People always ask how they can improve their skin, especially how to get a pure even complexion free of pigment and sun damage. It’s not as simple as using a special moisturiser or serum. Knowing what causes pigmentation and how to prevent it is also important.
Inflammation is Pigmentation
What causes inflammation to the skin?
Sun exposure, trauma to the skin through picking and squeezing, acne, harsh treatments, rough exfoliants, poor diet, illness and stress.
Inflammation is mostly seen in the epidermis where the melanin (colour) is formed. These cells start out clear and when exposed to sunlight or trauma release an enzyme that turns them brown. These damaged cells come to the surface of the skin in the form of sun spots and pigmentation. A tan is actually your skins trying to protect it self when it is being damaged.
Have you ever noticed when you pick or squeeze at a spot it can leave a mark on the skin or scarring? Picking and squeezing are both forms of trauma to the skin which sets off the same reaction as the sun – darkening the skin cells.. It can take a long time (& money) to remove. Not the mention it spreads bacteria. In some cases severe forms of acne can cause scarring even if you do not touch it as the bacteria is in the skin for a long time which also causes trauma.
If you are having or have had any IPL or Laser hair reduction treatments you MUST wear sunscreen always on that area afterwards. IPL causes trauma to the skin via heat and light, in order to get the reaction we want within the hair follicles.
Trauma = inflammation = pigmentation if you don’t take care of the skin
Prevention is better than care
A common misconception is that you only need to wear sunscreen when its sunny or hot. Unfortunately UVA rays which cause the most damage, are still present in Winter and on a cloudy day.
If you sunbathe with no sunscreen, if you drive to work every day without protection or if you use a sunscreen that isn’t broad spectrum you increase your chances of pigmentation. It can take years for the damage to show up but the older we get the less time it takes to show up.
SPF in makeup is not the same
SPF in makeup unfortunately isn’t enough. We do not apply enough foundation to give us enough protection, you would need at least 6 times the amount of foundation to get adequate spf coverage. Makeup is also generally not broad spectrum it only protects from UVB rays. If UVA is allowed to enter the skins surface and reaches the dermis it will damage healthy cells and the pigmentation process will begin to form.
At Indica Medispa we have a range of treatments to help you reduce unwanted pigmentation, from clinical peels to skin needling. It’s important to be wearing SPF daily and using a tyrosinase inhibitor to inhibit the transfer of pigmented cells. We love O Cosmedics B3 Plus and recommend it as homecare to anyone undergoing any skin treatments. It’s also a great preparation serum before undergoing laser or peels.