Struggling with hyperpigmentation? Here’s how to treat it
In a global survey, wrinkles came out on top as the number one skin concern. In South Africa, however, hyperpigmentation takes the top spot. It affects people of all ages and skin tones and the dark spots are caused by a combination of genetics, hormones and living in a sunny climate. And while you might enjoy spending hours basking under our bright, warm sun, *trust and believe* that it will catch up with you later!
Why hyperpigmentation happens
As mentioned, there are several factors that can cause hyperpigmentation and some people are genetically predisposed to it.
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Hormonal fluctuations – such as pregnancy – can lead to dark marks. Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is also a problem for some and occurs after an injury to the skin, such as an acne flare-up. By far the biggest culprit behind an uneven skin tone in SA is sun exposure, as this can trigger the overproduction of melanin and make your skin tone uneven. While there is no way to avoid it altogether (this is Africa, after all!), there are ways to keep your skin protected and lighten existing pigmentation for a clear complexion.
As the old saying goes, prevention is better than a cure! This couldn’t be more true when it comes to hyperpigmentation. The best way to do this is to protect against sun exposure. You can do this by shielding your skin by wearing a hat and long and loose clothing. It also means that you need to apply sunscreen daily and reapply it every two hours, especially if you’re going to be spending time outside. Using antioxidants – such as vitamin C – in your skincare routine can also help to prevent UV damage.
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So you may not have been vigilant with sunscreen over the years and are already struggling with hyperpigmentation – now what? Don’t stress! There are several ways to go about treating this common concern. There are a number of dermatological treatments available, such as microneedling and chemical peels. But it can also be faded by using certain ingredients on your skin. These include alpha-hydroxy acids (AHA) and beta-hydroxy acids (BHA), which gently exfoliate the skin. Niacinamide has also been shown to inhibit the production of melanin and minimise dark marks for a flawless face.
Your hyperpigmentation correction kit
Incorporate these products into your skincare routine to transform your complexion and keep hyperpigmentation under control.
- COSRX AHA BHA Vitamin C Daily Toner
- Silki Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Squalane & Turmeric
- SKIN functional Vitamin C Serum (12% Ascorbic Acid + Briteodant Complex)
- Pastry Skincare Pigmentation Correction Serum – 5% Niacinamide
- Standard. Pigmentation Buster Mask: 10% Aha Fruit Acid Peel & 2% Alpha Arbutin
- Dermopal Sunscreen SPF50