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What is Pigmentation?

Pigmentation / Hyperpigmentation is a common skin condition where some areas of the skin turn darker in colour and is usually caused by an over activity of the skin pigment, melanin.

Types of pigmentation vary from freckles and solar lentigines (age or liver spots) to Melasma, Chloasma and PIH (Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation) but although the causes and severity vary, all are exacerbated by sunlight.

Melasma and Chloasma

Closely related to hormonal changes and the sun’s rays and often covering large patchy areas and darkening during the summer months or with exposure to sunlight, Melasma can also be associated with a change in contraceptive pill, IUD or hormone patch or higher levels of oestrogen during the menstrual cycle. Chloasma is usually pregnancy-related and is often referred to as the ‘pregnancy mask’, although it can develop on areas of the body other than the face.

Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation

PIH can be a result of acne, when areas of the skin have been damaged by spots or picking of the skin. The condition can also be caused by traumatic scars, surgery scars, or quite often, poor skin care regimes or aggressive skin treatments.

Hyperpigmentation and Melasma have many triggers and affects all skin types. Treating pigmentation takes time and specifc cosmeceutical and medical grade topical treatments and sunscreen to help fade and control discoloration.


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