If you’re not a skincare expert, the sheer variety of serums can seem overwhelming. Where do you even begin implementing these products into your daily skincare routine? One of the best ways to select serums for your skincare routine is to choose products that address a specific skin health issue. Hyperpigmentation is a relatively common condition that impacts the appearance of the skin. And fortunately, there are numerous serums available that will improve the appearance of skin that is hyperpigmented. In this blog, we’re going to discuss exactly what hyperpigmentation is and which serums will deliver the best results for specific skin types.

What Is Hyperpigmentation?

Hyperpigmentation is a descriptive term referring to many different skin conditions that cause the skin to darken. Depending on the underlying cause, hyperpigmentation can occur in one small spot on the skin, in a larger area, or across the entire body. No matter the specific cause, hyperpigmentation occurs when too much melanin is produced. Melanin is a pigment that gives skin its color and is produced by special skin cells called melanocytes. When overproduction of melanin occurs, the skin in the affected area will be darker than the skin on the rest of the body.

Some of the common underlying causes of hyperpigmentation are sun damage and inflammation. Injured skin tends to heal differently than other areas of healthy skin. There are three main types of hyperpigmentation:

  • Melasma – This is the common type of hyperpigmentation that isn’t caused by direct damage to the skin. Instead, this type of hyperpigmentation leads to increased melanin production caused by changes in hormone levels during pregnancy, menopause, or from taking oral contraceptives. The hyperpigmented areas can develop anywhere on the skin, but melasma spots are most common on the face and stomach.
  • Solare lentigines – This type of hyperpigmentation is caused by sun damage, especially prolonged sun exposure, and actually has many common names, including liver spots or age spots. This form of hyperpigmentation typically appears as small dark spots of skin over areas of the body that are frequently exposed to the sun like the face and hands.
  • Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation This form of hyperpigmentation is closely linked to skin damage. It may occur after cuts, burns, or surgeries, but it is also a common side effect of acne. Hyperpigmented skin develops in the area where the skin was damaged.

In addition to these three common types of hyperpigmentation, darker areas of skin may develop due to taking medications that increase photosensitivity. Hyperpigmentation may also occur for those going through chemotherapy, which can increase melanin production. Addison’s disease, a rare endocrine system disorder, can lead to hyperpigmentation most commonly developing on the face, neck, hands, knees, and elbows. Finally, those who have a darker natural skin tone may be more prone to hyperpigmentation.

How Do Serums Improve Hyperpigmentation?

Serums for hyperpigmentation deliver numerous benefits. They are typically geared toward either hindering melanin production or reducing the existing pigment in cells to lighten the skin. Products that help with hyperpigmentation can also support an even skin tone for healthier-looking skin.

What Are the Best Serums for Hyperpigmentation?

Finding the right hyperpigmentation serum is all about looking for products with the right set of ingredients for your skin type. Some ingredients that are beneficial for hyperpigmentation treatment include acids (azelaic, glycolic, kojic, and citric) as well as vitamin C and retinol.

It’s always a good idea to talk with your board-certified dermatologist to get skincare product recommendations for your specific skincare needs, but our top six most recommended serums for hyperpigmentation are described below:

Scientis Cyspera Intensive Pigment Corrector

In the past, hydroquinone was relied upon to lighten skin that was impacted by hyperpigmentation. However, this ingredient isn’t safe for long-term usage. For this reason, dermatologic researchers at Scientis developed the Scientis Cyspera Intensive Pigment Corrector. This hydroquinone-free pigment-correcting serum relies on cysteamine, an antioxidant that reduces the appearance of hyperpigmentation. It’s safe on sensitive areas of skin, tolerated for long-term use, and proven effective in diminishing the appearance of even the most stubborn hyperpigmented dark spots and patches.

ALASTIN A-Luminate Brightening Serum

One of the newest pigment-correcting serums available on our site is the ALASTIN A-Luminate Brightening Serum. This skincare product helps to reduce the appearance of dark spots and hyperpigmentation. Additionally, the powerful antioxidant ingredients help to prevent hyperpigmentation caused by sun exposure and skin damage. With daily use, this serum also brightens skin and improves the overall skin tone.

Sente Cysteamine HSA Pigment & Tone Corrector

Another cysteamine serum, the Sente Cysteamine HSA Pigment and Tone Corrector penetrates deep into the skin’s layers to promote a healthy, even complexion. This gentle formulation is safe and effective for short and long-term use even by those with sensitive skin.

SkinCeuticals Discoloration Defense

If you are dealing with stubborn, treatment-resistant hyperpigmentation, SkinCeutical Discoloration Defense is exactly what you need. This gentle, lightweight serum brightens skin and reduces the appearance of dark spots more quickly than most other pigment-correcting serums. You can see results as quickly as two weeks after beginning usage.

SkinMedica Lytera 2.0 Pigment Correcting Serum

While hyperpigmentation is common among expecting mothers, many pigment-correcting serums are not recommended for use by pregnant women. SkinMedica Lytera 2.0 Pigment Correcting Serum delivers skin tone improvements as soon as two weeks after starting regular use, and it’s safe for people with all skin types including expectant mothers.

Want More Skincare Product Recommendations?

If you’re looking for skincare products for any skin type or specific skin health issues, DermSkincare has you covered. Our dermatologist-selected skincare products are carefully chosen to ensure there are great options for people with any skin type or skincare need.