Frustrated with skin patches that seem to show up out of nowhere? Here, we chat with a dermatologist about exactly what melasma is, melasma causes, how to treat melasma and how to prevent it from occurring in the first place.
Melasma is one of the most common skincare issues, especially among women, since it’s a skin condition that responds directly to hormone fluctuations. But there are certain things you can do to help prevent melasma from occurring, and wearing sunscreen every single day stands at the top of the list.
To gain more insight on this skin issue, we chatted with Deirdre Hooper, a New Orleans-based board-certified dermatologist and an associate clinical professor in the Department of Dermatology at both Louisiana State University and Tulane University. Here, she breaks down everything you need to know about melasma, including how to treat and prevent it.
What is melasma?
Melasma is a skin condition where you develop brown patches on sun-exposed skin. It commonly shows up on the upper lip, forehead or cheeks.
How does someone develop melasma and why does it usually occur?
Melasma is more common in women; it can be triggered by birth control pills or pregnancy. Genetic factors also influence whether you will get melasma. People with melasma have a greater number of estrogen receptors in affected skin cells. Some people notice improvement when they stop birth control pills, but not everyone will improve with stopping them.