Everything You Need To Know About Pigmentation And How To Treat It

Describe pigmentation.

Pigmentation is the medical word for a benign skin disorder that causes some body parts’ skin to darken. Pigmentation is a broad term that includes freckles, dark undereye bags, acne scars, and sun damage.

What Leads to Face Pigmentation?

The two main causes of pigmentation are sun damage and heredity, although there are other causes as well, including:

  • Acne Physical Injury Pregnancy
  • Using various medications
  • mineral and vitamin deficiency
  • liver illness
  • powerful emotional tension
  • a gall bladder condition
  • hormone adjustment

A pigment known as melanin, which is present and distributed throughout the skin, determines the colour of the skin, which is referred to as skin pigmentation. Melanocytes, specialised cells found in the epidermis, the skin’s outermost layer, are responsible for producing melanin. Different people and ethnic groups have different amounts and types of melanin in their skin, which results in variations in skin tone.

Melanin serves as the skin’s main barrier against the damaging effects of ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun. The melanocytes create more melanin when the skin is exposed to UV rays, which darkens or tans the skin. The skin uses this tanning reaction as a natural defense against overexposure to UV rays.

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There are numerous factors that might affect skin pigmentation, including:

Genetic factors: Genes are a major determinant in the type and quantity of melanin that melanocytes generate. Levels of pigmentation might vary depending on distinct gene variations.

Ethnicity: The amounts of melanin production range among individuals from various ethnic backgrounds. For instance, people with African, South Asian, or Mediterranean ancestry typically have darker complexion because of increased melanin levels.

Sun exposure: Prolonged sun exposure encourages the formation of melanin, which causes tanning. On the other hand, limiting sun exposure can make skin lighter.

Hormonal changes: Uneven pigmentation or the formation of dark spots on the skin can be brought on by hormonal changes during pregnancy or by certain medical diseases, such as melasma.

Skin diseases: A number of skin conditions, including vitiligo (a melanocyte loss condition) and hyperpigmentation disorders, can cause irregular skin pigmentation.

Age: Melanin production may decrease with aging, resulting in lighter or uneven skin pigmentation.

Options for treating skin pigmentation depend on the particular situation and goal.

Melanin, which comes in two varieties—eumelanin, a brownish-black pigment, and pheomelanin, a yellowish-red pigment—determines the color of the skin. Different skin tones result from variations in these pigments’ distribution and ratio in the skin.

Hyperpigmentation is the term for the skin’s tendency to become darker in some parts or patches than in surrounding skin. It can happen as a result of acne, hormonal changes, UV exposure, or some drugs.

Hypopigmentation is characterized by lighter regions of skin because melanin production has been reduced or stopped altogether. This can be brought on by conditions including vitiligo, albinism, or post-inflammatory hypopigmentation.

Melasma is a common hyperpigmentation disorder that develops brown or gray-brown patches on the face, especially on the cheeks, forehead, nose, and upper lip. Hormonal changes, such as those that occur during pregnancy, menopause, or while using oral contraceptives, are frequently linked to it.

Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) is a condition that develops after the skin becomes inflamed or injured due to conditions like acne, burns, wounds, or other skin problems. As the skin heals, it causes dark spots or patches to emerge.

Skin treatments are among the frequent ones.

Sun protection: Regularly using sunscreen with an SPF of 50+ and wearing protective gear helps reduce excessive sun damage and sun-induced pigmentation.

Topical treatments: To cure hyperpigmentation or lighten dark spots, doctors may prescribe a variety of creams, lotions, or serums containing chemicals including arbutin, vitamin C, hydroquinone, retinoids, azelaic acid, lactic acid, glycolic acid, or kojic acid.

Chemical peels: During this process, a chemical solution is applied to the skin in order to exfoliate the top layer of the skin and encourage the creation of new, evenly pigmented skin.

Laser therapy: A variety of laser methods, including intense pulsed light (IPL), Q switched, yag, and fractional lasers, can be used to target particular pigmented lesions in order to lessen their appearance or level out skin tone.

Microdermabrasion: This treatment uses a tool to gently exfoliate the skin, eliminating dead skin cells and promoting cell turnover to lighten pigmentation.

The use of skin-lightening substances like Kojic acid, vitamin C, and others that are directly injected into the epidermal/dermal layer during micro needling and dermal infusion treatments, which use these ingredients, is becoming more and more common to treat hyperpigmentation.

To ascertain the underlying cause of any pigmentation concerns and to acquire an appropriate diagnosis and treatment suggestions that are suited to specific needs, it is vital to speak with a dermatologist or other certified healthcare practitioner.

You can attempt the following at-home treatments to treat your pigmented skin.

1. Apple cider vinegar

Acetic acid, which is present in apple cider vinegar, may aid in reducing skin pigmentation.

