Dark spots, sun spots, liver spots, age spots: Call them what you will, but spots that appear on your face and other areas that are exposed to the sun are all essentially sun damage, caused by an accumulation of melanin in certain patches of skin.
But when it comes to how to treat dark spots, there are two broad approaches. The first is targeted: Treat only the darkened area with a product with a high concentration of a skin-brightening agent like vitamin C, without treating the whole face. Silk + C30 Anti-Aging Films are 30 percent vitamin C (the other 70 percent is Activated Silk™), and each film is perforated, making it easy to apply each half of the film to a small area of skin. Use the films every day until you’re comfortable with the level of pigmentation, then use them once a week or so as maintenance.
That focused approach can help get rid of spots once they’ve appeared. Really, though, the question isn’t so much how to remove dark spots as how to prevent them from forming at all. Vitamin C is the key here again. In addition to being a natural dark spot remover, this multitasker helps protect your skin from the UV rays that cause the damage.
When using vitamin C products to prevent sun damage, look for a lower concentration of the nutrient than spot treatment requires. C Advance Anti-Aging Serum has 10 percent vitamin C, making it appropriate for daily use all over the face. Using it daily can help prevent spots, and it’s also good for reducing the appearance of spots that are just beginning to emerge.
Your skin will be best prepped to receive the benefits of vitamin C if it’s exfoliated. Using the Renewing Peel Gel Exfoliator helps slough dead skin cells, clearing the path for the active ingredient in C Advance and the Silk + C30 Anti-Aging Films. If you’re using the films as a spot treatment, you can prep just the area in question with the exfoliator before applying the film; otherwise, use the exfoliant one to two times a week.
But before you do any treatment, make sure that you’re dealing with plain old hyperpigmentation and not something more worrisome. (In fact, now’s the time of year to brush up on your sun-safe smarts—it’s Skin Cancer Awareness Month.) If a spot differs in appearance from your other sun spots and fits any of the other ABCDE guidelines from the American Academy of Dermatology, consult a dermatologist.