Treating Brown Spots or Pigment

If you have melasma or brown spots, treating these conditions can be frustrating.  "Bleaching creams," for example, can help some pigment problems but do nothing or very little for others problems.    


ALL treatment plans for pigmentation require sun and light protection, so in this tip I want to emphsize that you should consider double layering your sunscreen if you have brown spots or pigment issues.  The first sunscreen should contain zinc oxide 10% or higher.  There are some nice tinted ones now.  The second layer depends on how much you are outdoors.  If you are indoors, a mineral pigment makeup is good or even a tinted moisturizer or makeup with an SPF 15 or higher could be fine. If you’re outdoors, your second layer could be a good powder susncreen like the Colorescience ones. 


See Dr. Irwin’s answers to questions on sun protection. 

See Dr. Irwin’s sunscreen recommendations.

See Dr. Irwin’s article on melasma and her information on color and texture problems.

Dr. Brandith Irwin, MD

Ask me your skincare question!

Hi, I’m Dr. Irwin. I believe that consumers deserve a medically trained and unbiased skin care advocate.

  • All our content is written and researched by myself.
  • My medical office in Seattle has treated thousands of patients for 15+ years.
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