We all long for even, smooth glowing skin, but why does our skin seem to look “patchy” as we age!? Here’s all you need to know about hyperpigmentation and the things you should consider to get even!
The colour of our skin is determined by the amount of melanin in our skin. Melanin is pigment, that can range from brown to black, that is produced by a skin cell called, the melanocyte. The melanocyte produces melanin to help protect our skin from inflammation inducing factors like, UV exposure and skin trauma. However, when the skin is under prolonged stress, the melanocyte kicks into overdrive, producing too much melanin, leading to the appearance of dark patches, known as hyperpigmentation.
There are many triggers that can contribute to the cause of Hyperpigmentation, including, photoaging, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation and hormones.
Photoaging is the occurrence if fine lines, wrinkles and hyperpigmentation due to sun exposure. These darkened patches are commonly referred to as sun spots. To achieve the best results when targeting sun spots, the use of a daily sun protection SPF 30 or above, is vital.
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, or PIH, is caused by trauma to the skin and is commonly associated with problematic skins, especially those with a higher Fitzpatrick. When skin is damaged, the skin quickly tries to recover, leading to inflammation that can trigger the melanocyte to produce more melanin to aid in protecting the skin. To achieve the best results when targeting PIH, it is important to identify what is causing the skin to be stressed and focus on calming this first.
Melasma is hyperpigmentation often related to a hormonal imbalance, often occurring during pregnancy, although sun exposure and genetics may also lead to the appearance of melasma. Most commonly melasma is present on the cheeks and across the nose. Typically, melasma takes longer to see an improvement in the appearance as it sits in the deeper layers of the skin.
With so many contributing factors leading to hyperpigmentation it is important to look for a product with a multi-pathway approach and always pair with daily sun and antioxidant protection.
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