Hypo/ Hyperpigmentation and Your Skin: A Complete Guide
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Hypo/Hyperpigmentation and Your Skin: A Complete Guide

May 19, 2021

The pigment melanin is responsible for your skin’s colour. A healthy pigment is when your complexion is normal and even-toned. Due to certain underlying factors or any injury, then your complexion can change colour. This may result in an uneven skin tone that is called hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation, wherein the skin will be lighter in some areas and darker in others.

Hyperpigmentation is when the skin tone is dark in some areas, as compared to the rest of the body. Hypopigmentation is when the skin has lighter tone in certain parts when compared to the rest of the body. In this article we take a look at what can cause hyper or hypo pigmentation and what are the options available for treatment.

Worried about your skin condition? Get in touch with best of our skin specialists in Pune. For a skin treatment, book an appointment with our dermatologists near you +919584584111

Skin Hyperpigmentation Causes:

The main cause of hyperpigmentation is due to an increase in melanin production, and can be triggered in conditions like pregnancy or Addison’s disease. Excessive exposure to sunlight can also cause melanin production to go into overdrive, thereby leading to hyperpigmentation. Various drugs like antibiotics and antimalarial drugs can also cause skin darkening.

Hyperpigmentation causes

 Melanin production in excess:

The main cause of hyperpigmentation is due to an increase in melanin production, and can be triggered in conditions like pregnancy or Addison’s disease. Excessive exposure to sunlight can also cause melanin production to go into overdrive, thereby leading to hyperpigmentation. Various drugs like antibiotics and antimalarial drugs can also cause skin darkening.


Melasma is a chronic hyperpigmentation face condition. It is triggered due to hormonal conditions like pregnancy and is often called the mask of pregnancy. It is recognized by the brown patches that occur on the face. Men can also develop this condition, due to a hormonal imbalance.

UUsually, Melasma subsides when the hormones are balanced and the pregnancy period is over. However, if it doesn’t then the condition can be treated with prescription creams and medicines. You need to visit a dermatologist if the melasma persists (or gets severe) even after pregnancy.

If you are experiencing Melasma then you have to try reducing any unnecessary exposure to sunlight. If you have to head out then wear a broad-brimmed hat, use a sunscreen that has an SPF higher than 30,  PA FACTOR (3+), and wear clothing that will protect you from UVA and UVB rays. Once again, consult with your dermatologist to prevent your condition from getting worse.

Hypopigmented patches on your skin: What do they mean?

Hypopigmentation happens when melanin production is less than normal. Some examples of hypopigmentation include:

Vitiligo: This condition is where smooth, white patches start to develop on the skin. Some people may experience this all over their body. This is an autoimmune condition where the cells that produce melanin are destroyed. However, many treatments help with this condition like a cosmetic cover-up, corticosteroid creams, calcineurin inhibitors, and ultraviolet treatments. Many prescription topical treatments are available. You must consult with your dermatologist before deciding on any treatment.

Albinism: This is a rare hypopigmentation disorder that is inherited, and it’s caused due to the absence of enzymes that produce melanin. The reduced melanin production results in less pigmentation in hair, skin, and eyes. People who have Albinism, possess an abnormal gene that restricts the body from producing melanin. There is no cure for this condition. People with albinism must use sunscreen, every time, because they stand a high risk of developing skin cancer and sun damage. This disorder can affect any race, but it’s quite dominant in Caucasians.

Skin damage that leads to pigmentation loss: If you have suffered through skin damage like infections, rashes, blisters, burns, or external trauma, you may also notice a pigmentation loss in the affected area. The positive aspect of this condition is that it’s not permanent, but the healing and re-pigmentation process can take a long time. You can opt for cosmetics to cover the affected area until the body starts regenerating the pigment. If you want to speed up the re-pigmentation process then it’s best to consult with a dermatologist before taking up any treatments or prescription medicines.

Hyperpigmentation and hypopigmentation FAQs: Your Queries Answered

What are the main treatments for skin hyperpigmentation?

Hyperpigmentation is a common skin condition and their many treatment options available. Ensure that you consult with your dermatologist because they will suggest the best treatment that will suit your skin, gauge the severity, and provide you with the best results. Some popular treatment options are:

  • Lightening creams
  • Face acids
  • Retinoids
  • Laser peels
  • Chemical peels
  • Intense pulse light therapy
  • Microdermabrasion
  • Dermabrasion

How long can it take to reduce hyperpigmentation?

It can take 3 to 6months, the whole healing process depends on the treatment you choose and the severity of your condition. The period for hyperpigmentation to fade depends on the spot darkness when compared to the surrounding skin. The bigger the contrast, the more time it will take to fade.

What is post-inflammatory hypopigmentation?

Post-inflammatory hypopigmentation is a partial or complete loss of skin pigmentation that takes place after bouts of cutaneous inflammation. The severity of the pigment loss depends on the degree and extent of inflammation.

What is periorbital hyperpigmentation?

This condition is also known as periocular pigmentation, dark circles, or infraorbital discoloration. It can be caused due to various reasons like genetics, excessive sun exposure, and age. Hormonal imbalance can also cause periorbital hyperpigmentation.

Why choose Clearskin?

Hyperpigmentation treatment 

Excessive sun exposure or lack of adequate skincare could turn disastrous with the appearance of dark spots and an unevenly toned complexion. We can help you recover your skin tone through evidence-based treatment methods and are transparent about the expected results to ensure customer satisfaction. We pride ourselves on giving patients great care and guidance during the pre and post-op stages, instead of treating it as a one-time session.

ClearSkin provides specialized Hyperpigmentation and hypopigmentation treatment options with the help of a team of qualified dermatologists and the latest technology. Combined treatment plans ensure permanent solutions for your skin problems with advice and follow-up care to maintain your complexion.

You can trust our in-house team of highly experienced dermatologists and cosmetic surgeons because they use top-of-the-line, FDA approved equipment, along with holistic treatment modalities to help treat even the most complex skin conditions.

For treating your skin condition, feel free to get in touch with one of our best dermatologists in Pune. You can also call on +919584584111 to book an appointment at one of our skin clinics near you.


Dr Dhanraj Chavan

About the Author: Dr Dhanraj Chavan

Dr. Dhanraj Chavan is a globally trained, young, and dynamic dermatologist. He is a Consultant Dermatologist and Varicose Vein Specialist at Clear Skin, VeinMD, and HairMD.

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