Hyperpigmentation Causes – What Causes Skin & Facial Hyperpigmentation?


What causes skin and facial hyperpigmentation? What are the common hyperpigmentation causes? What are post inflammatory hyperpigmentation and periorbital hyperpigmentation and their causes?

Any irregularities on skin tone are a cause for concern. It would worry you so much to learn that you have some black, red, purple, or pink spots on your skin. A visit to the dermatologist would enable you to learn that you have hyperpigmentation. What is hyperpigmentation? However, what it is should not worry you as much as what causes it.

Freckles often considered as hyperpigmentation causes
Freckles often considered as hyperpigmentation causes

This is because without knowing the cause of your spots, you can never rid your skin or face off them. They will keep coming back and you will carry on trying one treatment after the other without success. What causes hyperpigmentation? Learn all the hyperpigmentation causes whether, post inflammatory or periorbital hyperpigmentation shortly.

What Causes Hyperpigmentation?

Dark spots or discolorations on skin do not just happen. There is a reason why you have them on your face, neck, abdomen, arms and hands or anywhere else on your body. Although they form due to overproduction of melanin, the protein that determines your skin color, there is a trigger behind their occurrence. What causes hyperpigmentation? The spot marks appear because of high concentrations of melanocytes, the cells that produce melanin on specific areas on your skin.

Is that what causes hyperpigmentation? That is the reason you have the dark spots. The causes of hyperpigmentation include:

Exposure to Sunlight

You probably get a tan when you stay for long hours under the sun. Sometimes the tan may come out unevenly depending on which part of skin the sunrays hit most. This will cause you to have spots that are darker than the rest of the skin. If you are prone to freckles, they will become more prominent.

Long exposure to sunlight may not show immediately, but when you grow older there is no hiding the fact that you loved being under the sun unprotected. You can therefore, prevent the sun damage by wearing a high factor sunscreen and wearing protective clothing or even carrying an umbrella if you must come into contact with sunlight. Furthermore, avoid tanning beds as much as possible. A sunscreen should be worn on your skin everyday regardless of the weather and whether you are indoors or outdoors.

Ethnic Background

Does your ethnic background have something to do with skin discoloration? Unfortunately, it does, if you have dark skin that generally has more melanin, you will tend to be a culprit of dark spots. This is the case for those who come from Africa, the Mediterranean, Latin and Asian communities.

If you come from these groups, you should also think twice before going for any laser or surgical treatment. This is because making use of an inexperienced surgeon or dermatologist could leave your skin spotted. On the other hand, if you already have discoloration on your skin, you can treat it effectively with a hyperpigmentation cream for black skin.

Allergies to Heavy Metals

That necklace, wristwatch or ring you love so much could be detrimental to your skin if it is made from gold, silver, bismuth or mercury. Find out if you have an allergy to these metals before purchasing an expensive jewelry that could discolor your skin.

Skin allergy reactions cause hyperpigmented skin if not treated on time
Skin allergy reactions cause hyperpigmented skin if not treated on time

Skin Inflammation

If you burn, injure or cut yourself or suffer from about of acne, your skin will heal and leave behind not only atrophic or hypertrophic scars, but also a discoloration. You can avoid both of these by not picking or popping the wound.

Certain Diseases

What causes hyperpigmentation? Certain diseases do. A discoloration could be a sign of a melanoma, Addison’s disease, Cushing Disease, Peutz-Jeghers Syndrome and Polycystic Ovary Syndrome among other conditions. This is why it is imperative to have a doctor or dermatologist know about your skin discoloration so that he or she can identify the underlying condition and rule whether the dark marks are harmful or not.

Certain Drugs

Causes of hyperpigmentation may also include drugs. If you have used to some of the following, it could be the reason why you have dark spots on your skin:

  • Tetracycline
  • Mynocycline
  • Bleomycin
  • Doxorubicin
  • Bulsalfan
  • Antiseizure drugs
  • Anti malarials
  • Sulfonamides

Facial and Skin Hyperpigmentation Causes

Facial Melasma is common among women and in rare cases in men. Melasma may affect the face and stomach. Another name for melasma is chloasma or pregnancy mask because it is common in pregnant women. Chloasma comprises a large patch that is darker than the rest of the skin.

The melasma skin hyperpigmentation causes therefore include hormonal changes experienced not only during pregnancy, but also in women who interferes with their hormonal balance with the following:

Burns and severe bruises can leave you with hyperpigmented areas on the skin
Burns and severe bruises can leave you with hyperpigmented areas on the skin
  • Implants
  • Oral contraceptives with estrogen or progesterone
  • Intrauterine devices

Skin hyperpigmentation causes of melasma could also be:

  • Hypothyroidism
  • Reaction to certain drugs
  • Exposure to harmful chemicals found in skin care products
  • Allergies to scented soaps and cosmetics among others reasons
  • Iron overload

Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation Causes

Post inflammatory hyperpigmentation is simply a mark that remains after a skin irritation has healed. You can prevent PIH by not picking at scabs or zits. PIH may clear on its own if the inflammation was superficial. On the other hand, if the wound or pimple was deeply rooted in the dermal layer of the skin, you may need to use a treatment from a dermatologist’s office or buy a hydroquinone cream to take care of the discoloration on skin.

The main post inflammatory hyperpigmentation causes include:

Sun exposure can cause hyperpigmentation
Avoid sun exposure.
  • Trauma from surgery or laser treatment
  • Burns
  • Acne
  • Injuries
  • Fungal infections
  • Systematic lupus Erythetatosus
  • Cutaneous T-cell lymphoma
  • Insect bites
  • Eczema
  • Chronic dermatitis
  • Psoriasis

Periorbital Hyperpigmentation Causes – Dark Eye Circles

Around the eyelids, you have the thinnest skin from the rest of your body, which is about 0.5mm as opposed to the 2mm on other parts of the body. This therefore, makes the skin around there more visible when it is pale, puffy or has bags.

The periorbital hyperpigmentation causes are:

  • Asthma
  • Allergies
  • Eczema
  • Iron deficiency in pregnant and menstruating women
  • Liver problems
  • Fatigue
  • Age, which causes the periorbital region to collapse due to loss of collagen or habitual facial expressions
  • Sun burn
  • Lichen simplex chronicus development

In order to avoid these periorbital hyperpigmentation causes:

  • Quit smoking
  • Always moisturize and use sunscreen around your eyelids
  • Avoid rubbing the eyelids

A quick fix to the dark eye circles would be the use of a cream concealer around the eyelids that is lighter than your skin tone.