July 15, 2012

Melasma anyone?

Apparently at some point during pregnancy my body responded with a “hell yes” to this question!   Wondering what Melasma is?  Does the term “pregnancy mask” spark any type of recognition?  I read a little about this while I was pregnant but never looked into it.  I guess I really should have.  Two years later, after giving birth to Alivia, I have been battling with what I thought were age or sun spots when all this time it was Melasma

I was in search of a color corrector with my mom last night after I’d exhausted all concealer products for hiding my discoloration where a MAC consultant and Aesthetician in Macy’s told me it looked like I had pregnancy mask!  The minute she said “pregnancy mask”, it was like a light bulb went on over my head.   I just knew she was right and immediately wondered how I could not have realized this myself.  I could hardly wait to get home to start googling away on the ol’ laptop for confirmation.  It only took about several minutes to find image after image of what looked exactly like the spots on my face!  It was quite a relief to finally give it a name.  Now I could treat it correctly.  Or could I?  Apparently there were only few treatments and some not even 100% effective!  A little discouraging to say the least.  Not only that, but I learned that UVA and UVB rays make it considerably worse and here I’ve been in the sun these last two vacations with only a measly sun protection factor of 15 on my face!  No wonder why it’s been so noticeable! 

What boggles my mind though?  The fact that pregnancy mask is supposed to go away once you deliver the child.  Not so much in my case.  I’ve also read that oral contraceptives can contribute to Melasma as well and am wondering if that is why I haven’t been able to get rid of it.  I plan on making an appointment with my Primary Care Physician to find out what’s going on.  Maybe a different birth control pill would do the trick?  Not so sure, but I’m hopeful (sort of). 

In the meantime, I thought I’d share a few pictures with you so that you could see what I’m talking about.  These are unedited photos of my naked face so be kind.  I covered my eye area so you wouldn’t have to see my un-plucked eyebrows.  Trust me, it’s NOT pretty! 

These first two pictures are of the spots on my forehead.  It looks a little like dirt.  In fact, I’ve actually had someone say you have dirt on your face.  Yep, that was a great day folks!

010 RS with arrows

013 RS with drawing

This next picture is of the spots on my cheeks and bridge of my nose.  I have major issues with the spots around the sides of my eyes but I couldn’t get a good picture to share.  It’s difficult to catch them on camera.  If I had to make a realistic guess, I’d say that they are about two and half times more prominent in person. 

017 RS 71512

They wouldn’t be such a pain in the behind if they were easily concealed, but NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!  It’s amazing how much they show right through concealer!  I’ll tell you what I did find though.  MAC Prep & Prime Highlighter (color corrector) in Light Boost.  I really wish I took some pictures of myself after the MAC Consultant gave my spots a little makeover.  Although I didn’t know I was going to write a post about this at that time.  Anyhow, she applied the light boost highlighter under the Pro Longwear Concealer and then blended it well with Studio Careblend Pressed Powder.  She also recommended the Fix + spray to soften and blend the makeup better and the Prep & Prime Skin Brightening Serum as a treatment.  I noticed she used a cosmetic brush to tap product onto the spots where I’d normally use a sponge.  It makes sense that a sponge would just absorb the product where a brush would keep it on top of the skin.  It’s amazing how the application is almost more important than the actual product itself.  I  feel like this has a lot to do with why it created such nice and even coverage!  For those that are interested, she used a #242 brush to apply my corrector and #224 to apply the concealer.

The only reason I didn’t purchase any of these products yet is because I haven’t visited any other cosmetic counters other than MAC and I want to make sure there isn’t something better out there.  Once I narrow it down to a few products, I’ll be sure to publish  a follow-up post and share my findings. 



On an ending note, I’d like to link up the photo below to the following photo challenges.

As wonderful as vacation in Cape Cod was, it’s nice to be back blogging and participating in photo challenges!  Love the back of my baby’s neck and those curls in her ponytail!  Mwwuuuaaaa!  In case you’re wondering, that’s supposed to be the noise a kiss makes!

159 RSWM

Photobuckethappy jax

Also, another BIG THANKS to last week’s guest bloggers that posted in my absence!  You ladies ROCK! 

Skye from First Time Mama - First Time Blogger
Becky from Finding my Creativity
Kyna from Great Expectations

I’m lucky I was able to publish posts at all while I was away since our room had a VERY weak internet connection.  Sorry to leave you hanging on Thursday and Friday with no posts!  I have some great stuff planned for this week to make up for it!

25 comments :

  1. Gorgeous capture of livvy down there!!! You poor thing! I thought it just looks like freckles. I hope you can figure something out, but I'm sure you are still just as gorgeous! I can't believe someone said that to you, but I'm sure they thought they were being helpful?... Oh and I lol'd at you covering your unplucked eyebrows... you should see mine lol! :0) Glad you had a great vaca and glad your back!

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  2. I have one pregnancy spot right beside my eye. Oy, it is so annoying! SO I feel your pain a little. I love love bare minerals. I feel like it covers amazingly while still looking like bare natural skin. I use the rested eye in particular...but everywhere. Somehow that lighter shade makes all the difference and then I use the spf makeup everywhere else. But maybe a skin lightener would do the trick? Ponds makes a cheap one and it works!

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  3. Hey mama! Hope your having/had a wonderful vacation! I've heard of Melasma before, actually have a girlfriend that had it long after she had her little babe... YOU my dear have an extremely light case of it... believe me! How great to know how to treat it now though.

    I ADORE your sweet shot of your sweet girl. Just so creative & simply beautiful. Thank you bunches for linking up mama!

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  4. I love those sweet baby curls! Great capture!

