It may not feel like it outside, but summer is almost over.
We hope you had as much fun as we did! If you felt like you got a little too much sun this summer, you may be seeing the early effects of hyperpigmentation. Not to worry – we often address brown spots & discoloration here at Dermatology & Laser of Alabama.
What is hyperpigmentation?
Hyperpigmentation is usually caused by the increased deposition of melanin in the skin, resulting in a darkening or increased concentration in the natural color of your skin. Hyperpigmentation appears as lesions of different sizes, distributions, and patterns. How susceptible you are to hyperpigmentation is somewhat hereditary, although environmental factors (such as too much sun and heat) can accelerate the visible effects.
Can hyperpigmentation be fixed?
Hyperpigmentation can be challenging as it is, by nature, chronic and persistent. With increased sun exposure, you may be prone to relapsing episodes as your skin’s surface is repeatedly damaged (again, why prevention is so important)!
SKINCARE FOR SUN DAMAGE
To combat pigmentation, we may recommend a treatment plan including products such as:
PHYTO A+ BRIGHTENING TREATMENT—
We say this is like a green juice for your face for a reason: this powerful punch of Phyto botanical extracts naturally brightens skin tone, making you look (and feel) like a million bucks. Azelaic acid smooths skin and improves the appearance of fine lines & wrinkles while arbutin, an organic compound, combats hyperpigmentation.
GLYCOLIC 10 RENEW OVERNIGHT—
This corrective night cream promotes cell turnover while reducing the appearance of dark spots and wrinkles, brightening skin while you sleep. Glycolic 10 Renew contains 10% glycolic acid and phytic acid to promote a healthy glow, while a triple action-soothing complex supports the skin barrier.
We often recommend alternating nights with a retinol — like the SkinCeuticals Retinol 1.0— as you increase your usage of these products as your skin learns to tolerate such powerful ingredients.
Vitamin C is your key to glowing skin, and this patented triple antioxidant serum is known as the “Gold Standard” of Vitamin C for good reason! C E Ferulic visibly improves signs of aging and photodamage to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles and brighten your complexion. When paired with sunscreen, you’ll create the perfect daily dose of antioxidants — vitamins C, E and ferulic acid — to smooth and firm skin.
TREATMENTS FOR SUN DAMAGE
If the hyperpigmentation is moderate to severe, or simply isn’t responding to topical skincare products, we may recommend a more aggressive treatment for stubborn discoloration:
Microneedling is a minimally-invasive facial rejuvenation treatment in which tiny needles create hundreds of invisible, controlled puncture wounds on the skin’s surface. Your body responds to this controlled injury by producing collagen, elastin, and new capillaries, resulting in a reduction of scars, improved skin texture, firmness, and hydration.
This treatment, especially when paired with PRP to further increase collagen production, effectively reverses the signs of aging and sun damage, making this an excellent treatment for hyperpigmentation! Depending on your needs, we’ll likely recommend a series of 3, and then repeat every few months for continued sun damage improvement.
IPL/BBL treatments can brighten and even skin tone to reduce the appearance of sun damage. We use broad band light (BBL) therapy, in which high-intensity pulses of light improve the appearance of red and brown pigment. This is one of the most effective treatments to combat hyperpigmentation as the BBL specifically targets skin cells that contain excess pigment, which will rise to the surface and slough off after the procedure (usually one to two weeks). Most patients can immediately resume normal activity post-treatment. For best results, avoid tanning and sun exposure three weeks before & after treatment!
Our Q-Switched Alexandrite, AKA “Alex,” laser is used to remove specific pigmented lesions. Patients with sun spots and brown patchy areas on the face and body can have these lesions easily removed with this laser. The Q-switched Alexandrite laser targets darkly pigmented tissue and leaves surrounding lighter tissues unaffected. The result is a faded pigment in the treated area and improvement in uniformity of skin color.
NEW! LASER MEMBERSHIPS
As our VIP patients know, consistency is key to prevention & maintenance.
That’s why Dr. Sarah Sawyer is introducing two NEW annual laser memberships to our menu of services:
- IPL/BBL Maintenance – $139/Year
- Access to 15% off all IPL/BBL treatments
- Brighten & Tighten – $239/Year
- Access to 15% off all IPL/BBL, Fraxel, Exilis, Clear + Brilliant, Microneedling & Infini RF treatments
Schedule a complimentary consultation to see which membership is right for you!
GET STARTED TODAY
If you’re noticing more skin pigmentation this time of year, we suggest scheduling an appointment with our laser technicians. We’ll talk through your concerns and determine the extent of sun damage, with customized options that work for your skin!