Skin Problems and Conditions
Melasma is another skin pigmentation disorder that can cause distress for people with brown skin. Like post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation(PIH), melasma results from functional problems with cells that produce and contain the melanin pigment.
Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation conditions can be skin problems for all women (and men) with brown skin - people of Asian, African, Latin or Native American background.
Drug-Induced Pigmentation: Women with brown skin, particularly those of African and Latino descent, have a high incidence of hypertension, diabetes and heart disease and consequently take medications for those medical problems. These, as well as other commonly used medications, can cause various types of allergic reactions that frequently lead to hyperpigmentation (dark patches).
Vitiligo is a skin disorder that occurs in people of color, in which the cells that make melanin pigment (melanocytes) are destroyed. The destruction results in the appearance of white patches on the skin, in the hair, and on mucous membranes (lips and genitals).
Acne Vulgaris, is one of the biggest challenges to women with brown skin who seek clear, glowing complexions. In addition to the acne, women with brown skin must also face hyperpigmentation—skin darkening in spots or patches— which occur in response to the acne outbreak.
Acne Rosacea is not one of the skin problems typically associated with skin of color. A main feature of rosacea is redness or erythema of the face. But rosacea does occur in people of color, including African Americans, Latinos and Asians, and is often undiagnosed or misdiagnosed.
Eczema is one of the more common skin problems for individuals with brown skin, including those of Asian, Latino and African descent. It is felt to be the second most common skin disease in African-Americans. Although it is unknown if the incidence of eczema is increased in Latinos, one study found a significantly higher percent of Mexican American adolescents with eczema than white and African American adolescents.
Hyperkeratosis is a thickening of the skin that occurs in women with brown skin. It is due to excessive accumulation of keratin in the outer layers of the skin.
Abnormal healing of the skin occurs frequently in individuals with brown skin. When skin is injured, it may heal with one of several types of scars (Keloids): normal (level with the surrounding skin), atrophic (depressed), hypertrophic (slightly raised), and keloidal (large and raised).
Seborrheic Dermatitis, often referred to as dandruff, is a common problem for many women with brown skin. Areas of involvement are the hairline and scalp, as well as the eyebrows, the area between the nose and corners of the mouth (nasolabial folds) and the ears.
People with brown skin often have a false sense of security when it comes to skin cancer. While individuals with increased skin pigmentation have added protection against the UV rays of the sun, it is dangerous to assume that our darker skin exempts us from this serious skin problem.