Treating Hyperpigmentation: A Brown Girl’s Guide

Hyperpigmentation, or dark spots and discoloration, can be a real problem for many people. It’s especially prevalent for brown girls who tend to have darker skin tones and a higher risk of hyperpigmentation. The good news is that we’ve got you covered!

We’ve put together this guide to help you understand the causes of hyperpigmentation and how to treat it.

What is Hyperpigmentation?

Hyperpigmentation occurs when the body produces too much melanin, causing dark patches on your skin that can be permanent if left untreated. Hyperpigmentation can occur anywhere on your body, but it most commonly appears on the face and neck.

What causes hyperpigmentation?

Hyperpigmentation is caused by a buildup of excess melanin in the skin after exposure to UV rays, hormones, and other things that can cause inflammation. The most common causes are:

Sun Exposure

The most common cause of dark spots on brown skin is excessive exposure to sunlight (or UV rays). Over time, these rays can damage the dermis layer of your skin and cause discoloration.

Melanin Production

Hyperpigmentation can also be caused by an increase in melanin production in response to inflammation or other irritants (such as acne). This happens when the body tries to protect itself from further harm by creating more pigment than normal—which makes the affected area appear darker than intended.

Genetic Factors 

It is important to know that some genetic factors may cause hyperpigmentation in people with darker complexions


Acne scarring or post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (this happens when your body is trying to heal itself from an injury like acne)

Hormonal Changes

Hormonal changes, such as those that occur during pregnancy or menopause, can cause your skin to become darker than usual in some areas. This is because increased melanin production is triggered by high levels of estrogen in these areas of your body during these times when hormone levels are changing rapidly due to pregnancy or menopause.

How do I treat hyperpigmentation?

The first step in treating hyperpigmentation is figuring out what’s causing it. If you don’t know why your skin is acting up, it’s going to be hard to treat it! For example, if you’ve been using a new moisturizer and it seems like the only thing different about your routine is that new moisturizer—that might be what’s causing this issue for you!

Once you have discovered the root cause, it is time to find a treatment that works for you. This however can be difficult, but don’t worry! Here are some tips to help you get started.

Vitamin C Serum

Try using a vitamin C serum every day, especially if you have dark spots on your face or body. The ingredients in these products will help to lighten the skin and reduce the appearance of dark spots over time.


If you have hyperpigmentation from acne scarring, try using an exfoliating scrub once or twice per week to help remove the dead skin cells that are causing the discoloration. You can also apply an acne treatment cream to the affected areas at night for up to one week at a time before switching back to your regular moisturizing routine (or just use it as needed). This should help minimize redness and swelling while also reducing inflammation caused by acne breakouts so that your scars will heal faster without leaving behind any permanent discoloration!


Wear sunscreen every day. Choose a product with SPF 30 or higher, and reapply frequently if you’re outside for long periods. Do not rely on makeup alone for sun protection!

Limit Exposure to Sun

Limit your time in the sun, and wear long sleeves and pants when you’re outdoors for extended periods during peak hours (between 10 am – 4 pm). If possible, cover up with an umbrella or other shade like sunglasses as well.

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