Sun Spots? Age Spots? If You’re seeing Spots, This Post is for You!
Summer’s long over and, with it, so went sun-tanning. Even though most of my friends have given up dedicated sun baking and using oil to get that golden brown glow, there’s no way to avoid the sun altogether.
We might be smart about the UVA and UVB rays now, but past sun sins can come back to haunt us. Years of unprotected sun exposure cause brown spots, those unattractive brown blotches of varying shades and sizes.
Today dermatologists are saying that those spots are cropping up on younger patients. “Brown spots used to be something old people got, but today they have less to do with aging and more to do with sun exposure. I see them in 20 something women all the time,” said James M. Spencer, of Spencer Dermatology and Skin Surgery Center in St. Petersburg.
Protecting your skin is the first step in warding off those unsightly brown badges, sometimes referred to as age spots or hyper-pigmentation. Even if you haven’t been sun savvy in the past, there are methods – from bleaching creams to laser treatments – that can alleviate these unwanted age advertisers. Here are a few tips and dark spot solutions:
Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen!
It’s never too late to start protecting your skin. The best solution to brown spots is prevention. UV ray-blocking skin and face creams are a must! Existing spots become more visible, and new spots will continue to develop unless you minimize sun exposure. Don’t leave the house without using a product with at least SPF 15 every day.
At-home creams take months to work. So don’t expect drastic results. Be patient. The results can be spotty so try to confine cream to the brown spot only, so you don’t get a lighter ring. Look for bleaching creams containing hydroquinone; it blocks the formation of new brown pigment. It’s available over-the-counter in 2 percent concentrations, but you can get stronger concentrations at your dermatologist. For a quicker solution, try Retin A – a prescription strength retinoid that helps skin turn over more quickly.
In-office Laser treatments:
Laser treatments are pricier than creams but that’s because lasers are the most effective at permanently removing spots. A laser facial uses light energy to peel off brown spots. The laser can remove brown spots in two treatments. And you might go home with a little redness where the brown spots used to be, the healing is quick and painless. Laser treatments are most effective when combined with microdermabrasion. Microderm removes dead cells with a light abrasion.
I find that pairing the treatments with a lightening cream gives the best results. Laser facials are relaxing and show major results. When I go in to do a laser facial I always ask the technician to do a little bit of microdermabrasion. The deep exfoliation combined with the laser facial’s rejuvenation properties are a real one-two punch to dark spots, fine lines, and dry dull skin.
Try it for yourself!