All caught up on Dark Spots 101? Now that we’ve covered the hyperpigmentation basics, we’re taking a deeper dive into the different types of dark spots you may be dealing with. We’re here to help you classify the “what” and “why” behind your dark spots. Let’s dive in:
Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH)
A.k.a the pesky dark spots left behind after your bad breakouts. This lingering discoloration is caused by an overproduction of melanin––the protein that gives your skin its color. Melanin helps to heal the skin, so more is produced when you’re breaking out.
When your summer vacays start to catch up with you, sun spots will start to appear. UVA/UVB rays speed up the production of melanin, so with time, the melanin becomes clumped on skin and shows up as skin discoloration. Also known as ‘age spots’ or ‘liver spots’, these dark spots develop with time as you get older––so, get ahead of them now and wear your SPF (always!!!)
Another common cause of pesky dark spots? This common skin condition is caused by hormonal changes in the body––think birth control, hormonal therapies, pregnancy, and stress (yes, stress!!!). While there are cases in which this can be permanent, the good news is that it often is treatable and can be temporary!
Other conditions or medication
If you are feeling your hyperpigmentation may be the cause of another skin condition or medication you are taking, talk to your dermatologist or primary care doctor. Although rare, some skin discoloration could be a sign of something more serious, like skin cancer. Be sure to keep an eye out for the ABCDE's:
Asymmetry: irregular shape
Border: outer edges are uneven
Color: dark black or multiple colors
Diameter: diameter (greater than 6mm)
Evolving: change in size, shape or color
Keep your eyes peeled for part three of our Dark Spots series where we'll be dishing on treatments for your dark spots. Say sayonara to your hyperpigmentation––fast!