This website is rated AA in Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1
Morpheus 8 in New York (smiling woman)

Home » Laser Treatments » Age Spots

Age Spots

Most age spots are harmless and don’t require medical treatment, but many people find their appearance unattractive. At Hellman Dermatology, we offer several treatments that can effectively lighten or, in some cases, eliminate age spots. We also encourage having them periodically checked to ensure their benign nature.

Contact Us Today

*Required Fields

What are age spots?

Age spots are flat tan, brown or black spots that are usually found on the areas of the body that are frequently exposed to the sun, including:

  • Face
  • Neck
  • Chest
  • Hands
  • Arms
  • Shoulders
  • Upper back
  • Tops of feet

Age spots tend to be flat and round or oval-shaped and are noticeable because they are more darkly pigmented than the surrounding skin. brown spots can be as small as a freckle or bigger than 0.5 inches across. They may appear alone or in patches on the skin.

While brown spots are harmless, there is a small chance that a brown spot on your skin may actually be the beginning stages of skin cancer. If you notice any unusual changes in your skin, we encourage you to contact our New York office. It’s important that a qualified dermatologist examines any new skin growths to ensure that they are not cancerous.

Who gets age spots?

Individuals with a fair complexion are most likely to develop brown spots, but they can also develop on people with darker skin. Many adults over the age of 50 have at least one age spot, but it’s not uncommon for younger people to get age spots too, especially if they spend a great deal of time outdoors.

Cause and prevention of brown spots

The most common cause of age spots is repeated exposure to ultraviolet light from the sun and, less commonly, tanning beds. Age spots form when melanin, the pigment that gives skin its color, is produced more quickly than normal, typically in response to UV light exposure. This is why age spots tend to appear on areas of the body that receive frequent and/or prolonged sun exposure. As such, the best way to prevent age spots is to limit sun exposure or wear sunscreen when outdoors for long periods.

Contact Us Today

*Required Fields

At our office, Only Board Certified Dermatologists See Patients & Perform Treatments

Super Doctors Expertise 10 Top Top Doctors logo Best of 2023 certificate appreation judith hellman


Before & After Photos

Before & After Photos : Brown Spots - Female (hands)

*Results may vary


There are several treatments available to lighten or remove age spots, which is good news for anyone who is bothered by the appearance of brown spots on their skin. At Hellman Dermatology we offer a number of safe and effective treatments. The best treatment for you will depend upon your unique skin type and the number of brown spots being treated. During your initial consultation, Dr. Hellman will explain treatment types and help you select from the following available treatments:

  • Topical medications can be used to lighten brown spots. We recommend using a cream with a high percentage of hydroquinone, a traditional treatment for age spots, combined with products containing glycolic acid. In many cases, topical medications can effectively minimize the appearance of brown spots with few side effects.
  • Glycolic Peels and microdermabrasion can be used to gently remove the surface layers of skin to reveal fresher skin that is free of brown spots. Usually several treatments are needed to see noticeable results.
  • Laser treatment is another popular treatment for brown spots. We typically use the Alexandrite laser, Fotofacial laser, or UltraPulse Laser to treat brown spots. The laser is calibrated to target the darkly pigmented age spots, break them apart, and even out the skin tone.

Each person is different, so Dr. Hellman takes the time to assess each patient’s skin and medical history before recommending a treatment protocol to remove or lighten brown spots.

Super Doctors Expertise 10 Top Top Doctors logo Best of 2023 certificate appreation judith hellman

Written by Dr. Hellman on 2/5/2020

Schedule A Consultation

For further assistance regarding any of our procedures,
Call Us Today (212) 751-0577

Judith Hellman

About the Author

Dr. Judith Hellman is a board-certified dermatologist and an associate professor at Mt. Sinai Medical Center. Her passion for people shines through when consulting on a diverse range of medical skin conditions and how these may affect health, aesthetics, and self-esteem. Dr. Hellman has lectured globally and has authored many journal articles. Her fluency in English, Hungarian, and Hebrew helps enhance multilingual communication for many dermatology patients in NYC.

Learn More about Dr. Hellman | Learn More Google Scholar

Follow @hellmanderm on Instagram