British Skin Foundation - Vitiligo

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Embracing the summer with vitiligo

Postby WinnieGfox on Mon Jun 10, 2019 3:14 pm

Now that summer has arrived I'm once again seeing the vitiligo spreading across my face and hands. I'm lucky to be very fair, so it's really only an issue in the summer time when the contrast between tanned and white skin really stands out. I currently use Vichy Dermablend to cover my vitiligo. It's working well... in the autumn and winter time at least, but doesn't tend to last for very long when used with sun protection in the summer. I would like to know if there's a more permanent solution out there which lessens the visual impact of the condition, but ideally not make-up based, as it needs constant re-applying and is not water resistant. Perhaps something that reduces the glare of the very white patches and evens out the colour difference. Thank you in advance for your advice.
Regards, Winnie Fox
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Re: Embracing the summer with vitiligo

Postby Dr Zainab Laftah on Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:40 pm

Dear Winnie

Thank you for your question.

Often patients who have fair skin notice that their vitiligo is more noticeable during the summer as the rest of their normal skin will tan, due to the presence of the pigment cells that are absent in patches of vitiligo. Areas of vitiligo burn easily in the sun and the use of sunscreen (SPF 30 and higher) to all exposed skin will help protect the skin and reduce the contrast between the areas of vitiligo and the surrounding normal skin.

Skin camouflage, such as Vichy Dermablend, is helpful but as you mentioned it does require re-application. To my knowledge I do not know of any semi or permanent solutions unfortunately. One random suggestion is perhaps using fake tan lotion on the vitiligo patches. It will require a bit of experimentation to see if it works and whether the colour is similar to that of your own normal skin. If you do try it please do let me know how you get on and remember you will still need the sunscreen.

Best wishes

Dr Zainab Laftah
Consultant Dermatologist
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Dr Zainab Laftah
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