Hypopigmentation may sound similar to hyperpigmentation, but they are complete opposites. Hypopigmentation is the lack of pigmentation in the skin, whereas hyperpigmentation is an excessive amount of pigmentation in the skin.
Hypopigmentation is caused when melanocytes within the body begin to slow down or stop producing melanin. The result is white or light patches in the skin.
Hypopigmentation can be caused by genetic disorders or conditions that affect the pigment producing cells in the body, such as vitiligo, albinism, or pityriasis alba. Overly aggressive lasers or skin peels - when not properly suited to the client’s ethnic profile - may also result in hypopigmentation.
The most common cause of hypopigmentation is trauma or injury to the skin. Burns, cuts, pimples, blisters, or improperly administered laser or chemical peels can all cause hypopigmentation. When left to heal, these skin traumas often leave behind blotchy, uneven,
and bleached-looking skin.
Treatments include corticosteroid creams and fading or bleaching creams, like hydroquinone to blend the surrounding areas. IPL, Fraxel, microdermabrasion, and chemical peels are other, more aggressive, options.