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Exploring Pigmentation Facial Options for an Even Skin Complexion

Discover your pigmentation facial options, including peels, photo facials, laser facials and facial peels to address facial melasma, sun damage, or PIH.

Uneven skin discolouration includes freckles, sun spots, melasma, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, and solar lentigos.  In skilled hands correcting skin pigmentation I possible. Though facial pigmentation is most often changes to skin colour, are or aesthetic concern. To provide the best treatment, it is important to take a tailored approach and have your pigmentation examined by our skin specialist doctor to ensure a correct diagnosis before treatment and that therapies are tailored to your skin type.

You can start with a free assessment with our dermal clinician Jodie or nurse Christine, or if you want, you can book directly with Dr Colin McTari for a full skin assessment and diagnosis. The cost of this is $130 and partly redeemable on Medicare.

For a free consultation with one of the Pearl team, book online or call 07 3350 5447. Or book directly for skin assessment with Dr Colin McTari

*1 BBL Hero treatment for pigmentation before and after – results are individual.

*BBL laser treatment of back pigmentation before and after – results are individual.

skin pigmentation treatment
*results are individual

asian skin pigmentation treatment with picocare
*results are individual

*Melasma treatment 2 Peels + 2 Picolaser before and after – Results are individual

When considering pigmentation facial Options, it is essential to consider the different causes of facial hyperpigmentation, such as melasma, sun damage, and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH), as the best facial treatment for pigmentation depends on the type. Once you understand what is causing your facial hyperpigmentation, effective treatment options are tailored to each cause.

Chemical peels, topical creams containing pigment inhibitors, photo facials for sun damage pigmentation, LED pico laser and Q-switch lasers for facial melasma management to LED facial and Pico laser settings specifically targeting ethnic skin types for PIH recovery.

But before going any further, it is essential to get an accurate diagnosis of any pigmented lesions before treatment. Dr Colin McTari is qualified to diagnose and treat skin cancers and all aspects of medical skin treatment. If there is any concern, our therapist and Nurse will book you for a consultation with him. for accurate diagnosis and appropriate laser treatments based on specific facial hyperpigmentations.

By understanding the nuances in facial pigmentation options achieving clear and radiant skin is well within reach!

Identifying the Cause of Facial Hyperpigmentation

First, let’s talk about identifying the cause of your pigmentation issue. With over 150 possible causes, it’s crucial to diagnose your specific condition for effective treatment accurately. However, the most common culprits include facial melasma, sun damage (photo damage), freckles, and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH).

Facial Melasma Caused by Hormones, UV Exposure, and Genetics

Facial melasma is a common skin condition characterised by dark map-like patches on the face due to hormones UV exposure. This has a genetic basis, and an unlying predisposition runs in families.

Sun Damage Presents as Pigmentation, Redness &Wrinkles

Our beloved sunshine can be both friends, helping produce Vitamin D, improving our mood and helping us sleep, but too much can cause damage. Sun damage pigmentation typically exists alongside other changes to skin colour and texture. These can include redness from broken capillaries, skin dryness or roughness, fine lines, and wrinkles.

Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation Due to Acne or Other Skin Conditions

The third most common cause is PIH which occurs after an insult to the skin resulting in inflammation. It is most common after acne or other inflammatory skin issues. But it can result from burns (including laser), chemical peels, and physical trauma after the acute insult heals the inflammation set up to recover, leaving behind darker spots on the skin surface.

Pigmentation Facial Options

Let us look at the pigmentation facial options from the simplest to the most complex.

Topical Treatments

For those with mild facial hyperpigmentation issues, topical treatments with pigment inhibitions may be all you need. These can include the gold standard of prescription topical to fade pigmentation, such as hydroquinone and retinoids. There is a range of topical skin ingredients which are commonly used in combinations in creams, serums, and gels containing ingredients like Vitamin C, Niacinamide, arbutin, kojic acid, azelaic acid and a range of botanicals such as barberry or liquorice root. It is important to note that these treatments may take weeks or even months to show results. Our favourites are the prescription gold standards. However, you will need to see a Doctor. This is especially useful for facial melasma, and PIH Over counter Azelaic acid (combined with Niacinamide) or Vitamin C is well tolerated by everyone. Kojic though a good option, can cause sensitivity.

