While some people are blessed with naturally fair and flawless skin, others are not so lucky. The skin produces Melanin which is a pigment that helps the skin develop a tan. Harsh environmental factor such as pollution, heat also contributes to having a darker, more tanned skin tone
However, there are ways you can whiten your skin and get a nice healthy skin tone, just the way you want it. In this article, various treatments, products, home remedies and healthy habits that can help you get a lighter skin tone have been discussed.
What Products And Treatment Can Help You Lighten Your Skin?
There are various products available on the shelve to help you whiten your skin. Most of these products have the ability to lessen the effect of melanin on your skin, thereby making it fairer.
In this section, you will find different products and treatments you can try out to get a lighter skin tone.
1. Skin Lightening Cream
Skin lightening creams are always available over the counter and are relatively cheap. They help reduce the effect of melanin which is the pigment responsible for tanning and sunspots on the skin. Products containing glycolic acid, alpha hydroxy acids, kojic acid, vitamin c are effective for skin lightening. Always use the product as recommended by the manufacturer, you will find directions for use on the product’s packaging. If you notice any bad skin reaction after usage, you should stop using the product.
Avoid skin-lightening creams that contain mercury. They can cause harm to your skin, making it go dry and age prematurely.
2. Chemical Peel
Using chemical peels is another effective way of getting that lighter skin tone you’ve always wanted. They get rid of darker skin and uneven skin pigmentation on the top layers of the skin, exfoliating and treating blemishes in the process. Physicians do this by applying peeling solutions (like the alpha hydroxy acid) to the skin, leaving it for about 5 – 10 minutes. After usage, your skin will be a lot more sensitive, so it is advisable to wear sunscreen always and reduce the amount of time you spend in the sun.
It might take a while to start seeing results so, regular usage of chemical peels is recommended to get the best result. However, you might want to opt for other skin treatments if your skin is too sensitive to chemical peels.
It might sound like a big word but really is just a procedure to remove dead skin cells from your skin. Microdermabrasion is a much better alternative for those whose skin is too sensitive to chemical peels and creams. This procedure involves using an abrasion tool with exfoliating materials such as diamond flakes, coupled with a suction device that sucks in dead skin cells during exfoliation. It is mostly performed by professionals and can be done in your home or office with the treatment taking 15 – 20 minutes.
You might have to get 6 – 12 treatments before you start noticing significant results. The procedure is considered non-invasive and has little to no side effects compared to other skin treatments.
This cream is an acidic form of Vitamin A which has a whole lot of benefits for the skin and also lightens it. Retinoid creams reduce fine lines and smoothen wrinkles, unclog the pores, and helps speed up cell turnover. They also clear discoloration making the skin look a lot brighter. It might take a while for your skin to get used to a retinoid cream and you may experience dryness, flakiness, and redness at the first few tries. Ensure you see a dermatologist before making a decision on which retinoid cream to use.
What Daily Habits Can Help You Get A Lighter Skin?
Taking proper care of your skin can help get the desired lighter skin tone. You should form a daily habit of taking care of your skin.
In this section, you will find out the habits you need to adopt to get a lighter skin tone.
1. Always Wear Sunscreen
Exposure to the sun has lots of unwanted effects on your skin which can make your complexion not quite what you want. You can get freckles, sunburns, brown spots, and even skin cancer. Protecting your skin against the sun can go a long way in achieving lighter skin. The skin produces melanin which when exposed to UV rays causes it to darken. It is essential you take care of your skin by using sunscreen, preferably one with a high SPF rating.
Also wear light protective clothing such as long-sleeved shirts, hats, and sunglasses if you are going to be in sun for a long time.
2. Cleanse and Moisturize Daily
It is a no-brainer that the skin needs proper cleaning to stay healthy. The skin pores are clogged with sweat and dirt after a long day. Proper cleansing will help remove this dirt and keep the skin healthy. You can employ a two-way cleansing which involves washing your face with warm water and tapping dry with a clean towel. Then you follow through with a gentle facial cleanser to help get rid of excess dirt left on the face. Ensure you do not overdo facial cleansing. You can cleanse twice per day, in the morning and right before you go to bed at night.
