Uncovering the best skin care ingredients for fighting melasma can be confusing, but these four surprising ingredients are critical in the fight against this visual battle. Inside you’ll learn the secrets behind why these ingredients are important and discover how to apply them to your routine.
Before we jump into the ingredients and what they do for you, let’s cover the basics first.
What Is Melasma?
Melasma is a skin disorder that affects the face. It is caused by hormonal fluctuations and sun exposure. Melasma can be found in women of all ages, but it more often begins during pregnancy. It is caused by an increase in melanocytes or the cells that produce melanin, which are pigment-producing cells in the skin that give it color. It is the job of melanocytes to synthesize and restore our skin’s natural color, repair its surface, and protect it from harmful UV light.Melanocytes also provide protection against the damaging effects of pollution, aging, and stress. Unfortunately, melanocytes can become damaged by prolonged exposure to sun or other forms of UV radiation, as well as by inflammation and photoaging.
The Mask of Pregnancy
A term commonly used to describe melasma in pregnant women is ‘The Mask of Pregnancy’. We already mentioned that hormones play a role in pigmentation, but let’s take a bit of a deeper look into why it happens.
50 to 75 percent of pregnant women end up developing melasma according to a leading online publication. As you could probably imagine, estrogen and progesterone are the main culprits. The sharp increase in the levels of both hormones end up stimulating the excess production of melanin, leading to hyperpigmentation.
Fortunately, this mask tends to fade on its own after the baby has been delivered or after nursing/breastfeeding.
It’s when the mask persists that you should look for professional assistance. Here are a few treatment options for melasma that can work:
Glycolic acid, lactic acid and trichloroacetic acid are commonly used to treat melasma patients. These chemical compounds should ring a bell with most of you since it can be found in many off-the-shelf beauty products that are sold daily. Glycolic acid is a chemical compound that has been used for more than 70 years as an exfoliant to help diminish the appearance of mild to moderate melasma. It can be found in several over-the-counter products, including some moisturizers and eye creams. Lactic acid is a type of sugar that you find in milk. It’s an important part of our skin’s natural defense system because it helps to protect against the overproduction of melanin (the pigment responsible for creating the dark spots on our skin). However, it can also be found in many other places, including vegetables and fruit. It is reported that the most common side-effect of trichloroacetic acid (TCA) peeling agent for treatment of melasma is Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH).
Laser treatments are commonly used in treatments for melasma, but you want to make sure that you’re receiving a quality treatment that is going to provide you with the desired results. One of the most common mistakes people make when going in for a laser treatment is not taking a few minutes to talk to a medical professional about what they should expect from the treatment and what they should do in advance – it can be an incredibly costly affair.
Online Prescription Medication
The use of prescription medication for melasma treatment is more common than you may think. The medications that are available treat the condition on a systemic level, meaning they only affect the cells on the surface of your skin. Online prescriptions are the perfect way to avoid the hormonal treatments which are so often prescribed for people who have melasma. As a matter of course, we suggest making use of online prescription treatment providers. There are many treatment providers out there, that’s for sure, but they are not all worth their salt.
How do you find the best provider?
This is not as hard as you may think. Consider the best ones out there to be at the cutting edge of science and technology. This also needs to be combined with the type of ingredients used in the treatment they prescribe you. Often, you’ll find providers prescribing treatment creams containing the same ingredient mix, in the same proportions (NOT tailored to your specific needs), for most conditions – this is wrong. Not only will they conduct their business in such unscrupulous ways, but their staff are often underqualified – avoid this at all costs.
When consulting a provider, ensure that they have the following ingredients in their treatment creams:
The properties of azelaic acid are the reason it is so effective in helping to get rid of melasma. There are three main reasons why this acid is so effective in fighting this skin disease: it targets melanin, its anti-inflammatory properties reduce redness, and it has antioxidant properties that help fight free radicals.
Hydroquinone is a powerful ingredient that helps to fight against hyperpigmentation. It works by inhibiting tyrosinase, an enzyme involved in melanin formation. Hydroquinone is found in creams and lotions to combat the common skin condition melasma.
Tranexamic acid, or TXA, is a chemical compound that has been shown to help with fading melasma. This is because TXA was found to inhibit the growth of melanin (the pigment responsible for producing skin discoloration). It also helps with inflammation and makes it easier for the other ingredients in the treatment to work.
Tretinoin cream, a synthetic form of vitamin A, is one of the most popular medications prescribed to patients with melasma. This cream contains the active ingredient tretinoin, which is a retinoid that has anti-inflammatory properties. When combined with other important ingredients found in topical creams, it can help people get rid of dark spots and hyperpigmentation caused by melasma.
The 4 ingredients in this article have helped many people fight their melasma. They are great when combined with each other or when used separately depending on your needs. Not only are they effective in fighting the effects of melasma, but they are also very cost-effective to use.