Shay Mitchell, who gave birth to her daughter last October, recently led her Instagram followers through her first IPL (Intensive Pulsed Light Therapy) treatment. She went to treatment to treat her melasma, a skin condition often associated with pregnancy.
In the IGTV post, Mitchell begins with a mirror selfie that shows her comfortable outfit (and her mask!) And announces that this is her first melasma treatment. It then provides background information on melasma and IPL treatments. Then, after a short video of her face with numbing cream, Mitchell takes a moment to show the camera her “little melasma spot” just below her eye and also points to a melasma spot on her upper lip. “Especially for young mothers,”
Although Mitchell says she was too nervous to record a video during the treatment, she says immediately after saying that her face is numb and that the IPL feels like “a million tiny rubber bands all over her face”. It also indicates some red areas on her face that the treatment was targeting. Your facial then continued with a soothing collagen mask.
Then Mitchell cuts off an update a week after her first treatment and so far she seems happy with the results. Even though she says getting one or two treatments is recommended, after the first one she feels like “We’re on the right track to lighten up these little guys.”
Melasma is a form of hyperpigmentation that often occurs during or after pregnancy. The disease is so often associated with pregnancy that it is sometimes referred to as the “mask of pregnancy”, as SELF explained earlier. It usually causes brown or gray-brown skin patches on the cheeks, forehead, nose, upper lip and chin. These stains are not harmful or painful and sometimes go away on their own. But some people may want them to be lightened or removed.
First of all, as Mitchell mentions, melasma is exacerbated by UV radiation. Therefore, wearing broad-spectrum sunscreens with a sun protection factor of at least 30 is usually a mainstay of melasma treatment and maintenance. Recent research also suggests that people with melasma may benefit from using an iron oxide with sun oxides that blocks the visible light from the sun and from devices like your phone or laptop.
From there, treatment is usually done with topical medications such as prescription hydroquinone, which can lighten the skin, explains the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD). Tretinoin, a potent retinoid that speeds up cell turnover, is another common choice, as are corticosteroid medications and azelaic acid.