Since the start of the pandemic, many of us have contemplated the pros and cons of masks. Yet there’s another type of mask that’s been around for a long time but isn’t as easy to peel off. It’s called melasma, and 90% of its sufferers are women, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.
Melasma is often dubbed the "mask of pregnancy" because its characteristic dark patches — which tend to cluster on the nose, cheekbones, and jaw — are even more prevalent in expectant mothers. But hormonal fluctuations related to birth control pills, menopause, and hormone therapy are also triggers, says Dr. Arianne Shadi Kourosh, director of the Pigmentary Disorder and Multiethnic Skin Clinic at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital.
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About the Author
Maureen Salamon, Executive Editor, Harvard Women's Health Watch
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