Most of us wish that we could counteract the damage that the summer or winter months have done on our skin.
Sun damage from UV exposure and all that accompanies it in our extreme environment has a cumulative effect on our skin that just isn’t pretty, period! Fortunately, there are effective treatments to counteract those horrible age spots that seem to multiply as the years pass by. I’m not just talking about the age spots on our face but the hands and forearms as well.
Lightening and brightening treatments are very skin tone specific. Treatments that for a lighter or ruddy complexion is not the treatment that an olive tone complexion should receive. Darker skin tones need to be treated less aggressively, otherwise they will experience rebound pigmentation later on.
Treating Your Age Spots
Diffuse sun damage can really ruin an otherwise pretty complexion and isolated
dark spots are hard to hide.
DIFFERENT SKIN TONES NEED DIFFERENT TREATMENTS, BUT THEY ALL NEED SUNBLOCK!!
OLIVE TONE COMPLEXIONS AND DARKER SKIN TYPES
Fitzpatrick Scale 4-6
Vitamin A Treatments
They are excellent brightening treatments for darker and olive skin tones. They safely treat pigmented tissue without causing any undo inflammation, which usually caused pigmentation in the first place.
Vitamin A Mask Treatment
Dermaplane with Vitamin A Mask
Cosmelan Vitamin A Therapy Treatment
(with or without a pre-peel acid treatment and 30 day follow-up)
Needling with brightening & lightening growth factors or serums can help support a pigment reduction protocol. It can also be partnered with a dermaplane and acid treatment for added benefit as long as it’s very superficial.
Acid treatments are a more conservative approach and is practiced with darker skin types. Different acids can be layered for a custom treatment depending on skin condition
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL or Photo Facial) I don’t recommend this treatment for darker skin tones or olive complexions. The results may look good initially, but rebound pigmentation usually occurs a few months after. If this is the treatment of choice, is should be done at lower settings.
Lightening/Brightening Serums & Lotions should be part of your daily routine if you have pigmentation concerns. Spots don’t show up overnight, they’re an accumulated condition. Brightening products help to reverse this condition with regular, accumulated treatments.
Vitamin C Serums are another excellent product to help with upstream and downstream aging (hasn’t happen and already happened, respectively)
LIGHTER OR RUDDY SKIN TYPES
Fitzpatrick Scale 1-3
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL or Photo Facial) is a great treatment to zap away ugly pigmentation on lighter skin types because there’s not as much pigmentation waiting to activate at the slightest irritation! A series of 3-5 treatments has beautiful results, but you’ll also be amazed after just one!
NEW!! Levulan & PDT (photodynamic therapy with blue light or IPL) This is a great treatment to remove AK’s or Actinic Keratoses which are common on lighter skin that has taken a beating from the sun. Symptoms are dry, scaly patches that don’t go away. Usually takes 1-6 visits every two months depending on severity of AK’s. Downtime again depends on severity of condition, skin may be red and flaky for a few days after.
May be covered by insurance!
Needling with brightening & lightening growth factors or serums can help support a pigment reduction protocol. This can also be partnered with a dermaplane and acid treatment for added benefit.
Acid treatments are another great treatment for lighter skin types. Different acids can be layered for a custom treatment depending on skin condition.
Lightening/Brightening Serums & Lotions should be part of your daily routine if you have pigmentation concerns. Spots don’t show up overnight, they’re an accumulated condition. Brightening products help to reverse this condition with regular accumulated treatment
Vitamin C Serums are another excellent product to help with upstream and downstream aging (hasn’t happen and already happened, respectively).
FURTHER EXPLANATIONS FOR SOME OF THE ABOVE TREATMENTS…
IPL (intense pulsed light or photo facial) are attracted to the brown and red tones in the skin. They “zap” the melanin or hemoglobin which in turn die and then shed off or are absorbed by the lymphatic system. Topical anesthetic is usually applied for 20-30 minutes prior making the treatment more comfortable, which feels like a rubber band snap. The sun damaged skin turns brown and crispy, and takes about 7-10 days to clear up. Makeup can be applied during this time.
Derma planing, needling, and acid treatments are done every 1 – 4 weeks with a series of 4-6 treatments depending on severity. Dermaplaning is a physical exfoliation of the skin with a medical device. Needling involves different needle lengths depending on area and condition, also known as collagen induction therapy. Acid treatments may include salicylic, malic, TCA, or jessner’s. Minimal to moderate downtime, depends if done individually or layered with each other.
NEW!! Levulan & PDT (photodynamic therapy with blue light or IPL) A solution of special acid is applied to the skin and allowed to “incubate” for at least an hour on the face, longer on body parts. Face, head, or body part is then exposed to a special “blue light” for 17 min to activate the acid solution which then kills the pre-cancerous skin cells. Incubation period is in the office so no UV exposure occurs during this stage. Reading materials, etc can be brought to pass the time while incubating.