Hyperpigmentation affects 99% of women and only 1% of men. Its causes are mainly hormonal, but also the massive exposure to UV rays without proper protection can be responsible for it.
From an aesthetic point of view, skin spots are as disturbing as wrinkles. Women are most targeted because of hormones, contraceptive pills, and genetic predisposition. In some cases, pregnancy makes the situation worse, although not for all women.
«In this period», says Dr. Alessandra Grammatica, a dermatologist at the San Raffaele Hospital in Milan «many women are victims of chloasma gravidarum (or melasma): face pigmentation becomes uneven, especially on the forehead or cheeks, because of the hormonal overhang typical of pregnancy. More generally-the dermatologist points out - hyperpigmentation consists of accumulation of melanin due to congenital causes or after a disease, as well as caused by certain medications or aesthetic treatments».
And what about so-called age spots?
«Age spots are those spots which, precisely, appear in old age. They usually appear on the face and hands and they have the appearance of enlarged freckles. In the majority of cases, they are triggered by very prolonged exposures to the sun, without the use of appropriate products for UV protection. In old age, the cells responsible for the production of melanin - tend to get stuck: the distribution of melanin is no longer uniform, and then the spots appear. Besides the sun, other aggravating factors are smoke and smog: the skin becomes more vulnerable and it starts producing the pigment irregularly.
Menopausal women are also more likely to develop spots on their skin due to hormonal changes. The term chloasma indicates the kind of senile spots caused by menopause».
What can we do?
«Prevention is essential. If you are susceptible to spots, you must protect your skin with a product with a very high (50+) sunscreen, not only when you go to the beach, but also in the city and not only in summer, but throughout the year. For older spots, use scientifically tested dermatological products, capable of blocking the synthesis of melanin, and then of discoloring the complexion. Pidobenzone-based products are effective and very well tolerated, contrary to hydroquinone-based ones, which, although similar in composition, have been removed from the market because of their toxic or irritating effects. People treated with Pidobenzone-based lotions have achieved good results with a total absence of significant side effects, including redness, burning, and irritation. How do I apply them and how long does it take before I see the results? Once or twice a day, according to the size of the spot and before applying the make-up. Their gel texture is non-greasy on the skin and in three months of treatment you can achieve very good results».