Dark spots on the skin, also known as hyperpigmentation or age spots, can happen at any time, but they mostly appear during middle-age. Mostly, these spots appear due to extreme sun exposure, an underlying skin condition, or as a side effect of some medicines. They generally appear on parts of the body exposed to the sun such as the face, back of the hands, shoulders, arms, and back.
The other causes of these spots can be pregnancy, liver disease, Addison’s disease, pituitary tumors. There are a few ways or methods to remove or lighten these spots, which are as discussed below:
1. Exfoliation: Acne scars are one of the most common dark spots on acne-prone skin. Exfoliation will help in removing all the dead skin on the surface and deep within pores.
Gentle exfoliation cleansers such as The Derma Co.’s AHA-BHA foaming cleanser can do the job without irritating the skin with harsh scrub beads.
It has a good combination of AHA, BHA, glycolic, and salicylic acid that are excellent exfoliators scientifically known to kill bacteria and unclog pores without a sweat.
2. Potato: One of the natural remedies that help to whiten dark spots or blemishes on the skin are potato slices.
The key components of the potato are starch and sugar, and they work together to help in exfoliating dead skin cells and aids the growth of new ones.
- Potato slices are one of the easiest methods used to fade dark spots. Grate fresh potatoes and apply the juice on the affected area and leave it untouched for about 10-15 minutes.
- Potato and lemon juice mixed together have bleaching properties. They have rich Vitamin C concentration and thus help in skin brightening.
3. Aloe Vera. It contains 90% of the amino acids found in our body, in addition to vitamins A, B, C, and E.
Aloe Vera helps in providing quick depigmentation, removing dark spots, and treating sunburn.
This plant also has anti-aging and skin nourishing properties along with pain relief and antiseptic properties.
4. Vitamin C or Orange Peel: The orange peel contains a lot of Vitamin C and antioxidants, which helps in getting clear and brighter skin.
The peel has an anti-bacterial and anti-microbial property, which helps in treating oily skin as well.
Vitamin C is a fantastic immune system booster that can also help fight symptoms of cold and flu. Dry out the orange peel out in the sun and grind to a fine powder.
Mix the orange dust along with few drops of honey and milk to get rid of the dark spots quickly.
The lactic and citric acid in the milk and orange peel will bleach dark spots while honey will moisturize and soften the skin.
5. Lemon Juice: The citric acid and Vitamin C present in the lemon makes it the perfect bleaching agent for depigmentation.
Lemon, when applied in concentrated form, can be really harsh on the skin, and hence water can be used to dilute the juice. This diluted solution is a perfect solution for people with sensitive skin.
6. Pineapple Juice. It is rich in antioxidants and Vitamins A, and C present in the juice can help in increasing collagen production. When used together, they help in fighting pigmentation and fade dark spots.
Other than these quick and easy home remedies, few clinical methods recommended by dermatologists include-
a. Laser treatment: Lasers are one of the most expensive yet impactful treatments to reduce dark spots.
The process involves targeting a focused beam of light on the affected areas to break up and eliminate the pigment particles in the skin. The laser treatment takes approximately 30 minutes and is mildly uncomfortable. Laser treatments for dark spots use an Intense Pulse Light (IPL) laser.
The laser head emits light that’s absorbed by dark skin cells. The darker the skin cell, the more energy it absorbs, killing that particular cell.
Redness and swelling are normal the day after the laser treatment. Then within 4-6 days, these spots will begin to fade.
b. Microdermabrasion: This is another well-known exfoliating treatment for hyperpigmentation or dark spots that uses tiny particles to melt away dead skin.
During a microdermabrasion treatment, tiny crystals are sprayed across the skin and simultaneously vacuumed off.
A famous dermatologist Dr. Fran Cook-Bolden describes microdermabrasion as a non-chemical procedure that is non-ablative, which means it does not destroy skin tissue and, therefore, does not require significant recovery time.
It is best for milder hyperpigmentation conditions since the results are modest in terms of improving the appearance of skin discoloration.
The skin may be pink for a while afterward, but these techniques are considered low risk.
These were the few methods and treatments discussed to fade dark spots on your skin when you hit middle-age. It is important to get a skin analogy done by a dermatologist to see if the spots are due to extreme sun exposure or a medical condition. Determining the root cause is the only way to treat it right and permanently.