By: Fola Onifade
One of the most common skin ailments are dark spots. But how do they even show up on our skin the first place?
Dark spots appear when there’s an overproduction of melanin in the skin and this can be caused by pimples, wounds, medications, skin care products, or hormonal changes. As Dr. Adeline Kikam states in this Instagram post, “Not all dark spots are created equal, and in turn, should not be treated equally.” Keep this in mind as you read through some proposed solutions to fighting dark spots and always make sure to consult a dermatologist.
Now that we know all the various reasons dark spots appear, let’s get into the different ways they can be treated.
First things first: Sunscreen
Prevention is the most effective form of treatment, and the best way to prevent dark spots is by using sunscreen consistently. Sun exposure can actually cause dark spots to get even darker, so using sunscreen can help block out most of the rays that would otherwise darken them. Apply sunscreen daily, and reapply every two hours if you’re in the sun.
Skin by Ame Natural Products
Hydrating Face Cream
How to: Massage daily into the skin after cleansing and toning.
Sweet Almond Oil
Natural Skin Lightening Products
Most skin lightening products inhibit the production of an enzyme called tyrosinase, which aids in the production of melanin. Before using over the counter skin lightening products, pay attention to the ingredients to check for irritants or things you may be allergic to. Additionally, some dark spots are harder to treat than others. If any of the treatments don’t deliver the desired results, you may want to consult a dermatologist.
How to: Before applying sunscreen, massage a few drops of Vitamin C daily into clean skin.
How to: Apply kojic acid at nighttime only to problem areas.
How to: Apply it once or twice a day after cleansing, toning, and exfoliating. You can use it alone or with your favorite serum or moisturizer. When using it during the day, follow up with sunscreen.
To prevent this, use hydroquinone sparingly on the target area and feather outwards towards the edges.
How to: Apply at night, and increase to twice a day as needed for maximum effects. Hydroquinone can cause sun sensitivity, so pair it with sunscreen during the day.
All the treatments we’ve listed above vary in range and strength. For the most powerful results, however, you may consider procedures like laser treatment, chemical peels, microdermabrasion or microneedling.
As always, we recommend a consultation with a dermatologist or skin care specialist before engaging in any treatment.