4 Ways to Reduce Dark Pigments in Your Skin

I’m often asked about sun damage and what can be done about the dark pigment on the skin. While there is no way to completely reverse the damage that’s been done, there are ways to prevent further skin damage, reduce dark pigmentation and improve the skin’s appearance. Take a look!


Let’s start with the most obvious way to prevent skin pigmentation in the first place, which is the daily use of sunscreen even on those overcast or cold days. Sun exposure is the #1 cause of hyperpigmentation and the #1 cause of aging. Applying sunscreen on a daily basis will not only reduce the risk of unwanted pigment, but it will also slow down the aging process.  While choosing the best sunscreen is important, using it correctly is also important.  At least an SPF of 30 that blocks UVA and UVB rays – applied to your skin at least 30 minutes prior to sun exposure – is the most effective.


Chemical peels work by exfoliating the outer layers of the skin. Not only do they improve the appearance of your skin, but they can reduce the age spots, freckles and dark patches (melasma) due to the sun, pregnancy or taking birth control pills.  Pigment does not occur over night, so unfortunately it doesn’t go away with one treatment.  Our aestheticians will tailor the peels to your specific needs.


Photofacial is a generic term for a skin treatment that uses light based technology.  Photofacials are mostly used for treating brown spots and they work by destroying the pigment producing cells with heavy amounts of melanin.  Your immune system then carries away the fragmented cells and pigment molecules.  The pigment may appear darker for the first week post treatment and then slowly lightens or sloughs off.  Melasma can be more difficult to treat due to where the pigment lies within the skin.  Seeking a skilled practitioner is important in knowing the difference in the types of pigment and the best course of treatment.


The use of medical grade skin care products is a great tool for reducing unwanted pigment in the skin.  The daily use of these products is so important in helping towards the goal of lightening pigment.  Chemical peels and/or photofacials combined with daily use of medical grade skin care products will greatly speed up the process of lightening your dark spots.  Products such as Lytera® and Retinol are excellent choices for lightening pigment.

A skilled practitioner will give you a detailed plan to help decrease and/or treat your unwanted hyperpigmentation.