Do you rely on thick foundation or concealer to hide your blemishes or brown marks on your skin?
Many of us have brown spots or marks on our skin which can sometimes cause concerns about our appearance.
Skin aging caused by long-term sun exposure, facial blemishes due to excessive pigmentation and, in general, imperfections caused by melanin, are more and more common, especially among Asians.
Types of pigmentation
Brown spots, liver spots, age spots, sun spots, freckles, lentigos, or senile/solar lentigines are associated with premature aging and exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun.These marks range in colour from light brown to red or black and are located in areas most often exposed to the sun, particularly the hands, face, shoulders, arms, decollete and forehead, and the head if bald. Most are harmless, but all are aging and may be unattractive.
Café au lait, Nevus of Ota and other pigmented birthmarks are localised areas of increased pigmentation in the skin, which are present at birth.
Melasma, also called ‘chloasma’, is a common skin condition of adults in which light to dark brown or greyish pigmentation develops, mainly on the face. The name comes from melas, the Greek word for black. Although it can affect both genders and any race, it is more common in women and people with darker skin-types who live in sunny climates. Melasma usually becomes more noticeable in the summer and improves during the winter months. It is not an infection, it is not contagious and it is not due to an allergy.
How do we treat pigmentation?
- Professional chemical peels: These are solutions applied to the face which cause gentle exfoliation of the superficial layers of the skin. This stimulates skin regeneration and helps lighten pigmentation and improves texture. Peels used to treat pigmentation include glycolic acid, lactic acid and trichloroacetic acid.
- SilkPeelTM DermalinfusionTM : It is a procedure in which the outermost layer of dead skin cells is mechanically exfoliated, carrying with it some of the pigment-containing cells. This is coupled with dermalinfusion of Brightening Solution which features the revolutionary LumixylTM peptide, effectively lighten up uneven pigmentation and dark spots. About 8-10 sessions may be needed bimonthly, and thereafter maintenance sessions.
- Pigment Laser – Fotona QX MAX’s Q-switched Nd:YAG laser works by destroying the pigment in the skin without the need for excision. The laser produces short pulses of intense light that pass harmlessly through the top layers of the skin to be selectively absorbed by melanin in the lesion. These melanin are subsequently broken into smaller particles, which are then removed by the body’s own immune system. There is minimal discomfort with no downtime. Multiple sessions are needed and treatment intervals may vary from 1-4 weeks.
Pictures courtesy of Fotona
After 4 sessions.
Some pigmentations especially melasma can be worsen by sun exposure. Broad-spectrum fragrance-free sunscreens, with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or greater and a high ultraviolet A (UVA) star-rating, should be applied daily throughout the year.
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