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Nov 30, 2016
by Vivant Skin Care
Mustaches are great if you're a 70s porn star, a guy, and you practice good grooming. But since you’re reading this article, we can safely assume those things don’t apply (with the exception of good grooming), and a mustache is not your idea of a fashion choice.
That being the case, you’ve likely tried waxing, plucking, lasers, depilatories or shaving to get rid of unwanted hair on your upper lip. And if so, you may have been hit with a steep tariff, a wax tax, if you will. We’re talking about the dark pigmentation that can show up where the unwanted hair once appeared. A ghost mustache that just won’t seem to disappear.
This is post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation or PIH and it’s caused by trauma to the skin. Hair removal treatments like those mentioned above cause damage to the follicle. This trauma triggers melanocyte cells to spring into action in an attempt to protect the skin. When melanocytes get stimulated, pigment is formed. Melasma, which is hormonal, may be a contributing factor, but the trauma to the skin (i.e. the hair removal procedure) is the instigator in this scenario.
The best way to avoid the problem is to avoid waxing, plucking, shaving or laser treatments on the delicate area of the upper lip. If it’s too late for that, and you’re already dealing with the dark specter, there is a plan of attack. And here it is.
Protect Yourself From The Sun
First and foremost, apply sunscreen daily to your entire face and décolletage but pay special attention to the upper lip. Vivant’s Day Treatment Lotion SPF 15 contains zinc peptides, which not only provide protection from UV radiation, but also help to promote collagen production and reduce inflammation. To enhance your UV protection, apply Vivant’s vitamin C & E therapy Spin Trap® Antioxidant Serum underneath your sunscreen. The pairing of antioxidant vitamins C & E has been proven to provide significantly enhanced photo-protective effects, far better than sunscreen alone.
Use An Exfoliating Serum
Use a daily serum that combines brighteners and exfoliating agents to boost cell renewal and fade excess pigmentation. Look for ingredients like kojic acid, lactic acid, salicylic acid, glycolic acid, and niacinamide. Vivant's Exfol-A™ combines vitamin A propionate with glycolic, kojic and lactic acids for a rapid cell regenerating formula that also works to prevent future dark spots from forming.
Get Some Help From Hydroquinone
Dermatologists agree that no topical is more effective than hydroquinone for lightening and preventing discoloration. Its effectiveness is further enhanced when combined with vitamin A to boost collagen and speed cell renewal. You can find that synergistic blend in Vivant’s Bleaching Cream, which has the added boost of brightening kojic acid. For darker skin or skin too sensitive for hydroquinone, 8% Mandelic Acid 3-in-1 Serum provides effective treatment with less irritation.
Mitigate The Irritation
If you just can’t live without the hair removal, do everything you can to mitigate the irritation. Use an ice compress immediately following the procedure. Follow that with a soothing lotion like Vivant’s Allantoin Sedating & Hydrating Lotion, which uses the healing compound allantoin derived from comfrey leaves, along with nourishing grape seed extract, zinc peptides, oat proteins, and aloe to calm and repair. Use Spin Trap and sunscreen before going out.
Because pigment begins deep in the skin and works its way to the surface, fading takes time. Employ the steps above and be patient. It will take approximately eight weeks to achieve some visible results.
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