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Melasma2020-11-06T08:34:35-08:00

Melasma

Melasma is a particularly stubborn type of chronic skin disorder that causes asymmetrical, blotchy, brownish pigmentation on the face. There is no cure for melasma, but there are treatments at Palo Alto Laser and Skin Care that can keep the discoloration to minimum therefore minimizing your stress about covering it on daily basis. Melasma is not dangerous, but it can lead to considerable embarrassment and distress. You may have heard melasma referred to as chloasma, but this term actually refers to green-toned skin, whereas melasma refers to brownish skin and is the preferred medical term.

The cause(s) of melasma is complex. All types of hyperpigmentation are caused by an overproduction of melanin by the pigment cells in your skin, or the melanocytes. This is true of melasma, brown spots, freckles, and moles. There is a genetic predisposition for melasma, with at least 33 percent of patients reporting that they have family members affected by melasma. It is a chronic condition for most people, though there are some melasma triggers that might cause it to only happen during certain life events—such as pregnancy. Melasma can be at the epidermal level, dermal level, or may be mixed, which is the most common presentation.

By Marjie T., Real Patient Review*

“This is no fluffy, aromatic spa, but a serious skin care clinic, so if you’re looking for a massage over skin care, this is not the place for you. But, if you’re looking for real improvements and results in the appearance of your face and skin, then look no further.”

By Anonymous, Real Patient Review*

“Absolutely amazing! I’ve had difficulty finding competent skin care facilities in the area, and Palo Alto Laser and Skin Care has been a breath of fresh air!”

By Andrea J., Real Patient Review*

“Not only is the staff extremely knowledgeable on service, product and industry trends, but the service itself was stunning … not only am I thrilled with the results but [the provider] also saved me a ton of money. That’s service with integrity, a rare find. Please check this gem out!”

By Marjie J., Real Patient Review*

“This is no fluffy, aromatic spa, but a serious skin care clinic, so if you’re looking for a massage over skin care, this is not the place for you. But, if you’re looking for real improvements and results in the appearance of your face and skin, then look no further.”

By Anonymous, Real Patient Review*

“Absolutely amazing! I’ve had difficulty finding competent skin care facilities in the area, and Palo Alto Laser and Skin Care has been a breath of fresh air!”

By Andrea J., Real Patient Review*

“Not only is the staff extremely knowledgeable on service, product and industry trends, but the service itself was stunning … not only am I thrilled with the results but [the provider] also saved me a ton of money. That’s service with integrity, a rare find. Please check this gem out!”

Melasma Triggers

Some of the most common melasma triggers include:

  • Pregnancy: hormones are a factor in melasma, which is why those who are pregnant are particularly prone to this condition. Fortunately, the hyperpigmentation of melasma typically fades a few months after childbirth. However, you can speed up this process both during and after pregnancy with the help of a professional.
  • Hormone treatments: once again, hormones play a role in the development of melasma. Hormone treatments such as taking oral contraceptives, estrogen or progesterone treatments, hormone replacement therapy, and intrauterine devices (IUDs) containing hormones are an exacerbating factor in about 25 percent of women with melasma.
  • Sun exposure and sun damage: this is one of the most common causes of melasma and the most avoidable. Protecting yourself (and your skin) from the sun is important for everyone, not just those prone to melasma. This means avoiding skin exposure to UV rays by wearing long sleeves and wide-brimmed hats as well as adopting a quality sunscreen or sunblock regimen. Even wearing sunglasses has been shown to be beneficial in preventing worsening of melasma!
  • Some medications: there are some pharmaceutical drugs, such as some used to treat cancer, that tend to cause or exacerbate melasma. Additionally, some topical items have been linked to melasma such as scented cosmetics, deodorants, soaps, and other toiletries. These items can cause a phototoxic reaction triggering long-term, chronic melasma.
  • Hypothyroidism: low levels of the circulating thyroid hormone have been known to cause melasma.

The ideal melasma treatment for you will depend on numerous factors, and your provider will go over your options during an individualized consultation. Some of the most commonly used treatments for melasma include the VI Peel, microneedling, Clear + Brilliant, chemical peels and topical prescription and non-prescription products.

Melasma Before and After Photos*

Individual results may vary, please schedule a complimentary consultation to discuss your aesthetic goals and we’ll put together a custom treatment plan that’s right for your skin.

Real Patient Before / After Photos*

FAQs About Melasma

Should I get Clear + Brilliant or a VI Peel for melasma?2020-11-06T08:24:46-08:00

Clear + Brilliant is a type of laser treatment that works by creating many tiny treatment “zones” in the top layer of the skin. It has to handpieces-1440nm and Permea 1927nm. It is the Permea handpiece, which can also be effective in milder cases of melasma and used for laser-assisted drug delivery of antioxidant or tranexamic serum by SkinCeuticals to improve your melasma. Remember-melasma can be controlled, not cured! Your provider will put together customized treatment plan most suitable for your skin type and degree of severity of your melasma to achieve the best results.

Will microneedling really help with melasma?2020-11-06T08:23:08-08:00

Yes, although microneedling is a very mild and minimally invasive treatment. It is often best paired with another treatment, such as a VI Peel, for maximum results. Microneedling works by triggering the healing and collagen production process in the skin by creating controlled, closed, painless micro-injuries at the target site.

How will a VI Peel help with my melasma?2020-11-06T08:21:52-08:00

A VI Peel is medium-depth peel, so it peels away more than just the superficial level of skin. It is a popular choice for many types of hyperpigmentation, including melasma, because it can remove deeper pigmented areas that some lighter peels don’t reach, and it is safe for all skin types.