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Freckles or ephelides are brown spots on the skin. In fact, they are a cluster of melanized cells. In fact, these are a sign of overexposure to the sun.
While most freckles do not pose any danger, they indicate sun damage to the skin. Moreover, freckles have a tendency to develop with an increase in melanin production.


Overexposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays causes an increase in melanin production. This increase in melanin is the skin’s attempt to protect itself from more sun damage. In fact, freckles often disappear in the winter. They are very visible and dark during the summer season. This due to to the overexposure to the sun during summer.

Freckles are more visible and more common in individuals with fair skin. This is because fair skin is more prone to sunburns. Moreover, freckles appear during childhood in the sun-exposed areas of the body.

Freckles are essentially an unusually heavy deposit of melanin at one particular spot inside the skin. Absorbing UV rays causes the epidermis to thicken. In fact, the exposure to UV rays also produces a lot more melanin, which darkens the freckles.


Causes of Freckles 

  • Genetic predisposition
  • Sun exposure
  • Exposure to the fluorescent tanning lights

Do & Don't for Getting Freckles

DO: Wear hats, caps, and scarves when exposed to the sun.
DO: Use broad-spectrum sunscreen daily.
DO: Follow a healthy lifestyle.
DO: Eat a diet rich in vitamin C.

DON’T: Use tanning beds.
DON’T: Expose yourself to accidental radiation.
DON’T: Expose yourself to artificial UV light.
DON’T: Overexpose yourself to the sun.

Types of freckles

There are two types of Freckles.

1. Ephelides:

These are tiny, flat, tan-coloured spots. They are more visible in summers. In fact, one can see these in people with light skin, reddish hair and bright eyes.

2. Solar lentigines:

These are large pigmented spots. They are isolated. Moreover, one can commonly find them in areas with sunburn. In fact, they are common in older people.

Treatments of freckles

One doesn't need to treat Freckles. In most cases, individuals wish to improve the appearance of freckles for cosmetic purposes. Dermatologists customise treatments based on skin type. 

The same treatment may have different effects on different individuals. 

Freckles often recur with repeated UV exposure. 

  • Over-the-counter prevention

These products are creams or ointments. One must apply them to the pigmented area. They work to reduce melanin production. As a result, the hyperpigmentation reduces. 

  • Topical creams:

These mainly include skin lightening (bleaching) creams containing hydroquinone, and topical creams containing retinoids. Both may be available with or without prescription 

  • Bleaching or fading creams:

Products that contain hydroquinone or kojic acid help lighten freckles, and will also avoid the occurrence of freckles. Hydroquinone suppresses melanin production to lighten darkened areas of skin. Bleaching and fading creams are actually most effective as a combination ensuring avoidance of sun as well as being an effective measure of sun protection.

  • Retinoids:

Retinoids absorb the ultraviolet radiation, improve sun-damaged skin, lighten freckles and prevent more from forming. They also accelerate skin cell turnover, destroying the accumulated melanin pigment. 

  • Medical procedures

There are various medical procedures. They are safe and effective. Often, dermatologists recommend these procedures in combination with one another. 

1. Chemical peels: 

Chemical peels remove the outermost layer of skin by exfoliating. This reduces the appearance of freckles. New skin generates once the damaged skin peels off. 

Depending on the depth of skin penetrated, the chemical peels come in three different strengths: superficial, medium, and deep. For freckles, medium peels containing chemicals like glycolic acid or trichloroacetic acid that reach up to the middle layers of the skin are used. 

Chemical peels can be used for freckles on face, arms and hands. They may temporarily cause some stinging, redness, irritation, crusting, and swelling. Skin takes about two weeks to heal in case of moderate peels. During this period, it's essential to avoid the sun, take antivirals, and apply a topical ointment daily to promote healing and soothe skin.

2. Cryotherapy:

Cryotherapy uses liquid nitrogen to freeze and destroy abnormal skin cells, causing necrosis (cell death). After being frozen, the freckled lesions whiten. They then scab and fall off within 7-10 days. As a result, this restores the normal pigmentation of skin. 

The procedure is safe, requires no hospitalisation, no anesthesia. The recovery period is also short.  Potential side effects are pain, swelling, blistering, bruising, hypopigmentation, and rarely, infection.  To avoid these, one must follow proper skincare before, after & during the procedure. 

