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Also referred to as "mask of pregnancy," melasma (muh-LAZ-muh) is a brown darkening of facial skin. The dark patches usually occur on the forehead and cheeks. Melasma might be worsened by sun exposure.

Melasma often affects:

  • Black, Asian and Hispanic people
  • People with darker white or light brown skin
  • Women who use birth control pills or hormone therapy
  • Women in their second or third trimester of pregnancy

Melasma might fade after delivery, in the winter months or when you stop taking birth control pills. But melasma can also last for years.

April 09, 2021