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Hyperpigmentation is a condition we often see in the clinic and there are various things which cause it to develop. From age and hormones to skin injury, the effects of hyperpigmentation can be debilitating particularly for darker skin tones where it can be more visible.

What is Hyperpigmentation?

Hyperpigmentation is a condition which occurs when pigmentation in the skin becomes uneven due to the production of excess melanin; the pigment which is responsible for the colour of the skin.

Hyperpigmentation can occur anywhere on the body and at varying degrees. Sometimes it will present itself as small age spots or darker patches on the skin. Other times it will cover much larger areas of the skin surface and even appear on the face.

While any skin type and colour can be affected by hyperpigmentation, it is generally far more noticeable on dark skin due the pigment in the skin being stronger. 

Types of Hyperpigmentation

There are several types of skin pigmentation which can be affected by hyperpigmentation.

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Melasma

Melasma is probably one of the more common types of hyperpigmentation and is often triggered by changes in hormone levels such as when a person starts taking the contraceptive pill, is pregnant or going through the menopause. While it can also occur in males it is far more common in females due to the hormone balance in the body. Melasma is most likely to appear on the face including the mouth and the forehead.

Age spots

Ages spots are sometimes known as liver spots and are caused by long term exposure to the UVA and UVB rays in the sun. They are most often found on areas which are regularly exposed to the sun such as face, neck, chest, hands and arms. Again the effects tend to be more obvious on darker skin types.

Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation

Post inflammatory hyperpigmentation is essentially a form of scarring and occurs when skin injury or trauma heals and leaves an area of discoloured skin behind. In the clinic we see this as a result of scarring caused from acne, eczema or even previous cosmetic treatments such as chemical peels or microdermabrasion.

One of the biggest causes of hyperpigmentation remains UVA and UVB rays from the sun increasing the production of melanin in the skin. The more melanin you have, the darker the skin, the stronger the tan – however the darker you are the more susceptible you become to excessive melanin production as you are able to tolerate the sun for much longer than a lighter skinned person.

The best way you can manage hyperpigmentation and reduce the likelihood of it affecting you, is by protecting your skin – even when you have darker skin types, and even when the weather is cloudy. UVB rays are arguably even more damaging to the skin as you don’t realise how strong the sun is. The clouds quite literally cloud your judgement.

Pigmentation

Tej & Co top tips for staying safe in the sun and reducing the risk of hyperpigmentation

  1. Use an SPF product daily – use the Australian method of Slip, Slap, Slop
  2. Check the dates on your SPF products – if they are more than one year old you need to change them as they won’t be as affective. Better still label them with the date you have opened them so you can track how long you have been using them for.
  3. Stay out of the sun during the peak times such as the middle of the day when the sun it as it’s hottest.
  4. Stay hydrated and keep the skin moisturised to restore the skin barrier and ensure there is enough moisture in the skin. 

How to treat Hyperpigmentation

In the clinic we treat the skin with a mixture of prescriptive products which are highly effective and work at a medical grade. They will nourish and restore the skin so that it is in its optimum condition. We also use LED Therapy alongside bespoke facial treatments, which can be effective in treating hyperpigmentation.

We always meet with clients first to assess their skin before putting together a tailored treatment plan.

To find out more about hyperpigmentation, or to speak to a member of the team about booking a consultation in the clinic please email info@tejandco.co.uk

This article was written by skincare specialist Tej of Tej & Co. Tej & Co are experts in skincare and hair removal clinic, West Midlands. Offering safe and results-driven non-surgical skin treatments including Endymed Skin Tightening.