Discolored Patches On Face – Why Do They Form?

Portrait of a woman

Discolored patches of color on the face that cover the upper lip, cheeks or forehead can be a nuisance. Often time, these patches make you feel self-conscious. But what are they, and how do they form?

This is a problem both for men and women, and not only for women, as it is wrongly believed. Let us find out more about these colored patches, or melasma, as it is called.

The color of our skin is because of melanin that is produced by cells called-melanocytes. These melanocytes sometimes get hyper active and produce much more melanin than needed. This activity can be triggered by some phototoxic allergies, hormonal imbalance, pregnancy etc.

If you use a product that is photo toxic there are very good possibilities that you will develop melasma. Photo toxic means that the product is safe for use if no sun is present, but will produce allergy as soon as sunrays strike it. Hair dyes are a good example of this. In women, during pregnancy and while taking birth control pills, hormones activate the melanocytes in the skin and produce more of melanin -the skin color. You will therefore get the colored patches on the facial skin.


Protect your skin from sun as much as possible. The sun is an activating factor for melanin. If you protect your skin from the sun, you will save lot of damage to your skin including keeping these colored patches away.