Hyperpigmentation is usually caused by sun damage, inflammation, hormone fluctuations, and other skin injuries. These can also include acne vulgaris. Those who have darker skin tones are more prone to hyperpigmentation, especially when they are out in the sun. Excess production of melanin is the main cause of hyperpigmentation.
Hyperpigmentation is defined as a flat, darkened patches of skin. The patches vary in size and color and quite often appear in areas where the skin is exposed to the sun, such as the face, décolleté, hands, arms, and the neck. Hyperpigmentation is common; most of us have dark spots, freckles, and patches of darker skin areas.
How Is Hyperpigmentation Treated?
There are many different hyperpigmentation treatments; some can be done at home, but more effective hyperpigmentation treatments are done in medspas.
Lightening creams or over the counter hyperpigmentation treatments work with ingredients that are designed to decrease pigmentation. However, these OTC treatments will take quite a bit longer than professional treatments. You can also find these creams in stronger prescription forms from your medspa. The ingredients found in OTC lightening products are:
- Licorice extract
- Niacinamide or vitamin B-3.
Chemical peels use acids at strong concentrations and are used on the upper layer of your skin or the epidermis. Chemical peels reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation by removing the upper layer of your skin or the epidermis. Stronger and deeper versions of a chemical peel can also penetrate the middle layer of your skin or the dermis to give you more dramatic results. A medical-grade chemical peel at your medspa is powerful and yields quicker results. You may have redness, irritation, and blistering after a chemical peel, but the side effects quickly subside. If you are out in the sun quite a bit, however, chemical peels may not be the best treatment option for you.
IPL therapy or intense pulse light therapy or a photofacial stimulates collagen growth and is used for overall pigmentation issues. Flat and dark spots respond to IPL, but you may need many sessions to get rid of your pigmentation issues.
Pigment removal can also be treated with fractional laser resurfacing treatments. Laser treatments are deeper procedures for more stubborn pigment issues. There are two types of laser hyperpigmentation treatments. One is ablative lasers, that are intense and involve removing layers of your skin.
Another laser hyperpigmentation treatment is a non-ablative procedure that targets the dermis to promote collagen growth and tightening effects. Both ablative and non-ablative lasers destroy elements in your skin to ensure that new skin cells grow back with less pigmentation.
Hyperpigmentation treatments using microdermabrasion only affect the epidermis. A handheld tool with a wire brush or abrasive attachment is swiped across your skin to remove the epidermis gently. Multiple sessions might be needed to achieve your hyperpigmentation problems. Microdermabrasion works best on superficial scars. Have your aesthetician at Sanctuaire Luxe Day & Medspa provide you with information on microdermabrasion for hyperpigmentation treatment.
Dermabrasion is similar to microdermabrasion as it removes the upper layer of your skin. However, the effects of dermabrasion continue into the second layer of skin or the dermis. Dermabrasion is used to smooth out wrinkles, acne scars age spots, injury and chickenpox scars, and sun damage. Microdermabrasion also uses a handheld tool with a wire brush or abrasive attachment.
How is it Determined what Hyperpigmentation Treatment to Use?
First, you need to discuss your options with your aesthetician at Sanctuaire Luxe Day & Med Spa. Skin tone and condition is important to diagnose and determine the intensity and length of hyperpigmentation treatments. If you have fair, medium, or dark skin tones, you can use some of the hyperpigmentation treatments, but those with darker skin may need more time or different hyperpigmentation treatments.
Patients with fair skin respond well to almost all the hyperpigmentation treatments but avoid high-beam lasers and IPL therapy if you tan easily. Chemical peels and microdermabrasion work well for medium skin tones. Darker skin tones generally benefit from chemical peels that use glycolic and kojic acid. Microdermabrasion is also a good treatment option for patients with darker skin tones.
Discuss options with your aesthetician at Sanctuaire Luxe Day & Medspa before you decide on a hyperpigmentation treatment. Whatever treatment you use, a professional at Sanctuaire Luxe Day & Medspa will be the best option, and you will be pleased with the final results.