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Age spots and sunspots, amongst other names like brown spots and liver spots, are actually all the same thing. Age spots seem to have gotten their name due to the fact that they start to appear and multiply as you age, but they can develop at any point in your life. A pigment in your skin called melanin collects and sticks together over time forming small brown spots that you can see on the skin’s surface. Melanin is what causes your skin to tan, but unlike bronzed skin, age spots or sunspots won’t fade.
Sunspots occur in three forms: Ephelides, lentigines and melasma. Ephelides, dark symmetrical circular spots on the skin, are more commonly known as freckles. This kind of sunspot develops from sun exposure, but also has to do with your genetic makeup – if you’re fair or light skinned and have blond or red hair you’re more likely to develop ephelides. Lentigines are smooth brown spots that can measure between one to three centimeters in size. These sunspots actually occur as a result of photo damage to the skin caused by too much time spent in the sun while unprotected. Melasma, also referred to as a “pregnancy mask”, is another spot that forms as a result of UV exposure. Though, the nickname of this kind of sunspot may be misleading, you don’t have to actually be pregnant to develop melasma. The splotches can develop on women with darker skin tones, or who are taking hormonal birth control pills or who are, in fact, pregnant.
To prevent against the development, or further development, of age spots you should make applying sunscreen with broad spectrum SPF a part of your daily skin care routine. Be sure to apply sunscreen to any area of your skin that may be exposed to the sun at any part of your day; that especially includes your face, lips, ears, neck, chest, backs of hands, and tops of feet. Look for creams and moisturizers with SPF broad-spectrum protection, try Age Perfect® Glow Renewal SPF 30 Lotion,. It’s important to have both UVA and UVB protection to effectively prevent against other signs of skin aging. Try to look for a product with at least SPF 30 level protection, which will absorb up 97 percent of the sun’s harmful rays – which can reach your skin even on cloudy days. Reapply as needed throughout your day and try to stay in the shade or create shade when you can, by packing an umbrella for a day at the beach and by wearing sunglasses and hats regularly while outside.
If you have already noticed the development of age spots there are ways that you can diminish their appearance. Aim to brighten your skin by looking for products with Vitamin C, additionally, exfoliants with salicylic acid will slough away dead skin cells, helping to brighten the look of your skin over all. You can also look for a skin care product with retinol or LHA, like Age Perfect® Cell Renewal* Night Cream.