There are numerous reasons why you may want to lighten your skin. If you suffer from age spots, melasma, dark spots, acne scars, sun damage, or any other type of skin discoloration, skin whitening creams may be the perfect solution for you. Blemishes on the skin can appear for many reasons. Some people have scars left from acne, while others may have age spots caused by exposure to the sun or a hormonal imbalance.
Skin Bleaching Ingredients
You can find several skin bleaching ingredients on the market that work effectively to lighten the skin. Here are some of the most popular skin bleaching substances:
- Hydroquinone: This is one of the popular skin bleaching ingredients found in most prescription skin lightening treatments.
It works by inhibiting the formation of melanin in your skin.
In the past, hydroquinone was used extensively in skin lightening creams. But now, because of its connection with cancer and potential long term side effects, the use of hydroquinone has been permanently banned in many countries.
Actually, the skin lightening caused by hydroquinone is temporary. The effect remains only while you are using the product on your skin. Therefore, you need to use it regularly to maintain the lightened effect.
Ochronosis is one of the rare side effects of hydroquinone, where the treated areas of the skin become very dark. Doctors recommend stopping the usage of hydroquinone after six months if you see no improvement. Hydroquinone is usually available in percentages of 2 percent and 4 percent in over the counter and prescription skin creams respectively.
- Azelaic Acid: Azelaic acid is secreted from pityrosporum ovale and works as an inhibitor of tyrosinase. It will slough off the dead skin cells. It is used extensively for treating acne, rosacea, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation and lentigines.
- Kojic Acid: Kojic acid is one of the effective skin bleaching ingredients, and it is produced in the fermentation process of malting rice. It blocks the activity of melanin. Kojic acid is found in concentrations of 1 percent to 4 percent. It is an effective skin lightener, but prolonged use may cause contact dermatitis.
- Licorice Extract: Licorice extract is composed of glabridin, which is a natural extract used for reducing skin reddening and de-pigmenting skin.
Glabridin also shows anti-inflammatory properties and it exhibits tyrosinase-blocking activity to reduce pigmentation.
- Niacinamide: This belongs to the vitamin B family and has anti-oxidative properties that benefit the skin. It prevents the small melanin pigments that turn your skin brown from getting to the bottom layers of the skin. It also inhibits pigments and enhances the lightening effect.
- Bilberry Extract: Bilberry belongs to the family of blueberries. It contains tannins that exhibit anti-inflammatory and astringent properties. It was traditionally used by herbalists to cure blood pressure problems and prevent the formation of blood clots. It is an excellent antioxidant and is useful for treating hyperpigmentation and sun damage.
- Alpha Arbutin: This is naturally obtained from plants that are located in the northern Canadian region. There are two forms of arbutin: alpha and beta.
Alpha arbutin blocks the activity of tyrosinase ten times more than its beta version. The alpha form of arbutin offers great stability and efficacy leading to effective skin lightening.
Research indicates that there is little to no irritation when using alpha arbutin. Also, it works to reduce reddening of the skin, or erythema.
When looking for a skin lightening cream, be sure to choose one that contains safe and natural ingredients. It is best to avoid hydroquinone and other harmful skin bleaching ingredients such as steroids and mercury, as their regular use can harm your skin permanently. Natural ingredients are gentle on the skin and produce noticeable results in a just a few weeks of use.
Moreover, the results obtained by using natural skin lightening treatments are usually permanent, as the effect does not reverse even after you stop the treatment.
Illuminatural 6i is one of the popular skin lightening creams that use many proven natural skin lightening ingredients.
It does not contain harmful ingredients such as steroids, mercury or hydroquinone. It shows results in just four weeks of applying the cream.
Apart from using a safe skin lightening cream, you can prepare homemade facial masks by combining natural skin bleaching ingredients. You can use them on a weekly basis to pamper your skin and provide the nutrients your skin needs. Below you will find a few effective homemade facial masks to get rid of those stubborn facial blemishes.
Homemade Facial Mask
A homemade facial mask can also cure dark spots and eliminate dead skin cells easily. You can prepare a paste at home with natural skin bleaching ingredients.
- A paste made from rosewater and sandalwood is very good for reducing dark spots and enhancing the skin’s glow. You can easily attain rejuvenated skin after applying this mask.
- Lemon juice is a natural skin bleaching ingredient. You can apply a mixture of cucumber juice and lemon on your face daily for 20 minutes.
- Add a few drops of tea tree oil to your homemade mask for natural glowing skin. The aroma of tea tree oil also helps to relieve stress and has a calming effect on your mind.
- Aloe vera is considered one of the safest and most natural skin bleaching ingredients.
It has the ability to heal wounds and acne and enhances skin whitening.
It also helps to replenish moisture lost from the skin.
It is composed of antioxidants that make it an effective skin treatment to fight signs of aging.
- You can make a paste of one tablespoon Fuller’s earth with a few drops of water and potato juice. Potato juice cools down your skin and helps to eliminate dark skin areas, while the Fuller’s earth removes the dead skin cells and impurities from the skin’s pores. Regular use of this mask ensures your skin tone will be even and bright.
A regular cleansing routine and moisturizing are also essential to maintain the health of your skin.
Protect Your Skin From The Sun
When using a skin lightening cream, sun protection is essential. If the treated areas are exposed to the sun, they may darken again. Thus, it is crucial to use a sunblock with a high SPF. A broad range sunscreen will protect your skin from the harmful UV rays of the sun.
Regardless of which skin lightening ingredients you use, patience is very important. Some types of dark spots may take months to lighten, while others may respond quickly. So, be patient and allow several weeks to notice visible results.