As summer gradually comes to an end, how much time do you think you've spent under the sun this summer? Can you confidently say that you reapplied sunscreen every few hours or wore a wide brimmed hat regularly when outside? I must confess that I could've been more diligent about applying sunscreen and wearing protective clothing to shield my skin from the sun.
But, there are times where we get too relaxed at the beach and end up falling asleep beneath the warm sun or spend an entire day adventuring outside and completely loose track of coverage from the sun. Nonetheless, prolonged sun exposure is definitely not a good a thing for our skin and can lead to undesired consequences, including freckles and sunspots.
Freckles and sunspots are a result of overactive melanocytes, cells that produce melanin or pigment in our skin. Spending too much time in the sun or exposure to UV rays from tanning beds can damage these cells and cause them to overproduce melanin, leaving unwanted patches of dark spots or freckles on our skin.
To help reduce the appearance of freckles and dark spots, it's best to correct the hyperpigmentation as quickly as you can. The longer you wait, the longer it can take for the spots to fade. So let's jump into some useful tips for getting rid of freckles and sunspots:
Avoid harsh scrubs and exfoliators, which can aggravate melanocytes - the goal is to calm these cells down and stop them from overproducing melanin
Stock up on vitamin C, retinols, and gentle exfoliating acids - Vitamin C can help brighten the skin by suppressing melanin production, while retinols and acids will promote skin cell turnover and push up new, even-toned skin cells to the surface
Apply generous amount of sunscreen - Top off the previous ingredients with sunscreen with at least SPF30
Makeup as additional protection - Applying makeup, either a light mineral powder or heavier coverage foundation, can help provide extra coverage from the sun
Sticking to this regimen can greatly help reduce freckles and sunspots if maintained regularly. However, you may need additional help in getting rid of more problematic hyperpigmentation. There are numerous medical options, from chemical peels to light therapy. I would suggest seeing a dermatologist who can help you decide on the best treatment for your condition. As always, the best care is preventative care so make sure to faithfully apply sunscreen and keep healthy skin protected!