The skin also needs to be regularly hydrated which is why you should moisturize regularly. There are various types of moisturizers available, however make sure you choose one that works well with your skin type. People with oily skin should go for an oil-free moisturizer, while people with drier skin should opt for oil-based moisturizers. Moisturize regularly to keep the skin hydrated and healthy.
3. Drink More Water and Eat Well
Your skin benefits a whole lot from a good diet and proper hydration. While this is not an automatic ticket to lighter skin, it will help your skin get better by getting rid of the old pigmented layer and revealing a new fresh layer. This makes your skin look great and brighter. Six to eight glasses of water is recommended per day. It helps flush out unwanted toxins from your body, improving the texture of your skin.
Eating well also plays a role in how healthy and fresh your skin looks. It provides your body with all the essential nutrients and vitamins it needs. Eat fruits and leafy vegetables which contain a high amount of vitamins A, C, and E. You should avoid eating processed foods.
4. Get Enough Sleep
Not getting enough sleep especially at night can be detrimental to your skin. The skin heals itself better at night and not sleeping well can deprive the skin of this benefit. 7 to 8 hours of sleep is recommended each day, this gives the body enough time to rest while giving great blood flow to the skin.
5. Quit Smoking
While it is common knowledge that smoking can be detrimental to one’s health, a lot of people do not know that smoking also does damage to the skin. It causes fine lines, wrinkles and can make you age a lot faster. Smoking also inhibits blood flow which might make your skin look greyish.
What Home Remedies Can Help You Get Lighter Skin?
If you are not a fan of using chemicals or other skin treatments to achieve lighter skin, another option for you is to use home remedies. There are quite a number of them you can try out.
In this section, you will find the benefits and applications of proven home remedies for lighter skin.
1. Lemon Juice + Honey + Milk
Lemon Juice contains citric acid which is a natural bleaching agent. Using lemon juice on your face will definitely make it lighter and even treat freckles. Honey is another great natural ingredient in this mixture. It is known for its anti-bacterial properties and as a natural humectant.
How to apply:
- Mix milk, honey, and lemon juice in a bowl.
- Apply this mixture for 20 mins.
- Rinse with warm water.
Although a spice, turmeric can help lighten your skin. It has been used for this purpose for thousands of years. It is believed that turmeric reduces the production of melanin in the body which prevents the body from being tanned.
How to apply:
- Mix turmeric with flour and some olive oil to form a paste.
- Apply this mixture to your skin and let it sit for about 15 – 20 minutes
- Rinse with clean water
You should repeat this procedure up to twice per week to achieve the best results. This spice can also be used in making teas and smoothies which offers benefits to the skin.
3. Aloe Vera
This plant has lots of benefits when used on the skin. It helps remove discoloration and soothe inflammations. It also has moisturizing properties and helps lighten the skin.
How to apply:
- Extract gel-like sap from the plant by breaking off a leaf.
- Rub this gel on your skin.
- You can decide not to wash it off, however, if it makes you feel uncomfortable, you can rinse it off after some minutes.
Yogurt is another readily available home remedy for getting fairer skin. It contains vitamins such as B complex which helps make the skin brighter and it is also rich in lactic acid which can help lighten your skin. It also helps slow aging.
How to apply:
- Put two teaspoons of yogurt and one spoon of honey in a container and mix.
- Apply this mixture on your face and leave it for about 15 minutes.
- Rinse with water.
If you desire whiter skin or you simply want back your fairer skin tone, the information contained in this article is all you need. Try out any of the treatments and products discussed. However, if you notice bad reactions after using any of these treatments, you should stop.
You can also try out using some of the home remedies if that is more suited to you. Eat well and take care of your skin to get that nice, healthy, and whiter skin you deserve.