beauty ‘I tried everything to fix my severe melasma. This is what finally worked.’ Hannah Cashmore

But first, what is melasma?

Melasma is a type of hyperpigmentation of the skin, characterised by large, dark patches often on both sides of the face, whereas other types of pigmentation can appear blotchy and in random spots. Another way melasma differs from other types of hyperpigmentation comes down to the impact of hormones, which is why pregnant women are more likely to get melasma and anyone like me with hormonal issues. 

UV light and heat can cause flare-ups, and dermatologists say that stress can play a factor too. In some cases, it can clear on its own if the trigger is addressed, for example after pregnancy or if you stop taking a certain medication. In many cases, it can last for years or a lifetime. 

My melasma can get so bad that it covers my entire face.

 The worst case happened while I was travelling overseas for a wedding in Thailand and then to the UK to visit family. Even though I was protecting my skin, my face went really dark and my pigmentation was even darker. It was awful. People would stare at me and ask what was wrong with my face. My friend’s husband thought I had a black eye. I was so self-conscious; it took the fun out of my trip.

‘My melasma can get so bad that it covers my entire face.’ Image: Supplied.