Get to know your darker skin needs

In partnership with SA’s top medical aesthetic companies

Have you figured out your skin type – that means your shade category, rather than skin condition - yet? Find it here.

While those of us who fall into Skintypes 4 to 6 - with more melanin pigment in our skin - don’t have many of the same issues that bother our paler sisters (like sun damage-induced wrinkles), we all share pigmentation problems. However, our skin tone makes our treatment options different, and we have other issues that affect us more frequently.

People with skin types 4 and 5 (Mediterranean, Indian and so-called Coloured complexions) often struggle with melasma (hormonal pigmentation, including the ‘pregnancy mask’) and pigmentation from skin damage, as well as acne scarring.

You need to know that there is no one-size-fits-all solution in the treatment of pigmentation and melasma. With darker skins in particular, it is essential to ensure that the right kind of treatments are prescribed and administered by professionals who know what they are doing. Even though technology has evolved to give us treatments and lasers that can be used on any skin tone, such as the Laser Genesis and Fraxel Dual, light technologies can still be dangerous if not done correctly by a professional who has had training in their use on darker complexions. The consequences of a bad experience could be permanent scarring, making your situation even worse!

Did you know that specialised equipment such as lasers are graded differently? Those with a medical grading can only be used in medical practices and aesthetic clinics, such as Skin Renewal, by qualified skincare therapists under supervision of aesthetic doctors, dermatologists or plastic surgeons. These machines are more powerful and can reach much deeper levels of the skin, giving much better treatment results.

For skin types 4 and 5, we recommend:

  • Dermamelan Depigmentation treatment, which begins with a pigmentation treatment mask in the clinic, then a specific treatment programme at home for 9-12months. Dermamelan works where other treatments have failed. It treats all forms of excess pigmentation, especially deep-seated, severe melasma or post inflammatory hyperpigmentation PIH in skintypes 1 to 6.
  • Laser Genesis™ skin therapy uses the multi medical award-winning Cutera Nd: YAG non-ablative laser (it doesn’t remove the skin) to stimulate the skin to produce new collagen, helps restore the skin's glow and smooths out uneven texture caused by ageing, sun damage or certain scarring… with no pain or downtime. It helps break up superficial melasma pigmentation and prevents it recurring after treatment, as well as treating hard-to-treat skin problems such as acne and acne scarring and enlarged pores.

6-8 treatments are normally needed, unless it’s a severe case. Suitable for skin types 1 to 6.

Skin type 6 - the darker black skin types - most commonly need treatment for acne, acne scarring and melasma pigmentation.

Acne scarring often results from severe cystic acne formed deep in the skin, or superficial acne that has been interfered with. The aim is to prevent or limit the extent of scarring by treating acne early in its course, and for as long as necessary.

  • Acne treatments include Carboxytherapy, Lamelle Beta chemical peels and Laser Genesis.
  • Acne scarring treatments include Dermapen skin needling, chemical peels, Pearl Rejuvenation or a combination of these, as well as Subcision (cutting under the scar tissue to loosen the tie pulling the skin down) Laser Genesis and Fraxel Dual laser.
  • Fraxel® DUAL laser is the next generation of the renowned Fraxel laser, treating skin types 1 to 6 more effectively than previous lasers, in fewer treatments. It improves skin tone and texture, reduces pigmentation around the eye area and erases unwanted age/brown spots, as well as improving the appearance of acne scars and surgical scars.
  • For Dermatosis Papulosa Nigra (DPN), the treatment of choice is Cutera Nd: YAG laser.

To find out more about the different skin types and the treatments that are suitable to treat your concerns, as well as the four pillars to maintain a youthful skin, visit Skin Renewal at

Take the quick Beyond Beauty Survey and you could win a R2 000 Skin Renewal voucher to spend in our online store, with free delivery within South Africa. T&Cs apply.

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