Watch Out! Ladies

Does Pregnancy / Birth Control Pills Trigger Skin Hyperpigmentation?

Birth control pills may trigger skin hyperpigmentation the same way as pregnancy. Before going deeper, it is necessary for us to understand about the skin hyperpigmentation during pregnancy, so that we can understand the mechanism on how hormonal changes trigger skin hyperpigmentation. There are some ladies who have skin hyperpigmentation like a patch over their face, which is known as "mask of pregnancy". "Mask of pregnancy" occurs because when one is pregnant, her body will wrap up the production of estrogen, a female sex hormone. A normal range of estrogen in female is about 30-400 pg/ml, but when one is pregnant, the level may go up to 200-7000 pg/ml. That is about 10 to 100 fold of increment.

                However, it is not necessary that when one is getting pregnant, she will get skin hyperpigmentation. Some of us may have a skin which is estrogen-sensitive, the steady increase in estrogen in pregnancy will trigger skin hyperpigmentation in this group of people. Melanocytes are cells over our skin, over its surface, it has something called receptors, which act as a "lock", our hormone estrogen will act as a "key". When this estrogen sits on the "lock" and opens its "lock", it will increase the activity. Increasing the activity of melanocytes, means more production of melanin. Overproduction of melanin will cause skin hyperpigmentation.

                Thus, hormones used in birth control pills may have similar effect on our skin. Most birth control pills are combined pills, meaning they have both estrogen and progesterone. If we notice that after start taking the pills, we have worsening of the skin hyperpigmentation, or new patch starts to form over the face, we are probably taking the combined pills.

                If the skin hyperpigmentation is disturbing us, we should talk to our doctor who prescribed it. He may suggest to switch to non-hormonal contraceptive method or different types of birth control pills that do not contain estrogen, so that after consumption, it will not trigger any skin hyperpigmentation.         

                In fact, when we talk about ways to lighten up skin tone or remove spots, be it reduces the existing melanin, or inhibits new melanin formation, the most direct method is to inhibit the "tyrosine to melanin signaling pathways" that cause the overproduction of melanin pigment, with the help of Vitamin C.

                "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure". Hence, in order to maintain and restore radiant skin, the interventions of "what we put on our body" and "what we put in our body" are equally important!

Choose the Right Skin Care

  1. Lab Division Collagen Booster series contains Ascorbyl Glucoside (a stable derivative form of vitamin C) converts into l-ascorbic acid by enzyme alpha-glucoside. L-ascorbic acid fades existing dark marks & wards off production of new ones, interferes melanin by stopping the production of tyrosinase enzyme, in order to treat hyperpigmentation and uneven skin tones. Tyrosinase is the enzyme that converts tyrosine to melanin. Therefore lowering the levels of tyrosinase within the skin can help to inhibit excess melanin production before it has even begun (Zolghadri et al., 2019).

    Choose the Right Supplement

    1. FMD FloraC which is derived through fermentation (enzyme catalysed process) is totally beneficial and important for on reducing pigmentation where epidermis needs more antioxidant-rich vitamin c to repair darken scarring than dermis. Meanwhile, Vitamin C is capable of blocking melanin from transferring to skin cells. When melanin is synthesized, it has to be transported to the skin cells before it can appear on the complexion. Thus, inhibition of this movement can stop pigmentation from appearing on the skin surface. This can be achieved by encouraging melanin deposits to clump together so they cannot travel to the skin surface (Kim, 2002).
    2. FMD FloraGSE (not recommended for pregnancy)is a powerful antioxidant that helps to recycle vitamin C and vitamin E in our body. FloraGSE has OPC (Oligomeric Proanthocyanidins) phytonutrients that focus on reducing skin pigmentation, slowing down aging process, alleviating allergic reaction and most importantly, providing protective shield to your skin collagen and elastin. Bear in mind, free radicals can also contribute to hyperpigmentation. Just like tyrosinase enzyme, they can oxidize tyrosine, converting it into melanin. So, antioxidant-rich FMD FloraGSE can block the production of free radicals to halt them from exaggerating melanin production.
    3. Udo's 3, 6 & 9 Oil Blend contains essential fatty acids (EFA) that cannot be synthesized by our body and must be taken from diet. EFAs are essential to healthy skin and help in healing skin pigmentation problems. Omega 3 (especially EPA) is a natural sunblock, which functions to protect the skin against UV inflammation, increase the sunburn threshold and reduce the signs of photoageing like wrinkles, reduced elasticity and uneven pigmentation. Omega 6 LA is a natural moiturizer which can prevent dehydration by retaining skin moisture , keeping our skin moisturised from inside out.


    Written by

    Pearly Oh

    Wellness Practitioner

    Executive Master in Preventive Health(EMPH)

    Major in Weight Management, Beauty & Skin


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    1. Kim, Y. (2002). The 7 routes to brightening. Retrieved from

    1. Zolghadri, S., Bahrami, A., Hassan Khan, M. T., Munoz-Munoz, J., Garcia-Molina, F., Garcia-Canovas, F., ... Saboury, A. A. (2019). A comprehensive review on tyrosinase inhibitors. Journal of Enzyme Inhibition and Medicinal Chemistry34(1), 279-309.