Melasma is a pigmentary disorder that predominantly affects women with darker skin tones. However, it can also affect men and women of all skin types.
Several risk factors associated with the development of melasma include pregnancy, hormonal changes, solar exposure, stress, and genetics.
If you’re an unfortunate victim of this pigmentary condition, you might be in search of an effective treatment for melasma.
It is important to understand that there is no definitive cure for melasma; however, with proper treatment and maintenance, these hyperpigmented areas will become less noticeable over time.
In this blog post, we’ll explain what exactly melasma is and its potential causes.
Furthermore, we’ll introduce some of the best products available on the market and some telltale signs to look out for when choosing your skin care products to treat melasma faster and more effectively.
Melasma, also known as the mask of pregnancy, is a skin condition that happens when melanin (skin pigment) collects in the middle layer of skin and causes brown to dark brown patches on the face.
People with darker skin types are at an increased risk for melasma, as are pregnant women. Depending on the severity of the condition, doctors can prescribe different medications to fight melasma.
Types of Treatment
Most cases of melasma can be treated with a topical over-the-counter (OTC) cream or prescription medication. However, you’ll want to see an experienced dermatologist for specific treatment suggestions.
Exfoliating is often recommended to keep the skin looking fresh and healthy. Tretinoin is typically used in many treatments, though it has side effects like dryness, sun sensitivity, and peeling.
The most effective type of tretinoin is adapalene. Therefore, products containing this active ingredient are more effective than other products containing other forms of tretinoin.
When choosing a product containing adapalene, make sure that it contains at least 0.1% of the ingredient to work effectively in treating melanoma.
What To Look For In Treatment Cream
There are various treatment options for melasma, including melasma treatment cream, chemical peels, laser treatments, and prescription-strength creams. It is important to find a cream that:
Contains an Effective Concentration of Hydroquinone
Hydroquinone is one of the few chemicals proven to help reduce skin discoloration. Hydroquinone products should also contain sun protection to protect the treated skin from developing new patches.
The best hydroquinone creams also include Vitamin C, increasing efficacy while reducing side effects such as redness or irritation.
Doesn’t Contain Benzoyl Peroxide or Salicylic Acid
Benzoyl peroxide can lead to increased sensitivity to sunlight and exfoliation of the skin (leading to more hyperpigmentation). Salicylic acid can cause dryness or irritation on sensitive skin types.
Has Broad Spectrum SPF Protection
Melasma will darken with UV exposure, so it’s important to use sunscreen daily. However, some patients have found that sunscreen alone can be enough to prevent any additional darkening or the development of new patches.
Is Easy To Apply
The last thing you want when treating melasma is an inconvenient application process. So it would help if you had something that won’t stain your clothes or pillowcase, has a pleasant smell, and doesn’t require much time each morning.
Choosing the best treatment for melasma can be confusing, but by researching and carefully considering each treatment’s pros and cons, you will be well on your way to a solution.
Treatments considered safer include sun avoidance or protection, glycolic acid lotion, hydroquinone, and azelaic acid cream.
If you’re experiencing an atypical type of skin condition where the rash is worsening with time or if this is your first time getting it, then make sure to see a dermatologist ASAP.
Sandra is a health blogger based in San Diego, California. She is passionate about living a healthy lifestyle. She loves being outdoors and exploring new places with her husband. She is a mom of two awesome kids and a dog named Luna!