Dark spots on the skin and other types of skin blemishes can be a significant cause of concern for women. A fair, light and flawless skin is what all women around the world aim for. However, since the skin is an organ that is most exposed to the sun and pollution, uneven skin tone, dark spots and blemishes occur whenever we leave our skin unprotected from the harmful effects of sun and pollution exposure. When our unprotected skins are exposed to the sun, it can lead to hyperpigmentation or dark spots on the skin. The sunscreen was created for this very reason to protect our entire skin, and not just our faces.
Fortunately, dark spots can be treated with the use of lightening creams. There are several lightening creams out in the market that each claim effectiveness in treating or reversing the hyperpigmentation and other effects of sun exposure. Before we proceed with choosing the best lightening cream, we have to differentiate first skin lightening from skin whitening. Whitening works with changing pigmentation, like turning a natural dark skin to white skin. This is popular among dark or tanned skin individuals, particularly in some Eastern cultures. Skin lightening works with treating problems that cause the skin to have uneven pigmentation or dark spots. Fair or light skinned individuals face this type of problem, that is why a lightening cream is what they need. Before you get enticed by lightening creams having varying claims of efficacy, it is wise to review key aspects of the lightening products you are considering to buy.
Find a Natural and Effective Formula
An article from Monicasbeauty.com/best-skin-lightening-creams/ points out that one way of verifying the effectiveness of a skin lightening cream is through its ingredients. Thanks to the continuing dermatological research on skin repair and rejuvenation, several compounds and chemicals have been discovered to be effective in treating hyperpigmentation and regulating melanin production in the skin. However, not all ingredients of skin lightening product are safe for the skin. One such ingredient is hydroquinone. The compound, which was once considered as a safe and effective ingredient for treating hyperpigmentation, has been recently reported by the FDA to have dangerous side effects and potentially carcinogenic or can cause cancer.
As a result, dermatological researchers have come up with natural and safe alternatives to hydroquinone. Most of these ingredients are derived from plants, but still retain the same effectiveness as hydroquinone when it comes to treating hyperpigmentation and lightening the skin.
- Arbutin – is a compound extracted from plants such as bearberry, cranberries, blueberries, wheat, and pears. Arbutin is known for effectively reducing spots and hyperpigmentation because of its melanin-inhibiting properties. The good thing about this extract is its natural and safe for the skin.
- Licorice Extract – another natural and plant-derived extract that is proven safe and effective in lightening the skin and reducing dark spots. The specific compound at work is glabridin, which prevents the activation of our body’s pigment producing, tyrosinase. When the activation of tyrosinase is prevented, the production of melanin in the skin is also inhibited, thus returning your skin to its natural color.
- Vitamin C – another important compound that should be included in a lightening cream is vitamin C. This compound has antioxidant properties and helps promote collagen synthesis, which gives the skin an even tone, fuller sensation and smoother texture. The antioxidant property of vitamin is a great complement to the melanin-inhibiting properties of other compounds. The antioxidants help prevent sun exposure damage and keep the skin healthy.
- Mulberry Extract – mulberry is another extract that lightens skin. It also is a natural inhibitor of the tyrosinase enzyme, a precursor to melanin production. Another beneficial property of mulberry extract to the skin is its astringent (skin tightening) and antibacterial properties. This keeps the skin protected from itchiness and dryness caused by pollution.
Find A Cream That Lightens Skin Fast
With regular use, an effective skin lightening cream can provide fast results that can be seen as early as one week. As a reference, take a picture of your skin prior to applying the lightening cream. After a week, document the change by taking another picture and compare with your reference picture. If you see a difference in the skin shade after a week, then the lightening cream works like it’s supposed to. The optimum period of effectiveness of skin lightening is 3-6 weeks. Oftentimes, within 4 weeks, you could already see your skin several shades lighter than your skin pigmentation.
Find A Cream That Has Mild or No Side Effects
Skin lightening products are mostly purchased over the counter and don’t need a prescription. Therefore, as a wise consumer, be sure to check for the possible side effects on the label and the interaction of some ingredients to certain drugs or compounds. One chemical to particularly watch out for is mercury.
Should Have No Mercury Content
Mercury is a very harmful element that should not be included in a skin lightening agent. It usually doesn’t have apparent effects on the skin except for instances of itchiness, dryness or roughness in skin texture, which we could sometimes mistake for a side effect of the lightening cream’s other ingredients. Mercury can be easily absorbed through the skin and into the bloodstream, affecting the kidneys, nerves, brain, heart, lungs and immune system. Watch out for mercury by checking for these compounds in the list of ingredients:
- Hydrargyri oxydum rubrum
Be Aware of the Side Effects
Side effects are the things that a lightening cream should not do. The common side effects of lightening creams are irritation or redness, a burning or stinging sensation or itchy or flaky skin. It always helps to read the label and instructions thoroughly. Use the product as instructed and follow the amount to be applied and the frequency of application. Deviating from the prescribed amount or how often the lightening product should be applied can be harmful to your skin. If your skin reacts negatively to the lightening cream and shows symptoms worse than the common side effects, discontinue using the product immediately and consult your doctor.
The Price Should Be Reasonable
The price of a lightening cream should be well worth the benefits of the product. Check the packaging and product size. For example, a 30ml product shouldn’t cost you more than $500. Check different stores and retail outlets for the price of a lightening product to get the best possible deal and also price match. If the product does have a hefty price, but you are sure of its effects, then it is worth buying.
The bottom line when it comes to choosing the best lightening cream is effectiveness and safety. The optimum time for an effective lightening cream to show skin lightening effects is 3-4 weeks. If you see no difference after this period, it just means the product doesn’t work for you or is suitable for your skin composition or makeup. Do not worry, the natural skin-whitening ingredients can be effective to any skin type and works on the common pigmentation compound: melanin. The ingredients should be natural and safe should not include toxic components. Once these are taken into consideration, you can be sure of your skin lightening cream. So go ahead and regain your beauty.