I was reflecting on what has changed in my 20 years of practicing cosmetic medicine, and one thing that has changed strikingly is the number of patients with skin of color that are seeking help with their aging skin. By “skin of color,” I assume you know that I don’t mean tanned skin. (I will save you the seminar on why tanning is brutal for your skin.) Canada is becoming more ethnically diverse and it is reflected in our patients.
The Challenges of Darker Skin
Darker skin is so interesting and demanding at the same time. It begs some explanation as to how skin of color is different from light skin. The main difference is that the darker the skin, the more melanocytes are present. Melanocytes are the cells in our skin that give us color when we tan and are in abundance in black skin and scant in pale, freckly Caucasians. Ever wonder why your Asian friends age amazingly? It’s because of the melanocytes in their skin that enables them to age gracefully. I have an Asian wife and I definitely need to keep up with my BOTOX to slow the appearance of my aging to keep up with her.
Skin of color has more melanin than white-guy skin like mine. Melanin presence increases thickness of the skin. The thicker the skin, the fewer lines and wrinkles that develop over time. It is striking how well darker skin ages. It can look 10 to 20 years younger than the skin of Caucasians of the same age. I am constantly jealous, yet dark skin has its own issues.
Treatment Options for Improving Skin’s Appearance
At ReNue, while it is not uncommon for us to use Botox or dermal fillers for patients with naturally darker skin, it is very common to consult for uneven pigmentation. Darker skin is prone to developing excess pigmentation, brown spots and discolored scarring from trauma, skin irritation or simple aging. Our goal is to make the skin more even and we have to be careful in doing so. Good quality skin products with safe lighteners are often a mainstay. We have to be gentler with things like peels and lasers to even out pigmentation, but they can be used safely. We love to use our Dermapen for microneedling, which is safe on all skin types and very effective in creating a more even complexion.
What Can ReNue Do for You?
We are all unique and our skin color is a part of what makes each of us unique. It takes experience to understand how to treat skin of color in a safe and effective manner. Commonly the issues are uneven pigmentation and at ReNue, we have many safe and effective treatments to address all skin types. Please come in for a proper consultation to discover the options.
Contact us today to schedule an appointment to discuss your skin concerns.