Hyperpigmentation (the darkening of skin, usually in patches) is often associated with the face—but this phenomenon can occur anywhere on the body, including the cheeks down below. Hyperpigmentation of the buttocks is common and usually nothing to be concerned about.
Learn more about what causes skin discoloration on the buttocks and what you can do about it if you choose to.
What Is Hyperpigmentation?
Skin tone is determined by a brown pigment called melanin that is made by the body. People with darker skin tones have more melanin; people with pale skin tones have less.
When the body produces excess melanin deposits, the skin in that area becomes darker than the skin around it. This is known as hyperpigmentation.
Skin Discoloration: Causes and Treatments
Hyperpigmentation is common and usually harmless.
Common causes of hyperpigmentation include:
- Also called age spots or liver spots
- Small, darkened patches
- Found on the face, hands, and other areas commonly exposed to the sun
- Caused by sun damage
- Also called chloasma
- Usually occurs on the face, and so is more likely to be treated
- More common in people with female hormones
- More common in people with darker skin types
- Associated with hormonal changes such as with pregnancy or birth control medication
- Dark spots or patches left after inflammation or injury such as acne
- Can occur anywhere on the body
- More common in people with darker skin tones
Less commonly, hyperpigmentation can be due to more serious conditions such as:
- Addison's disease (a hormonal disorder)
- Skin conditions such as psoriasis
- Vitamin deficiencies
Hyperpigmentation of the buttocks is usually not something to be concerned about. Unless there is an underlying health condition, treatment is not needed. Some people with hyperpigmentation choose to seek treatment if they are bothered by it.
When to See a Healthcare Provider
If you are experiencing symptoms beyond discoloration such as itching, pain, or any other bothersome symptoms, visit your healthcare provider for an examination.
If the dark spots show any warning signs of skin cancer, such as irregular borders or raised spots, have them checked.
What Causes Skin Discoloration Between Buttocks?
Is it normal to have a dark "butt crack"? The short answer is yes. Skin is not a uniform tone all over the body. It is common for some areas—such as the butt crack—to be darker than other areas.
Discoloration around the buttocks area can be caused by a number of factors but is usually harmless.
A common cause of hyperpigmentation in the buttocks area is irritation or inflammation. Trauma or irritation to the skin can cause postinflammatory hyperpigmentation and create dark spots or areas on the butt cheeks or between the buttocks.
This is commonly caused by:
- Folliculitis (butt "acne"): Infection of the hair follicles resembling acne
- Friction: Rubbing from clothing, or skin against skin
- Irritation from products or procedures: Products used on the skin such as some cleansers, or skin treatments or procedures, can irritate the skin and lead to hyperpigmentation.
To help reduce irritation:
- Wear loose-fitting clothing.
- Change and wash clothing after use, particularly swimsuits.
- Practice good hygiene.
- Use well-maintained hot tubs or avoid hot tubs (a common cause of folliculitis).
- Use gentle products that don't irritate the skin.
- Use sunscreen on areas exposed to the sun.
Other factors that can contribute to hyperpigmentation include:
- Hormones (pregnancy, hormone medications such as birth control, or other hormonal factors)
- Certain medications
Treatments for Hyperpigmentation
Treatment for hyperpigmentation is rarely necessary. It is common to have darker skin in the buttocks and public areas.
Dark spots caused by factors such as cleared folliculitis or other underlying factors that are no longer at play can often go away on their own with time.
Spots that are a few shades darker than the natural skin color generally fade in six to 12 months. Discoloration that is deep within the skin or much darker may take years to fade on its own.
Options are available for people who want to try to even out pigmentation for cosmetic purposes.
Skin Products That Fade or Even Out Hyperpigmentation
Look for an over-the-counter skin-lightening product that contains one of the following ingredients:
- Azelaic acid
- Glycolic acid
- Kojic acid
- Retinoid (retinol, tretinoin, adapalene gel, or tazarotene)
- Vitamin C
It's important to consult your healthcare provider before trying anything on this sensitive area. Discontinue the use of products if there's any burning or other side effects.
Prescription Skin Lighteners
Hydroquinone, the active ingredient in most prescription skin-lightening creams, reduces melanin production.
