Melasma & Hyperpigmentation

About Melasma

Melasma, also known as chloasma, is an acquired light or dark brown hyperpigmentation on sun-exposed areas, most often the face, resulting from exposure to sunlight. Melasma may be idiopathic or associated with pregnancy, oral contraceptives or medications. Melasma is more common in people with darker skin and 90% of cases occur in women.

This hyperpigmentation is most sharply defined in the malar and frontal areas of the face that are usually uniform, but it can also appear blotchy.

There are different types of hyperpigmentation to include melasma and postinflammatory hyperpigmentation. The diagnosis is clinically determined by a dermatologist.

Melasma can be prevented with sunblocks, either physical (such as a large brimmed hat) or chemical (sunscreens with ingredients to absorb the UV rays).


  1. Wolff, K., Goldsmith, L., Katz, S., Gilchrest, B., Paller, AS., & Leffell, D. (2011). Fitzpatrick’s Dermatology in General Medicine, 8th Edition. McGraw-Hill.
Melasma Medication Applicator Pump Instructions