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Ever wake up one day with dark spots along your cheeks, wondering how they got there? For women, dark spots or hyperpigmentation is a common problem that can hit at any age. Sensitivity to sunlight, inflammation, and most commonly hormones are the culprits of these dark blotches. While you can take steps to prevent hyperpigmentation, once it’s there it takes more than concealer to get rid of it.

So what’s a girl to do?

Here’s some good news about dark spots. You don’t have to live with them forever! There are ways to lighten dark spots safely and effectively with skin whitening products.

Why Do I Have Hyperpigmentation?

You have hyperpigmentation if an area of the skin is visibly darker than the surrounding skin. The condition can have many causes, but many individuals find that the biggest culprit of skin discoloration is sun exposure. Spots caused by sun exposure may appear anywhere on the body that was exposed to elements, but many of us take notice of the discoloration when it appears on our face.

The sun’s rays wreck our skin. And the result—over time—is hyperpigmentation in the form of little dark blotches. Some call these “sun spots,” but as not all sun-induced discoloration is benign, you should consult with a dermatologist when noticing any new mole or skin changes. Most of us have some degree of sun damage from failing to apply sunscreen, so annual visits to a dermatologist are a must even before worrying about the cosmetic implications.

Preventing Hyperpigmentation and Sun Damage

The American Academy of Dermatology recommends a broad spectrum sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 to keep sun damage away. While, yes, many of us use sunscreen to protect against skin cancer, sun damage can take many forms–including dark spots or other discoloration. Using a daily broad-spectrum SPF protects the skin from damaging UVA/UVB rays and their harmful effects on the skin. You should use SPF on the face year-round when you’re in the sun, even when it’s chilly!

Hyperpigmentation and Inflammatory Skin Conditions

Although sunlight is the biggest enemy of our skin, certain inflammatory skin conditions like acne, psoriasis or eczema also may cause hyperpigmentation. You might have noticed that the area where a pimple has healed suddenly looks darker—this is a typical case of hyperpigmentation. If your skin has suffered from discoloration after healing from acne or another skin irritation or condition, a good sunscreen can help prevent further discoloration. Skin whitening products also can help reduce the visibility of discoloration and even out skin tone.

Stop Hyperpigmentation with Skin Whitening Products

While these spots aren’t always completely reversible, you can easily brighten your skin tone and even out blemishes. Choose products that are a good fit for your skin type and won’t result in skin damage. (Stay away from skin bleaches!) There are products that may help reduce the look of hyperpigmentation. With daily use on the affect areas, like sun spots, you’ll see a dramatic difference in as little as a week. With continued use, you won’t have to worry about using foundation to cover up your skin.

The Sour Side of DIY

Skin whitening products and cosmetics that help brighten may lessen the appearance of hyperpigmentation and are often the best choice to help reduce (or conceal) discoloration. However, there are some who hope to DIY a solution for their sun spots and skin discoloration. While online resources may suggest at-home treatments, it’s best to use proven products or talk to your doctor.

One common DIY treatment shared on Pinterest encourages the use of lemon juice to lighten dark spots. However, lemon juice can cause the skin to become sensitive to the sun and it may even cause dark spots. The AAD doesn’t list lemons as a recommended lightener. So before you start squeezing lemon slices on your face, talk to a dermatologist first!

While dark spots may be a nuisance, don’t bury your face and hide from the world! Most of us have hyperpigmentation from sun, hormones, age or our genes. There are numerous skin whitening products on the market that you can use to help lighten or brighten. Once you commit to a treatment plan, remember to always protect your skin year round to prevent future dark spots from ruining your day.

Written by Dr. Steven Rosen
Many great inventions and discoveries in the world were unintentional or just plain accidents. The story you are about to read concerning a breakthrough in the cosmetics field relates another great accidental discovery. In 1985, in an office in South Florida, Dr. Steven Rosen, a dentist at that time was working on a patient. The patient was a private investigator. Medication was given to the patient to alleviate the pain associated with his treatment. Two days later, the patient noticed a dramatic improvement not only in the pain level, but in his skin as well. His face, which was full of razor bumps, had cleared up! The man couldn't wait to tell the dentist what had happened. He called the dentist on the phone. He asked the dentist what he was doing to him. The dentist was worried and asked what he was talking about. He told the dentist that something the dentist was doing was clearing up his razor bumps. He told the dentist that since he started shaving 15 years earlier, he had tried everything available for razor bumps and nothing had worked until now. The investigator began to tell the dentist how important this discovery was. He mentioned that the dozens of products already on the market did not come close to producing the dramatic results he had achieved. He also said that this was a big problem in the military where a clean shave was required or you would have to get a shaving clearance from the dermatologist. Lawsuits had been filed in industry by workers who were fired because they were unable to get a clean shave for example where gas mask use was required Police must have clean shaves and so on. The dentist realized the importance of this discovery and determined which ingredient in the medication was improving the skin. Realizing that the ingredient could not be taken internally for long periods of time, the two men experimented with the formula in an attempt to apply it directly to the skin. It worked. It then took nine long years work to create a workable product and learn how to reach the market. . The dentist had a great discovery. Other uses for the formula arose in the same "chance" way that the formula was discovered. Women who bought the product for their husbands or boyfriends started trying it on ingrown hair problem they had from shaving, waxing, and having electrolysis on their legs, bikini lines, and underarms. Not only did they report to the dentist that the ingrown hair problems had cleared, but that the formula worked as an excellent underarm deodorant. And the rest is history……… Thank you for letting us tell our story. We hope you enjoyed it.