One thing that makes getting acne even more annoying is the brown, dark, or reddish spots that can linger in your skin for weeks or months. There are also cases where the fading process can take years, especially if the discoloration lies deep within your skin. This can be a big blow to self-esteem, especially if the marks are extremely noticeable.
Why do dark spots appear?
Dark marks that follow after a blemish, skin injury, or trauma are referred to as post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH). This shows up after the healing of wound or inflammation and occurs as a part of your body’s healing process. The fading process is about 3 to 6 months, but there are instances where they can take too long to lighten.
More inflammation in the skin can make PIH more noticeable (in size and color). Its root cause is increased melanin production; the inflammation triggers the pigment-producing cells (melanocytes) to release more pigment. This darkens and discolors the affected area, lingering after the blemish or wound has healed.
Why does the fading process seem to take forever?
There are a number of things that can contribute to it. Your habits and the way you treat your skin play a role on how fast or slow your dark spots will fade. These include:
- Not wearing sunscreen – Unprotected sun exposure can cause further darkening and prolong the fading process. Make sure to wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher, every day regardless of the weather. It is also advisable to look for a product with zinc oxide or titanium oxide and won’t clog your pores.
- Scrubbing your skin/marks – Over exfoliating your skin or dark marks may only worsen your pigmentation. Aggressive scrubbing can also burst your acne and strip your lipid barrier of essential oils or moisture. Common signs of over exfoliation include redness, irritation, inflamed skin, and even breakouts (tiny, bumpy pimples).
- Picking or popping your blemishes – While it is so tempting to pick at the skin or pop your blemishes, this can prolong the acne’s healing process. It can push more dirt and bacteria deeper into the skin, causing inflamed acne or large cysts. Lastly, picking can also increase the risk of discoloration (PIH) and scarring.
- Not treating your acne – You are more likely to prevent dark spots and scarring or reduce your risk of getting them if you treat your blemishes early. The right treatment is also beneficial in preventing future breakouts and reducing the likelihood of needing stronger acne medications later on. Check out the things you should know about adult acne.
How can I fade or remove dark spots?
At Cutis Medical Laser Clinics in Singapore, we have a number of aesthetic treatments that can lighten your hyperpigmentation or lighten the fading process.
Limelight™ Photo Facial
This aesthetic treatment uses an FDA-cleared “intense pulse light” technology to address a range of skin problems. Limelight delivers pulses of light at the skin to draw out spots and patches, which will scab and fall off after three to four days. The brown spots may turn darker, but will soon get better after a few days, revealing brighter skin
Pearl™ Skin Resurfacing
This laser skin resurfacing treatment treats both the dermis and epidermis layers of the skin. It delivers heat simultaneously to the skin’s deeper layers and stimulates collagen production. The Pearl Procedure can treat melasma, sun damaged skin, and pigmentation. It also reduces wrinkles as well as rough and uneven skin texture.
This medical-grade chemical peel features a special formulation that is designed to address or improve a range of conditions. It provides a deep peeling effect that removes the damaged layers and stimulates the production of new skin cells. VI Peel can reduce age spots and other pigmentation, soften lines and wrinkles, and improve skin clarity.
Find out why VI Peel is not your average chemical peel treatment.
Don’t let your dark spots fade forever or become worse. Avoid the habits that can darken their appearance and contact Cutis Medical Laser Clinics. Schedule a consultation with our aesthetic doctor and learn more about the treatments for fading hyperpigmentation.