This medication should be used short-term, as there are risks associated with long-term use.
What Is Skin Lightening Cream?
- Laser treatment: Removes layers of skin using focused light energy
- Chemical peel: Removes top layer of skin using a treatment containing the chemicals salicylic acid and/or glycolic acid
- Microdermabrasion: Removes cells from skin surface using either a machine that sprays fine crystals through a wand that rubs against the skin or the abrasive end of a wand
- Cryosurgery: Liquid nitrogen solution freezes, destroys extra pigment
Should I Get Skin-Lightening Treatments?
Treatment for hyperpigmentation can come with significant side effects. Sometimes treatment can make hyperpigmentation worse. It can also be time-consuming and costly.
Before beginning any treatment for hyperpigmentation, discuss all your options and the pros and cons of each with your healthcare provider or dermatologist.
Home Remedies for Hyperpigmentation on Buttocks
More research is needed, but research suggests some natural treatments show promise in the treatment of hyperpigmentation, including:
- Green tea
- Licorice extract
- Vitamin C
- Soy extract
Use Caution With Home Remedies
Some skin-lightening products have been found to contain potentially harmful ingredients that aren't listed on the label.
Home remedies for hyperpigmentation can sometimes worsen the discoloration or cause other unwanted or hazardous effects.
Don't try to treat hyperpigmentation at home without first speaking to your healthcare provider or dermatologist.
A Word From Verywell
Hyperpigmentation in the buttocks area is common and usually harmless. While treatments are available, they can be timely and costly and have side effects.
If you are bothered by the look of hyperpigmentation, speak with your healthcare provider or dermatologist about the benefits and risks of the available treatment options.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can skin on my inner thighs and buttocks be lightened naturally?
Natural home remedies for skin lightening have less evidence supporting their efficacy than medicinal ones, but some show promise, including soy extract, licorice extract, and mulberry.
Some home remedies can cause more harm than good. Always consult your healthcare provider before trying any treatment to lighten skin.
Is it normal to have skin discoloration between the buttocks?
Yes. Skin discoloration between the buttocks is common and usually harmless.
How long do natural remedies for hyperpigmentation of the skin take to work?
Natural remedies for hyperpigmentation are still being researched, but some do show promise.
How long it takes for any treatment for hyperpigmentation to show results depends on several factors such as where the pigment deposits are in the skin and how dark the spots are compared to the natural skin color.(Video) How to Get Rid of Pimple Scars on Buttocks
Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. Hyperpigmentation.
Ogbechie-Godec OA, Elbuluk N. Melasma: an up-to-date comprehensive review. Dermatol Ther (Heidelb). 2017;7(3):305-318. doi: 10.1007/s13555-017-0194-1
Chaowattanapanit S, Silpa-Archa N, Kohli I, Lim HW, Hamzavi I. Postinflammatory hyperpigmentation: A comprehensive overview: Treatment options and prevention.J Am Acad Dermatol. 2017;77(4):607-621. doi:10.1016/j.jaad.2017.01.036
Mount Sinai. Skin—abnormally dark or light.
Desai SR. Hyperpigmentation therapy: a review. J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2014;7(8):13-17.
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Arora P, Sarkar R, Garg VK, Arya L.Lasers for treatment of melasma and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.J Cutan Aesthet Surg.2012;5(2):93-103. doi:10.4103/0974-2077.99436
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By Heather Jones
Heather M. Jones is a freelance writer with a strong focus on health, parenting, disability,and feminism.
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Potato juice and honey
Extract some potato juice and add some honey to it. Mix together and apply on the inner thighs and buttocks. Rinse off the area with cold water after some time. Repeat this remedy twice or thrice a day to get white and glowing skin.
