Cutaneous ageing signs such as discolouration become visible from as early as the twenties, especially with excessive sun or environmental exposure.
Between the ages of 35 to 49 years, there is a sharp increase in prevalence of skin changes, clearly ascribable to photo-aging such as pigmented spots and discolouration of the skin. Awareness of the damaging effect of UV radiation on the body and sun avoidance and protection before the age of twenty will help reduce the risks for developing discolouration lesions later in life.
Ageing skin unsettles women more than men because society believes a woman loses her attractiveness once visible signs of facial ageing set in. Characteristics of an aging skin (on the face or body) include, fine and coarse wrinkle formation, pigmentation changes, sallow colour, dry texture, loss of elasticity, loss of skin tone, sagging subcutaneous tissues, underlying muscle hypertrophy and volume loss.
Ageing skin is associated with a range of cosmetic concerns - from pigmentation problems and splotchy skin to redness due to enlarged vessels or capillaries, all causing discolouration of the skin especially on sun exposed areas such as the face, neck and décolleté. Photo ageing caused by ultraviolet light exposure, tends to act more on the surface of the skin. There are sun freckles or irregular pigmentation and dilated blood vessels (often referred to as "broken" blood vessels) that lead to an overall uneven tone and discolouration.