Melanin, the natural pigment that determines skin, eye and hair color is usually evenly distributed. But when factors such as sun exposure, heat, hormones or skin injury (e.g. acne, rashes) disturb the melanin cells, the color distribution becomes haphazard, resulting in mismatched skin, brown patches and blemishes. The ingredients of Cosmelan lighten existing pigmentation and regulate future melanin.
- Effective in all types of melasma
- Multi-action pigmentation reduction
- Compatible with ALL skin types (Fitzpatrick I – VI)
- Light peeling effect
- Rejuvenates the skin
- Treatment can be used all year round
- Beneficial for acne patients
How it works:
1. The First Step in your Cosmelan program is the application of a pigment reduction activating mask called Cosmelan I. This is a key component in stimulating a quick response. The special Cosmelan Mask is left on your skin for 8 to 12 hours depending on your skin type and sensitivity level. The patient is then allowed to go home and remove the mask at the appropriate time in the comfort of their own home.
For those with stubborn pigment, it is advisable to treat first with a Mandelic peel, 30-40%, for about 5 minutes before applying the Cosmelan mask.
2. Your At-Home program will consist of active-ingredient products that you will use on a consistent basis to further improve pigmentation problems and prevent excess pigment formation. Your maintenance cream, Cosmelan II, will be used on an ongoing basis. This special pigment control cream contains ingredients such as Kojic Acid, Phytic Acid, Ascorbic Acid and a protective agent, Titanium Dioxide.
Although the Cosmelan system is intended for one use, we find it works better applied in two applications, about 2-3 weeks apart. There is enough Cosmelan mask to cover both applications, and therefore the second application at our clinic is complimentary.
*Cosmelan is formulated without Hydroquinone. Active ingredients include azelaic acid, kojic acid, arbutine, phytic acid, and ascorbic acid. The Cosmelan® Depigmentation treatment action mechanism is based on the inhibition of tyrosinase, a basic enzyme in the melanin formation process. Several of the substances present in the Cosmelan formula act by blocking this enzyme.
Hyper-pigmentation is very difficult to conceal, even with heavy makeup or camouflage creams. Women who have previously had to resort to unnatural looking cover up makeup and concealers are generally able to use only a minimal amount of makeup once they have adopted the Cosmelan program.
Types of Hyper Pigmentation:
Melasma or Chloasma (sometimes called “the mask of pregnancy”): Skin coloration that appears as blotchy brown spots, often covering cheeks, forehead, or temples. This type of hyper-pigmentation can be hereditary, or triggered by hormonal changes such as pregnancy or menopause. Taking birth control pills can also trigger melasma. In addition, some treatments may worsen the condition so be sure to consult a physician prior to having treatments meant to improve melasma.
Age Spots or “Liver” Spots: Smaller darkened patches usually on older adults who have been exposed to the sun for many years. These spots can be seen on the face, forearms and backs of hands.
Post-inflammatory Hyper-Pigmentation: This type of hyper-pigmentation results from any injury or trauma to the skin that causes inflammation. Typical causes of post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation:
- Acne – particularly cysts or nodules – often leaves brownish discoloration after a blemish heals. Persistent cystic acne can be minimized with Photodynamic Therapy. Also can occur with picking/squeezing/popping pimples.
- Incorrect chemical peels, improperly performed laser hair removal, or poorly chosen laser treatment can cause hyper-pigmentation.
- Rashes like psoriasis and eczema often darken the skin as well. Even leg waxing and electrolysis can cause the melanin cells to over-react.
- Prolonged exposure to heat, whether from being in the sun or working over heat-producing appliances, can also be a potential cause.
Other Treatments for Hyperpigmentation
From time to time additional measures are incorporated to further the results. Poor skin texture combined with pigmentation may respond best to Fractional Laser Resurfacing (e.g. ProFractional laser), as will Melasma and Chloasma. Chemical peels may be used as an adjunctive in reducing sun damage-related pigmentation. IPL or BBL, for pigmentation that is not hormonally induced is good also to diffuse pigmentation superficially. During your office consultation you will be provided with a detailed plan of the treatments that will benefit you most. Initial Cosmetic Consultations are Complimentary.
Please contact us by phone (416-633-0001 x2) or email ([email protected]) with any questions you may have or request an appointment online for your complimentary consultation.
~ Sheri Roselle, Medical Esthetician at Toronto Dermatology Centre