Can IPL Address Hyperpigmentation?

If you’re seeing spots gradually appear on your skin, the development can be stressful or alarming—but there’s no need to panic. The term “hyperpigmentation” refers to dark patches that form on the skin due to excess melanin production. That said, what gets rid of hyperpigmentation the fastest? Our Rockland, Maine-based Skin Klinic & Day Spa team frequently hears this question from patients who are bothered by the darkened patches on their skin. Unfortunately, getting rid of hyperpigmentation can be challenging, and it’s unlikely to quickly disappear from your skin, even with treatment. It does take some effort to make the spots fade.

This is because hyperpigmentation is caused by an increase in melanin, which is the pigment that gives color to the hair, skin, and eyes. The most common causes of hyperpigmentation are sun exposure, aging, hormonal conditions, skin injuries, and inflammation. Usually, this condition is not life-threatening or contagious—though you may feel less confident about your appearance if you have it. Spots can seem to develop out of nowhere, and anytime you look in a mirror you may see pesky dark patches you wish you could do something about.

People of all ages and with any skin type can be affected by hyperpigmentation appearing as brown patches that look similar to large freckles.

Many patients aim to reduce their dark spots with a combination of at-home and in-office techniques. Fortunately, there are various types of treatments that can be used to lighten dark patches on the skin, including intense pulsed light. Since IPL (as the treatment is known) is not a laser, it is less “aggressive” and so requires less downtime. The broadband light pulses target specific darker pigments in the skin, which heat up and gradually fade or flake away.

Laser skin resurfacing and chemical peels work well for hyperpigmentation, and exfoliants—including over-the-counter products that contain retinol and other skin brighteners—can help.

In addition to addressing existing spots, be sure to use sun protection to reduce the chances of your skin from creating new pigment deposits. Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher, avoid the sun during peak hours between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., and cover up with appropriate clothing when you do go out.

Contact our team at Skin Klinic & Day Spa to find out more. Call us today at (207) 594-7003 or submit a contact form to schedule a consultation if you want clearer, more even skin.