Sun Mustache: Causes, Treatment, and Prevention
Sep. 16, 2020
Sun mustache refers to darkened skin on the upper lip caused by UV light exposure. You can treat it with skin lightening and brightening products.
If you’ve noticed your upper lip skin is looking distinctly darker after long summer days, you might have a sun mustache.
We share what causes this awkward phenomenon and what other conditions can darken your upper lip. Learn what to do to restore your skin to normal.
What is Sun Mustache and What Causes It?
There’s nothing like soaking up those rays, but UV radiation can be incredibly damaging to your skin. An enviable tan is the result of your skin producing excess pigment (melanin) to reduce injury.
So, why is that only your upper lip is noticeably darker?
The upper lip gets a lot of action—drinking or eating can inadvertently rub away SPF, and sweat tends to collect there too.
Most of us don’t realize how often we touch our faces: you might be unknowingly wiping off your SPF.
That means even if you apply SPF religiously before heading out, you need to remember to top it off. Don’t forget to rub it in, since patting down your cheeks and forehead will leave your upper lip exposed.
What Else Causes Dark Upper Lip Skin?
If you avoid sun exposure and slather your face with SPF regularly, your sun mustache could be something else.
Melasma is the typical culprit behind sudden dark patches on the face. Technically, sun mustache is a type of melasma too—UV radiation is one potential cause.
Other possible factors include pregnancy, certain medications, allergic reactions to cosmetics, and hormonal therapies.
How Do You Get Rid of Sun Mustache?
Now that you know why you have it, it’s time to find out how to fix it. Stay patient and be consistent to fade the discoloration.
- Apply SPF
You don’t want your sun mustache to get worse. Keep up with applying sunscreen, and make sure it’s at least SPF 30 or higher.
If you know you’ll be at the beach or pool, aim to be more conscious of your habits. For example, try to avoid touching your upper lip, and apply SPF after drinking or eating.
- Skin Brightening Treatments
There are plenty of treatments that help even out skin tone and eliminate dark spots. Ingredients to look out for include:
Hydroquinone is a staple ingredient in skin lightening treatments, both prescription and over-the-counter. It’s strong and can cause irritation, so you’ll want to be careful with it.
Arbutin is a natural variation of hydroquinone, which is derived from certain plants. It inhibits a certain enzyme that encourages pigment production.
It’s usually less irritating than traditional hydroquinone but still effective.
- Vitamin C
You’ll find vitamin C in the majority of skin brightening treatments. The powerful antioxidants work to even out skin tone and improve photoaging.
- Azelaic Acid
This acid can fight acne as well as hyperpigmentation disorders, such as sun mustache. Like with arbutin, it inhibits the enzyme tyrosinase to prevent and improve darkening.
- Licorice Extract
This plant-based extract reduces unwanted pigmentation in two ways. It lowers pigment production to fade out dark spots and has anti-inflammatory properties. Plus, it’s non-irritating.
- Kojic Acid
Kojic acid is another solution to inhibit melanin production and lighten skin. It also has some antimicrobial abilities which can help soothe inflammation, e.g. from acne.
Niacinamide (vitamin B3) stimulates keratin production, which makes the outer layer of your skin tougher and less prone to damage. It’s a highly effective skin lightening treatment as it also disrupts pigment production.
Best Skin Lightening Treatments for Sun Mustache
Fortunately, there are plenty of skin brightening serums and creams on the market. Here are three options to consider to kiss your sun mustache goodbye:
- TruSkin Naturals Vitamin C Serum
This vitamin C serum is free of artificial ingredients such as stabilizers and synthesizers.
It contains other complexion-boosting substances such as witch hazel, jojoba oil, and hyaluronic acid.
The formula works to fade sun spots and improve skin tone overall. It can also help smooth out wrinkles and improve skin firmness.
- EnaSkin Dark Spot Corrector
The EnaSkin Dark Spot Corrector works on both your face and body. It has multiple ingredients to correct uneven skin tone, including kojic acid and salicylic acid.
Aside from fading a sun mustache, this lightweight cream can also improve acne scarring and aging signs.
- PULCHRIE Lightening Serum
This serum contains arbutin and kojic acid, two effective skin brighteners. It can fade out existing dark patches and prevent the formation of new ones.
PULCHRIE’s serum includes anti-aging and anti-wrinkle ingredients too.