Peel Facials for Pigmentation

Peels are a mainstay of cosmetic medicine, including treating facial hyperpigmentation. There are a vast array of superficial and medium-depth peels. Our favourites for melasma treatment include vitamin A and jessner peel, and for PIH, a much gentler pigmentation facial is recommended with Azelaic acid peel and LED light combinations.

Light Treatments, including LED Facial or Photo Facial for Pigmentation

Phototherapy is a non-invasive approach using light to address facial hyperpigmentation. The two most common light treatments are LED facial or IPL photo facial.

The LED light in the red/infrared range is used to help settle inflammation. It is our go-to first step for resolving PIH and its cousin PIE. (Also very useful for acne, rosacea, facial melasma, and any inflammatory skin condition). Suitable for any skin type.

IPL such as the BBL is excellent for treating sun damage pigmentation in skin types I, II and III and with low skin type IV care. Because broadband light treats the three causes of sun damage together (facial hyperpigmentation, redness and skin texture changes), a photo facial is our most sought-after for lighter skin types, rejuvenating the appearance of sun-damaged skin.

Laser Treatment

Laser treatment is the next-level treatment option that uses concentrated light beams to target pigmented areas. A wide range of lasers is suitable for addressing facial hyperpigmentation issues, and the choice depends again on the underlying pigmentation and skin type. This approach may be ideal for those with more intense discolouration problems, yet multiple treatments might be necessary.

For a free consultation with one of the Pearl team, book online or call 07 3350 5447. Or book directly for skin assessment with Dr Colin McTari


Common Types of Facial Hyperpigmentation

Treating Facial Melasma Effectively: The Winning Combination

Alright, let’s dive in. Facial melasma can be a stubborn foe, but you’ll have it under control with the right approach. The key is a combination of treatments, including creams, peels, sun protection and lasers, creams, for optimal results. Melasma is a common skin condition affecting all skin types, especially those with darker skin. It is not unusual for melasma to be misconstrued as age spots or sun harm. However, getting an appropriate analysis from a skin specialist is imperative to eliminate the probability of skin cancer.

Sun Protection: Your First Line of Defense Against Melasma Recurrence

No matter how effective your treatment plan is, facial melasma will reappear without proper sun protection. To prevent this vicious cycle from happening again and again:

  • Always wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 50 or higher on all exposed skin areas.
  • Avoid direct sunlight during peak hours (10 am – 4 pm).
  • Wear protective clothing like wide-brimmed hats, umbrellas and sunglasses when outdoors.
  • Also essential for all types of facial hyperpigmentation.

Facial Peels a Good Place to Start to Lift Pigmentation

– A range of peels can assist in lifting pigmentation from melasma; our favourite is a prescription vitamin A cream (also excellent for sun damage).

Lasers & Creams: A Powerful Duo for Better Outcomes in Facial Melasma

Treating melasma effectively requires specialised lasers such as Pico laser or  Q-switch lasers like Revlite and tyrosinase inhibitors (creams that block pigment production). Using these treatments together achieves better outcomes than using either one alone.

Facial melasma is a common skin condition affecting all skin types, especially those with darker skin. It is not unusual for melasma to be misconstrued as age spots or sun harm. However, getting an appropriate analysis from a skin specialist is imperative to eliminate the probability of skin cancer.

Addressing Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH)

So, you’ve battled acne and won, but now you’re left with pesky dark spots. This is called PIH, and there are simple measures that will help speed the recovery.

Firstly time is your friend with PIH – do not be too eager to jump into aggressive treatments. Although pico lasers are more gentle and effective in settling, PIH care must still be exercised.

The first rule with PIH is sun protection to prevent making the PIH worse. Minutes of UV light set up inflammation in your skin which can last for days. So if you are trying to settle PIH, it is essential not to add further inflammation.

The first line of treatment should be measured to help calm inflammation, such as LED lights and topical creams such as Azelaic acid and Niacinamide. (all three of these work with PIE as well as PIH).

Pigment inhibitors such as hydroquinone and retinoids are the following line and are very effective in healing and repairing PIH. Finally, after the above measure fails, Pico lasers can be used for recalcitrant facial hyperpigmentation.

  • Pico lasers are gentle yet effective in treating PIH on various skin types, including darker ones.
  • Settings Matter: Pico Laser Treatment for Ethnic Skin Types
  • The key is using the correct settings tailored to your unique skin type.
  • Patience is a Virtue: The Recovery Process
  • Patience pays off regarding PIH recovery, with proper treatment, broad-brimmed hats, and absolute sun protection SPF.

