healthHealth and Medicine

Why Do People Have Freckles?


Robin Andrews

Science & Policy Writer

clockApr 16 2016, 16:23 UTC
1046 Why Do People Have Freckles?
They're the benevolent graffiti of the skin. Irina Bg/Shutterstock

Have you ever wondered why you get freckles, but have been too distracted by the chaos of everyday life to actually look it up? Fear not, surfer of the Web: The folks at SciShow have got you covered.

Freckles are essentially clusters of cells containing melanin, a group of natural pigments found in almost all organisms. In the skin, the production of melanin occurs when exposed to ultraviolet radiation (from the Sun, for example), which causes the skin to begin to tan. Melanin is a remarkably effective absorber of solar radiation, and as a result, it is thought to protect skin cells from ultraviolet radiation damage.


So in a way, freckles are tiny little lifesavers.

Check out the video from SciShow below.



healthHealth and Medicine
  • tag
  • skin,

  • radiation,

  • face,

  • melanin,

  • protection,

  • freckles