If you have hyperpigmentation or dark marks from blemishes and you want something natural, read on to find out what ingredients you should be looking for in your skin care products.
There are cells in our skin called melanocytes that produce a substance called melanin. This gives skin its color. Certain things will trigger a release of additional melanin, like sun exposure...as you well know. But there are hormonal and inflammatory conditions that can also result in excess melanin production, with the unwanted result of hyperpigmentation or dark marks.
Seeing your Dermatology PA is always the best move but what if you don't want to use harsh chemical prescriptions on your skin?
There's an old adage that says, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure". What does that mean? That it's always better and easier to prevent certain circumstances rather than trying to correct them.
Arbutin is a hydroquinone derived, naturally occurring compound originating from the leaf of Bearberry, Cranberry, Blueberry plants and Pear trees. It is a skin lightener that can be used on hyperpigmentation without causes lightening in your regular skin tone. And it is especially helpful for people with sensitive skin.
Azelaic acid is a naturally occurring dicarboxylic acid derived from rye, wheat, and barley and it has quite an impressive resume. It helps to scavenge free radicals, is comedolytic (helps unclog pores) and reduces hyperpigmentation in the skin. There are several prescription acne/ rosacea medications where Azelaic Acid is the main ingredient, over the counter products containing this ingredient are NOT a substitute for those medications.
Malic Acid is part of a family of fruit acids commonly known as alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs). These fruit acids gently encourage skin cells to exfoliate and in turn help to even out skin tone and reveal brighter skin.
To make your life easier, I've combined all these ingredients and some others for fine lines to give you an all in one, anti-aging skin brightener in my Honeysuckle Brightening Serum . The tricky thing with chemical skin brighteners like hydroquinone (other than the scary potential side effects) is that they must be placed precisely on dark marks or they can lighten your normal skin. The Honeysuckle Brightening Serum is designed to be used all over for care free brightening- with no concern of it lightening your regular skin tone.
As with any endeavor, consistency is key! Whether it is achieving an even skin tone or mastering the piano, it is never going to happen if you do it "sometimes". Healthy skin to you. :-)
Savy Guthrie is a dermatology PA with 17 years of patient care experience and is the founder of Theoderma Skin Care.
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