Dermatologists consider products with hydroquinone, alone or combined with other lighteners, to be the gold standard for fading dark spots because it slows the production of pigment. These are available by prescription, per the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).Which cream is best for dark spots on buttocks? ›
Bare Body Essentials Bum Cream helps in reducing dark spots and acne on your bum skin, lightens skin tone and softens and smoothens the texture. It also firms the skin, giving your buttocks .How can I get rid of hyperpigmentation in 2 weeks? ›
exfoliate. This is the first step to speed up cell turnover and remove the damaged, overly pigmented and dead skin cells. Using a gentle yet effective chemical exfoliator like with Quick Refiner every night will also help your skin to absorb the key ingredients of the brightening products much better.What removes hyperpigmentation naturally? ›
Aloe vera contains aloin, a natural depigmenting compound that has been shown to lighten skin and work effectively as a nontoxic hyperpigmentation treatment, according to a 2012 study. To use: Apply pure aloe vera gel to pigmented areas before bedtime. Rinse using warm water the next morning.How do I get rid of pigmentation ASAP? ›
In this case, turning to dermatological procedures will work as the fastest way to get rid of hyperpigmentation. Chemical peels, laser therapy, microdermabrasion, or dermabrasion are all options that work similarly to rid skin of hyperpigmentation.Is dark buttocks normal? ›
Not all parts of your body have the same skin tone. It gets darker or lighter on several parts. The same is with butts. Due to the higher concentration of melanocytes (the cells producing melanin) in the skin folds, our butts appear darker as compared to other parts of the body.What can I use to clear black spots on my buttocks? ›
Help to reduce the appearance of bum spots by applying a topical acne treatment – so one containing salicylic acid – and using an antiseptic wash to wipe out any lingering bacteria.Which cream is best for hyperpigmentation? ›
- Mamaearth Bye Bye Blemishes Face Cream. ...
- The Derma Co 2% Kojic Acid Face Cream for Pigmentation. ...
- DERMATOUCH Bye Bye Pigmentation Cream.
- O3+ Whitening Face Emulsion Pigmentation Removal Cream.
This is a very simple remedy, for this you will need just 2 things – Toothpaste + Vaseline petroleum jelly...
How long does it take for hyperpigmentation to fade? Once what's causing the dark spots or patches is found and stopped, fading can take time. A spot that is a few shades darker than your natural skin color will usually fade within 6 to 12 months. If the color lies deep in your skin, however, fading can take years.What does hyperpigmentation look like? ›
Hyperpigmentation can appear as brown, black, gray, red or pink spots or patches. The spots are sometimes called age spots, sun spots or liver spots. The spots can occur in just one area of the body or all over.Can hyperpigmentation go away permanently? ›
Hyperpigmentation can go away on its own, dependent on the cause, but it may take a long time to fade. Some cases of hyperpigmentation may never go away completely.Which acid is best for hyperpigmentation? ›
As well as treating acne, azelaic acid is also a skin-lightening agent that's useful for fading post-acne marks, or post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.How long does it take baking soda to lighten dark spots? ›
Baking Soda And Apple Cider Vinegar:
Apply the paste on the dark spots and leave it for 15 minutes. Allow it to dry and then wash off with cold water.
Many people use apple cider vinegar on the skin to try and lighten unwanted pigmentation. Apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid, which may act as a mild chemical peel in some cases. As a study in the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine notes, apple cider vinegar also contains polyphenols.What causes dark under buttocks? ›
One reason: “The skin in the folds of our buttocks, armpits, elbows, and backs of our knees all have a higher concentration of melanocytes — the cells that produce melanin, which is responsible for our skin pigment,” says Dr. Kristina Semkova, a consultant dermatologist at the Cadogan Clinic.Why is my bum whole dark? ›
Due to the higher concentration of melanocytes (the cells producing melanin) in the skin folds, our butts appear darker as compared to other parts of the body. For the same reason, the skin of our armpits, elbows and the backs of your knees appear darker.Why is my bum whole so dark? ›
Of course, it's normal for the skin around your anus to look darker. It is most often not a cause for concern. "This can be due to genetics, everyday friction, sweat, diet, irritation, hormonal changes, among other reasons," said Dr. Kaado.How can I lighten my dark bottom? ›
- Mix orange peel powder and lemon juice in a bowl.
- Add some honey to it and mix well.
- Next, add milk to the mixture and blend all the ingredients well.
- Apply the mixture on the affected area and let it stay for about 5-10 minutes.
- Wash it off with lukewarm water.