Managing Sun Damage-induced Facial Hyperpigmentation

Sun damage can be a sneaky culprit behind complex facial pigmentation issues. Despite the complexity of this issue, there are various treatment options to address sun damage-induced pigmentation.

For proper treatment, distinguishing between facial melasma and sun damage is crucial. However, unlike sun damage, melasma doesn’t have seasonal fluctuations, making it a bit tricky to diagnose.

Photo Facial – Our first choice for Sun damage Pigmentation Facial

A specialised pigmentation facial with IPL is called a photo facial. The term was adopted because, as it states, facial pigmentation is purely made of light pulsed onto your skin. Chromophores absorb the morning, and the light energy is converted into heat to destroy the target (while leaving the surrounded skin protected)

Various laser treatments are also effective for reducing sun-induced pigmentation. For example, fractional lasers, CO2 or erbium resurfacing techniques are generally effective options for sun damage recovery.

  • IPL Photofacial, BBL
  • Excell V and V Beam Laser
  • Fractional Lasers: These lasers create micro-injuries in the skin to stimulate collagen production and repair pigment irregularities.
  • CO2 Resurfacing: This powerful technique removes layers of damaged skin cells while promoting new cell growth.
  • Erbium Resurfacing: Similar to CO2 but gentler on darker skin tones, this method also helps with fine lines and wrinkles.

These laser treatments are multitasking powerhouses.

Remember: Accurate diagnosis is essential before attempting any pigmentation facial to avoid worsening the condition or causing additional complications.

Other pigmentation facials may be available besides light treatment and topical treatments. Nevertheless, these procedures may not be suitable for all skin types, particularly those with deeper complexions.

It’s also important to note that some pigmentation can indicate a more severe condition, such as skin cancer. Therefore, if you experience any changes in your skin, such as dark spots or age spots, it is wise to seek medical advice from a skin specialist or dermatologist to ensure no underlying skin cancers.

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FAQs about Pigmentation Facial Options

The most effective treatment for pigmentation depends on the specific type and cause. Common treatments include topical creams, chemical peels, laser therapy such as Q-switch lasers, and Pico laser treatments. Consulting a skin specialist is essential to determine the appropriate treatment based on individual needs.

The best method of removing facial pigmentation varies depending on its origin. Still, it may involve using targeted skincare products containing ingredients like hydroquinone or azelaic acid, undergoing professional procedures like LED facials, chemical peels, or opting for advanced technologies like IPL (photo facial) therapy or pigment or Pico Lasers.


The newest lasers for pigmentation are Pico lasers. However, there is an array of other suitable treatments depending on the type of pigmentation. Treatment for pigmentation includes chemical peels, laser therapies such as Q-switch, intense pulsed light or photo facial (IPL). These treatments can be tailored to address specific pigmentation issues and are often combined with topical creams for optimal results.

The best pigmentation facial depends on what is causing it. For example, facial melasma responds to pigment-lightening treatments such as hydroquinone and chemical peels, including Vitamin A, TCA or Jessner peel. At the same time, facial hyperpigmentation from sun damage responds better to a photo facial, like a BBL laser. Finally, the best facial from post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is LED light facial combined with topical pigment inhibitors.

Yes, facials can help reduce hyperpigmentation and enhance the look and texture of your skin. However, the best facial for pigmentation varies depending on the cause of the pigmentation, the three main types being melasma, sun damage and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. At Pearl, we combine pigmentation facials with lasers, peels and topical prescription creams such as hydroquinone and retinoids.

The best facial treatment for pigmentation depends on the underlying cause. It falls under four areas. Creams to reduce pigmentation, pigments inhibiting agents such as hydroquinone, retinoids and vitamin C. Light-based treatments such as IPL, BBL (photo facial) or LED light therapy (LED facial) and lasers such as Q switched laser and pico lasers.

Yes, Vitamin C is one of a group of cosmetic skin actives called pigment inhibitors. Hydroquinone is the gold standard for facial hyperpigmentation, which gives solid and consistent results. However, various botanical and vitamin pigment inhibitors act in multiple ways to stop melanin formation. These include Vitamin A, B (Niacinamide) and C, kojic acid, azelaic acid and arbutin, barberry etc.

Sanadi, R. M., & Deshmukh, R. S. (2020). The effect of Vitamin C on melanin pigmentation – A systematic review. Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology : JOMFP, 24(2), 374-382.