Does Microdermabrasion Help with Sun Spots?

Doctor Answers 8

Microderm and sun spots

Micro controlled peeling gently removes epidermal cells to treat a vast range of skin imperfections. It is especially effective for skin aging. Having these treatment in a series and combining with lighetening products like Hydroquinon or a milder form of a skin lightener such as Kojck Acid, Bearberry and peels can certainly give you a better chance of impacting brown spots from sun exposure and other enviormental pigment problems.


Microdermabrasion is one of the most effective pigmentation treatment techniques, using abrasion to decrease melanin production, break down melanin deposits located in the skin's dermis layer and directly combat other factors that contribute to hyperpigmentation. It also reduces redness and promotes a uniform skin tone. However, suitability depends on an in-person assessment of your skin.

IPL PhotoFacials are the treatments of choice for brown sun spots.

Microdermabrasion will help with discoloration of your skin if it's combined with a chemical peel, and if you begin a skin care regimen. Suitable skin care includes: SPF30, glycolic acid, and possibly tretinoin. I'm not a big fan of hydroquinone.

IPL PhotoFacials are designed to lighten brown spots from sun-damage. You'll need around 4 treatments spaced around 3 weeks apart.

I hope this is helpful for you.

Eric M. Joseph, MD
West Orange Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 397 reviews

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Microdermabrasion and Sun Spots

Microdermabrasion sands off about 10-15 micron depth of skin. The EPIDERMIS, the outer layer of skin is 50 - 60 microns thick. Most sun spots are thicker than 10 microns and would require a deeper peel. In this regard, Microdermabrasion is literally a feel good feel that does not last and will not erase most skin lesions.

Try a Sciton MicroLaser peel and your sunspots will be gone in the vast majority of cases.

Dr. P. Aldea

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 102 reviews

Microdermabrasion not the best for sunspots

Microdermabrasion is great for removing the top layer of the epidermis but does not penetrate deep enough to affect the sun damage. I like to use either TCA peels or laser treatments to diminish or eliminate the signs of sun damage. Regardless of the modality it is absolutely imperative that you are consistant with proper sunscreen use to protect your skin and the results long term.

Lee Robinson, MD - RETIRED
Portland Facial Plastic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Microdermabrasion for sun spots

Microdermabrasion will not conistently reduce or eliminate sun spots due to their deeper location in thie dermis. Topical creams or lotions containing retin A and/or hydroquinone are more likely to provide a better non-surgical solution

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

Treating sun spots

Microdermabrasion is useless for sun spots.  IPL (intense pulsed light) photorejuvenation is a good way to treat sun spots and broken capillaries from too much sun exposure. 

Microdermabrasion for sun spots

Hard question to fully answer. I have seen improvement using this technique but it is not 100% reproducible. Other non invasive treatments can reduce and eliminate sun spots much better than microdermabrasion. 

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.