Apart from wrinkles, small spots or pigmentation that appears on the skin as you age, is also a matter of concern for most women. Dark spots on the skin caused by sun damage and acne scars can make the skin look aged and dull. That’s why it’s important to not only prevent these spots from happening but to also target them once they begin to appear. We’ve got some tips on how to eliminate these spots so that flawless, youthful looking skin is here to stay, for as long as possible.
Part of getting rid of pigmentation and dark spots, is to make sure they don’t happen in the first place. The most common reasons why spots appear on skin is sun damage and acne scarring. Both of these are easy to tackle, considering there are so many products available that can help with these issues.
Sunscreen has possibly been the most talked about product when it comes to a skin care routine. The fact of the matter is, the sun’s harsh UV rays are our skin’s number one enemy. Not only does skin get darker, but it dries out, fine line start to appear and so do dark spots. Apart from roaming around in a Halloween Ghost sheet costume, the best way to ward off the sun’s rays is to wear sunscreen.
Apply sunscreen to the face 20 mins before leaving the house, so that your delicate skin has the most amount of protection. Depending on your preference, an SPF of 25 and above is optimal. Stronger SPFs can be used on the body, to protect the skin on your arms and legs. If you’re out by the pool or on the beach, make sure you apply sunscreen once every 2 to 3 hours, for ultimate protection.
Another great way to work SPF into your daily routine is to find makeup that comes with it. Many foundations, lipsticks and even mineral powders have a degree of SPF in them to really help keep those dark spots at bay. Doing all these things now might seem tedious, but when you don’t notice those dark spots in your 40s, you’ll be thankful.
Acne is another contributor to dark spots which is usually caused by the scars that they leave behind. Firstly, these tiny scars or spots appear mostly because we tend to pick at our skin which causes irritation. So leave your acne alone, stop touching and prodding at it. Secondly, find a good acne treatment routine that works for you. Go to a dermatologist and get as much information about your skin as possible. Knowing what skin type you have will make it easier to buy the right over-the-counter products to help reduce acne.
Washing your face frequently, with anti acne or anti blemish face washes will help prevent sebum buildup that causes acne. Products which contain salicylic acid, from face washes to make-up remover wipes all help with reducing acne. Tackling your acne issues head on, will have a huge impact on those acne spots that are left behind.
If you’re doing your bit to prevent dark spots, then don’t panic when you start to see a few. There are a few things you can do, that will help to lighten them.
Limes have been known to brighten skin, and are often used in home face masks for that very reason. We suggest using a raw lime, cut in half, dipping it in sugar granules and gently rubbing it over the face. This exfoliating scrub helps to remove dark spots while brightening skin. After you rub the sugar around your face, keep the lime-sugar mix on your face till it dries. Then wash your face with water or a gentle face wash to remove. Doing this once a week, will help with those dark spots. Always consult a dermatologist before trying these home remedies, some people do see an adverse reaction from lime, so if you feel a tingling or burning sensation, rinse immediately.
There are a whole host of dark spot creams available in the market and they come in at different price points. You can opt for natural-ingredient spot creams from brands like Lotus and Himalaya, or go for the stronger dermatologist tested ones from Avene or Clinique. There really are a whole lot of options available, the only way they are effective though, is if you use them regularly. We suggest getting a spot treatment cream and using it over dark spots every day for a few weeks. Repeated use will help to lighten dark spots.
Laser treatments are often used for severe pigmentation and many beauty clinics have different programs that target dark spots. Depending on the size and color of your pigmentation, most clinics will suggest the best course of action and number of sessions required. These laser treatments are usually non-invasive and painless and offer quick results. However, these treatments aren’t for everyone, depending on your skin type and how sensitive it is, you may consider not going for a laser treatment. It is advisable to speak to a specialist first before considering a treatment such as this one.
Chemical Peels are another option that your dermatologist might suggest. It is essentially an application of a chemical that will cause your skin to react and peel off, giving way to new skin cells to regenerate and reducing dark spots. Yes, that sounds scary, but they are relatively painless, and always conducted by a professional. The most common peel is done with alpha-hydroxy acid, which is like glycolic or lactic acid, the strongest is done with a chemical called Phenol. Depending on the size, colour and density of your dark spots, your dermatologist will suggest the best option.
Finally, regular face brightening facials and body scrub spa massages will also help you battle dark spots. If you’re not too bothered about these pesky spots but still want a handle on them, then regular spa and salon visits will help your overall appearance. Many salons offer face brightening facials that use products that target spots, pigmentation and dead skin cells. Having these facials once a month will help to reduce and prevent dark spots on the long run.
Age spots, pigmentation, acne scars, liver spots, whatever the reason of concern, the beauty industry has a solution to every blemish. Whether over-the-counter products or intensive treatments, a mixture of preventive measures and consultations will help you combat dark spots. So, enjoy being comfortable in your skin no matter its appearance!