Let’s face it, all of us desire and strive to keep our skin looking flawless and healthy without having to worry about concealing any imperfections. However, none of us are immune to unwanted skin woes, especially dark spots or, more technically, hyperpigmentation. It is undoubtedly, among the most dreaded and stubborn skin problems faced by people worldwide. With an unlimited number of skincare products being introduced to get rid of dark spots into the skincare world every day, it’s getting harder to know and trust that the product you choose will get rid of dark spots. If you’re also struggling to find the most suitable ways of preventing or getting rid of dark spots, worry not! Continue reading further, and this will act as your go-to guide to everything you need to know about dark spot treatment and prevention.
The first step towards treating any skin concern is understanding the factors that pave the way to its development. So, let’s start by understanding what dark spots are and what causes them.
What Are Dark Spots or Hyperpigmentation?
It is a skin condition that results from the production of a pigment, called melanin, in the skin. Extra deposits of this pigment in some areas of the skin make them look darker or patchy compared to the surrounding areas with your natural skin tone. A few common types of dark spots include melasma, age spots, freckles, post-inflammatory scars, liver spots, and sunspots. Dark spots or hyperpigmentation affect people of different age groups, skin types, ethnicity, and gender.¹ One of the reasons behind this condition is unprotected exposure and can occur anywhere on the body. However, most people are concerned with dark spots on their faces.
What Causes Dark Spots on Your Face?
A variety of factors can lay the groundwork for the formation of dark spots on your face. As mentioned earlier, dark spots or hyperpigmentation occurs due to the excess production of melanin-producing cells (melanocytes) in the skin, which gives the skin its color. The following contributing factors mainly stimulate the higher release of these cells:
- Oxidative stress (including sun damage)
- The natural process of aging
- Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation
- Hormonal fluctuation or disturbance
- Improper diet and unhealthy habits
- Medical Conditions
- Allergic reactions to certain medicines
- And genetics
Luckily, no matter the cause or extent of skin damage, numerous skincare ingredients can help to lighten, treat, and prevent dark spots.
How to Get Rid of Dark Spots?
If you feel the damage has already been done, and you’re struggling to restore your skin to its previous even-toned and glowing shape, don’t worry. It’s never too late to make quality improvements to your skincare routine. In the ever-evolving world of skincare and beauty, hundreds of manufacturers are introducing numerous products to treat and manage all sorts of skin woes. There is a never-ending list of options to choose from for getting rid of dark spots.
Now more than ever, skincare specialists, enthusiasts, and brands are turning to natural and safe ingredients instead of synthetic and chemical-laden ingredients. As a result, customers are making more conscious decisions about what they are putting their skin through. So scan through the labels of skincare products, identify the ingredients for reversing and reducing skin damage, including dark spots on the face. Then, with a proper skincare routine, you can turn back the clock and get your spotless skin back.
Which Ingredients Work the Best for Dark Spots?
We understand that it can be pretty overwhelming and sometimes annoying to find the right kind of skincare ingredients guaranteed to work for your specific skin concerns and help reduce and treat them. Similarly, it can be exhausting to get rid of dark spots if you fail to choose suitable skincare ingredients. But wait! We’ve got you covered. Below are a few of the most well-known, influential, and commonly used ingredients for treating dark spots:
- Vitamin C: When used as a skincare ingredient, vitamin C acts as a natural brightening and repairing agent. The topical application of this magical anti-hyperpigmentation and anti-aging ingredient accelerates the synthesis of collagen and elastin in the skin. It also inhibits the production of skin cells, melanocytes, which cause discoloration. This antioxidant acts as a shield against free radical damage, protecting the skin cells from breakdown and preventing the appearance of dark spots. It also deeply hydrates and nourishes the skin.
- Hyaluronic Acid: A naturally occurring compound in the body, it is among the most celebrated skincare ingredients due to its never-ending benefits for the skin. Hyaluronic Acid improves skin texture and helps skin appear tighter. It provides intense hydration, fortifying the skin’s lipid barrier and reducing the signs of aging. It works as a powerful antioxidant that defends against cell damage due to UV rays, free radicals, and other contaminants in the environment. Hyaluronic Acid also assists in the better production of collagen and speeds up blood circulation to the skin, ensuring an enhanced supply of micronutrients. It further soothes and repairs damaged skin, making it suitable for all types of skin. With so many benefits, we knew we had to include this powerful ingredient in Sundree’s RYSE+SHYNE facial serum, for happy, healthy skin.
