Melasma / Pigmentation In Dark Skin Types

People of color are a very large group, which in South Africa includes people of African and Asian descent.

It also includes patients of mixed backgrounds who have more darkly pigmented skin. Darker skin type people represent a significant and growing group of patients seeking aesthetic procedures. This is because of the increased awareness of safe, affordable aesthetic procedures. These procedures include amazing new lasers that are colour blind and are less invasive than previous generations of lasers. Yet special concerns have to be addressed when treating skin of colour.

Melasma, also known as hormonal pigmentation, is a considerable problem for South African women, especially in darker skin types. It is a chronic skin condition that occurs on the face in the form of brown patches and is a dynamic (active) condition that needs lifelong management.

Melasma dark skin treatments

Pigmentation in Dark Skin Types Treatment Videos

Frequently Asked Questions

Treatment for melasma in black skin is available in Johannesburg at FourwaysParkhurstMorningside, BedfordviewWest Rand, Waterfall and Illovo as well as in Pretoria at Brooklyn and Irene and in the Western Cape at Cape QuarterClaremontConstantiaStellenboschWillowbridgePaarl, and in KwaZulu-Natal at BallitoDurban & Umhlanga.

  • UVA rays are a stimulant for melanin (brown pigmentation) to develop on the skin and unfortunately can even penetrate through car window glass.
  • Any change in hormonal status with higher levels of estrogen is thought to trigger and aggravate the condition (i.e. birth control pills and pregnancy). Discontinuing the use of contraceptives rarely clears the pigmentation and it may last for many years after discontinuation.
  • After pregnancy Melasma (chloasma) or pigmentation usually clears within a few months of delivery but may persist indefinitely
  • Any activities that cause Intense heat to the face( from steam showers, hot closed environments, sitting on the beach even under cover and with full sun protection, etc causes inflammation which is a powerful stimulator of melanin
  • It is more prevalent in darker-complexioned individuals though persons of any race can be affected due to the intense sun exposure in South Africa.
  • Melasma is seen most frequently in young women but can be seen in men.
  • Centro Facial (forehead),
  • Malar (cheekbones) and
  • Mandibular (jawline).
  • Avoid sun exposure and wear a protective hat when outdoors for extended periods to further block these rays.
  • Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30+ to block the UVA rays every day to help prevent melasma.
  • In addition, your sunscreen should also contain an anti-oxidant as this stops free radicals that cause pigmentation.
  • At least 10ml of sunscreen should be applied daily to the face and neck twice a day to prevent melasma.
  • Taking an oral antioxidant supplement such as Pycnogenol from the French Maritime Pine bark is clinically proven to raise one’s level of resistance to the sun and also helps to reduce the melanin content in the skin down the line.
  • As melasma is a dynamic condition and needs to be managed daily and indefinitely. One day of unintentional sun burn can set you back.

Home therapies for Melasma in dark skin types:

We offer highly effective depigmentation topical creams: Dermamelan Maintenance Cream and Cosmelan 2

Pigmentation ranges by top cosmeceuticals house Neostrata is also available at all Renewal Institute branches.

In-house topical brightening agents have been specially developed for Renewal Institute. The Renewal Institute brand includes traditional brightening products such as Kojic, Arbutin, Nicotinamide amongst others. Topical anti-oxidants that protect against infra-red A, a newly discovered deep wavelength which causes accelerated ageing and pigmentation, is also available at Skin Renewal.

In Office therapies for Melasma in dark skin types:

At Renewal Institute it's mandatory that one of the home brightening products mentioned above be used routinely for 2 weeks on the entire before any exfoliation treatment such as peels. A visit/consultation to one of our doctors who are experienced in treating skin of colour is mandatory before any procedure.

In-Office Treatments available at Renewal Institute include the full epidermal peel for PIH that is resistant to treatment with normal superficial AHA and BHA peels. Transdermal Mesotherapy with prescription Brightening products done straight after our peels improves the final result by removing deep dermal pigment. Cosmelan and Dermamelan mask treatments together with the home maintenance products offer superior results for resistant pigmentation.