How to apply this treatment

In a container, combine water and apple cider vinegar in an equal ratio.
Apply it next and let it on for two to three minutes on your dark spots.
Use warm water to rinse.
To get the desired results, repeat the application twice daily.

2. Aloe vera

Aloin, a naturally occurring depigmenting substance found in aloe vera, can be used to lighten skin and as a nontoxic treatment for hyperpigmentation.Try applying Aloe vera gel to your face if you want to get rid of scars and dark spots on your face.

Because aloe vera includes an element that decreases dark spots called aloin, many people think it’s one of the best substances for eradicating pigmentation from the face and lightening scars and dark spots.

Aloe vera can help to get rid of old skin cells and encourage the growth of new ones. Before going to bed, apply some fresh Aloe vera gel to your pigmentation-prone skin and let sit overnight. To achieve success, stick with this procedure for two to three weeks.

How to apply this treatment

Before going to bed, apply pure aloe vera gel to the pigmented regions.
Rinse in the morning with warm water.
Repeat each day until your skin tone becomes better.

3. Red Onion

One ingredient included in certain commercially available skin- and scar-lightening lotions is red onion (Allium cepa) extract. Red onion skin that has been dried off has been shown to successfully lighten skin. Find lotions that contain Allium cepa extract to help with hyperpigmentation.
In addition to being healthy for consumption and hair development, onion juice is also very beneficial for the skin. A vegetable called an onion naturally has antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic qualities. These characteristics make it the ideal treatment for pigmentation because it eradicates infection-causing microorganisms and stops new breakouts.

In addition to all of this, onion juice’s high vitamin E, C, and A content can help with brightness and flow. It can also smooth out wrinkles and improve the texture of the skin.

Red onion functions as a whitening agent and aids in the fading of dark brown marks on your face because of its acidic nature.

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4. Extract green tea

According to studies green tea extract administered topically may aid in the reduction of pigmentation. Since green tea is beneficial for a variety of skin issues, you can apply green tea bags to dark patches to lessen the pigmentation effect, albeit this has not been proven.

How to apply this treatment

Boiling water should be used to dissolve a green tea bag for three to five minutes.
Remove the tea bag and let it cool in the water.
Directly over your dark spots, place a tea bag.
Repeat this procedure twice daily until the desired results are achieved.

5. Water for black tea

According to a  study, black tea water was found to be efficient in reducing dark spots on guinea pigs, according to Healthline.com. For four weeks, guinea pigs received two daily applications of the black tea water, six days per week.

How to apply this treatment

Add a spoonful of fresh black tea leaves to a cup of distilled water that has just come to a boil.
After two hours of steeping, struggle to get the leaves out.
Apply a cotton ball that has been dipped in the tea water to the dark regions.
Over the course of four weeks, use the formula twice daily for six days a week.

6. Milk

Milk has been proven to be useful in skin lightening and brightening, as have buttermilk and even sour milk. Lactic acid, the key component responsible for decreasing pigmentation, is an ingredient in the aforementioned products.

How to apply this treatment

Pour milk into a container first, then soak a cotton ball in it.
Twice daily, apply it to the darker regions.
Repeat each day until the desired outcomes are achieved.

7. Tomato paste

Studies suggest that ” tomato paste rich in lycopene protected the skin against short-term and long-term aspects of photodamage”. 55 grams of tomato paste in olive oil were consumed daily by trial participants for 12 weeks.


To acquire lighter and brighter skin, include more tomato in your diet since it also contains vitamin C and other vital nutrients.

8. Red lentils, or masoor dal,

Red lentil (masoor dal) face masks are well-liked for treating hyperpigmentation or discoloration of the skin. Antioxidants found in abundance in red lentils have many positive effects on the skin.

How to apply this treatment

50 grams of red lentils should be soaked in a dish of water all night.
Create a fine paste next using a blender or food processor.
Put the paste on your face evenly, then leave it on for 20 minutes.
After rinsing, pat your skin dry with a towel.

About the author 

Mayra Smith

Hi, I’m Mayra Smith, the founder of Skinzzy. I created this website to share my passion for skin care and beauty with you. I believe that everyone deserves to have a healthy and radiant skin, and that’s why I’m here to help you achieve it.

I have over 15 years of experience in the skin care field, and I’ve seen firsthand how skin diseases can affect people’s lives. Whether you want to diagnose your skin condition, treat your acne, or prevent premature aging, I’ll provide you with reliable and up-to-date information on the best products and practices for your skin type. I’ll also give you tips and tricks on how to maintain your skin’s natural balance and glow.

My goal is to make skin care easy, affordable and fun for everyone. I hope you’ll join me on this journey and discover the amazing benefits of having a beautiful skin. Thank you for visiting Skinzzy!

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