Melasma, a common skin condition, can be a source of concern for many individuals. However, the good news is that effective melasma treatment options are available at PFRANKMD to help you achieve clearer, more even-toned skin. Whether you’re dealing with the “mask of pregnancy” or melasma caused by other factors, understanding the treatment options and approaches is the first step towards regaining confidence and a radiant complexion.

What is Melasma?

Melasma is a skin condition that appears as brown or grayish-brown patches on the skin. There are different causes and risk factors of melasma, including sun exposure, pregnancy, hormone therapy, and stress. Melasma does not cause any medical problems, but it may occur in highly visible areas such as the cheeks, nose bridge, forehead, or chin, making it cosmetically undesirable.

How We Treat Melasma

At PFRANKMD, we use innovative instrumentation and state-of-the-art technology to treat melasma:

Pigment ProtocolThis combination of Clear + Brilliant and PICO Genesis laser treatments breaks up the pigment in the skin to clear away melasma.

PICO LaserPICO Genesis laser treatment is a preferred method of melasma treatment and involves delivering laser energy to the pigment cells.

FraxelFraxel laser treatment uses fractional laser energy to address the pigment that makes up melasma.

AerolaseAerolase laser treatment is a gentle option for melasma treatment. Its laser energy attacks the unwanted pigment cells to reduce the appearance of melasma.

MedLiteMedLite laser can be used to treat brown blemishes, and reduce brown marks such as freckles, melasma, pigmented moles, Nevus of Ota, and Nevus of Ito.


Am I a Good Candidate?

You are an ideal candidate for melasma treatment if you have tried all other options without the results you’ve been hoping for. For patients who want quick and long-term results, laser treatments may be the best option. You must not have any active skin infections. Laser treatments are safe for pregnant or breastfeeding women, but we recommend discussing the treatment with your OB/GYN prior to your appointment.

Recovery & Results

Our laser treatments do not require extensive downtime or recovery periods. You may be able to get back to work or resume your daily activities right after your melasma treatment session. Redness and dryness may be experienced, but should disappear quickly. All aftercare directions should be followed as closely as possible in order to avoid complications. You are recommended to avoid prolonged exposure to the sun and to regularly apply sunscreen.

The timeline for seeing results from melasma treatment can vary depending on the specific method chosen and individual factors. For topical treatments, such as creams and serums, initial improvements may become noticeable within a few weeks, with more significant results emerging after several months of consistent use. Chemical peels may yield visible improvements in a week or two, with continued progress over weeks to months. Microdermabrasion may require several sessions spaced apart, with subtle enhancements appearing gradually. Laser therapy and intense pulsed light (IPL) treatments can lead to results over several weeks to months, often necessitating multiple sessions. For combination therapies, which some cases may require, the timeline can extend further. It’s important to remain patient, adhere to your dermatologist’s recommendations, and maintain rigorous sun protection to support the efficacy of treatment and prevent melasma recurrence.

Schedule a Consultation

Ready to restore your skin to a beautiful even tone? Take the first step towards subtle yet impactful enhancements today. Contact the PFRANKMD team to schedule a consultation at either our 5th Avenue or West Village location in NYC.

Before & After

pfrank melasma ba
pfrank melasma ba


What are the common treatment options for melasma?

Common treatment options for melasma include topical creams, chemical peels, microdermabrasion, laser therapy, and intense pulsed light (IPL) treatments. Your dermatologist will recommend the most suitable option based on your skin type and the severity of melasma.

How long does it take for melasma to fade with treatment?

The time it takes for melasma to fade with treatment can vary depending on the chosen method. Some individuals may see noticeable improvements within a few weeks, while others may require several months of consistent treatment.

Are there any side effects associated with melasma treatments?

Side effects can vary depending on the treatment method but may include temporary redness, peeling, or mild discomfort. Serious side effects are rare and should be discussed with your dermatologist before starting any treatment.

Can melasma be treated naturally?

While natural remedies like aloe vera, vitamin C serums, and licorice extract may help lighten melasma to some extent, professional treatments are generally more effective for significant improvement. Consult with a dermatologist to discuss both natural and medical treatment options.

What role do sunscreen and sun protection play in melasma treatment?

Sunscreen and sun protection are crucial in melasma treatment. UV radiation can exacerbate melasma, so using a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a high SPF and wearing protective clothing and accessories can help prevent further pigmentation and protect the skin during and after treatment.

Can stress worsen melasma?

Stress may exacerbate melasma in some individuals. While it’s not a direct cause, managing stress through relaxation techniques and a healthy lifestyle can complement melasma treatment efforts.

Is melasma more common in certain skin types or ethnicities?

Melasma is more common in individuals with Fitzpatrick skin types III to VI, which includes people with more melanin-rich skin. It is often observed in individuals with Hispanic, Asian, Middle Eastern, and African ancestry.

Are there any dietary changes that can help with melasma?

While there is no specific diet to treat melasma, a well-balanced diet rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals can support overall skin health. Drinking plenty of water and avoiding excessive caffeine and alcohol consumption can also benefit your skin.

Can melasma come back after successful treatment?

Melasma can recur, especially if you are exposed to significant sun without protection or experience hormonal changes. Maintenance treatments and sun protection are often recommended to prevent recurrence.

How much does melasma treatment cost?

The fees of melasma treatment depend on the individual and are discussed upon consultation.