Advice for Skin of Color
As a woman of color, I am particularly sensitive to the special needs of pigmented skin.
Hyperpigmentation, or the darkening of the skin or nails, is a huge issue for many patients of color and has to be addressed along with the precipitating skin condition. Marked changes in pigmentation may be seen with acne, eczema, lupus and numerous other skin diseases in ethnic skin.
I instruct patients on how to navigate treatment of their skin and the residual pigmentary changes that make the condition seem worse. Due to pigmentary changes, certain cosmetic procedures, particularly laser procedures, may not be recommended for some skin types.
I encourage patients to tell me about their heritage. Having an understanding of one’s genetic background can have important therapeutic implications. The response in treatment to a laser procedure in an Irish man with a Brazilian grandmother could be quite different from a German woman with Polish parents.