Updated: Dec 2, 2020
Types of hyperpigmentation include age spots, melasma, and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Every type has different reasons and a range of treatments and products, including natural ones, are available to treat it. Hyperpigmentation occurs when the skin produces more melanin, the pigment that gives skin its color. This can make spots or patches of skin appear darker than surrounding areas. Hyperpigmentation is a common skin condition. It affects people of all skin types, but mostly darker skin types.
Some forms of hyperpigmentation, including melasma and sunspots, are more likely to affect areas of skin that face sun exposure, including the face, arms, and legs.
Other types of hyperpigmentation appear after an injury, such as cuts, burns, or acne.
How to get rid of hyperpigmentation
Although hyperpigmentation is harmless, some people wish to treat it for cosmetic reasons. There is a range of possible treatments and home remedies that can be worth trying.
To prevent hyperpigmentation, or to stop it from becoming more prominent:
• Avoid exposure to the sun. Use a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher to protect the skin and stop hyperpigmentation from becoming darker.
• Avoid picking at the skin. To prevent hyperpigmentation from forming after an injury, avoid picking at spots, scabs, and acne. You can try the following treatments to lighten dark patches of skin and remove hyperpigmentation:
• Azelaic acid
• Kojic acid
• Retinoids, such as tretinoin
Home remedies for hyperpigmentation
It may also be possible to lighten areas of hyperpigmentation using natural remedies. If a person wishes to try a new treatment or natural remedy, they should always try the product on a small patch of skin first and stop using it if it irritates the skin.
A study suggests that the following natural treatments may be able to reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation:
Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid, which can lighten pigmentation.
To use this remedy: Combine equal parts of apple cider vinegar and water in a container. Apply to your dark patches and leave on two to three minutes. Rinse using lukewarm water. Repeat twice daily you achieve the results you desire.
Aloesin, a compound that is present in aloe vera, can lighten hyperpigmentation. Aloesin works by inhibiting the production of melanin in the skin. You can apply aloe vera gel from the plant directly to the skin daily.
Licorice extracts can lighten hyperpigmentation. Research suggests that a licorice extract contains glycyrrhizic acid can have anti-inflammatory and skin-whitening effects.
Green tea extracts may improve hyperpigmentation. Researchers have long studied green tea for its potential antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.