Pigmented Skin

Knowledge is power, and this is no different for effective skin care. This concept is applicable for a skin colors or tones and also skin types. A skin care program for individuals with darker skin tones is no different than any other skin care program in the fact that you need to understand what makes your skin different from anyone else’s.The bottom line is all skin has specific requirements that must be attained to bring about an invigorated and radiant complexion.

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Skin cells called melanocytes are distributed throughout the epideral layer of the skin. These cells are responsible for the production of melanin. The amount of melanin present determines the skin color or tone; the more melanin the darker your skin will be.The number of melanocytes does not change from person to person, only the amount of melanin they produce.

One of the greatest benefits of melanin is protection from the sun. Melanin is essentially a natural sunscreen; it is not uncommon for individuals of African descent to look years or even decades younger than their actual chronological age. With that being said, melanin does not defend against all the damaging effects of the sun, therefore regardless of skin color a sun protection of SPF 15 is always recommended.

The concern however with increased melanin production is it leaves the skin extra sensitive and often overly reactive. This means that in situations where the skin sustains trauma or comes in contact with irritates the melanocytes in the affected area are triggered and produce additional melanin.This results in a condition called post inflammatory hyper pigmentation which in essence is a darkening in concentrated area or a scaring effect that can last for months or years. Post inflammatory hyper pigmentation is often unpredictable therefore repair and prevention should be a priority.

To prevent the development of unnecessary damage to the skin, here are few simple tips. Number one, be gentle. Cleansing and exfoliating is recommended for all skin types, however scrubbing your skin to aggressively may cause bruising and microscopic tears. Darker toned skin tends to be much more delicate and the resulting damage is often camouflaged. A gentler option would be to use Clay based exfoliates. It is recommended that soap products be avoided for use on the face and necks areas because it can be harsh and drying. Products that contain perfumes may cause irritations or rashes so use caution. A purifying cleanser is a good choice for oily skin types.

To moisturize or not to moisturize, this is a controversial topic when it comes to individuals with naturally oily skin. A large majority of persons with dark skin do indeed struggle with oily skin however that does not necessarily mean that they should not moisturize. There is a vast selection of moisture available that quickly penetrate the skin without leaving a heavy greasy layer to contend with, these are preferred.

Black or dark pigmented skin tends to have larger pores, therefore toning is essential. A gentle toner helps to prevent blackheads and to help keep the pores healthy.

For the most part, skin is skin, and it is all different regardless of tone or color. Every individual is different therefore no one product fits all. Use products that fit your individual needs and that give you the results you are looking to achieve.

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