What is The Fitzpatrick Scale?
The Fitzpatrick Skin type scale is a classification system developed in 1975 by a dermatologist at Harvard Medical School. Skin types range from light (I) to dark-skinned (VI). This rating is used by physicians and estheticians to determine potential reactions to products or treatment procedures. The physicians at Aesthetica MedSpa determine a clients’ skin type before any facial or laser treatment to minimize adverse skin effects, including burns and hyperpigmentation.
The Six Types Explained
• Type I Always burns, never tans. Very fair skin with freckles
• Type II Usually burns, tans with difficulty. Fair skin with red or blonde hair
• Type III Sometimes mild burn, capable of tan. White skin with beige tint
• Type IV Burns minimally, tans well. Olive or light brown skin
• Type V Very rarely burns, tans very easily. Rich brown skin
• Type VI Never burns and always tans. Black skin tone and the darkest
Why Is This Important?
This is an important factor in determining which treatment options are best suited for different skin types. It’s not necessarily a determination of skin tone exclusively, but rather a skin’s reaction to the sun. This provides an indication of how your specific skin will react to laser light. This holds especially true for Types IV-VI. Individuals with skin type IV-VI are very vulnerable to hyperpigmentation. To avoid potential dark spots, discoloration and scarring, it is imperative to properly consult with a board-certified physician.
To obtain your free skin type assessment and speak with a physician about your treatment options, please call or text us at 201-482-1419