Skin of Color

Written by Dr. Sean Maguire on July 2, 2014

Skin of color comes with its own unique challenges. What can you do to address them?

woman-dark-skin-washing-faceObagi® products work beautifully for many skin tones. How do you know which products are right for yours? Let’s take a closer look at some common skin conditions among people with darker skin tones (check to see where you fall on the Fitzpatrick I – VI scale*1) so that you can be prepared to discuss your options with your skin care consultant, such as Marilyn Cannon, at your next appointment.

Dark Spots and Discoloration

One of the most common pigmentation problems, especially for those with darker skin, is hyperpigmentation, or localized darkening of the skin. Acne, genetics, sun damage, and skin trauma all may contribute to hyperpigmentation. Both ancestry (genetics) and outward manifestations of skin color can also affect how susceptible you are to hyperpigmentation.

The Obagi Nu-Derm® System and the Obagi-C® Rx System can both help improve hyperpigmentation. In one study, daily use of Obagi-C Rx provided quick and dramatic improvements in overall appearance, discoloration, and skin tone for all patient skin types.

It’s important to remember, however, that no treatment is a match for the dangers of the sun. The amount of UV damage that your skin receives throughout your life is a significant determining factor in causing hyperpigmentation.

Sun Damage

UV waves also play an important role in conditions such as premature skin aging and skin cancers. Regardless of skin color or ethnicity, anyone can develop skin cancer. Often melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, isn’t diagnosed in people with skin of color until the cancer has spread because melanoma may be less obvious between the toes or hidden on the scalp. That’s why it is especially important for people with skin of color to practice regular skin self-examinations and wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen like Obagi’s Sun Shield Matte SPF 50.

Acne and Scarring

Acne affects all skin types and ethnicities, but the darker the skin, the worse the pigmentary abnormalities and scarring that acne leaves behind.

Because skin of color often does not heal as easily after cuts, burns, or even piercings, scars are much more common and likely to last than with lighter skin tones. If you have scars that haven’t healed with time, talk to your skin care consultant to see if a scar treatment like Dermatix® Ultra, suitable for most skin types, is right for you.

No matter your skin type or color, there’s an Obagi product for everyone. It’s important to speak to a skin care consultant, such as Marilyn Cannon, about which products are right for your skin type and tone.



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