Skin Color and Type Matter


Rashes. That is because there is not as much of a color contrast between inflamed skin and natural skin tone in darker skin tones as compared to lighter skin tones.

We do have to take into consideration what form of topical treatment we choose to treat depending on a patient’s skin color. Often patients with darker skin tones require more moisture in their products. Patients with lighter skin tones can typically tolerate products that are more drying to the skin. When dealing with scalp issues, treatments vary dramatically. That often has to do with different hair types and how often people are able to wash their hair. Lastly, when prescribing oral medications, we take into consideration our patients’ past medical history and that of their family as there are certain medical conditions more associated with certain skin colors.

Yes, always. Even though darker skin toned people can develop skin cancer, their risk is less than that of white skin people. However, we still would like our patients with darker skin tones to wear zinc sun protection to prevent any risk of skin cancer, but also to help them maintain an even skin tone. Those with a darker skin tone have a propensity to develop blotchy skin tone from sun. Protecting their sun with zinc every day minimizes this risk.

Yes, if darker skin tones become irritated, it can create light and dark colored spots leaving the person with uneven skin tone. It is best to stay away from harsh products that can cause skin irritation, such as products with benzoyl peroxide, acids, vitamin A derivatives or any other products that tend to dry the skin. Sometimes we have to use these in people with darker skin tones, but we try to counter act that with other products that will calm the skin. That’s often not easy to do, but we work very hard to try to keep the skin in balance.

Yes, but we have to be selective when recommending those treatments. Botox and fillers are a yes to any skin type. Chemical peels can be done, but you have to move slowly and increase the strength as the skin becomes accustomed to the chemical being used. You have to be careful with microneedling and lasers. Make sure that you are being treated by a technician that is familiar with dark skin. There are lasers that can be used on darker skin tones, but you just have to be cautious about which ones are being used on you.


Many systems have been developed to categorize skin types with some having up to 15 skin types. For practical purposes, we initially determine if your skin is oily, normal, dry, or a mixture of the three. Then we will determine if your skin is also sensitive

Once we have a general idea of your skin type, we try to discover how your skin will react to treatment recommendations based on your skin’s reaction to past product experiences. We then take all that into account when developing a treatment plan for you.

No. We have to understand skin type no matter what area of the body we are treating. It is important to recognize that your skin type can vary over different areas of your body. For instance, your face may be oily but your hands very dry.

Some people can notice their skin type change throughout the day, day to day, week to week and season to season. Others may only notice a change in skin type over the years.

Consider using your face wash to counteract the changes your skin type is experiencing allowing you to keep the rest of your product regimen very consistent.

Products can quickly make oily skin dry and dry skin can become oily with the inappropriate use of products. We like to keep a close check on our patients when we initiate a product regimen to assure their skin is reacting as we would expect. If not, we quickly adjust the regimen to bring the pH and the skin into balance.

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