As you age, it is normal for the skin to develop darkened spots and patches. Known as age spots, these can be made worse by frequent sun exposure. Covering them with concealer or foundation is a good temporary measure for hiding them, but if you want to really fade your age spots, you'll need to take more drastic measures. Here's a look at your options.
The least invasive and least expensive treatment option for age spots is fading creams. You can find several of these at most local pharmacies and beauty supply stores. You generally apply the cream once or twice a day. The ingredients are designed to essentially bleach the pigment out of the spots. The downfall to this option is that it only works for pretty mild, small age spots. If you have larger, more pronounced spots, you will probably need to turn to a different option.
Photorejuvenation is a professional treatment performed in your dermatologist's office. It involves using a special wavelength of pulsed light to bleach your age spots. The light stimulates the production of collage and helps minimize pore size, which further helps minimize the appearance of the spots. Most patients need a couple of treatments, spaced a few weeks apart, to see noticeable results.
Photorejuvenation treatment may cause some mild discomfort, but it's not overly painful. Some patients compare the feeling to that of a rubber band snapping against their skin. You may notice some light bruising after treatment, but you can go back to your normal skincare and cosmetics routine immediately.
If your age spots are a little raised and have a rougher texture, your dermatologist may recommend a procedure called dermabrasion. The procedure involves using an abrasive scrub or tools to abrade away the outer surface of the skin. The new skin that grows back in its place has a more even texture and color.
Dermabrasion can be a bit painful, and your skin will be scabby and crusty for a few days afterwards. You'll need to wear sunscreen if you go out into the sun. Some patients need more than one treatment, spaced several months apart, in order to experience the results they desire.
To learn more about your treatment options for age spots, reach out to a local dermatologist, such as one found at Vivid Skin and Laser Center. They will take a look at your skin, assess the severity of your age spots, and then make recommendations based on their observations.