3. Laser therapy:

Lasers target damaged areas of skin using pulses of forced, intense light. It burns the blood vessels underneath the freckles, reduces their appearance, and may also remove them entirely on occasion. Q-switched ND YAG laser is usually effective here. 

Safe, and with low risk of scarring, lasers don't cause any long-term damaging effects, but may temporarily cause itching, swelling, redness, crusting, peeling, infection, etc. 

  • Lifestyle changes  

1. Sun protection:

This is a must for preventing new freckles.  A broad-spectrum sunscreen (SPF>30) should be used daily. One must apply it at least 15 minutes before going outdoors. Physical protection is a must too.

2. Vitamin C:

This vitamin prevents melanin production by inhibiting tyrosinase. Tyrosinase is the enzyme for melanin synthesis. Citrus fruits, kiwis, spinach are all rich sources of this vitamin; or you could also take vitamin C supplements.


Freckles are harmless. However, some people may find them unappealing. In fact, they may affect self-esteem. Therefore, individuals may choose to treat freckles.READ MORE



It is possible to treat Freckles. In fact, a dermatologist can reduce their appearance with various medical treatments. The treatments take time to show results.


Patient Speak 36

Jaya More ,Kharadi, Pune

Treatment:Acne Pimples Date: Oct 18, 2019 Sessions: 4

“ Excellent guidance and neat treatment .”

Freckles – Q&A

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Important Announcement


Video Consultation Service

Video Consultation Protocol
Hello Sir/Mam,

Clear Skin & HairMD Clinics team is pleased to offer ONLINE VIDEO Consultation facility to to help patients with their skin and hair problems.
Our expert Dermatologists, will discuss your queries related to Skin & Hair Problems & guide you regarding medication and care

Video Consultation  - Day & Time will be scheduled according to the mutual convenience of our Dermatologists & you, our esteemed patient.

Basic Information related to Video Consultation Sessions

  1. Counselling will be done with Prior appointment, which should be taken at least 2 days before the session
  2. Consultation session slot will be finalised post the payment confirmation from our accounts team
  3. Video Consulatation session duration - 15 min
  4. Consultation Fee for each session - Rs 700 (Payment Details are shared below for your reference)
  5. Sessions will be done through Whatsapp video call
  6. Before the session, you will need to share your Images and questions related to your skin/hair ailment on WhatsApp of our with our Patient Support Team at +91-74989 06403
  7. Images of the area should cover all sides. Images should be in good light with focus. For e.g. image of face should cover left and right side chin, forehead and cheeks. This will help us contextualise the discussion.
  8. Medicines will be prescribed as per the latest Medical Council of India guidelines for Telemedicine (March 2020) and sent over email and WhatsApp,
  9. Please understand that teleconsultation has its limitations as compared to in-person consultation. Because it is not possible to do detailed physical examination, the teleconsultation process comes with its limitations. The patient agrees with this limitations of teleconsultation. Also because of the inability for detailed physical examination, some medicines cannot be prescribed in a teleconsultation process, as per Government of India - Medical Council of India - latest Guidelines.Some dermatological diseases may require procedural interventions too along with the medicines. It is required by the patient to visit the clinic for the same. In such cases medicines may not be able to give maximum result.

Please fill the form attached or message us on  +91-77980 22622 so that we can guide you about the payment process .

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Timeline for Freckles

Dermatologists assess the skin to understand the intensity of the freckles. They then prescribe personalised treatments. In fact, there are various medical treatments available. Certain treatment options have a longer recovery than others. The modalities might also vary based on the darkness. It may also depend on the type of freckles.

Do & Don't for Tattoo Removal

DO: Keep the affected area clean and dry.
DO: Apply antibiotic ointment 2-3 times a day.
DO: Keep it covered for the first 2-3 days.

DON’T: Take hot baths.
DON’T: Expose it to direct sunlight.
DON’T: Use any cosmetics, since they can irritate the skin.
DON’T: Scrub the treated area since it is sensitive.

Do & Don't for Getting Dark Circles

DO: Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen.
DO: Use hats, scarves, and sunglasses.
DO: Eat citrus fruits.

DON’T: Avoid overexposure to the sun.
DON’T: Don't over-exfoliate.
DON’T: Avoid using home remedies.