Published: 08/20/2015 - Updated: 12/28/2017
Author: MSc. Miriam Reyes
Healthy, spot-free skin…who says you can’t have it? Having healthy, young, fresh and firm skin is a beauty idea. After warts, acne, and other skin problems, melasma is yet another one of the most common skin problems, which a lot of people fight against.
Melasma is a dark mark, or hyperpigmentation, on the skin, which is often times found on the face, generally the cheeks, forehead, or upper lips. The hyperpigmentaiton generally spreads throughout the face, making one part of the face look darker than the other. This also could make it look like a type of mask.
What causes Melasma?
A lot of things could cause this type of skin discoloration:
- The primary cause is sun exposure without sunscreen, or being frequently exposed for prolonged periods of time, especially between the hours of 11 am and 5 pm. The sun is a lot stronger and more direct during this time period, and the skin is much more noticeably affected.
- Hormonal changes could also cause skin marks, which is why taking contraceptives or hormone treatments affects the skin, possible staining it.
- Lack of vitamins combined with unprotected sun exposure.
How to treat Melasma
Melanin is the skin pigment that is accentuated or concentrated whenever the skin is exposed to sun. This is one way that the body protects itself from intense sun rays. That’s why when you go to the beach, your body will tan, which is a consequence of accumulated melanin in the body.
Melasma is generally caused by the same thing. The body creates more melanin in one area of the body, in this case the face, which is exposed to the elements all day, constantly getting sun. Even when it’s cloudy out, ultraviolet rays will penetrate and hit the skin, activating this protective mechanism. If you skin is malnourished and dry or poorly moisturized, the body will activate its defenses for the most urgent areas of the face, causing the skin to become discolored. This all occurs because the body is weak in vitamins and hydration, causing the body to activate defenses where it needs it most. This is what causes marks to develop on the skin.
- To start cleansing your skin of this discoloration, you will need to take a break from sun exposure. If you were to stop going out into direct sunlight for six months, you would notice the difference, seeing how your skin cleans itself. However, going out and being exposed to sunlight is sometimes unavoidable. In this case, you need to buy a good sunscreen cream, and apply it before going out.
- Getting away from direct sunlight, however, often times isn’t enough. You will also need to eat a healthy diet so that your skin will have the appropriate enzymes and healing elements. This will give your skin its natural appearance. Drinking fresh vegetable juices is wonderful for the skin, especially in juices and smoothies. Include, for example, aloe, carrots with celery or alfalfa, prickly pear with lemon, fresh ginger with orange, etc. Pineapple and chia seeds before breakfast are wonderful for keep skin clean and repaired.
- Using creams also helps. Snail slime gel, along with aloe gel, or apple and oatmeal gel works great. All of these creams help regenerate cells and tissues, helping to effectively reduce skin mark.
Revised by: Dra. Loredana Lunadei on 12/28/2017
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