- Melasma is characterized by homogenous areas of dark pigmentation that most commonly appear on areas of the face such as the forehead, upper lip, and cheeks.
- Melasma can be triggered by hormonal changes of pregnancy, or from exogenous hormones such as birth control pills or hormone supplements.
- Melasma can be worsened by certain topical treatments and laser treatments, so expertise is key in successful management.
- Daily broad spectrum sun protection is essential to the treatment of melasma. Mineral sunscreens are best since even visible light can worsen melasma.
- Topical brighteners can help to fade unwanted pigmentation, but must be carefully chosen so as not to trigger additional pigmentation caused by inflammation of the skin.
- The most data-driven approach to treating melasma is with the new Clear+Brilliant Perméa laser. The 1927nm wavelength is very effective at targeting the darker areas of pigmentation without inflaming the skin. Dr. Sherber uses the opportunity immediately post-laser, when absorption of topical treatments is increased 17x, to apply a customized blend of brightening serums to each patient’s skin for added benefit.
- Depending on the depth and severity of melasma, Dr. Sherber may pre-treat the skin for several weeks prior to laser treatment using a tailored regimen of topical treatments.
- Dr. Sherber may recommend labs to check for hormonal irregularities ranging from estrogen hormones to thyroid imbalances.
- If melasma is triggered by oral contraceptives, Dr. Sherber may recommend changes to your medication regimen.
- Dr. Sherber does not recommend IPL in the treatment of melasma since for most skin types it can result in initial improvement and subsequent worsening of pigmentation.