Causes and treatment of skin hyperpigmentation

Causes and treatment of skin hyperpigmentation

Hyperpigmentation of the skin is a widespread disorder that affects people of all ages, genders, and skin types.

Skin hyperpigmentation is distinguished by the darkening of the skin in specific places caused by an excess of melanin.

Melanin is a pigment that gives our skin, hair, and eyes colour, and it is generated by melanocytes. Hyperpigmentation occurs when these cells create too much melanin.

Sun damage

Exposure to the sun is one of the most common causes of hyperpigmentation. When the skin is exposed to the sun, it triggers the production of melanin as a defence mechanism to protect the skin from further damage. Over time, this can lead to an accumulation of melanin in certain areas of the skin, resulting in dark spots or patches.

Hormonal changes

Hormonal changes, such as those that occur during pregnancy or menopause, can also cause hyperpigmentation. This type of hyperpigmentation is often referred to as melasma or chloasma, and it usually appears on the face, neck, and chest. Hormonal fluctuations can trigger the overproduction of melanin, resulting in dark patches on the skin.


Acne can also cause hyperpigmentation, especially if the acne lesions are not treated properly. When acne heals, it can leave behind dark spots or patches on the skin. This is known as post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, and it is a common concern for people with acne-prone skin.


Inflammation can also cause hyperpigmentation. When the skin is inflamed due to conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, or dermatitis, it can trigger the overproduction of melanin, resulting in dark spots on the affected areas.


Certain medications, such as antibiotics, anti-fungal drugs, and chemotherapy drugs, can also cause hyperpigmentation. This is because these medications can affect the production and distribution of melanin in the skin.


Finally, genetics can also play a role in hyperpigmentation. Some people are more prone to developing dark spots or patches on their skin due to their genetic makeup. This type of hyperpigmentation is often referred to as genetic hyperpigmentation, and it can be challenging to treat.


Cosmetic procedures can be effective in treating hyperpigmentation, especially for more stubborn or deep-seated pigmentation concerns.

Here are some common cosmetic procedures used for hyperpigmentation:

  • Chemical Peels: Chemical peels involve the application of a chemical solution to the skin, which exfoliates the top layer and promotes skin cell turnover.
  • Laser Therapy: Laser treatments use concentrated beams of light to target and break down the excess pigment in the skin.
  • Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) Therapy: IPL uses broad-spectrum light to target and reduce pigmentation irregularities in the skin.
  • Microdermabrasion: Microdermabrasion involves the use of a device that exfoliates the outermost layer of the skin.
  • Microneedling: Microneedling is a procedure that uses tiny needles to create controlled micro-injuries in the skin. This stimulates collagen production and promotes skin regeneration, helping to fade hyperpigmentation over time.
  • Cryotherapy: Cryotherapy involves the application of extreme cold temperatures to the skin to freeze and destroy excess pigment.

When it comes to treating hyperpigmentation, there are several ingredients known to provide effective results.

Here are some of the best ingredients commonly found in skincare products for treating hyperpigmentation:

  • Tranexamic acid: This is a potent ingredient that specifically targets hyperpigmentation by reducing melanin production and improving the appearance of dark spots, leading to a brighter and more even complexion.
  • Niacinamide: Also known as vitamin B3, is a multitasking ingredient that can help reduce hyperpigmentation. It inhibits the transfer of melanin to the skin's surface and has anti-inflammatory properties, which can calm the skin and improve overall skin tone.
  • Alpha arbutin: Works by inhibiting the enzyme called tyrosinase, which plays a crucial role in melanin production. It is a milder alternative to ingredients like hydroquinone, making it suitable for individuals with sensitive skin.
  • Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid): Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that inhibits the enzyme tyrosinase, reducing melanin production. Beyond its brightening effects, vitamin C shields the skin from free radicals and UV-induced damage (though it doesn't replace sunscreen).


Remember that everyone's skin is unique, and what works for one person may not work the same for another.

Also, it's essential to use broad-spectrum sunscreen daily to protect your skin from further damage and prevent the darkening of existing spots. If you have severe or persistent hyperpigmentation, it's recommended to consult with a dermatologist for a personalised treatment plan.

The Takeaway

Skin hyperpigmentation can be caused by various factors, but with the right product, it can be effectively treated.

If you're looking to achieve a more even skin tone, Brightening Hero can help target the underlying cause of your hyperpigmentation and provide visible results.

Don't let hyperpigmentation hold you back any longer!