HOW TO MANAGE HYPERPIGMENTATION & SUN SPOTS
The sun can cause damage to skin quite easily if not managed and protected. To learn how to treat sun spots and protect your skin from UV rays, read here.
Have you thought about the link between daily sun exposure and uneven pigmentation on your face? Even if you never get sunburnt, UV exposure gradually leads to sun spots on your face. In fact, exposure to ultraviolet radiation is one of the leading hyperpigmentation causes.
Minimising sun exposure and wearing products with urban protection and SPF helps minimise sun spots, hyperpigmentation and premature visible signs of ageing. All it takes is SPF protection and the right skincare ingredients to help reduce the occurrence of pigmentation and even out your skin tone. Keep reading to learn all the details about how hyperpigmentation and sun spots happen, accompanied by product recommendations from our UV Expert range.
How does the skin react to UV radiation?
It’s common knowledge that getting sunburnt is bad for your skin, but the full extent of UV rays’ effect on skin is often underestimated. The two types of UV radiation (UVA and UVB) each have distinct effects on the skin, with both contributing to long-term risks of skin cancer and premature skin ageing.
For the purposes of this article, we’ll be focusing on the way that melanin works as the skin’s inbuilt sun protection mechanism and how this can lead to unwanted hyperpigmentation and sun spots. When your skin is exposed to harmful UV rays, your body automatically triggers an increase in the production of melanin, the substance that gives skin its pigment. This acts to help stop the rays from penetrating, but the visible effects range from tanning to hyperpigmentation and dark spots.
The importance of wearing SPF every day
The harmful effects of UV exposure accumulate every single day with each instance of sun exposure, regardless of whether you’re behind glass, if you get sunburnt or if it’s a cloudy day. Even if your skin looks fine after sun exposure, you can easily end up with long term damage and hyperpigmentation. That’s why suncare such as sunscreen for hyperpigmentation forms such an important element of your daily skincare routine.
What are the long-term skin effects of sun exposure?
Let’s explore the long term effects of sun exposure for your skin, to help you understand the anti-ageing benefits of sun protective skincare and makeup.
Hyperpigmentation: Once UV exposure has triggered excess melanin production, this can take the form of hyperpigmentation from the sun. This term covers many types of excess or uneven pigmentation within the skin, including dark patches and melasma.
Sun spots: Perhaps the most well-known form of sun pigmentation, sun spots are also known as dark spots or age spots. These spots tend to show up on the areas of your skin that see the most sun. Think your face, neck, shoulders and decolletage. They can vary in colour through shades of brown. Sun spots are harmless on their own, but they serves as a warning sign of sun exposure.
Blemishes: How is sun exposure linked to blemishes? It turns out UV exposure can exacerbate post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation – the red or dark spots left behind after a pimple or blemish goes away. Avoid the risk of making things worse by wearing SPF every day.
Premature visible signs of ageing: Yet another way that sun exposure harms your skin over time is by accelerating the decline of collagen and elastin, two proteins that play a huge role in keeping skin looking firm, bouncy and youthful. Declining collagen and elastin also leads to an increase in fine lines and wrinkles, all of which can be minimised by avoiding the sun and applying SPF.
How to reduce pigmentation with skincare ingredients
If you’ve found yourself experiencing hyperpigmentation, sun spots or both, the good news is that enriching your skincare regime with some targeted ingredients can help manage these skin concerns. Here are a few skincare ingredients known to help keep unwanted pigmentation under control.
Vitamin E: This intensely moisturising ingredient is known to help manage existing hyperpigmentation including melasma.
Vitamin C: This powerful antioxidant inhibits melanogenesis (the pigment production process) to stop dark spots from forming.
Green Tea: Another antioxidant ingredient, green tea can help with all the signs of premature ageing caused by sun exposure. Green tea is also comforting to your complexion.
Discover our UV Expert range
Years of work from the Lancôme beauty experts has culminated in the UVEX filter seen in our UV expert range. Minimise the occurrence of hyperpigmentation and sun spots by wearing our BB cream formulated with UVEX, effectively protecting your skin from all sources of hyperpigmentation and photoageing.
Our UV Expert BB Cream Complete SPF 50+ provides multi-protection including urban pollution, long UVA rays and UVB rays to help your complexion fight against all kinds of daily aggressors. Our advanced coverage technology also works to minimise the look of existing pigmentation, helping your skin appear instantly brighter and more uniform.
To apply, spread evenly over your face and neck. You can use this cream as the last step of your morning skincare routine or the first step of your makeup look.
Loved this guide? There’s so much more to learn about taking care of your complexion. Read our next article What is Face Serum and Why Should You Be Using It?