Sun damage is the culmination of repeated exposure to the sun’s powerful UV rays. UVA rays alter the look and feel of skin, accelerating the aging process and creating discoloration. The result is loss of collagen, wrinkles and discoloration (a.k.a. sun spots, liver spots or old age spots), as well as superficial blood vessels (telangiectasias). Meanwhile, UVB rays (the key source of sunburns) work just as aggressively at damaging the epidermis.
Sunspots (medically known as solar lentigines) are the most common expression of sun damage, and result from an overproduction of melanin as the skin attempts to protect itself from UV light. These flat lesions are tan or brown and appear most frequently on the cheekbones, temples, nose, shoulders, décolleté and hands.