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When it comes to beauty, we all want to have flawless skin. Complexion really doesn’t matter, but clear skin is always desirable. But pigmentation and the lack of a beauty regime can make your skin look pale and flaky. And if not corrected on time, this pigmentation can turn into hyperpigmentation – which is all the more problematic.
Hyperpigmentation refers to the discoloration of the skin. Skin pigmentation is the most common issue among both males and females, wherein the skin becomes darker, often in patches. Hence, one gets an uneven skin tone.
In hyperpigmentation, the affected area appears darker than the rest of the skin. Hyperpigmentation or skin discoloration is the result of acne blemishes, freckles that have turned into sunspots, or due to skin conditions like psoriasis and eczema.
All these skin issues boost the production of melanocytes, and this, in turn, increases melanin production in the skin. The excessive melanin gets dumped into the deeper levels of the skin, causing hyperpigmentation. The various forms of hyperpigmentation include melasma and sun spots that are more likely to affect areas of skin that face sun exposure, including the face, arms, and legs.
The main cause for skin hyperpigmentation is overproduction of the brown pigment called melanin. Melanin is the pigment responsible for the color of the skin and is made by melanocyte cells in the skin.
“Skin rashes like rosacea, psoriasis, eczema, contact dermatitis; skin infections such as acne, ringworm, tinea versicolor, candidiasis, medical conditions, and hormonal changes due to pregnancy can cause the formation of skin hyperpigmentation and dark patches. Certain external factors and medication can also cause dark patches or hyperpigmentation, such as harmful UV rays. These can trigger the overproduction of melanin in the skin,” says renowned dermatologist Dr Ajay Rana.
1. Apple cider vinegar contains polyphenolic compounds that are beneficial in managing hyperpigmentation. One can apply it daily.
2. Sunscreen is the most crucial ingredient to treat hyperpigmentation, apply it every day at least 15-20 minutes before heading out in the sun, as it needs some time to get absorbed into the skin. Reapply sunscreen after every four hours to stay protected for a longer duration. This will help to prevent and treat skin pigmentation.
3. Potatoes are known for their anti-pigmentation properties. They work as a miracle cure for pigmented areas and blemishes. For this, cut a potato into half and dip the sliced part into water. Then, rub this slice of potato on the affected areas in circular motion for about 10 minutes. Wash your face with lukewarm water. Repeat this procedure twice or thrice in a week to get rid of dark patches of the skin.
4. Apply black tea water on the skin. For this, soak a cotton ball in black tea water and apply it on the pigmented skin at least twice a day.
5. Coconut oil is an ingredient, which has many medical benefits. It can help to remove the dead skin cells and also protects it from the harmful UV rays of the sun. Take coconut oil and massage it well on the affected skin, so that it penetrates deep into the skin’s layers. Leave it for about 20-25 minutes in the affected area, so that it gets absorbed. Then, wash your face with lukewarm water and apply this at least thrice a week for better results.
6. Sandalwood helps to lighten hyperpigmentation spots. For this, mix sandalwood and rose water to make a smooth paste. Apply this paste on the face and leave it on for about 15-20 minutes. When it dries, rinse it with lukewarm water.
“Always go for skincare products that contain alpha hydroxy acid, as it is good for reducing hyperpigmentation,” suggests Dr Rana.