How to get rid of dark spots on your face, according to skin care experts
Getting rid of dark spots on your face can be a pain.
Blemishes are annoying enough. You spend hundreds of pounds a year on products. Waste hours applying lotions and creams in front of the bathroom mirror, only to continue enduring a lifetime of blemishes.
Take it from me: I've tried everything in order to fight off acne and dry skin, but - oftentimes - the solution is only temporary at best.
However, there are longlasting ways of treating most skin ailments, especially for conditions which rely on preventative measures rather than a one-off cure. So if you're someone who suffers from darker patches of skin, fear not: there may be a solution on the horizon.
How to get rid of dark spots on your face
The first step to resolving any skin issue is to identify the root cause of the problem. Sometimes this is pretty easy (for instance, if you have a known allergy or sensitivity to something). While, on other occasions, nailing down the culprit of your dermatological woes can take years.
The simplest way of ensuring a healthier complexion (and better skin quality overall) is to take care in the sun.
"If you have good sun habits, you’ll get fewer dark spots than if you don’t," says Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi.
This means using sun cream or makeup with a high SPF factor. And also not overexposing yourself to UV rays by using tanning beds or any other high-radiation treatment.
What causes hyperpigmentation?
Darker patches of skin on the face are often written off as a simple side-effect of ageing - but that isn't the case.
In fact, there are many possible causes of darkened pigmentation. Sun damage, fluctuating hormones, skin irritation, and standard wear-and-tear all contribute to having an uneven complexion.
But some issues are more serious than others.
"Brown spots can be as benign as sun spots, genetic spots, melasma, hyperpigmentation, and moles, or be as concerning as melanoma," explains Dr. Melissa K Levin, a dermatologist at at New York University Langone Health and Mount Sinai Hospital.
Cosmetics can help treat dark spots on your face
If you already have darker patches of pigmentation, you can actually buy a range of cosmetics that will even out your skin tone. And, if that doesn't work, you can always contact a dermatologist.
Working with a skin specialist will give you more tailored solutions such as chemical peels or pulsed light treatments.
Of course, it must be noted that there is a genetic element to all of this.
If you have fairer skin then you're more susceptible to superficial damage. However, no matter your skin tone, it's important to protect your face in the sunlight, and pay close attention to any pigment changes.
Most of the time, it's not likely to be anything serious - but it never hurts to be cautious.
Retinoid solutions are particularly helpful
Producs such as Retin-A contain alpha-hydroxy acid and retinoic acid, which all help to increase cell turnover. This exfoliation helps promote the growth of new and healthy skin, which can diminish the look of hyperpigmentation.
However, it should be noted that retinoids can be very drying. And they also make the skin more sensitive to the sun.
Therefore, if you choose to treat dark spots with topical retinol solutions, you must also use a high SPF, every day.
If you do want to use retinoids to treat hyperpigmentation, ensure you check with a dermatologist first to assess whether it is a viable and appropriate option.