Sun Damage

Sun Damage

Sun damage presents in many forms as red and brown spots on the skin. Your skin increases its production of brown pigment, melanin, to protect itself from the damaging effects of the sun’s rays. The extra melanin produced will give your skin the appearance of looking darker or tan. However, the development of melanin can be uneven and can leave darker pigment behind in the form of sun-spots (lentigines), freckles (ephelides), and even melasma.

The sun can also cause stretching of small blood vessels, which gives skin the appearance of looking blotchy and red. This can also leave dilated blood vessels behind that look like spider veins, called telangiectasias.


The only way to prevent sun damage is to protect your skin from the sun using sunscreen and physical barriers. Wide-brimmed hats, plastic-rimmed sunglasses, and surf shirts are recommended for skin protection from direct sunlight, in addition to use of broad spectrum sunscreen with UVA and UVB protection. Sunscreen with SPF 50 or more is recommended for adults and children.


IPL is one of the best treatments to address signs of sun damage. IPL is Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) treatment. IPL diminishes the appearance of pigmented lesions on the skin. It can be used on all parts of the body, including the face, arms, legs and chest or any area that shows discoloration as a result of sun exposure. This treatment aims to reduce the appearance of pigmented lesions and evens the skin tone. By changing the settings on the laser, IPL also diminishes the appearance of blood vessels, small veins, redness, rosacea, and broken capillaries.

Check out our blog post on windshield and UV exposure and the great sunscreen ingredient debate!

Shop our favorite sunscreens and more on Derm to!

Related Galleries

Schedule an Appointment

To schedule an appointment, call (703) 356-5111.

Get Social! Share Sun Damage


As Seen On As Seen On