Addressing The Aging Issues Of Dark Skin

Dark skin-such as that of African, Middle Eastern and Indian descent-is known for being virtually wrinkle-free and void of aging's most obvious signs until later in life. This is because it tends to be thicker and oilier, and the dermis is more compact. However, dark skin still has a host of aging issues to deal with.

Most skin tones encounter sagging, lines and wrinkles, but dark skin faces primarily just sagging. There's a decrease in skin thickness, a loss of elastin, and a redistribution of fat. As fat in the cheeks slides down, fullness is lost, nasolabial folds appear, and the skin hangs around the jawline.

Radiesse, Sculptra Aesthetic, Restylane and Juvederm can all help fight the look of looseness and sagging. Unlike lighter-skinned women who have wrinkles that need to be filled, dark skin needs volume. The key is injecting the product deeply to rebuild the cheek area. Skin-tightening treatments may also be recommended.

Even though the skin is thick, the amount of melanin is dense, so the under-eye area is very pigmented. Therefore, dark circles seem especially apparent and harder to camouflage. Your doctor can inject the area under the eyes with a hyaluronic acid filler, which plumps up the hollows and creates the illusion of less darkness.

Dark skin can easily experience post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation-discoloration from anything that causes inflammation. It's common for dermatologists to receive complaints about breakouts when it's actually the spots left behind by blemishes.

A mix of methods, like peels or nonablative lasers with at-home use of hydroquinone, works well to address PIH. If you are sensitive to hydroquinone, then growth factors, antioxidants and oligopeptides may work as a substitute. However, ablative lasers should be avoided because of the risk of scarring and more pigmentation.

Gabrielle Union, looking gorgeous at 38, boasts smooth, even-toned skin and youthfully full cheeks.