Know Your Skin: Uneven Skin Tone Causes and How to Fix It.

Don't panic, you have uneven skin tone! With its many names, dark spots, sun spots, and age spots, it sounds worse than in reality. In its simplest form, it is generally understood as hyperpigmentation. These are areas of skin that are darker than the rest. Throughout this article, we will explore what dark spots are, the causes, and solutions. We will also talk about the pros and cons of each solution. Please note that we are not medical professionals. Do you suspect someone you know might have a serious condition such as skin cancer? It is important to schedule an appointment as soon as possible with your medical professional.

What are dark spots? 

Have you ever wondered what those weird brown spots that appear on your skin are?  Those are dark spots.  It's the overproduction of skin pigments that make your skin darker. But, it can have subtle nuances that can save your life, if treated on time.  Don't worry, most of the time, it is harmless cosmetic discolorations that appear on your skin.

If they are harmless, what are they?  Melanin is a complex polymer that creates dark spots. Your body's levels of melanin are determined by your genetic factors, as well as the amount of sunlight your ancestors were exposed to. There are many causes for age spots, hyperpigmentation, liver spots, and solar lentigines. These causes can occur in external and internal environmental factors. For example, it can be from UV damage to life events, pollution, dry skin and medications.

So, what causes dark spots?

Sun Exposure

It isn't surprising that many of us want to get that golden glow. But, this can be a path to premature and undesirable solar lentigines. Photoaging refers to the process of premature aging, which can be, wrinkles and fine lines.

To be precise, dark spots form when it defends your skin from sun damage. This goes beyond tanning. That is why they appear on the most exposed parts of your skin. As a result, the overproduction of melanin is your skin trying to tell you that it is enough. But, sunlight does have its benefits, such as metabolizing vitamin D.

Skin type

Skin type also plays a role in further developing sun spots. Especially, for dry skin. Actinic keratosis is a type of dark spot caused by intensive UV rays on dry skin. These are scaly spots on the top layer of skin. Also known as solar keratosis.

Why You Shouldn't Try Tanning on Purpose

UV rays have a role in your life. But, when you account for all the other activities you do in the sun, it might be time to reevaluate your skin goals. Even with sunblock and sunscreen applied, you'll still tan. So, you might want to think again about going to the beach or scheduling a tanning appointment. But, if that doesn't convince you, here's an inside look at free radicals, and what they do.

What are Free Radicals?

Free radicals are unstable atoms that can damage cells. This means that it can have a drastic impact on the aging process. It can also create general to serious health problems. So, what is the link between free radicals and UV rays? In fact, UV rays create free radicals that can mutate and kill healthy cells from the inside. This in itself is not all bad, since our body needs free radicals and oxidants. It allows our body to fight diseases.

This becomes a problem when oxidative stress occurs. This is the imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants. Causes include pollutants, UV rays, and other environmental toxins. Without saying, avoid this as much as possible.  Both UVA and UVB rays have detrimental effects on our body and skin health.  Noted in an article by Fort Wayne Dermotology Consultants, "UVA rays are a leading cause to damage of elastin, collagen, and the skin structure. UVB rays, known as burning rays, contribute to skin cancer."

Can We Combat Free Radicals?

Yes, we can combat free radicals with antioxidants.  But, remember, not all antioxidants are effective against all free radicals.  However, vitamin C is known to be effective for UV rays.  


This is something that is less noticeable until you live where air quality is not so great.  Your skin is resilient to quite a bit of things.  That is until your skin can't handle the constant barrage of dust and air particles.  Without a dedicated skin routine, your skin will be distressed. For example, Sriracha sauce townspeople complained about factory odor causing headaches, and burning eyes.  This is far from the normal skin problems you're facing.  But, you can see how your environment can affect your skin.  


Some medication may change your skin tone, due to a process called drug inducing photosensitivity.  This is when your skin reacts to UV rays.  Additionally, the main cause of photosensitivity can be from metabolic defect.  Where discontinuing treatment, as well as sun avoidance when available, is a possible treatment to photosensitivity. 

Pregnancy A.K.A. Melasma

Melasma, chloasma, or "the mask of pregnancy" can be a cause of dark spots. "Increased levels of estrogen and progesterone during pregnancy are thought to trigger Melasma in some people.8"

Acne Scars

It's intentional that we have put acne scars here.  This is because acne scars, while most preventable, are the most common.  This is due to the healing process of the pimple.  If it gets infected, dark spots will appear.  It is like a cut.  If it is not treated properly, it can leave a mark for many months.  But, don't worry, there are solutions for many of these types of dark spots.  

