Dark Neck

Dark Neck
Dark Neck

Get rid of Dark neck /Black neck

You might be having a blemish-free face, but the presence of dark pigmentation around the neck may take away the glory of your face.

The dark neck would occur due to multiple reasons. Includes,

Acanthosis Nigricans(AN)

It is a common skin problem, observed as darkening and thickening of the skin over the neck, underarms, and face; frequently mistaken as dirt accumulation around the neck. Sometimes, people even implicate this condition secondary to friction imposed by a chain or necklace. Causes

Insulin Resistance

The darkening of the skin is due to the excess multiplication of skin cells at areas mentioned earlier due to increased insulin levels in the blood, especially in people with Type 2 diabetes and obesity. Due to excess abdominal fat, the body cells stop responding to the insulin in these individuals. As a result, the pancreas produces more insulin to control sugar the blood. This additional insulin acts on the skin to produce AN.

In a recent study, medical doctors observed the association of acanthosis nigricans with metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is a condition showing increased blood pressure, type 2 diabetes mellitus, excess body fat around the waist, high triglyceride level and reduced HDL or “good” cholesterol. Hence, early identification of AN and its associated risk factors is of utmost importance.

Hormonal Imbalance

AN is also more frequently seen in individuals with PCOS and thyroid problem.


AN may be seen due to certain drugs such as nicotinic acid, insulin, birth control pills, oral corticosteroids and diethylstilbestrol.


Rarely, patients with cancer of the stomach, liver or colon will quickly develop AN

Dermatitis neglecta

It is a condition that occurs due to inadequate cleansing leading to accumulation of skin cells sebum and sweat ultimately resulting in dark patches over the neck. This indicates a lack of hygiene and cleanliness

It is treated easily by simple scrubbing with soap water or alcohol swabs.

Sun exposure

Excessive exposure to sunlight could also implicate in the development of dark neck.

Drug induced hyperpigmentation

Sometimes, the dark neck can occur as an adverse effect due to medication, including NSAIDs, antimalarials, phenytoin, tetracyclines, antipsychotic drugs, etc.

Allergy to the chemicals

Uncommonly, chemicals used in certain skincare products might produce an allergic reaction that could leave a dark patch on the neck.

Treatment of AN

A dermatologist can diagnose AN and can differentiate from other skin discolouration conditions. The doctor shall order blood tests to identify insulin resistance and other risk factors. AN is a marker of insulin resistance or pre-diabetes. Weight loss and exercise can be of great help reversing insulin resistance.

Depending upon the level of insulin resistance, your dermatologist would prescribe metformin orally along with topical creams containing Retinol, Glycolic acid and other skin lightening agents and a sunscreen.

Besides, chemical peels found to be effective in the removal of skin AN pigmentation. At Derma Space Skin and Hair clinic, we use Nomelan phenol peel to reduce AN to a greater extent. Nomelan phenol peel contains a unique mixture of phenol, trichloroacetic acid, retinoic acid, phytic acid. It also includes a mix of hydroxy acids such as glycolic acid, salicylic acid, ascorbic acid and mandelic acid. Phenol and retinol present in this peel improve the texture of the skin.

Do visit Derma Space Skin and Hair Clinic for a complete assessment.