Skip to content
Spend $120+ and receive a double cleanse + go gift. Use code CLEANSE at shopping cart to redeem.
Spend $120+ and receive a double cleanse + go gift. Use code CLEANSE at shopping cart to redeem.
Get expert advice with a free virtual skin consultation. Book now.
Get expert advice with a free virtual skin consultation. Book now.

hyperpigmentation: behind the brown spot

hyperpigmentation: behind the brown spot

story highlights

  • Hyperpigmentation is different from freckles or birthmarks.
  • Daily SPF use helps to prevent UV-induced hyperpigmentation.
  • Fading dark spots is possible, but it typically takes at least 30 days.

Dark marks, brown spots & more: hyperpigmentation, demystified.

Brown spots have a major influence on how old people think we are. In fact, one study showed that unbalanced skin tone can make a person look more than 12 years older! The big questions: where do they come from, and what can you do about them?

It helps to understand the science behind brown spots. The official term for brown spots and other forms of skin discoloration is hyperpigmentation. Unlike freckles, hyperpigmentation doesn’t fade in winter and, unfortunately, it becomes more visible as we age.

what causes hyperpigmentation?

Irregular production of melanin (the brown or reddish pigment in skin). Certain triggers – unprotected sun exposure in particular – causes this irregular production, which leads to surface colour-clumping. Other causes include hormonal factors (birth control pills and pregnancy), and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) caused by past trauma or scarring (think a popped pimple or a deep cut). Hormonal hyperpigmentation and PIH are both intensified by sun exposure.

So, what to do about it? Here’s how to figure out what’s causing your brown spots – and take action.

how to to treat hyperpigmentation?

call in the experts

Ask a Dermalogica skin therapist for a free Face Mapping® skin analysis and consultation to get to the root of your brown spots. Knowing your personal triggers will reveal the best treatment. They can even recommend professional treatments that can help you banish dark spots faster!

apply SPF daily

Did you know that spending just 30 minutes unprotected in the sun can undo a month’s worth of effort in fighting hyperpigmentation? Sunscreen helps prevent UV-induced pigmentation, and it also helps prevent existing spots from becoming more intense. Wear it daily to make the most of the treatments you try.

know your ingredients

There are a number of ingredients that can help address hyperpigmentation, but Niacinamide and Hexylresorcinol stand out as two of the most powerful.

Hexylresorcinol is a potent active that can lead to decreased production of melanin, and Niacinamide has been found to significantly decrease hyperpigmentation. Both Niacinamide and Hexylresorcinol help fade the look of uneven pigmentation for more luminous skin and can be found in PowerBright Dark Spot Serum.

be patient

There’s no quick fix for hyperpigmentation: it can take at least 30 days of skin care treatment (with sunscreen use) before you see any progress. Additionally, some spots may look darker before they lighten; this is because they gradually rise to the skin’s surface as you continue to exfoliate. But stick with it, and you’ll eventually see fewer, smaller dark spots!

the best product for hyperpigmentation

Fade spots to bright with PowerBright Dark Spot Serum, bringing together a powerful combination of Niacinamide and Hexylresorcinol — both of which have been shown to deliver significant improvement on even skin tone and dark spots in just one week. This advanced serum’s breakthrough technology begins to diminish the appearance of uneven pigmentation fast, and keeps working to even skin tone over time. It brings a new way to address hyperpigmentation, providing both fast and long-term benefits for your skin.

Previous article reduce the effects of stress on your skin