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Skin Lightening

It's a fact: as our bodies age, our skin's melanocytes don't work as effectively, which results in a duller, darker complexion. Age spots, unevenness in skin tone, and discolored patches all can start to occur, which makes us look older and less healthy. As the demand for products that lighten and brighten the skin increases, we are seeing a variety of different solutions that can help to lighten the skin; some of these products are more effective than others.

Skin Lightening Products

There is no shortage of different types of products that all claim to promote skin lightening and to diminish the appearance of dark discolorations and age spots. From lightening pills that are supposed to work from within the body to topical creams and serums, the number of choices of skin lightening products can confuse even the most savvy consumer.

Skin Lightening Creams

Creams that lighten the skin are some of the simplest skin lightening products available, but the formulas used in these products can vary considerably, which results in a wide range of the effectiveness of these creams. Many creams that claim to lighten and brighten the skin contain little but ingredients that help to moisturize the skin; these products don't begin to address the real problem behind duller, blotchy skin. Some of the ingredients found in skin lightening creams can actually cause harmful side effects; hydroquinone, for example, has been banned in a number of countries but can still be found in some products that are available in the United States.

Skin Lightening Pills

Many people looking to lighten their skin turn to pills that promise to banish dullness and spots; for the most part, pills do little to actually address the issues behind this problem. While many skin lightening pills contain various ingredients that contain antioxidants, these products provide an overall health benefit to the body but do not really help to lighten and brighten the skin or to rectify the hyperpigmentation that causes skin darkening in the first place.

Skin Lightening Serums

Serums are a more potent version of skin lightening creams, but as is the case with creams, serums are only as effective as their individual ingredients. Many serums are oil-based, which can exacerbate problems with acne and pimples for individuals who are prone to breakouts. While some consumers believe that serums are more medically-based than cream formulations, in actuality, skin lightening creams are just as effective, if not more so, than serum-based products.

Best Skin Lightening Cream

To find the best options in skin lightening creams, you need to get to the heart of the matter: the ingredient list for each cream. There are several specific ingredients that have been found to gradually fade discolored skin and to brighten the entire complexion; these ingredients provide powerful effects, but are still safe to use on delicate skin tissues. Look for Kojic Acid Ester, a naturally-derived extract from mushrooms, as well as the herbal extract Asafetida Extract; both are proven to prevent the excess formation of melanin deep within the skin. In addition, look for Glycolic acid, one of the most effective exfoliation ingredients; it can help to speed the effects of the other ingredients in the skin-lightening process.

See our picks for the best skin lightening creams.