When we think about signs of aging, wrinkles are often the first thing that comes to mind. Skin laxity and sagging might be a close second. However, at VIDA, we understand the complex ways the body ages and can help you achieve a more holistic approach to anti-aging. It’s much more than lines, wrinkles, and sagging. As we get older, all those years of sun damage really start to show, often in the form of hyperpigmentation. Age spots, sun spots, brown spots, liver spots … people refer to them by a number of different names. Take a look at kids and teenagers and you’ll see the young just don’t have them. Freckles and moles are the hyperpigmentation marks of the young, so once you start having hyperpigmentation beyond those two, it’s aging signs.

The good news is that hyperpigmentation is removable, but you’re going to need in-office treatments to turn back the clock. Hyperpigmentation also doesn’t play fairly—some people get more brown spots than others for a variety of reasons. Of course, sun damage is a major factor, but so are genetics, conditions like eczema (which can lead to hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation), and skin color. Those with fairer skin simply tend to sunburn more easily and brown spots are more obvious. If you’re ready to reverse the clock, let’s take a look at some of the best ways to get rid of hyperpigmentation.

Laser Your Way to Clear Skin

Broadband light therapy (BBL) or its predecessor, intense pulsed light therapy (IPL), are gold standards when it comes to treating hyperpigmentation. The use of scattered light energy means the hyperpigmentation is treated below the surface while keeping the top skin’s surface intact. This leads to virtually no downtime, though you can expect to look a bit pink after your treatment. Most clients require a series of initial sessions to get the best results, then maintenance sessions every few months to keep them.

One of the great thing about these laser treatments is that most of them can provide a variety of benefits beyond removing hyperpigmentation. You can simultaneously tackle lines and wrinkles, poor texture, laxity, and even redness caused by rosacea or broken blood vessels. However, not all lasers are for all people. Those with more melanin need to be very careful with laser treatments, lest they exacerbate skin problems or create new ones. For example, many people with darker skin tones can experience unwanted skin lightening with some lasers.

Other Ways to Treat Hyperpigmentation

Depending on the type of brown spot and the depth, a chemical peel can be a great alternative or complement to lasers. Chemical peels are typically available in superficial or medium depths and are customized for each person. They use a concoction of chemicals to peel away the top layer of skin (including the brown spots) to reveal clearer skin below the surface. However, chemical peels keep working because they also stimulate collagen production. This means that results will keep improving in the days and weeks following the treatment.

Microneedling is another fantastic solution for some forms of hyperpigmentation. This treatment was initially discovered at the turn of the last century as a means of treating severe skin trauma (often in war veterans). The techniques and technologies have advanced tremendously in the last 100 years, and today microneedling is used both medically and cosmetically. In aesthetics, microneedling creates micro-channels in the skin via tiny needles, which lets the body know it needs to start producing collagen at the treatment site. Results are not immediate with microneedling, but you’ll notice a continued improvement in the skin for about one month after the treatment.

Preventing Future Brown Spots

Unfortunately, many of the brown spots that pop up as we age are actually from sun damage that happened years and even decades ago. Even if you’re a diligent sunscreen wearer now, you probably weren’t as a baby, child, or even teenager. However, it’s never too late to start safeguarding your skin. Medical-grade sunscreens are an integral part of daily protection anytime you leave the house or are otherwise exposed to UV rays. This includes working from home by a window. Windows, whether at home or in a car, are not a form of UV protection.

Let’s work together to undo the hyperpigmentation you have and prevent future brown spots from occurring. Schedule your complimentary hyperpigmentation consultation today by calling the VIDA office or filling out the online form.