- Peptides: These building blocks of amino acids are essentially responsible for upholding the structure of various proteins in the body, including collagen. A decline in their level can lead to loss of firmness, discoloration, and texture change. Peptides restore collagen and elastin levels along with their potent antioxidant action, which prevents dark spots and wrinkles from forming.
- Retinol: Commonly used as an anti-acne and anti-aging treatment, this derivative of vitamin A also works wonderfully to brighten the pigmented and uneven complexion.² Retinol is a skin-renewing and repairing ingredient. It accelerates the cell turnover rate, which helps shed damaged skin cells and replace them with healthier ones. Additionally, it amps up the level of collagen in the skin and tightens the pores. As a result, your skin appears even-toned, smoother, and more supple.
- Kojic Acid: How is it possible not to mention kojic acid while talking about pigment-reducing ingredients? Fungi produce this plant-based ingredient during the process of fermentation. This natural acid hinders and reduces the action of the amino acid tyrosine, which aids in the production of melanin. It also protects collagen from breaking down due to oxidative damage. These effects of kojic acid make it effective for dark spot treatment and prevention.
- Alpha Arbutin: This active compound is known to be the safest and commonly prescribed alternative to hydroquinone for improving skin tone and reducing dark spots on the face. While the latter works by breaking down melanocytes, alpha arbutin constrains the action of the enzyme (tyrosinase) that stimulates melanin synthesis in the body. As we know that the higher production of these cells otherwise contributes to uneven skin tone or discoloration; therefore, using alpha arbutin can prevent and reduce dark spots.
- Niacinamide: This compound has gained increased popularity in the beauty world over the past few years for the right reasons. This active form of vitamin B3 is water-soluble and is primarily used in water-based serums, moisturizers, lotions, and creams. It possesses potent anti-aging, antioxidant, soothing, hydrating, and brightening properties, making it suitable for treating various skin issues, including hyperpigmentation. Niacinamide is a gentle, non-acidic, and non-allergenic ingredient, even ideal for very dry, itchy, and sensitive skin. Also you guessed it! Niacinamide is one of the featured ingredients in Sundree’s gentle and mighty RYSE+SHYNE facial serum!
How to Prevent Dark Spots?
Well, it’s a no-brainer that you can’t achieve and maintain a radiant and healthy complexion without a bit of effort. It’s safe to say, many of us unintentionally take our skin for granted and only start taking care of it when it becomes problematic. The fact is that a preemptive approach can save you a lot of hassle, money, and time. The key to a smooth, plump, and vibrant complexion is adopting healthy skincare habits and following a consistent skincare routine that involves the use of skincare products with skin-savvy active compounds.
It’s crucial to continuously upgrade your skincare routine to account for the evolving needs of your skin. You don’t have to drain your hard-earned cash on visiting doctors or getting in-clinic procedures. Opting for skincare products with active compounds will ensure effectiveness.
The most significant and effective way of making sure your skin stays free of pesky dark spots is to keep it protected from the damaging radiation of the sun. Always apply and re-apply broad-spectrum sunscreen amply before heading out in the sun.³ Find a formula that works against both UVA and UVB rays.
The Bottom Line
Beautiful, bright, happy, and healthy skin doesn’t happen overnight. You need to find skincare products with the right ingredients and follow a diligent skincare regimen year-round to preserve your skin in its optimal health and appearance. The same goes for dark spots. First of all, understand the nature of dark spots on your face and then look for the appropriate products and treatments. We hope the list of skincare ingredients mentioned above will help you kickstart your journey to getting rid of dark spots and achieving the skin of your dreams! Happy skin is on the way!
- American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. ‘Hyperpigmentation’, org. Accessed June 3, 2021. Available at: https://www.aocd.org/page/Hyperpigmentation.
- Allen, May. (2021). ‘The Best Retinol Serums for Anyone Who Doesn’t Know Where to Start’, Accessed June 3, 2021. Available at: https://www.byrdie.com/best-retinol-s
- Nathan, Neera. (2020). ‘Your Secret Weapon To Prevent Dark Spots And Slow Skin Aging’, Accessed June 3, 2021. Available at: https://www.forbes.com/sites/neeranathan/2020/05/27/your-secret-weapon-to-prevent-dark-spotscae60db2