Everyone’s skin is a little different. Yes, we’re all human, but our genetics and various other factors contribute a lot to how our skin reacts to particular things. Our hormone levels, in particular, play a large role in how our skin behaves most of the time even if we don’t think about them. That’s why particular treatments tend to work better for some men than they do for some woman and the reverse is true as well. Your skin is a unique combination of factors you learn how to take proper care of with a little help. Sometimes you can just hand products back and forth between people, but this isn’t always the case. There are particular problems that can come up when trying to treat dark spots on the skin though. Universal methods exist, but differences in skin thanks to hormones mean that in some cases you need to take different approaches or at least use different concentrations of particular products. Let’s take a quick look at this topic so we’re all a bit better informed.

Prevention Is Universal
There’s no escaping the fact that your best option when it comes to dark spots is doing your best to ensure that they don’t happen in the first place. That means taking preventive measures to minimize the effects of sun exposure on your skin. Wear your sunscreen. Sunscreen is the best preventive step available to the majority of us as the most thorough option involves just not exposing your skin to the sun ever and that’s simply not doable. Most of the sunscreens available to you are going to be chemical sunscreens that absorb the UV rays for you instead of your skin taking the damage. We strongly recommend looking for sunscreens with zinc oxide, a physical blocker, that reflect UV rays instead for the most thorough protection. Beyond that, we encourage everyone to use an SPF product that offers broad spectrum protection of 30 and up to ensure that it is effective.

Couple looking in the mirror

Over the Counter Solutions
Lots of over-the-counter products exist to help deal with dark spots. These come in a lot of forms. Some of the most popular are actually weaker forms of prescriptions that can be used to treat dark spots, but many of them are relatively self-contained treatments. Over-the-counter skin brightening products are typically not the most potent options you have available to you and will take a good deal longer to treat dark spots than a prescribed medication might. They are highly tested though. You can also use good skincare practices to treat dark spots as well. Exfoliating a dark spot actually helps to lighten it some as long as you’re remembering to wear your sunscreen to prevent it from darkening anew. There are no strong differences in care at this level. The biggest concern with any skin brightening product tends to be your base skin tone as darker tones are more likely to have trouble with brightening products as they might create lighter patches on accident.

Prescription Remedies
This is where the problems actually start to happen. Prescribed medications are often an order of magnitude more potent than anything that you can get over the counter and as a result tend to be prescribed based on the individual patient. We need to focus on this as levels of hormones in the body affect how thick skin is and how much of your skin’s natural oils are on it. Both of these are factors to consider when it comes prescribing a product. People with higher testosterone, most men, are going to necessarily need slightly more potent products to help ensure they properly get through the extra layers of protection. Prescriptions for people with higher estrogen, most women, are a little less potent because the skin is thinner. As is true with all prescribed products, you shouldn’t really swap or share prescriptions. They’re meant for you for a reason. Ignoring this with a topical product, especially one treating dark spots, can lead to visible skin troubles.

Treating dark spots on the skin is relatively universal. Preventive measures are the best option by far, but you can get away with simple over-the-counter options intended to specifically treat dark spots. These are more or less shared between everyone. Prescription treatments are much more finicky and shouldn’t be shared as the concentration of the active ingredients will vary depending on the person. Beyond that specific circumstance, good skincare remains good skincare.

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