How to Fix Dark Spots

1. Add Sunscreen/Sunblock to your Morning Routine

The path to consistent skin tone is easier than it seems.  It's as simple as applying sunblock to your morning routine.  Unprotected sun exposure is certainly a good way to age and increase the chances of early development of wrinkles and premature aging.  In fact, according to dermalogica, "about 23% of Americans get sun damage by age 18, adding about 10% more with each following decade."  This simple habit can help you on your path to healthier and consistent skin! 

2. Add Topical Creams:

It still amazes me how innovative the skincare industry has improved over the years.  There's a solution for just about everything.  With different degrees of price and quality.   But, if you are just starting out, and don't want to take too much risk or spend lots of money, we would highly recommend topical creams.  We'll discuss our go to solution in just a moment.

What is Avarelle's Brightening Complex Cream?

Avarelle's Brightening Complex Cream is a noninvasive sensitive skin safe solution to noticeably brighten your skin.  It also provides essential nourishment to facilitate rejuvenated consistent skin.  Not only targeting those pesky spots that often detract from your complexion, but also acne too!

Benefits of Avarelle's Brightening Complex Cream

Avarelle Brightening Complex Cream goes beyond simply brightening your skin.  It contains many acne-fighting ingredients that not only help keep your skin clear, but also nourish it.  Maintaining that natural porcelain glow you always wanted.  Rest assured, it won't dry out your skin, making it worse than it was.  In fact, it will moisturize your skin, leaving it feeling soft and hydrated.  Feel free to use it on your face, elbows, underarms, or any area where you need some extra help.


Ingredients that inspire, and surprise in positive ways.  Avarelle Brightening Complex Cream, has Niacinamide, Cica, Licorice Root Extract, Tranexamic Acid, and Alpha Arbutin.  Which we'll discuss in more detail below.  


Remember the part about free radicals?  In fact, niacinamide (NIA) or vitamin B3 can help repair DNA, as well as protect skin cells from oxidative stress.  Which we now know is not good for our skin and overall health.  But, what does that mean for your skin? Well, according to Paula's Choice, it helps "visibly minimize enlarged pores, tighten lax or stretched out pores, improve uneven skin tone, soften fine lines and wrinkles, diminish dullness..." 


This plant is great for soothing, hydrating, and fading blemishes.  These all sound like it would be perfect for your pimples doesn't it?  It is! That is why Avarelle adds this in most of their pimple patches!  But, it also has effects that can reduce fine lines, and wrinkles, as well as, promote the appearance of collagen-rich skin. Note that collagen cannot be produced just by any means, as you age, your collagen levels naturally decrease.  But, with proper care, you can certainly prolong the elasticity for many years to come.  

Licorice Root Extract

This amazing root also has many similar properties as Cica, but it also has the added benefit of brightening dark spots.  It also has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that may help reduce skin inflammation.  

Tranexamic Acid and Alpha Arbutin

This acid also has many similar properties as licorice root extract.  Which is, targeting dark spots.  While, Alpha Arbutin reduces age spots, acne scars, and post-blemish redness.  Alpha Arbutin reduces tyrosinase activity, which in turn decreases melanin production levels in your skin.  This allows your skin the reduce the spots where hyperpigmentation appears.  Creating a more consistent skin tone.

3. Chemical Peels

 Chemical peeling is a great way to brighten, and remove wrinkles and dark spots.  With repeated treatments, it can improve your overall appearance.  In certain cases it can help with acne and rosacea.  But, be aware that chemical peels are meant for superficial wrinkles and scarring.  It will do little for deep wrinkles.  Like all things, there are certain disadvantages to note.  These disadvantages may be, "itching, erythema, increased skin sensitivity, epidermolysis, allergic and irritant contact dermatitis, and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH)." states the National Library of Medicine.  There are different levels of intensity from superficial or light, medium, and deep chemical peels. Which have different recovery periods.  That said the purpose of chemical peels is to remove dead skin cells and stimulate the growth of new skin cells. 

4. Eat a Clean Diet

I don't want to be a broken record, but remember the free radicals section? Many vegetables, fruits, and fish provide vitamins B, C and E.  As well as, healthy fatty acids and omega 3.  All of these either fights free radicals or reduces the melanin production.  All of which can help with skin conditions not only targeting dark patches. 


Dark spots may seem like a daunting skin concern, but they are generally harmless cosmetic discolorations caused by an overproduction of skin pigments. Understanding the causes, such as sun exposure, skin type, pollution, medication, pregnancy, and acne scars, can help in finding effective solutions. Protecting your skin from UV rays with sunscreen, incorporating topical creams like Avarelle's Brightening Complex Cream, and considering chemical peels can all contribute to brighter and more even skin tone.

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