The epidermis renews itself every six weeks, by six months, any pigment from PIH is probably in the dermis. Traditional skin rejuvenation treatments such as superficial peels, microdermabrasion, and bleaching agents are not successful for pigment such as PIH that has leached into the dermis. That is when the use of certain lasers such as the long-pulsed Nd Yag become effective to safely treat darker skin including skin type 6. The Laser Genesis procedure by Cutera gently heats the dermis, causing cavitation bubbles, which disrupt the unwanted dermal pigment, breaking it into smaller particles that are able to move upward to the epidermis where it can be easily removed with exfoliation. The PDT Red Light with post peel reduces inflammation and evens out skin tone.

Our Brightening Intravenous infusions with brightening anti-oxidants such as glutathione which work intracellularly to remove resistant pigment. An overall lighter and even skin tone can be expected.


See all reviews
*Please note results may vary by individuals.
Review -Best Service
Reviewed on 27 March 2018 by Maruledi

I have had the best service at this branch from the onset I have enjoyed my treatments. My therapist is the best (Deoné). I would definitely recommend everyone on my contact list. My progress is super.

Review -Thank You
Reviewed on 8 March 2018 by Salomé Van Der Westhuizen

I am very impressed with my doctor. He was patient and very caring about my problem. He took his time to explain and examine me. He restored my faith in Skin Renewal. Thank You.

Review -I followed her
Reviewed on 7 March 2018 by Teresa Van Rensburg

I followed Marisa here from another clinic and I must say, I love Skin Renewal. The treatments have made a big improvement, I have scars as well and they have faded a bit as well since doing treatments here.

Review -Caring, considerate therapy, maticulous attention to detail
Reviewed on 1 March 2018 by Jessica Pollard

I am incredibly pleased to have walked through the doors of Skin Renewal Parkhurst after many years of merely passing it on the way to work. I have been given thoughtful advice on the treatment of the Melasma on my face, a condition that has bothered and upset me, and I find myself looking forward to each visit as the condition shows dramatic improvement. Marisa is a wonderful therapist, taking such pride in her work and is incredibly professional in administering the treatments I receive. I look forward to seeing the beaming faces at reception and appreciate the careful consideration Dr Semple gives when suggesting further treatment. Many thanks, as highly recommended.

Review -I am comfortable
Reviewed on 24 February 2018 by Muneera Roomaney

Very friendly, and always feel very comfortable and at ease. My skin has improved so much. I feel so confident about my skin. I have referred family members to this clinic and will continue to do so further. Thank you so much for everything. You are amazing.

Review -Feels like home everytime
Reviewed on 16 September 2014 by Mali Langa

The staff at Brooklyn are awesome, I feel like I'm at home every time I go there. Keep up the good spirit guys, you rock!!!

Review -Relaxing Experience
Reviewed on 16 September 2014 by Anonymous

Lizanne is die terapeut wat my gereeld behandel. Ek geniet dit baie om na hierdie kliniek te kom. Die dames is baie vriendlik en hulle voel al soos my vriendinne. Die diens is uitstekend en die behandeling is uiters professioneel en ek ontspan heerlik. Ek sal dit vir enige een aan beveel.

Review -'n Ware Bederf!
Reviewed on 10 September 2014 by Aleit Swanepoel

Hiermee net 'n dankie boodskap vir die facial; Tammy was ongelooflik goed en professioneel. Ek het die werklik waardeer en dit was 'n ware bederf!

Review -I appreciate the advice!
Reviewed on 8 September 2014 by Theresa Van Heerden

Cindy is friendly, efficient and considerate during the treatment. I receive professional threading treatment and the advice is appreciated.

Review -I love my therapist!
Reviewed on 5 September 2014 by Lebo Ndlovu

I have had a pleasant experience so far and I love my therapist, she's professional and knowledgeable as well as friendly.

Sharon Izak Elaine ) WhatsApp