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Hyperpigmentation – Age spots, sun spots, brown spots or Melasma

Skin Pigmentation issues are common in people who spend a lot of time in the sun while growing up. They are called “age spots” for a reason – early skin damage can show up in your 30’s, 40s, and 50’s. Other times, women and men get Melasma, sometimes but not always related to pregnancy in women, which is an unevenly darker pigmentation pattern on the face. Click here to read about the Dermamalen treatment for Melasma.

What is Hyperpigmentation?

Human skin contains melanocyte cells that produce melanin, a chemical that gives skin its colour. Too much melanin leads to hyperpigmented skin, and common examples include freckles and age spots. Hyperpigmentation can result from sun exposure, trauma to the skin or as a side effect of pregnancy and certain drugs. Hyperpigmentation can cause your skin to look uneven, sallow and aged. The most common types of hyperpigmentation include:

Treating hyperpigmentation often requires a multifaceted approach as there is no one single procedure that can resolve the pigmentation. It can affect the skins surface (epidermal), deep (dermal) or it can be both. A thorough skin assessment is important to establish the type of hyperpigmentation so a tailored treatment plan can then be recommended to achieve best results.

What are the main causes of excess pigmentation or hyper pigmentation or Melasma?

Ultra Violet Light (UVA/UVB) can harm the skin and lead to pigmentation problems, aged spots and Melasma as well as put you at a high risk of skin cancer (high levels of exposure or if you have a genetic risk).

Hyperpigmentation treatemnt BA; face-rejuvenation-before-and-after-80-img

  • One of the main causes of hyper-pigmentation is prolonged sun exposure.
  • Cumulative ultraviolet radiation(UV) can penetrate deep into the skin and cause pigmented lesions including liver spots, age spots, freckles and actinic keratosis.

Medications & Hormones can cause uneven pigmentation, such as Melasma

  • This type of hyperpigmentation is caused by hormonal fluctuations and is a normal occurrence during pregnancy.
  • It can also occur as a result of thyroid dysfunction and as a side effect of taking birth control pills or hormone therapy medication.
  • This type of hyperpigmentation is called Melasma and it appears as a butterfly-shaped darkening of the skin which often appears across the cheeks, upper lips and forehead.

Trauma can lead to scars or other facial pigmentation differences or blotchy-looking skin

  • This type of hyperpigmentation is called Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH) and is caused by skin injuries such as psoriasis, burns, acne and some skin care treatments.
  • It usually goes away as the skin regenerates and heals, however in darker skin types PIH can sometimes be permanently embedded in the skin.
  • Burns are a common trauma to the facial skin that patients want help with; ask us for details about potential therapies to reduce uneven skin textures; we may be able to suggest some treatments to try.

What treatments are available for Pigmentation concerns, sun damage and Melasma?

There are many treatments that may help you reduce pigmentation and get a fresher, more-evenly skin toned facial appearance.

Phone us for an assessment consultation for details, and be sure you ask for a Canfield Reveal assessment.

A Canfield Reveal assessment during a consultation for skin care can help your Clinician know what to recommend in terms of treatments or home-care systems.

Hyperpigmentation treatment; canfeld-reveal-skin-imaging2e-rssmall-img

Laser Resurfacing

The Fraxel 1927nm and the CO2 Fractionated RF Dot Therapy are two great procedures that can dramatically improve sun damaged or hyper pigmented skin. The laser technology produces tiny dots of laser to treat “fractions” of the skin, removing the pigmentatation along with the top layers, allowing the remaining intact skin to heal and rejuvenate. These laser treatments have become the gold standard for the removal of pigmented skin compared to traditional lasers.

Limelight IPL

This treatment utilises Intense Pulse Light (IPL) to absorb the superficial pigmentation in the skin. It can also pick up any superficial redness and tiny little capillaries at the same time to refresh the skin.

Chemical Skin Peeling

Chemical skin peels that contain specific lightening ingredients can reduce hyperpigmenattion by exfoliating the layers of the skin where pigmented spots and discolouration are present. This treatment is more ideal for those with superficial (epidermal) hyperpigmentation. It also helps to improve skin penetration to further reduce and prevent pigmentation from coming back.


It is known that UV light from the sun can cause skin darkening and hyperpigmentation. Applying a good quality brad spectrum sunscreen everyday is the most important part in treatment and preventing discolouration and pigmented skin.

Medicated Skincare

These contain bleaching and pigment inhibiting ingredients including hydroquinone, kojic acid, retinol, lactic acid, glycolic acid and salicylic acid. These are effective topical preparations for hyperpigmented skin and to maintain a brighter complexion.

Next Step: Booking your Initial Consultation for Hyperpigmentation Treatments

Send us a confidential enquiry or call (03) 8849 1400 to arrange your Confidential Consultation with one of our Coco Ruby team members.

Want more information before scheduling your treatment consultation?

  • Request more information about any of our skin procedures, including laser rejuvenation, Fraxel, Injectables or Healite II treatments – call or contact us
  • Attend our FREE Regular Practice Events and meet our Skin Treatment Experts and our team of Plastic Surgeons – learn more about non-surgical and surgical options for face, body, breast and skin

Send a confidential Enquiry form today. Or phone (03) 8849 1400. Please also FOLLOW us on Facebook.

Dr Craig Rubinstein
Dr Broughton Snell
Dr Stephen Kleid
Dr Gary Kode

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001124843 Dr Craig Rubinstein

Dr Craig Rubinstein is a Specialist Plastic Surgeon based in Hawthorn East, Melbourne. With over 20 years of surgical experience especially in all areas of Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery, but particularly in breast surgery. These include Breast Augmentation and Breast Reduction as well as Breast Surgery Revision.

Furthermore, he believes that surgical customisation, precision planning and technical expertise help him to provide optimal surgical outcomes for his patients.

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001190266 Dr Broughton Snell

Dr Broughton Snell is a Specialist Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon based in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. His training in Plastic Surgery took place in Australia and the United States of America (USA).

Dr Snell is a fully qualified specialist plastic surgeon having completed his Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in plastic and reconstructive surgery.

ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgeon MED0001052799 Dr Stephen Kleid

Dr Stephen Kleid is an experienced Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Surgeon (Otolaryngologist) based in Melbourne with a passion for Septo-rhinoplasty, Septoplasty, as well as, a strong interest in Rhinoplasty Revision.

Dr Kleid trained at Melbourne University, then completed surgical training at various hospitals including Royal Melbourne, Royal Children’s, The Eye and Ear and St Vincents. He worked as a surgeon at the University of Florida Medical school for further experience.

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001405964 Dr Gary Kode

Dr Gary Kode is a Specialist Plastic Surgeon, with experience in Aesthetic and Reconstructive Surgery, as well as non-surgical treatments.

Dr Kode is a member of several organisations, including the Australian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS), The International Confederation for Plastic and Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery, and he holds a Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.

What to do next?

Our Patient Liaison Team can assist with any questions you may have when considering a procedure. You can send in an enquiry form below or call our Melbourne Clinic between 9 am – 5 pm Monday - Friday.

Disclaimer: Results depend on individual patient circumstances and can vary significantly. Results may also be impacted by a variety of factors including your lifestyle, weight, nutritional intake and overall health. Consult your Specialist Plastic Surgeon for details. This information is general in nature and is not intended to be medical advice nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Surgery risks and complications will be covered in detail during a consultation with your Surgeon.

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