MELASMA

Melasma, more commonly known as “the mask of pregnancy,” is brown pigmentation on the cheeks, around the eyes and sometimes on the forehead or above the lip, made worse by sun-exposure. Melasma is most often caused by hormonal changes brought on by pregnancy, birth control pills or other causes, although it can simply occur with no apparent cause. Although melasma is more common in women, it also occurs with frequency in men. People with darker skin are more susceptible to melasma, due to the propensity of people who are darker or who tan easily to manufacture melanin pigment in their skin in response to sunlight. Waxing of facial hair (especially above the lip), allergic reactions to skincare products, or other causes of inflammation can add to the pigmentation already present in people with melasma. Above all, sun exposure is the worst thing for melasma, and always makes the pigmentation worse.

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