Say Goodbye to Brown Spots and Other Pigment Problems with PicoSure

Say Goodbye to Brown Spots and Other Pigment Problems with PicoSure

August 25, 2020

Most people have a few brown spots on their skin here and there. But those who spend a lot of time in the sun (or in tanning beds) may see them crop up all over their hands, arms, shoulders, legs — wherever the sun hits.

These spots are typically nothing to worry about unless they turn black, change in size or color, or start to bleed, in which case you should seek medical attention. The majority of brown spots on your skin are physically harmless, but they may cause you to look older than you’d like to.

Fortunately, there’s an easy way to trade in your spots for even-toned skin. Our team here at Contours LaserSpa in Fairfax, Virginia, led by Dr. Tammy Jones, uses the revolutionary PicoSure® laser treatment to eliminate unwanted brown spots. Here’s what you need to know.

Understanding skin pigmentation

Your skin contains melanin, the pigment that determines its color and tone, and when too much melanin clumps together in one place, it affects the appearance of your skin. Here are two of the most common culprits:

Sun exposure

When you expose your skin to the UV rays of the sun, your pigment cells become overactive and increase melanin production to protect your skin from damage. That’s what happens when you get a tan.

When melanin concentrates in one area and forms a clump, you get a tiny tan in the form of a spot. Sometimes these are called age spots, because most people over 50 have a few brown spots on their skin due to years of exposure.


Melasma is another type of skin pigmentation that can stamp your skin with unwanted clumps of melanin. If the cells responsible for skin color (melanocytes) malfunction, brown or gray patches result. They typically appear on the face, but can also pop up on your arms, neck, and shoulders.

Melasma primarily affects women and people with darker skin tones, as dark skin contains more melanin.

Hormones also play a role in melasma, so if you’re undergoing hormone replacement therapy, taking birth control pills, or are pregnant, you may see some patches appear.

What gets rid of skin spots and patches?

Many creams and lotions and other topical treatments may be able to fade your spots by lightening your skin, but some contain mercury, which is a health hazard, and some cause skin irritation or even skin whitening.

Chemical peels can also lift a layer of skin that contains your pigment problems.

But one of the most effective methods for eliminating skin spots is Q-switch laser technology. At Contours LaserSpa, we trust the PicoSure laser by Cynosure, which safely and effectively rids your skin of excess pigment clumps and leaves you with a more even tone. Here’s how it works:

The PicoSure way

When you come in for a PicoSure treatment, we use a hand-held device that hovers over the area of skin we’re treating and emits light energy that penetrates the layers of your skin. That energy targets pigment cells and blasts them into countless tiny particles.

Once the clump is broken into pieces, your body goes to work flushing them out your system, and your spots are gone. PicoSure works the same way on tattoos you’d like to lose, as well as redness issues like rosacea and broken capillaries.

Depending on the size and quantity of your spots or other pigmentation issues, you may need up to 10 sessions spaced by a few weeks to allow your skin to heal. But you could see results in as few as two treatments.

While you shouldn’t feel much pain during your treatment, you can expect a light snapping sensation as the laser pulses its light energy.

If you have sun spots, age spots, liver spots, freckles, redness, or tattoos marking up your skin, don’t wait: Call us today or book an appointment online to start your PicoSure treatments and reclaim your youthful, even-toned skin.

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