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Melasma Cures & Treatments

The most promising cures and treatments

Treatment hinges on the type you have. Epidermal and dermal melasma respond differently to treatment (dermal is notoriously resistant), so you need diagnosis first from a dermatologist.
Epidermal, on the other hand is quite easily treated if persistent with the type of treatment or treatments.

The best way to minimise both types however would be:

1. To stay out of the sun to ensure that any dark patches don’t darken further.
2. Apply a sun block twice daily with an SPF factor of 30 or above to protect against both UVA and UVB rays.
3. Apply face creams that are specially designed to minimise Melasma to work alongside the active ingredients in the sun blocks.

Treatments for Melasma using NON-NATURAL methods (23-38% success rate)

Bleaching creams can work on surface melasma, but most are too mild and most stipulate use for 'uneven skintone', which does not mean melasma. Melasma needs to be specified.

Hydroquinone and tretinoin topicals inhibit melanin but can also lighten surrounding skin and cause redness. Dermalogica Skin Brightening System is a three-month treatment reportedly good at treating mild recurring Melasma.

Clinical treatments Lasers are sometimes seen as a hyper-pigmentation solution, the British Association of Dermatologists however does not recommend them for Melasma.

Glycolic acid used in chemical peels, often with hydroquinone, can work for some sufferers. Scarring and hypo-pigmentation (the reverse problem, when skin develops light spots) can occur, so consult a qualified dermatologist before opting for this treatment.

The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons gives good advice on melasma on its website, baaps.org.uk. It also recommends dermatologists for consultation (020-7405 2234).

Treatments for Melasma using NATURAL methods
(42-98% success rate- when used in conjunction with other natural methods)

Oral supplements MSM sulphur which can be taken to reduce the signs of Melasma. MSM (methysulphorylmethane) is a natural sulphur which some Melasma sufferers find helpful. Try Healthy Direct MSM Sulphur £5 for 60 tablets, 0800-011 1234.

Sun blocks are great for prevention and minimising dark spots and patches around the face. They are great used in conjunction with any other natural treatment.

SkinCeuticals Ultimate UV Defense SPF45, £35 (020-8997 8541).

Skin lightening Melasma Creams are made especially for Melasma sufferers and can be used for any type of Melasma type skin discolouration.
UK Skin lightening (Nur76) Melasma cream, £85.

Camouflage cosmetics can also be used to cover Melasma. Jane IredaleEnlighten Concealer is made for covering Melasma. £25, 0845-230 1770.
Advantages and disadvantages of using NATURAL and NON-NATURAL methods of Melasma treatments 

NATURAL Treatments/Cures

Advantages

Natural methods exist for every kind of anxiety or illness. They are advised by nearly all the medical professionals and are usually the healthiest treatments around. Natural means that all the ingredients are harmless to the skin in any way. They are found in the extracts of plants and trees and are the best form of cure in itself.

They are usually cheaper. Once the desired result is achieved there is no need to continue to use the treatment or treatments.

Disadvantages

They usually take longer to work and do not show immediate results which leads to its downfall. If persistent the desired results will show within 3-6 months.

NON-NATURAL Treatments/Cures

Advantages

Acids and chemicals are used to eliminate skin discolouration or dark patches in a bid to treat it faster in comparison to a natural methods. They are usually harmless to the skin if the percentage concentration of the acids are very small. They do work for some people, however there may be side effects.

Disadvantages

Chemicals and acids can affect the layers of the skin. New skin would also be affected even if not obvious until it has fully formed.

In some cases chemical peels are used so the skin would need to be broken and then peeled for new skin. This does not always guarantee the desired result but if done correctly could create a fresh layer of skin.

The cost of treatments would usually range from £400 to £5,000.

Side effects are also a disadvantage. They are more likely to happen as the skin is much more sensitive to ingredients such as hydroquinone. Side effects could include skin peeling, darker patches and the release of histamine (itching around the face) etc.

Melasma Information    
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