Clear Hydrated Skin The Clean Way✨
Staying in the trend of clean beauty, I have found an amazing product to add to my everyday routine. Odacité SKINCARE - Blue Aura Cleansing Water This is a cleansing water that is marketed to use in place of your cleanser for a “quick” clean. When looking for a good cleansing water, you want one that is hydrating and gets your face clean. Keep in mind not all cleansing waters are designed to clean makeup (I highly recommend a cleansing balm and cleanser). About This Brand: ✨Vegan ✨Cruelty Free ✨Certified Organic ✨ NO: Fillers | Parabens | Nanoparticles | Petrochemicals | PEG | Synthetic perfumes | Dyes | Phenoxyethanol. This cleansing water is so hydrating and satisfying to use. It smells very fresh and a little goes a long way. What is very important to me is my dry spot aren’t tight or irritated. I have been using this day and night and have seen amazing results acne and skin barrier wise. I included this in my routine after a regular cleanser and before my serums. So essentially, I use this as a “toner”. I do this to clean up anything my cleanse left behind, or the cleanser itself. INGREDIENTS: ✨Tumeric: Amazing for hyperpigmentation and overall skin brightness ✨Holy Basil: I drink the tea and can vouch this is an amazing adaptogen that can overall benefit every aspect of your life. It combats aging and free radical damage. ✨Neem: great anti aging ingredient that helps protects your skin barrier. ✨Aloe Vera Juice: this is great for your skin barrier overall. It hydrated, protects and brightens. I highly recommend this cleansing water and it is on sale for $9 at Boxycharm Pop Up 🥰🥰
We’ll Miss You!
To our cherie fam who has inspired us deeply over the last year and a half: thank you. We are so grateful to have been a part of your beauty journeys and the community you created with us was nothing short of amazing. It's with sadness that we announce that cherie will be closing our doors on April 8, 2021, and your posts will no longer be available. While our platform will no longer be available, we encourage our community members to continue finding ways to create and allow their authentic voices to be heard.
Drink of water for your skin!
We’re in the deep of winter and our skin get dehydrated and beaten by the harsh elements. Treat your skin to a pure drink of water that is based with pure Artic water —The ultra pure water that flows from the Arctic is known for its unique functional composition that’s buzzed about for helping to recharge dull-looking skin. By adding moisture back in helps fortify your skin and enhances skins’ luminosity. LUMENE - Nordic-C Glow Boost Essence Serum 30ml $12-$25 depends on size and retail. Based with pure artic spring water and two types o hyaluronic acids this serum is super emollient and hydrating. Love love love how gentle this formula is. LUMENE - Nordic C Valo Glow Lumenessence Brightening Beauty Lotion $14-$18 A gorgeous lightweight toning essence with pure artic water, hyaluronic acids and vitamin c rich berry complex. I love that it is gentle and not drying. 🐰 cruelty free and sustainably sourced
Wednesday Wellness 🙏🏾
This past week has been rather hard and long for me. I ultimately decided to get back on track with my wellness plan. My main wellness goal for 2021, is to indulge in myself more. I definitely am a firm believe in “as within, so without”. I started my day with: #Four Sigmatic - Mushroom Elixir Mix with Chaga[products]#[FiveStars] I have been getting back into adaptogen and herbal medicine. What we put into our bodies is just as important as what goes on the outside. Adaptogens are apart of ancient medicinal traditions traced all over the world. I also drink Tulsi “Holy Basil” Tea. If you need a pick me up or emotional boost I highly recommend! SUNDAY RILEY - U.F.O. Ultra-Clarifying Face Oil is my treatment of choice I used during the day. Do not be afraid to use salicylic acid during the day. I applied plenty of sunscreen afterwards as well! This is a GODSEND for clearing up acne and acne scarring. It’s by far the best acne treatment I’ve tried and its mostly due to the immediate results I get. This is a dry oil, so it should be used before a heavy moisturizer or sunscreen. THE BODY SHOP - Spa of the World Thai Makrut Lime Firming Oil is a staple in my night time routine. When I want to relax and really unwind I use a body roller with this oil. It smells like a fresh key lime pie and it’s so hydrating. This is great for firming, especially when paired with a body tool. What do you do for wellness?
Drunk Elephant- The Littles 🐘
I won this cute little kit in a raffle & I couldn’t be more thankful! I have always wanted to try these products but never wanted to spend the money on all of them incase I didn’t like them! Inside this kit are the following products: DRUNK ELEPHANT - Beste No. 9 Jelly Cleanser Deluxe Sample DRUNK ELEPHANT - B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum DRUNK ELEPHANT - Protini Polypeptide Cream DRUNK ELEPHANT - C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream DRUNK ELEPHANT - T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Resurfacing Night Serum DRUNK ELEPHANT - C-Firma Vitamin C Day Serum DRUNK ELEPHANT - Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil DRUNK ELEPHANT - Umbra Tinte Physical Daily Defense Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 30 That’s literally a whole skincare routine! So far I started out my day with one of Drunk Elephants infamous “Face Smoothies” I washed my face with Beste No. 9 Jelly Cleanser & then combined C-Firma Day Serum, Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil, & Protini Polypeptide Cream together on my mixing trey with a disposable skincare spatula! I applied it all over my face & neck. Once that absorbed, I applied Umbra Tinte Daily Defense SPF 30 over my face & neck & was done! I love how the kit comes with steps to walk you through different routines you can use in the morning or at night! I will do a follow up review after I have used all the products for a few weeks! But so far, my skin feels & looks great! I have been breaking out lately & haven’t felt the best about my skin so I really needed this pick me up!! Thank you for reading! You guys are the best!! ❤️ @cherie@Cheriebeauty@CheriePick
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