Aging is the leading natural cause of brown spots. From acne scars to brown spots caused by sunburns of years past, brown spots are a classic sign of aging. They are also sometimes referred to as “age spots” or “liver spots.”
Most brown spots are round in shape, flat, and usually brown or black. Sometimes age spots appear in clusters, and other times they show up by themselves. Melasma can be various shades of brown or gray and can appear irregular or patchy. Many people with melasma have a relative with this type of hyperpigmentation. Women who take hormonal birth control pills, who are pregnant, going through menopause, or undergo hormone replacement therapy are at an especially high risk of triggering melasma.