally, they appear as spots of hyperpigmentation on areas exposed to the sun, like the hands and face.
- Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is a result of an injury to the skin.
Intense pulsed light (IPL) Photo Facial and chemical peels ( such as PCA peel Or TCA peel) are also popular and yield fast results.
The mushroom-derived enzyme melanozyme breaks down melanin, which is responsible for dark pigments on your skin. Just be wary of products containing retinoids and hydroquinone, which has been banned in some countries due to side effects such as redness, dryness and a burning sensation.
“Hydroquinone has been the recent leader in the skin-whitening category and “Hexylresorcinol concentration at 0.5 per cent has proven to be just as effective as two per cent concentration of hydroquinone.”
A number of plants, such as yomogi and angelic root, have been found to have skin-brightening properties. They act to speed up cell turnover and break down melanin, diminishing dark spots, age spots and acne marks. Colman suggests liquorice for lightening skin and arnica flower extract, with its anti-inflammatory properties, for brightening.
Acids like alpha hydroxy, glycolic, salicylic and kojic act to remove dead skin cells, buffer the appearance of fine lines, even out skin tone and enhance skin clarity. Choose products that combine acids with skin-brightening ingredients.
A classic ingredient when it comes to skin brightening. The antioxidant works to lighten hyperpigmentation and prevent further spots. The appearance of uneven skin tone on the face, chest, and hands is a clear sign of aging skin, but it doesn’t have to stay that way. With the right mix of products, you really can get your youthful glow back!