At last, some good news about melasma

The Guardian - Weekend - - Sali Hughes -

Ihave al­ways promised that if I ever find a prod­uct that sig­nif­i­cantly im­proves melasma (large brown patches caused by de­fec­tive cells fail­ing to regulate me­lanin pro­duc­tion, trig­gered by dam­age or hor­monal changes, and wors­ened by heat and sun­light), I’d let you know. It’s been a long time com­ing.

My own melasma – which ap­peared in my 20s and stepped up sev­eral gears when I be­came preg­nant, spread­ing across my fore­head and down the sides of my face – has never re­sponded to treat­ments, ei­ther cos­metic or med­i­cal (NHS der­ma­tol­o­gists told me noth­ing could be done), so I’ve fo­cused in­stead on the art of cover-up.

In fact, when I be­gan us­ing DCL’s C Scape High Po­tency Night Booster 30 (£108) six months ago, I was in­ter­ested pri­mar­ily in vi­ta­min C’s an­tiox­i­dant, firm­ing and bright­en­ing ef­fects. C Scape is a very high 30% con­cen­tra­tion vi­ta­min C paste with a gritty, sticky, not en­tirely pleas­ant tex­ture, mas­saged into the face af­ter cleans­ing at night. The re­sults have been ex­tra­or­di­nary. My fore­head, pre­vi­ously iously 70% cov­ered in a jagged brown patch, is s now al­most en­tirely melas­mafree. The patches hes down my cheeks re­main, but I’m per­se­ver­ing by us­ing C Scape in month-on, month-off spells to avoid plateau (there’s been no re­gres­sion dur­ing the down­time). Each spell of us­age brings no­tice­able im­prove­ment.

This isn’t a per­fect prod­uct – its po­tency means I be­come itchy and mildly ir­ri­tated around my chin and mouth af­ter a week (so I now skip the area al­to­gether), and I’m not the sen­si­tive type. The other ob­vi­ous is­sue is the cost, which is pro­hib­i­tively high for many. The Or­di­nary of­fers a 23% Vi­ta­min C Sus­pen­sion for just £4.90, which must surely be worth a try first (though it didn’t work as well for me) and a 30% Sus­pen­sion (£5.80), but the lat­ter’s sil­i­cone base isn’t con­ducive to keep­ing the ac­tive in­gre­di­ent di­rectly on the skin’s sur­face (al­ways ap­ply any vi­ta­min C prod­uct first, with noth­ing be­tween it and you).

By day, I use Dr Den­nis Gross C + Col­la­gen Serum (£72) or Drunk Ele­phant C-Firma serum (not avail­able here, but shipped, tax-in­clu­sive, to the UK via Sephora; $80), both of which brighten dull­ness in­stantly and have a makeup-friendly con­sis­tency. I don’t make such costly rec­om­men­da­tions lightly, but in my di­rect ex­pe­ri­ence, these work. And, for many years, lit­er­ally noth­ing did.

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