Pigmentation and Pollution. How our environment affects our skin.
As a nation living underneath a hole in the ozone layer we are especially vulnerable to the effects of the sun and other irritants in our environment. Pigmentation; characterized by the formation of brown discoloration or “age spots” on our face, shoulders, décolletage and hands is a remarkably common complaint. For some this will show in the form of freckles, for others it can come up in larger “splotches” over the skin.
The main cause of this pigment is sun damage (UVA and UVB rays). Pigment formation is our body’s natural response to protecting our cells from damage. Your body produces these pigment splotches to help “reflect” away the sun and prevent our skin from burning. However if it is exposed to this stimulation enough, instead of fading away after the perceived danger has passed, the pigment will remain in our skin. This especially occurs in older skin. Fairer skinned people tend to have a more pronounced showing of sun damage pigment. This is because their skin is more sensitive to the sun and because it is much more visible on fair skin. Meaning a small amount of pigment can be very noticeable.
Further irritants can increase your pigment response also; this includes environmental pollution, blue light (from our devices) and sun beds. It is best to avoid these irritants if you have pigmentation prone skin.
There are a number of treatments that can help to decrease pigmentation caused by sun damage. The most popular is IPL (intermittent pulsed light) and BBL (Broad Band Light). This is a laser treatment designed to induce your body into reabsorbing or shedding the pigment. It can result in significant softening of the pigment and in many cases you can see the pigment flake off the skin a few weeks after treatment. Other treatments with great results include micro needling, which helps to soften pigment as well as help to rejuvenate and tighten the skin by inducing collagen growth (micro needling can also be very effective for melasma, a hormonally induced type of pigment that is notoriously hard to treat).
If you have problematic pigmentation we offer free skin consultations with our experienced registered nurses who will help to create a tailored treatment program that is based on your individual needs. To book you can do so online at https://encorehealth.co.nzor call us on 03 356 0214 to book an appointment. We look forward to seeing you and helping you achieve your skin goals!
Finally there is skin care to help prevent and lift skin damage. We at Encorė Cosmetic Clinic highly recommend a combination of our Aspect Dr range Vitamin C serum and our Complete Pigment Plus serum, combined with a high quality broad-spectrum SPF 50 sunblock. Sunscreen is so important for preventing pigmentation formation, as well as skin aging, and even the formation of skin cancers! It is our cheapest appearance medicine treatement and the first thing that we will recommend for anyone who suffers from pigmentation of any kind.
Before BBL at Encore After BBL at Encore