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Escaping the Melasma Miasma

Original Article by Greenwich Medical Spa Staff

Suffering from a chronic skin condition might not pose a health risk, but it sure can have negative effects on your self-confidence, and therefore, your well-being. This is true of conditions like acne and rosacea, as well as darkening of the skin known as melasma.

If the patches you’ve noticed on your forehead, cheeks and nose appeared with sun exposure, pregnancy or hormonal changes but now refuse to go away, there are a variety of methods to treat melasma naturally. You won’t be able to cure melasma, but you can improve and manage it with treatments and homecare products.

Where does melasma come from?

Whether you call it melasma, hyperpigmentation or the mask of pregnancy, this skin condition consisting of dark patches on various areas of the face or even the body, affects approximately 6 million Americans and is more common among women. Hormonal changes are often the cause, which is why melasma is frequently associated with pregnancy, birth control pills and hormone therapy. Sun exposure and heat can also be to blame because they trigger melanocytes – the cells that control pigment. People with darker skin have more pigment, so they are also more susceptible to melasma.

How can I treat melasma?

The best strategy for managing melasma combines a corrective treatment series with consistent use of the right at-home products. This dual approach will help you improve the appearance of melasma hyperpigmentation and maintain your results.

At Greenwich Medical Spa, we offer multiple medical-grade series options so that we can tailor melasma treatment to each client’s condition. Our 3-in-1 DermalInfusion Diamond Tone Microdermabrasion simultaneously exfoliates, extracts and infuses skin with condition-specific serums. We use Lumixyl, a lightening and brightening solution, for patients with melasma. Another option for successfully treating melasma is a series of our Greenwich VIP Peels, which improve skin tone and texture, as well as reduce or eliminate discoloration and hyperpigmentation. PCA Peels are highly effective for all skin types and require minimal downtime – for melasma sufferers, we often pair this peel with HQ and Resorcinol Acid to boost the brightening effects.

Most importantly, these treatments should be performed in a series, spaced as recommended. Typically, that will mean 3 to 8 treatments taking place somewhere between weekly and monthly – our experienced aestheticians will determine a plan based on the condition of your skin and your personal goals and lifestyle. Next, homecare products will help improve and maintain the skin-lightening results from your treatments. We have a variety of effective at-home products, such as Arieed Re-New, Lumivive, Lytera, IS Clinical Vitamin C, ISDN MelaClear and Obagi Clear/Blender with Tretitonin.

For women and men with melasma – and all other humans too – applying and reapplying SPF 30 or higher sunblock in all seasons represents good skincare practice. We love EltaMD SPF 46 and so do all of our patients who use it. With the right treatment strategy and maintenance techniques, even those with melasma will see bright days ahead!


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Male patient receiving an Emsculpt NEO treatment to the abdominal area.

Frequently Asked Questions

What can EMSCULPT NEO do for me?

EMSCULPT NEO is an amazing noninvasive body sculpting treatment. It’s perfect for patients who are looking to get summer body ready! With this state-of-the-art, two-in-one technology, you build muscle and burn fat at the same time! This treatment provides a 30% reduction in subcutaneous fat and 25% growth in muscle on the treated area after a recommended number of treatments.

How does EMSCULPT NEO work?

While you lie down and relax, EMSCULPT NEO sends high-intensity energies deep below your skin, making your muscles contract in a big way that is like doing thousands of crunches or squats in a few minutes. While your muscles are contracting, the energy from the applicator simultaneously sends warmth to your fat cells, heating them up to the point of destruction. So you build real muscle from the contractions while destroying fat cells that are later naturally eliminated by your body.

How many EMCULPT NEO treatments will I need?

The recommended treatment plan is 4-6 treatments, one week apart. Depending on the patient, you may see improvement in your muscle tone, core strength and posture within a few weeks. And you’ll see fat reduction continue for about 12 weeks after your last treatment.

Are there any patients for whom you do not recommend EMSCULPT NEO?

EMSCULPT NEO is great because it has been shown to be safe and approved for all body and skin types. Contraindications include hernia, recent surgery, and pregnancy, so if a patient has any of these conditions, they should wait until they don’t to get EMSCULPT NEO.

What is the difference between CoolSculpting and EMSCULPT NEO?

CoolSculpting is a well-known treatment that is excellent for reducing unwanted fat in targeted areas. EMSCULPT NEO also reduces fat, but it has the benefit of building muscle, which is what its predecessor EMSCULPT was made to do.

Which treatment you choose depends on what your body needs and your personal goals. If you have great muscle tone and only need to get rid of some extra fat in a specific area like your abdomen or below your chin, CoolSculpting is an excellent option. But if you have loss of muscle tone and need more of a lift or tightening to a certain area like your abs or butt, EMSCULPT NEO is your two-in-one solution.

What is your favorite thing about EMSCULPT NEO?

Not only is this treatment super convenient with one treatment lasting only 30 minutes, but there is also no downtime! Patients can go about their day as they normally would immediately after their visit.

Greenwich Med Spa