So one of the most common questions I have received from my readers, friends and family members is on the black spot or a dark area that they have on their face and neck. It usually gets very difficult to answer, since pigmentation is the most difficult thing to treat. However, good news is that it definitely can be lightened to a level where it won’t bother you. More over, it DEFINITELY can be prevented as well. Let’s learn that today!
This post is a little scientific but I will try my best to reduce the jargon and make it simple as much as I can
What is pigmentation?
When your skin color appears darker in certain areas due to melanin production, it is known as pigmentation. Also termed as hyper pigmentation this is one of the most common skin problem occurring to aged and younger generations.
Why is Pigmentation caused?
We get our skin color based on the production of Melanin in our skin/body. The more the melanin production the darker your complexion. However, we can have certain areas in our skin where melanin can be produced more, this could be because of over sun exposure. Hence leading to dark spots and hyper pigmentation.
Pigmentation is basically because of over sun exposure and it has damaged that specific area of your skin. Did you know? Exposing your skin to the sun too frequently may drop the vitamin C levels by 30% making our skin darker, dull and pigmented. The melanin is produced more and we get the dark patches.
It is of UTMOST importance that we use sunscreen each and everyday and repeatedly if you wish to have a clear complexion throughout your aging process.
Many people I have found in my family who are in 60’s; have really dark patches and strong visible pigmentation, the moment I asked them did you ever use a sunscreen? The answer has in variably been NO! I immediately ask them to use a sunscreen, but the damage has already been done. That is why taking care of your skin at an early age, can pay HUGELY in your grey hair days 😀
Understand your pigmentation. There are 3 types
Post-inflammatory hyper pigmentation – This pigmentation can be caused due to some trauma that your skin has gone through. It can be stress, excess acne breakouts etc. It can also be caused due to temporary but prolonged sun exposure. This type of pigmentation is usually temporary and can be settled with regular care and medication.
Lentigines – Sometimes also known as liver spots, sun spots this type of pigmentation is due to the Sun exposure and gets darker with age (The exact thing I explained above).
Melasma – Melasma is most common during pregnancy as it is caused due to hormonal fluctuations and changes. It can also be a side effect of oral contraceptives and any medication that lead to hormonal imbalance.
How to Prevent Pigmentation:
- SUN SUN SUN! The Most important thing is to sty away from sun between 10 am – 4 pm. This doesn’t mean you do not use a sunscreen. Sunscreen is must even if you are home. Make sunscreen a cosmetic that you cannot do without
- Take care of your skin. Ensure you follow a good skin care routine and use proper skin care products. Yes organic but if needed a temporary dermatology products (especially targeted to lighten pigmentation) can be of great help.
- Before tasking any hormonal medicine, clarify and understand their side effects. It is very important to understand and make sure you know what you are taking. Always ask your doctor for alternatives if you do not wish to take a specific medicine.
- Cover your face with a scarf when travelling. I personally do this since I have to travel by train every single day. It’s a lot of travel to and fro and in the sunny hours. So ensure you are well covered and sun protected.
- Visit a dermatologist once in 3-4 months to keep your skin in check and take preventative measures
I have seen many suffering from pigmentation and at any age it is not something anyone would want. So PLEASE start taking care of your skin today to reap the benefits later!
Have a great week you all.. Love you