Fitzpatrick Skin Types > Skin Type 1

Fitzpatrick Skin Type I

People with skin type I are usually pale, blonde or red hair, freckled with blue eyes and likely to experience severe sun damage from ultra-violet exposure. They usually burn easily, without ever having a tan. This skin type is believed to be highly susceptible to premature ageing and skin cancers (including melanoma, the deadliest type of skin cancer) and one is therefore advised to take extreme care, use sunscreen and protect yourself from harmful UV rays as extreme sun exposure can result in serious damage, premature ageing and skin cancers such as squamous cell carcinoma SCC, Basal cell Carcinoma BCC and Melanoma.


The Role of Pheomelanin:
It has been recognised that the type of melanin that blondes and red-heads have –pheomelanin - seems to be important in skin cancer risk. This type of melanin acts as a co-conspirator in causing a person to be more at-risk for developing skin cancer. In other words, this type of melanin that causes blonde and red hair actually increases the risk for cell death such as seen in sunburn. Melanin filters out UV radiation, but it also actually increases the UV harmful effects and causes cell death, particularly when the melanin is the kind found in light hair or skin. Pheomelanin acts with the sun's UV rays to increase sun damage. Pheomelanin or red melanin can vary widely, depending on whether your ancestors were Irish, Swedish or Dutch, and some of these variations are known to be associated with greater risk for skin cancer.


Skin Type I individuals are conducive to the usual aesthetic treatments and most treatments can safely be done without the danger of adverse side effects such as hyper- or hypopigmentation occurring. Aggressive Ablative resurfacing treatments (not done at Sinclair Aesthetics) such CO 2 laser , Erbium Yag laser and Phenol peels can result in permanent hypopigmentation (whitish skin that has lost its pigmentation) and should be avoided.

 
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