Treating African-American skin can be one of the trickiest skin problems to encounter as an esthetician.
As you can see in the before picture, this client needed really aggressive peels and homecare in order to get the acne and the resulting severe hyperpigmentation under control. However, we needed to be extremely careful not to make her pigmentation worse.
The darker the skin is, the more “active” the melanocytes are. These are the cells in the dermis that create pigment. They are just waiting for any kind of stimulation in the way of picking, rubbing, heat, acne, or just about anything to form more pigment. Overzealous use of products, even if they are the right products, is a recipe for disaster when treating darker skin tones – you can make their dark spots much worse.
So, in treating this color of skin, we had to be extremely careful to go very slowly in getting her skin used to products. We use products that include Vitamin A Proprionate, Kojic Acid, Mandelic Acid, Hydroquinone and Benzoyl peroxide in a systematic way to exfoliate the skin, keep the acne from forming, and lift the hyperpigmentation.
As you can see by the progress picture (the second one), we still have some work to do. Her acne is gone, but some darkness still remains. I just showed her the before pictures today and she about fell over in amazement when she saw them. She had forgotten from whence she came…