Just like skin tone, lip color can also vary among races and ethnicities. Some people are born with pink, soft lips which are attractive while others may get their lips cracked or dark with age or because of other factors.
Lip darkening or lip pigmentation is a common problem. It can occur because of various reasons like regular smoking or chewing of tobacco, genetic factors, certain medical conditions, birthmark, reaction to some medications, a trauma or injury to lips, exposure to UV radiations or pollutants, and cosmetic allergies. People often ignore the pigmentation of the lips until they appear too dark and displeasing. It can be problematic, if it is signalling an underlying health condition or a poor lifestyle. One can get beautiful pink lips with the best lip lightening treatment in Bangalore offered at Charma Clinic, a leading cosmetic dermatology clinic.
What causes lip pigmentation?
Melanin is a pigment released by melanocytes which gives the skin its color. The lips are covered with skin layers that also comprise melanocytes. They have highly sensitive skin as they are thinner than other body parts. If there is more melanin production, skin appears darker whereas less melanin creates a lighter skin tone. Hyperpigmentation or skin discoloration is an unusual production of more melanin pigments which leads to development of dark spots or patches on the skin. It can affect any area of the body including lips.
Some of the possible factors that can contribute to lips discoloration include:
When skin gets exposed to the sun or UV radiations for long, it leads to overproduction of melanin to absorb the sunlight. Thus, causing hyperpigmentation. It is important to protect the lips from sun damage by using lip balms having SPF of 30 or above.
Daily smoking can over time cause the lips to darken. This is because of the nicotine and tar present in tobacco that can shrink or narrow the blood vessels and make the skin deprived of oxygen and nutrients because of limited blood flow. It can also stimulate the melanocytes to produce more melanin than usual, thereby resulting in uneven lip pigmentation.
Some women may experience temporary dark patches on their skin including lips during pregnancy due to changing levels of hormones in the body. This condition is known as melasma.
Certain treatments and therapies
These include intake of some antimalarial drugs, oral antibiotics, anticonvulsants, antipsychotics, and anti-cancer drugs. Chemotherapy and radiation therapy may also be the reason. The lips may remain dark until a specific treatment course or medication gets completed, or may persist.
These include Addison’s disease, Actinic keratosis, Laugier-Hunziker syndrome, Peutz-Jehger’s syndrome, Familial lentiginosis syndrome, Angiokeratoma, Venous lake, Anemia, HIV infection, vitamin deficiency, mucosal melanoma, rise in iron levels, and hormonal disorders.
1. Q-switched Nd:YAG Laser
Q-switched Nd:YAG (neodymium-doped yttrium aluminum garnet) laser is a revolutionary technology to treat uneven skin tone and lip hyperpigmentation. It is a globally used laser technology for treating lip discoloration. This type of laser is highly safe for the skin and is used mainly to evacuate the profoundly located melanocytes where other cosmetic products or chemical peels cannot reach. It works on two wavelengths; a longer wavelength of 1064 nm (with deep penetrating ability i.e. ideal for treatment of dermal lesions) and a shorter wavelength of 532 nm both working effectively for deep-penetrating areas of the body.
Q-switched Nd:YAG laser creates an invisible beam of light that specifically targets the melanin (colored pigment) present in the dark spots without having any effect on the surrounding skin. The melanin absorbs the thermal energy generated by laser light and gets fragmented within the skin's tissues. The broken pigments are later disposed of by the body, thereby providing a smooth and even skin tone. It usually takes about 6-8 treatment sessions with a gap of about 4 to 6 weeks for the service to provide optimal results. At Charma Clinic, laser lip lightening treatment in Bangalore, JP Nagar is performed using the best advanced lasers by expert dermatologists.
How is this laser treatment performed?
The removal of lip pigmentation by using Q-switched Nd:YAG laser involves wearing protective eyeglasses or special eye cover to protect the eyes from laser throughout the procedure. Some people find the treatment tolerable, while others with sensitive skin ask for local anaesthetics. For lips, skin is usually numbed. After that, an expert laser technician performs the procedure by pressing a handheld laser device against the skin of the treatment site to deliver the laser beam in pulses.
Based on the type of treatment being performed, the laser device is set-up wherein the release of laser light in pulses are controlled. Ideally, for the treatment of vascular conditions affecting sensitive areas of the body, the duration of pulses being delivered is 50 milliseconds and it possesses output energy of 150 to 250 J/cm2.
As the laser light penetrates through the skin, the patient might feel a burning or a pin-pricking sensation on the treated area for several minutes or up to a few hours. There is slight redness and crusting of the skin.
Next, cold compresses or a cooling gel is applied to the treatment area to soothe it. But nowadays, advanced laser devices have come up with a built-in cooling system to make the procedure more comfortable.
A single session can usually remove more than 75-100% of an individual’s dark spots. A second or a third treatment may be needed to completely neutralize the color and result in soft pink lips.
Post-laser treatment care:
Advantages of Q-switched Nd:YAG Laser For Lip Lightening:
Q-switch NdYAG laser is an advanced option for lip lightening.
2. Lip Lightening Peels
Chemical peels and lasers both are skin resurfacing procedures to get rid of old damaged superficial skin layers and reveal a new skin. To reduce lips hyperpigmentation, both chemical peels and laser treatments are frequently used.
Lip lightening peels involve the application of chemical solution on dark or pigmented lips to help erase the discoloured lines on the upper and lower lip. There are three types of chemical peels based on their chemical strength: superficial, medium and deep peels. Superficial chemical peels like salicylic acid and lactic acid are gentle as it utilizes mild acids to exfoliate only the skin epidermal layer. Medium chemical peels include glycolic acid and TCA which are more intrusive and penetrate the skin dermis layers. Deep chemical peels like phenol acids, are the strongest peels. It makes use of powerful acids to reach the deep dermal layers and remove damaged skin cells.
Depending on the skin condition, a combination of chemical peels can be used to encourage collagen synthesis, enhance skin hydration, and improve cell turnover. Successive subsequent sessions are required to achieve long lasting and effective results. Common side effects are temporary which may include redness, dryness, stinging or burning sensation, and swelling.
Disadvantages Of Using Lip Lightening Chemical Peels:
Dr. Rajdeep Mysore, a renowned cosmetic dermatologist in Bangalore prefers using laser treatment for lip lightening instead of chemical peels. Here’s why:
To get healthy pink lips at a reliable cost with laser treatment in Bangalore, JP Nagar, schedule a visit at Charma Clinic.
Disclaimer: This website (www.charmaclinic.com) aims to spread awareness about skin, hair, nail problems and their relevant treatments. The information shared here is generic in nature and can not replace the advice/ prescription of a qualified medical professional. Every individual may have different skin, hair, nail concerns and must be treated accordingly. Hence, medications or treatments mentioned on the website shall not be consumed/ utilized unless prescribed by a certified medical professional.