What Melasma Is and How To Treat It

Have you noticed persistent brown or blue-gray patches on your skin? If you have, you may be suffering from a common, harmless skin condition called melasma. While the condition does not warrant any panicked calls to your dermatologist, we understand that this condition can affect your self-confidence. At Mint & Needle, we have a zero tolerance policy for low confidence, so we’re here to tell you that there are treatment options! A couple of treatment options are platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and platelet-rich fibrin (PRF). Read on to learn more about melasma, PRP versus PRF, and how you can boost your confidence up to where it should be. 

What is Melasma?

Melasma refers to harmless brown or blue-gray patches, spots, or blotches caused by the overproduction of melanin in the skin. This condition commonly affects areas such as the face, forearms, neck, and back, though it can affect any part of your body that has been exposed to sunlight. For this reason, melasma typically worsens during the summer.

Melasma is a condition that tends to affect women more than men, and it tends to impact people with darker or tanned skin more than light skin. Overall, experts estimate between 1.5% and 33% of the population may develop melasma. The condition is especially common during pregnancy —a whopping 15% to 50% of those who are pregnant will develop it. It’s also fairly common for women to develop it during their reproductive years, or between 20 to 40 years of age. Oral contraceptives and hormones also increase your chances of developing melasma.

What is Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP)?

Melasma PRP PRF Mint & Needle

Platelet-rich plasma, or PRP, treatment makes use of the patient’s own blood cells to promote healing. It can be used in many areas of the body, such as to heal joint injury and promote hair growth. 

Blood sample centrifuge

PRP contains two important elements: plasma and platelets, a type of blood cell that contains growth factors with the power to stimulate tissue regeneration.

To create PRP, your provider will take a blood sample and place it into a centrifuge. When the centrifuge spins the sample, the components of the blood separate, concentrating plasma and platelets, which are lighter, together at the top of the test tube. This sample is then extracted and applied to the skin as treatment.

How Effective is PRP in Treating Melasma?

Recent research shows that PRP is an appropriate treatment for melasma. According to a certain study, injections of PRP showed significant improvement in melasma because PRP helps to prevent the creation of melanin in your skin. Microneedling also offered good results. You can learn all about the benefits of microneedling here

What is PRP vs. PRF?

PRF Blood Sample

PRF, or platelet-rich fibrin, is simply a second generation treatment to PRP. Both are derived from a patient’s blood sample, but PRF is spun at a lower speed. This means the layers of the blood do not separate as much, allowing for white blood cells and stem cells (which are heavier) to remain within the plasma/platelet layer collected for treatment. This means PRF has even stronger healing power. 

When injected or microneedled into your tissue, this treatment can rejuvenate your skin tone and elasticity way beyond a surface level. 

Can I book a treatment?

Yes! We offer plasma treatment services right here at Mint & Needle. PRF can be added to any micro-needling or injectable treatment. Get ready to kiss your melasma goodbye and book your appointment today.