Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is any dark marks and blemishes that remain visible on the skin after a spot or acne breakout. They are the body’s natural response to inflammation. It can leave you feeling exposed and like, even without active acne or an active breakout, your blemishes are still on show. It can certainly leave you feeling like you have no choice but to reach for the concealer, even if you’d rather go natural.
But why do these patches of pigmentation remain visible for so long after the spot heals – and what can you do to lessen the effect of dark blemishes?
Let’s take an in-depth look at how to prevent post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation and acne scarring
These two conditions may seem similar, but there are some key differences. Acne scars are caused by damage to the tissues and veins, leading to pitting and scarring. Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation doesn’t damage the follicles or cause pitting of the skin. It’s a short-term issue, albeit usually lasting several weeks or more.
What does post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation look like?
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is triggered when the body’s melanin production goes into overdrive following an inflammation (in this case, the small infection of the spot). Although the main culprits are acne and spots, other traumas to the skin – such as a burn or cut – can also be contributory factors.
The symptoms of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation are flat patches of discoloration on the skin. These range in color and tone from red to black, depending on the severity of the hyperpigmentation.
The condition affects both men and women and can develop in all skin types. Some skin types are more prone to this hyperpigmentation, and some simply show any blemish more readily. Research shows that post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation tends to be more severe in darker skin tones. Those with very pale skin may also feel the hyperpigmentation is more visible.
Is post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation permanent?
In mild to moderate cases, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is not permanent and the blemishes will fade over time – even if left untreated. In severe cases, it can take months and even years for the discoloration to fade and some traces can remain permanently.
To minimize the chance of any lasting damage from post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, we advise taking preventative measures. These include wearing SPF50 sunscreen under your make-up and resisting the temptation to squeeze or pick any spots! Affected skin is more sensitive, hence the suggestion to pay particular attention to your sunscreen here.
The good news is that there are treatments and products available that can help to get rid of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation fast in the majority of cases.
We have treatments like RevLite SI, among others, that can address hyperpigmentation properly.
Call our Patient Care Lines: (+632) 7-368 5238 l (+63) 917 862 7454 l (+63) 921 217 0517 for inquiries, questions, and appointments, or talk to our consultants via LiveChat here on our website.