Melasma is a skin condition triggered by sun exposure that causes brown to gray-brown patches. In most cases it appears on the cheeks, bridge of the nose, forehead, chin and above the upper lip. But it can also appear on the forearms, neck and other areas that are exposed to the sun.

Hormones may also trigger melasma, which often affects pregnant women and rarely affects men.

Sun protection helps, so sunscreen should be applied frequently. However sunscreen alone may not be enough. A variety of treatment options exist for melasma.

For more information, visit the American Academy of Dermatology at