Envision Eye & Aesthetics

The Types of Hyperpigmentation & How We Treat Each

Unfortunately, many of us were not made aware of the dangers of prolonged UV exposure until later in life—after we’d spent our teenage years oiling ourselves up to lay out in the sun for hours.

It turns out UV exposure causes damage to the skin, usually seen in the form of wrinkles, loose skin, and brown spots or hyperpigmentation. The good news? Treatments at Envision Aesthetics in Rochester can eliminate hyperpigmentation caused by sun damage. This includes treatment for precancerous spots, as well as other forms of hyperpigmentation! 

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What types of hyperpigmentation exist?

Often, sun damage and other types of pigmentation, like those in the table below, occur in both the surface (epidermal) and deep (dermal) layers of the skin. 

 Pigmentation  Surface (Epidermal)   Deep (Dermal) 
Sun damage from prolonged UV exposure (freckles, brown spots)    Yes Yes
Birthmarks  No Yes
Normal tan Yes No
Melasma (hormonal hyperpigmentation) Yes Yes
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (acne, burns) Yes Yes
Pitted or raised scars (from cuts, severe acne, surgery, etc.) Yes Yes

With this knowledge, we can recommend hyperpigmentation treatments at our Rochester office that will work best for you. 

How does Envision treat each type of hyperpigmentation?

Sun damage

Like we mentioned, prolonged exposure to the sun causes premature aging, skin laxity, and hyperpigmentation. To break up the dark pigment in the skin, as well as reverse the other concerns sun damage can cause in both the superficial and deep layers, we turn to:


While birthmarks are not an issue that affects your skin health, certain ones, like prominent ones on the face or neck, can make you feel self-conscious and in search of a treatment. 

Most birthmarks fall into two categories: vascular and pigmented. Like the name suggests, vascular birthmarks result from a malformation of blood vessels in an area of skin. Port wine stains, and hemangiomas fall in the vascular birthmark category. Examples of pigmented birthmarks include moles and café au lait spots.

To treat many birthmarks, we have to use methods that go deep into the skin’s layers, where the hyperpigmentation lies. This makes light-based therapy the perfect option! With lasers, like Halo or MicroLaserPeel®, or BBL, we can eliminate or significantly improve the appearance of port wine stains and café au lait spots.


After pregnancy, hormonal changes, or overexposure to UV radiation, brown or gray patches called melasma can appear on the skin. The causes aren’t exactly known, but seemingly people with more melanin (darker skin) are more predisposed to melasma than others. Melasma is also linked to genetics, so if you have relatives with melasma, the chances increase of you developing it too. 

The other major factor is hormones: women make up 90% of the people who experience melasma! Melasma is especially common in pregnant women, often referred to as the “mask of pregnancy.” 

To treat Melasma, we offer:

Hyperpigmentation from scars

Believe it or not, scars are as unique as the people they appear on. Though no two are exactly alike, we can sort scars into several broad categories.

Raised, or hypertrophic scars occur when the body produces too much collagen to heal the damage. These scars are dark and can be itchy or painful. These scars can form after a burn, piercing, acne, surgery, or other trauma.

If you experienced severe cystic acne or chickenpox, you might have pitted or atrophic scars. These scars appear sunken and are sometimes called “ice pick scars.”

Finally, the cause of a surgical scar is obvious. With surgery, however, your skin isn’t left entirely to its own devices to heal—stitching techniques and other options like sutures and skin glues have come a long way. 

Depending on the type of scar and its unique features, we will create a treatment plan that might include one or more sessions with:

Schedule your free consultation with the Envision Aesthetics team for hyperpigmentation treatments in Rochester today! 

If you have skin laxity, wrinkles, lines, or facial folds you’d like to address, come see the Envision team today.

We offer state-of-the-art hyperpigmentation treatments in Rochester and want to help you treat your concerns, so you can achieve beautiful skin you can be proud of. 

Use our online virtual consultation tool to learn more about all our treatments that address your concerns, or click here to request an appointment today.

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