Dark Spots 101
What Causes Dark Spots?
Hyperpigmentation, dark spots, age spots, sun spots – there are many different names that are used to describe dark patches of skin discoloration that can form specific areas of the body.
Hyperpigmentation can be triggered by age, sun damage, acne scars, and even hormones. Other factors such as damage to your liver, pregnancy, or birth control pills have also been known to play a role in the onset of dark spots.
The top layer of your contains what are known as melanocytes, skin cells that produce melanin. These cells give the epidermis its color and also help protect against damage caused by UV rays.
As the body tries to protect skin, however, melanin is sometimes overproduced, forming dark spots where there is an excessive of melanin buildup. The resulting discoloration can vary in size, shape, and shade, and contribute to an “uneven” skin tone.
While some hyperpigmentation may fade naturally (after a person gives birth or stops taking a birth control that doesn’t work well with her body), other forms of hyperpigmentation can reach deeper levels of the skin, far beyond the surface, such as damage caused by the sun.
Steps Before Treatment:
Before you begin treating your dark spots, we recommend conducting a self-exam to rule out a larger problem, such as melanoma. While most dark spots are harmless, it is important to take every precaution before you begin cosmetically treating your skin.
If your dark spots are new, slightly raised, appear to be increasing in size, aren’t one solid color, or are asymmetrical, consider seeing a dermatologist before self-prescribing any type of treatment.
Some individuals choose elective cosmetic procedures such as microdermabrasion or chemical peels, and although these procedures can be effective in minimizing the appearance of hyperpigmentation, we’re aware that such intensive treatments aren’t for everyone.
Within the coming months, we are excited to announce that we will be introducing our Beverly Hills MD Dark Spot Corrector, a powerful blend of sophisticated ingredients that can help lighten the expression of hyperpigmentation.
In the meantime, if you’re looking for a way to begin treating your dark spots, Vitamins E and C or lemon juice, when applied topically, can help given skin a more even tone. Just beware of using lemon juice prior to heading out into the sun, and always remember to apply sunscreen to help keep old dark spots from worsening while inhibiting the formation of new hyperpigmentation.