Melasma and Hyperpigmentation - What is a Girl to do?

Hyperpigmentation and Melasma are two of the most common skin concerns we see at Begin with Skin MedSpa and they are more difficult to treat as there are many underlying causes. Each pigmentation type is slightly different and each one responds differently to certain treatments.

Briefly, Melasma is characterized by concentrated pigmented areas of the forehead, cheeks and chin which often can show up spontaneously and has a high recurrence rate.  Melasma is directly related to hormone levels such as changes during pregnancy, menopause,thyroid conditions, medications ( birth control pills) , sun exposure, and exacerbated by heat. Melasma can be controlled and improved with a combination of professional treatment and targeted homecare.

Hyperpigmentation is the general darkening of specific areas of the face and  is usually induced through sun exposure, acne scarring, and aggressive skin treatments. Unlike Melasma general hyperpigmentation usually responds well to targeted skincare and a series of light peels.

Both Melasma and generalized hyperpigmentation need a skincare program to lighten, brighten and stabilize the melanin production. Homecare regime should look like this:

Cleanse, Antioxidant Serum, Hydrate, SunBlock, exfoliate 2-3 times per week additionally adding a tyrosinase inhibitor such as Environs Clarifying Lotion before your serum. Committing to sun protection with a UVA and UVB sunscreen containing zinc or titanium dioxide is the only way to get both conditions stabilized and not intensify. Also using a broad brimmed hat and protective clothing.

Depending on your skin type 1-6, will determine what laser or peels you can receive. Melasma can not have any treatments that induce heat so microneedling is a great option with a series of peels.  Treating the conditions with lactic or glycolic peels, microdermabrasion, microneedling tend to have reassuring results. Effective results are a combination of treating the top and underlying layers of the skin.

Additionally there are prescriptions with hydroquinone (HQ) and azelaic acid that have beneficial results. A consult with your dermatologist is always suggested.

Our suggested action plan is start with sun protection and carefully selected skincare, second after 30 days start with a series of light peels or microneedling, lastly specific laser treatments with Fraxel is an option for those who are candidates.

At Begin with Skin we now carry the new pigment program from Environ called Melaprep which is a 4 step process for the treatment of pigment and we also suggest Perle from NeoCutis to treat pigmentation. If you would like to learn more about how Begin with Skin MedSpa can help you look and feel better about your skin, book a complimentary consultation at 978-455-6800.

Nina E Balan

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