Pigmentation is areas of darker or discoloured skin. These areas are bigger than the average freckle. They can often occur as pigmentation of the face, neck, shoulders and hands. It can also be known as brown spots or sunspots and is most likely to appear between the age of 20 and 40. Eventually, most of us will be impacted by pigmentation at some point in our lives. The skin will either appear lighter (hypopigmentation) or darker (hyperpigmentation) than normal in certain areas.

Pigmentation in our skin is created by a type of skin cell called melanocytes, so it makes sense to try and regulate their activity in order to combat pigmentation problems. Many factors can cause, or influence, pigmentation on our skin.

In many cases, pigmentation can be caused by sun exposure or sun damage. This can range from sunbed use to minimal use of sun protection. However, there are other factors involved. Hormonal changes triggered by events such as pregnancy, or certain contraceptive medications can cause pigmentation. Also post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, following a skin injury or condition (such as acne).

Types Of Hyperpigmentation

There are several types of hyperpigmentation including:

·         Solar lentigines – also known as sunspots. These range in colour from brown to black and are irregular spots caused by sun exposure and can appear anywhere.

·         Freckles – the most common type of pigmentation, these brown marks are caused by sun exposure, but can also be linked to genetics.

·         PIH – often caused by acne or skin injuries. These flat, discoloured marks can fade over time, but in many cases require treatment.

·         Chloasma or Melasma – these are caused by abnormal levels in the body and appear as large patches on the skin. This type of pigmentation is more commonly found in women than men.

How Can I Prevent Pigmentation Appearing?

The main thing to pay attention to when avoiding pigmentation of the face, or other areas of skin, is sun exposure and therefore what SPF you are wearing. It may come as a surprise, but SPF factor 10 is unlikely to offer any support from sun damage and sun spots when used throughout the year.

If you are fair skinned or prone to pigmentation, you want to be looking at wearing SPF 50 365 days a year and topping up throughout the day when you are likely to be exposed to a lot of UV light. Crysallis PROTECT SPF 50 is a highly effective lightweight serum. It contains a combination of clinically proven filters to protect the skin against harmful UV rays. At times of the day when the UV rays are their highest (between 12-2pm), you should wear a hide. Something with a wide brim for extra protection outdoors is good.

If pigmentation of the face or other areas of your skin begin after starting a new medication, speak to your GP. An alternative medication may be suitable.

How Can I Treat Pigmentation At Home?

Look at brightening creams that include Vitamin A (retinol), niacinamide, Vitamin C, Azelaic acid, kojic acid, and glycolic acid, such as Crysallis POWER Retinol, or Crysallis PORE REFINING AHA Daily Active Serum.

Getting the right amount of sleep is also important in trying to reduce pigmentation from appearing. Sleeping well is essential in preventing uneven skin tone and pigmentation problems. When we sleep, our brains release a hormone called melatonin which helps reduce the negative effects of UV rays.

What Treatments Can Crysallis Skin Clinic Offer For My Pigmentation?

Our skin experts at Crysallis Skin offer a number of pigmentation treatments to help balance and even out skin tone concerns. These include:

·        AlumierMD Home Care Products – this range includes serums and peels, which work to brighten and boost skin.

·        AlumierMD Professional Peels – from our Glow Peel to our Vitamin A Boost, all are customised to you and can help exfoliate skin to fade away pigmentation while boosting cell renewal. Here at Crysallis, we spend time ensuring your skin is primed to respond in the best possible way to ensure the peels are highly effective with instant results.

·         Microneedling and Mesotherapy – this procedure uses fine needles to encourage skin renewal and collagen production. It is used in conjunction with powerful, vitamin-based serums that rejuvenate the skin.

·        Cosmelan peel – ideal for deep pigmentation, these intensive masks work to reduce and prevent the condition.

·        Facials – following clinical analysis, we can create a bespoke skin facial solution for you.

Get in touch with us at our expert skin clinic in Reading to achieve the skin you deserve.