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Talking Tone: Melanin Under the Microscope

Laura J. Goodman April 2009 issue of Skin Inc. magazine
woman getting facial treatment

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Research shows women want healthy-looking skin, and regardless of where on the color spectrum any one individual is, uniform, even-toned skin is emerging as one of the most critical characteristics of healthy, youthful attractiveness.

In a study conducted by P&G Beauty and two leading evolutionary biologists, Karl Grammer, PhD, and Bernhard Fink, PhD, hyperpigmentation was shown to significantly contribute to the overall appearance of skin aging, just as fine lines and wrinkles do. The study demonstrated that uneven skin tone can add as much as 10 years to an individual’s perceived age.1

As a spa professional, hyperpigmentation may certainly be an area for discussion with many clients, and looking at how skin pigment cells work and learning about some of the technologies that are available to help assess and combat skin discoloration can help you offer better services and treatments.

Getting under the skin

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Related Content



Figure 1: Cross Section of the Epidermis

Figure 1

Figure 1: Cross section of the epidermis of the skin. Source: Ltd.: London (1999) J Gray, MD. The World of Skin Care, Macmillan Press, showing a melanocyte cell transferring melanin to surrounding keratinocyte cells.

Figure 2: Light Reflection and Refraction

Figure 2

Figure 2: Light reflection and refraction in young skin compared to aging skin.


P&G Beauty & Grooming


Table 1: Current Topical Ingredients for Treating Hyperpigmentation (Source: P&G Beauty Science)

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