Acne information center

Tinea Verisicolor

You just came back from a tropical vacation and you are rockin’ a fabulous tan . . . except for that white patch on your shoulder. What is it?

Even though this skin condition is not really an “acne imposter”, it can be coupled with acne and/or folliculitis in some cases.  Tinea versicolor is a fungal infection of the skin that can affect many people. Before you freak out thinking that your arms are going to sprout mushrooms, keep in mind that this fungus is already present on the surface of your skin. There are factors that can cause the fungus to overgrow, leading to an imbalance, then an infection of the skin.

The fungus is what affects the normal pigmentation of the skin. It begins as spots that are either lighter or darker than your normal skin. If not treated, the spots can grow and combine into larger patches. A weakened immune system, hot and humid weather, oily skin, sweat, and hormonal changes can all encourage the growth of this fungus. Young adults and teens are usually more prone to experience this.


So what can you do about it?

Using antifungal cleansers such as our Mandelic Wash or over-the-counter antifungal shampoos such as Selsun Blue, will treat the tinea versicolor. Also, avoid tight and restrictive clothing which can aggravate the condition. You may be tempted to try and tan the spots away. Unfortunately, the fungus prevents the affected areas from changing color and tanning can make it appear worse. So, be sure to wear your sunscreen! If there is no improvement after 4 weeks of following these measures, please consult your healthcare provider as you may require further treatment.

Tinea Versicolor on the face can be treated with anti-fungal serums like Face Reality’s l-mandelic serums. Mandelic acid will treat both the tinea versicolor and the acne shown in this picture.

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