Are People Born With Freckles? Separating Fact from Fiction


Whether freckles are cute or a nuisance, there are many myths about how they form. Freckles become darker with exposure to sunlight, but where do they come from? Are people born with freckles or is it simply from too much sunlight as a child?

What are Freckles?

Freckles are spots of darker pigmentation on the skin that often appear in clusters. The spots might collect to form bigger freckles with irregular edges. Individuals with fair skin and red or blonde hair are more genetically prone to having freckles than those with darker complexions. Prolonged exposure to sunlight makes freckles darker and staying out of the sun can make them disappear. For this reason, some people think that you cannot be born with freckles.

Sun Exposure and Freckles

According to MedicineNet, people are not exactly born with freckles, but can have a pre-disposed heredity to developing them. Sun exposure makes freckles more pronounced, but a person’’s genetics will determine how many and how much sun exposure will reveal the freckles. Avoiding the sun will diminish freckles. This is why many freckled-faces disappear during the winter months when sunlight is scarce.

You can avoid freckle development by staying out of the sun and applying sunscreen to block ultraviolet rays. If you were born with freckles, there are treatment options available to diminish or get rid of freckles. Talking to a dermatologist will help determine the best treatment options available for getting rid of your freckles. It is also important to keep a close eye on existing freckles. If they become dark and more irregularly shaped or raised, it could indicate melanoma which needs immediate medical treatment.