Skin lightening products work by reducing a pigment called melanin in the skin. When the amount of melanin is reduced, the skin lightens. These products are also called fading creams, bleaching creams, skin brighteners, and skin whiteners. They are used by plenty of people to treat different skin problems such as freckles, age spots, acne scars, skin discoloration, and to lighten darker skin.

Using some of these products however may have some added risks involved because of their chemical composition such as Mercury that could poison you. Because of this, you need to be a wise buyer to prevent such risks and you are here to be a wise buyer right? First, let us know about different facts about your skin color and on how these products work.

How is Skin Color Determined?

The amount of Melanin in your skin determines your skin color. Melanin is a pigment that is produced by specialized skin cells called Melanocytes and these specialized cells are located at the bottom layer of the epidermis. So if you have darker skin, Melanin may be the culprit.

Many factors are associated with having a good amount of Melanin in your skin such as exposure to sunlight, genetics, hormones, skin damage, and exposure to certain chemicals.

When you are always an indoor person, your skin color may be lighter because changes in skin color usually resolves after some time. However, certain discolorations such as Liver spots (also called age spots) become more or less permanent.

So, How Do Skin Lighteners Work?

Skin lighteners contain many chemicals and active ingredients that reduce the amount of melanin in your skin such as hydroquinone, a widely used chemical for skin lighteners. Most over-the-counter skin lighteners will have 2-3% hydroquinone but some dermatologists would recommend getting a skin lightener with more hydroquinone, mostly around 4-6%. It is important to meet with your doctor about on using any product with hydroquinone as this chemical is dangerous when applying larger than usual amounts. Other skin lighteners may use drugs (steroids and retinols – Vitamin A as an active ingredient) and even natural ingredients such as Kojic Acid that are derived from various plants.

Are there Risks Involved in Using these Products?

There is, especially when the product contains Mercury- a deadly element that poisons your body. So be cautious about a product’s composition before buying.

There are other risks such as:

  • Added risk of skin cancers.
  • Premature aging is usually caused by prolonged use of the product.
  • Steroids may cause irritation, acne, and skin thinning.
  • Unwanted skin discoloration.
  • Allergic reaction to certain ingredients.

If you are uncertain about a product you are considering, talk with a doctor – a dermatologist particularly to be certain.

If you already know all the risks, then buy one. Grabbing one is easy because different skin lightening products are available at a store near you; you can even find a product online. You can try this skin lightening product  because it is 100% safe and it does the job well.