Kate Ferdinand was applauded by fans for sharing a no makeup video revealing her pregnancy pigmentation, melasma.
Sharing a clip from the recording of the latest episode of her podcast, Blended, the former reality star revealed that she decided to “be brave” and go bare-faced during filming.
Kate, who married former soccer player Rio Ferdinand in September 2019, is currently pregnant with her second child and has shared details of her pregnancy journey on the podcast, including the stigma surrounding being silent in the first trimester.
The couple welcomed their first child, son Cree, in December 2020 and Kate is also stepmom to Rio’s three children by his late wife: Lorenz, 16, Tate, 14, and Tia, 11.
To know more: Kate Ferdinand reveals the gender of her baby, but says the gender reveal didn’t go to plan
More recently Kate discussed her struggles with melasma, a common adult skin condition in which brown or grayish patches of pigmentation (color) develop, usually on the face.
“I’ve talked a lot over the years about my pigmentation and I don’t feel confident without makeup,” she wrote on Instagram.
“Being pregnant and recently on vacation means the pigmentation is a little worse at the moment. But I thought you were brave (and this seems brave) and I’m not wearing makeup for this mini episode.”
After sharing the clip and accompanying caption, fans were quick to praise the former TOWIE star for his opening.
“You look beautiful, Kate, I’m glad you are [sic] embracing your natural self and looking natural is beautiful, well done to embrace that and being a little vulnerable you wear the pigmentation very well,” wrote one user.
“This is fabulous Kate,” agreed another. “You are beautiful and we should all celebrate our skin.”
“Thanks so much,” commented another user. “So powerful to see you without makeup! You are beautiful.”
Others have shared their own struggles with pigmentation.
“I have the same problem!” one commented. “I feel like my pigmentation can make my skin look a little dirty or not ‘fresh’, let’s say, and it’s made me a little shy at times.”
“Thank you for showing the pigment. I’m in a lot of pain and never seem to see anyone doing it. We’re probably all covering it up with makeup,” wrote another.
“My pigmentation makes me look like I have a mustache… I don’t care anymore,” another user added.
It’s not the first time Kate has opened up about living with melasma. In 2021, she showed off her makeup-free skin to fans on Instagram for an unfiltered look at her facial pigmentation spots.
“Me without makeup,” she wrote in the accompanying caption. “In recent years, even with SPF50 and a hat, as soon as the sun comes out my face looks like a patchwork.”
“I always feel so insecure about it and it really brings me down. I try to cover it up at all costs.”
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What is Melasma?
Melasma, also called “chloasma” and “mask of pregnancy,” is a common skin condition in which patches of brown or grayish pigmentation (color) develop, usually on the face.
According to the British Association of Dermatologists (BAD) the name comes from melas, the Greek word for black, or cholas, from the greenish word.
The condition is more common in women, particularly during pregnancy (when up to 50% of women can be affected).
The BAD says melasma is also more common in black people and those who tan very quickly but it can happen to anyone.
“Melasma can affect the cheeks, forehead, upper lip, nose and chin, however it can also affect other sun-exposed areas of the body, namely the forearms, neck, chest and shoulders,” said Dr. Ross Perry, medical director of Cosmedics skin. clinics.
“Women and people with dark skin tones are at a higher risk of developing melasma with melasma symptoms looking different depending on a person’s skin tone.”
Clock: Kate Ferdinand talks being judged, never feeling good enough and how meeting Rio changed her perspective
Dr. Perry says melasma occurs when melanocytes produce too much pigmentation in the skin, causing dark spots.
“People with black or brown skin have more melanocytes, which basically means they’re more likely to develop melasma than people with lighter complexions,” she explains.
“For those with olive complexions and skin that tans very easily, there’s also a higher risk of developing melasma if you’re exposed to the sun.”
Uneven pigmentation/age spots are small areas of discoloration (hyperpigmentation) that frequently appear on the face and hands and are one of the major changes associated with aging skin.
“They tend to appear as small, flat, dark patches of skin that are tan to black in color and are more common in people over the age of 40,” continues Dr. Perry.
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What causes melasma?
Skin pigmentation is caused by an increased production of melanin which is the natural pigment that gives our skin its colour.
“Melanin acts as your skin’s natural sunscreen by protecting you from harmful UV rays,” explains Dr. Perry.
“Excessive sun exposure increases the amount of melanin that the skin produces. Dark sports on our skin are usually triggered by overexposure to the sun, therefore affecting areas such as the face, neck décolleté, shoulders, forearms and hands.”
How to treat melasma
According to Dr. Perry, age spots/pigmentation aren’t dangerous and treatment isn’t necessary, but some people want to get rid of age spots because of the way they look.
“Whitening creams can be prescribed to gradually fade age spots and it generally takes several months to notice a difference, but they will make your skin more sensitive to the sun, so it’s important to stay out of the sun and always wear a high SPF,” he continues.
“There are also a number of medical procedures that can remove or reduce age spots that are worth talking to a dermatologist or skin care professional about.”
Pigmentation in pregnancy
One of the unwanted skin problems during pregnancy is uneven pigmentation and melasma which affects around 50% of women and can occur at any stage of pregnancy.
“This causes darker brown patches on the forehead, cheek and upper lip,” explains Dr. Perry.
“This is generally referred to as chloasma or melasma or the ‘mask of pregnancy.’ It happens because estrogen and progesterone stimulate some of the melanin cells in the skin to produce more pigment. This then subsides after delivery with patches fading and becoming less obvious.”
Dr. Perry says pregnant women may also notice other areas of the body darkening such as areolas and the skin under the arms and between the thighs, and darker-skinned women may find it more noticeable than light-skinned.
While there’s little you can do to treat pregnancy pigmentation since it’s caused by hormone fluctuations, Dr. Perry recommends staying out of the sun as exposure to the sun’s rays will only make the spots darker.
She also suggests wearing a high SPF and a hat for protection and to make sure you’re getting enough folic acid.
Hydroquinone and retinoid creams should also be avoided in pregnancy as they may harm the fetus.
“If you’re concerned about your skin, visit your GP or seek advice from a dermatologist,” she adds.