Ephelides is the clinical lingo for freckles, and in spite what you may have heard, they’re a condition of the skin but by no means a “skin condition.” Freckles are pinpoint-sized tan or light reddish-brown pigments that show up in the first decade of life, after exposure to natural or artificial UV light stimulates increased melanin production. Freckles are most commonly found in light eyed, fair skinned individuals.
Life Cycle of Freckles
The density and extent of freckles peak in adolescence, and become less prominent in mid-age as they gradually blend into the skin’s overall tone. They’ll come and go seasonally, increasing in intensity during the sunny months. If you are seeing freckles later in life that never existed before, they’re an indication that you’ve sustained sun damage.
Commonly Confused Cousin
Lentigines (called “lentigo” in group form) are scattered, sparse spots that resemble freckles but are dark brown in color and don’t change intensity with the seasons. Besides your face and shoulders that commonly catch rays, you can find lentigo around the body, quite literally – “where the sun don’t shine.”
Removing Freckles Permanently
If you want to lighten or permanently remove your freckles, it’s possible but should be done so with caution. Topical lotions like Retin-A are available by prescription from your dermatologist to accelerate the skin cell renewal process to diminish the intensity of freckles. Another option is intensed pulsed light (IPL) treatments, available through your dermatologist or medi spas are an effective, albeit costly option.
Erase Freckles Easily with Foundation
By choosing a full-coverage base or a combination of medium-coverage foundation and concealer, you can wipe out freckles for a day or as an everyday practice. A pair of makeup brushes will be your ally in getting a perfect finish every time. Start with an application of foundation over your entire face, using a foundation brush with synthetic bristles. Use a concealer brush to tap concealer onto any blemishes or redness that needs toning down, and then erase any remaining traces of freckles. Set with translucent loose powder for maximum staying power.
Correcting Your Complexion While Keeping Your Freckles
If you’re among the group of gals who likes to flaunt your freckles, congratulations. Just start with a light application of sheer foundation, bb cream or tinted moisturizer to get evening benefits that don’t totally erase your charming features.
Add Freckles Realistically with Makeup
Perhaps you want to add or increase the amount of freckles you have. It’s totally doable, and neither costly or complicated. In a tutorial for creating realistic freckles using makeup, YouTube vlogger Mareya Ketchum uses a stipple brush to apply a light, reddish-brown cream eyeshadow by Ben Nye in shade BN-CS 3. To soften any hard edges, lightly tap your application with your fingertips. The end result is a spattering of multi-pigmented polka dots in various sizes that looks a whole lot more realistic than using eyeliner will.