Commonly occurring among middle-aged women, hyperpigmentation is usually a harmless condition wherein the skin is darkened in patches different from that of the surrounding skin. This condition is the result of an overproduction and the formation of skin deposits of melanin, the dark pigment responsible for the skin’s normal color.
Hyperpigmentation either occurs as focal, or as diffuse. Focal hyperpigmentation usually occurs after injury and other causes of inflammation. Diffuse hyperpigmentation, also known as melanism or melanosis, comes as a result of a drug reaction, or if you are suffering from Addison’s disease.
Treatment of Hyperpigmentation: Lumixyl vs. Hydroquinone
Ways of evening skin tone to treat hyperpigmentation have been steadily developed by experts. Some of these procedures are skin brightening techniques that make use of topical treatments such as lumixyl and skin brightening creams that contain hydroquinone.
Hydroquinone is a skin-bleaching agent that inhibits the tyrosinase enzyme to prevent the transformation of dopamine to melanin. Treatment of hyperpigmentation would take up to six months before showing any results. It has been the most common hyperpigmentation topical treatment, until the FDA proposed to ban hydroquinone in 29 August 2006 as a reaction to compelling tests that show hydroquinone’s propensity to act as a carcinogen, a cancer-causing chemical, when tested on rats.
Hydroquinone has also been hypothesized to have been the cause of ochronosis, a medical condition wherein the skin becomes dark and thick, and the appearance of yellow, dome-shaped spots in the skin of black men and women.
Recent developments introduced Lumixyl, a topical skin brightening and moisturizing cream that is milder compared to hydroquinone. Developed by dermatological researchers at Stanford University, it uses peptide technology to combat mild to moderate hyperpigmentation such as sun spots, age spots, uneven skin tone, and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
Known for its non-toxic properties, it uses synthetic peptide, a substance that consists of a sequence of amino acids, aided by a couple of ingredients known to have been good treatment options for hyperpigmentation. It works by slowing down the overproduction of melanin, and avoids causing irritation, unlike other skin brightening products. It does not bleach the skin unlike hydroquinone.
Aside from skin brightening and moisturizing, Lumixyl can also aid in curing atopic dermatitis. Having been derived from natural licorice root extract, it contains natural lightening abilities.
Lumixyl is best used at night, for it takes a while before the skin can fully absorb the cream. It can also be used as the base under a regular facial cream. Rub it up to along the hairline for best results.
Studies conducted at Stanford show that skin topically treated with Lumixyl showed a 40% improvement among melanin-related darkening patients in eight weeks. Moreover, it proved to be 5.5 times more potent compared to an equal dosage of hydroquinone. In addition, aside from reducing damage and diminishing dark spots, Lumixyl has also proven to have the ability to restore luminosity to the skin. These are all achieved without increasing sensitivity to sunlight, or inducing loss of skin color (or hypopigmentation). Lumixyl is also confirmed to be safe for all skin types, and is non-irritating.