3 Treatments for Reducing Melasma Spots
It’s difficult to say whether public awareness of the effects the sun can have on our skin has increased over time or not. What is clear, however, is that these effects are becoming more severe.
Melasma spots are one of the many effects of the sun’s rays on the skin, and they can become a real aesthetic problem for people who suffer from the condition. In this article, we’ll give you some tips on how to reduce the appearance of these spots.
What is Melasma?
Melasma is recognized as a skin condition on the face, and is characterized by the appearance of brown spots. In addition to exposure to the sun, hormonal disorders are a common cause, especially those experienced during pregnancy, as confirmed in this study carried out by the General Hospital of Mexico.
It should be noted that this condition occurs more often in women, and patches or spots are usually more visible in those with lighter skin tones. The only symptoms of Melasma are the previously mentioned spots or patches on the face.
Nowadays, the treatments to fight the condition usually consist of the application of creams, laser therapy or exfoliants, as indicated in this investigation conducted by the department of dermatology at the General Hospital of Mexico.
3 treatments for reducing Melasma spots
1. Treatment with prescribed medications
Medications are usually the first option to treat Melasma. They often consist of the application of a facial cream prescribed by a dermatologist, which seeks to reduce the appearance of the spots.
This type of medication usually contains a chemical component called “hydroquinone,” which you can also get in gel or lotions.
Hydroquinone is able to counteract the appearance of spots thanks to the fact that it blocks the chemical process of melanin (the substance that gives our skin its darker pigment).
Other compounds which help to lighten spots or patches on the skin are:
- Azelaic acid
- Retinoic acid
2. Professional procedures
Professional procedures are the most effective, but at the same time the most abrasive and invasive for the skin. They are usually a last resort since they tend to be expensive.
The most common procedures include:
- Chemical exfoliation or peel. This treatment works to renew the outermost layers of the skin that are affected by Melasma. This type of exfoliation consists of the external application of a chemical substance (for example, glycolic acid), which causes a slight burn. When it peels off, it allows the new, unmarked skin to come through.
- Microdermabrasion and dermabrasion. According to this study carried out by the Ramathibodi Hospital, dermabrasion is a professional procedure that uses high-tech equipment to remove the superficial layers of the dermis, leaving the patient with spot free skin. As for microdermabrasion, this is an exfoliation procedure that uses diamond crystals in order to eliminate dead skin cells.
Both treatments take several sessions (normally 5 sessions) and in intervals of 2 or 4 weeks, as indicated by the specialist.
- Laser treatments. These treatments also work to remove the damaged layers of the skin. They tend to be the most effective and, in turn, the most expensive. In general, the treatment takes 4 or 6 sessions, resulting in a significant reduction in the spots on the face, and even eliminating them completely.
3. Homemade and natural treatments
There are also some highly recommended homemade treatments. Using natural ingredients, they work to lighten the skin darkened by Melasma. However, there is no scientific evidence to prove whether they are effective or not.
Here are some of them:
Cream of egg white and black balm
- 1 egg white. According to an investigation carried out by the Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research in Puducherry (India), egg white is used as a whitening agent. However, there is little proof that it is effective.
- 4 drops of black balm
- Combine both ingredients well and apply the mixture on the affected area in the morning and at night.
Honey and lemon mask
- 3 tablespoons of milk (45 ml)
- 4 tablespoons of honey (100 g)
- 2 tablespoons of lemon juice (30 ml). This study conducted by the Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands focuses on the use of lemon as a whitening agent. However, there is very little scientific evidence on this subject.
- Mix all the ingredients and apply the mixture to your face.
- Leave on for 20 minutes before removing with warm water.
- Repeat the procedure about 2 or 3 times a week.
Remember that the previously described treatments work precisely to reduce the appearance Melasma spots, but do not make the condition disappear altogether.
Also, in order for these treatments to be effective, we recommend that you combine them with treatments that help with your hormonal balance to prevent the condition from continuing to appear.