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  5. So sorry to hear that!!!!! I actually have a couple spots like this- that showed up like 6-7 years after my last was born. I had no clue that they would be related to that. Especially so long after pregnancy. Thanks for the info.

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  6. I got the pregnancy line on my belly which was also supposed to go away but is totally still prominently displayed all the way from my chest down to below the tan line.

    it's not so bad but totally frustrating :( and there isn't anything to do about it. (that i know of)

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  7. I have that too!! Thanks for sharing what you learned. Mine shows through concealer also, but a product called derma-blend works for me.

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  8. I LOVE that last picture! so beautiful and the black and white is just perfect!! sorry about the pregnancy mask! i hope you find something you like and helps! i am using a beauty balm from Stila and love it! it's evened out my skin tone without being too heavy but i am interested in what you find!!

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  9. I love your black and white and I'm sorry about your Melasma!

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  10. Now you have me wondering about the spots on my face! I just attributed them to age, but maybe not?? Hmmm how to tell... I've bought a few dark spot corrector face creams, but it hasn't done much. I'll be looking out for what you choose, and how good it works. I'd spend a little bit more to get a more clear complexion.

    Paula
    lifeasweknowitbypaula.blogspot.com

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  11. Thanks God I was lucky enough not to get these nasty spots, I guess it was a blessing judging by your pictures. Nevertheless, you look very beautiful, with or without melasma :)

    Hugs

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  12. What a sweet shot for You Capture :) So precious! (And I got the pregnancy mask with my last two, and still have it since I just gave birth 8 days ago. It's no fun :( I hope you find something that works for ya!)

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  13. I can totally relate to this post...unfortunately. :)

    That last shot is so precious! Love.

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  14. I haven't had melasma, but I do have age/sun spots which I hate.

    Love your gorgeous photo! So precious. ;)

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  15. Hello...again your bravery overwhelms me. I can relate also to this:( I have it on my neck! I am using a product from Roden Fields that helps age spots etc. It has lighten up the mask alot, but not perfect.
    Laurie @ Pride in Photos

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  16. i have a mustache looking melasma mark on both sides of my upper lip...not kidding. and my son is 19 months, still there!

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    1. I too have melasma and my youngest daughter is 6. It hasn't gone away yet, but I do use a cream for brown/age spots by arbon and it works great. The worst spot in on my upper lip so it always looks like I have a mustache. I hate it so much. It started during my first pregnancy 9 years ago.

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  17. I have that too, smack dab in the middle of my forehead, under my eyes and on my nose. its MUCH darker on my forehead though. And i have found NOTHING that works to cover it. it shows up in all my photos, and everyone says it looks like i put WAY too much makeup on in those spots! very frustrating! its been over 2 years since my daughter was born and its only getting darker. we live in florida near the beach and even with the kids spf 70, it continues to get darker in the hotter months. have you found a cure of sorts yet? i haven't taken birth control in 6 years, so that wouldn't be my issue. hope there is an answer out there somewhere!

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    1. I have melasma in the same areas. It's awful! :( I recently met a great esthetician and we're working on a long term treatment. I am on hydroquinon and Retin-A. They are prescription only. I recently did a peel and I did see some mild results but not enough- she was conservative though and didn't want to take the risk of darkening the spots, which can happen. She did tell me that heat and sun make the melasma worse. So make sure you use an excellent sunscreen on your face(you might have to research this a little- avoid fake ingredients and spf doesn't necessarily have to be higher than 30) and always wear a hat outdoors. EWG is a great resource for quality sunscreen. EltaMD has some good options. Best of luck to all of us! :)

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  18. I just wanted to say that I have the exact same thing on my forehead. Virtually identical. The weird thing to me, however, is that I have never been pregnant nor am I on any kind of birth control. But my spot is even the same shape and everything! I have also had someone (my manager at work, so that was neat) tell me that I had some dirt on my face. It was fun to say "Um...no, that's just my face." Have you had any luck?

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  19. I just wanted to say that I have the exact same thing on my forehead. Virtually identical. The weird thing to me, however, is that I have never been pregnant nor am I on any kind of birth control. But my spot is even the same shape and everything! I have also had someone (my manager at work, so that was neat) tell me that I had some dirt on my face. It was fun to say "Um...no, that's just my face." Have you had any luck?

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  20. I have the same exact thing on my forehead! Virtually identical...I mean it is the same shape and everything. The strange thing to me, though, is that I have never been pregnant nor have I ever taken any kind of birth control or hormonal anything...am I really just that unlucky? I have also been told (by my manager, so that was neat) that I had dirt on my face. It was fun to reply "Um...no, that's just my face." Have you had any luck with anything?

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  21. I have it too. I hate it and I was so embarrassed when a lady giving me a facial said I had sun damage. Mind you I was only 25 with no other wrinkles. I had it pre babies on birth control and then after the kids. 8 yrs later I still have it. It is better after using lighting cream and sunscreen but still there. Let us know if you find a cure.

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  22. Wow thanks for the advice on make up! I have the dreaded "Melasma Mustache" and on the bridge of my nose like yours...It so hard to conceal. But I will be doing some shopping online tonight thanks to you and I have also heard excellent things about Fix+ before I read your blog.

    Common team let's beat melasma together!.. Or atleast hide it ;)

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  23. Hi, ive also got it - upper lip, forehead and cheeks. i never go anywhere without applying makeup unless i am indoors! Holidays are the worst time, i have to faff about with sunblock and a big hat and a little bit of makeup to cover it up. Sheer Cover works and is waterproof but i think you can see that i have it on. I recently bought Veil online, and that's realy good as i can just put a little bit of that on and looks natural and covers everything- although it is really used to cover tattoos - i haven't tried it on holiday yet but i will do, i think its waterproof too. Good luck to everyone with this skin problem! x

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