Discoloration, also known as hyperpigmentation, can arise from a variety of different aggressors. Lighter skin doesn’t contain very many melanocytes or melanin (which is responsible for giving skin and hair their color), making it more susceptible to hyperpigmentation. However, discoloration can affect all skin tones and types.
Light skin tones tend to have a pink undertone and can burn easily in the sun. Acne scars, sun spots, bruising and broken capillaries are more apt to show up on lighter skin because it is thinner and fair.
The most common skin tone among Caucasians and Asians, light- to medium-colored skin has beige or yellow undertones, and hyperpigmentation of all forms can be a common concern.
Darker skin types—think Latinas and those of Mediterranean descent—have medium or olive skin tones and are more prone to acne scarring, sun damage and prolonged hyperpigmentation.
Very dark skin types are most common in African Americans. Although it has more melanin, very dark skin can burn (even though it doesn’t show as much), is prone to sun damage, and is more susceptible to developing brown spots.
Whether your hyperpigmentation is brown, pink or red, the discolored portion of your skin is basically signaling that it’s been damaged. In terms of how deep damage can go within the skin, it’s mostly dependent on the color, size and age of your hyperpigmentation.