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The Best Way to Lighten Dark Knees & Elbows

The Best Way to Lighten Dark Knees & Elbows The Best Way to Lighten Dark Knees & Elbows


When your knees and elbows are darker than the surrounding skin, it's often due to deposits of excess melanin forming areas of hyperpigmentation. This skin discoloration isn't usually a cause for alarm, since inflammation and ultraviolet light can contribute to this condition. Both factors increase the production of melanin, the compound that gives your skin its color. To lighten these areas of hyperpigmentation, topical creams are usually the best form of treatment.

Step 1

Talk to a doctor or dermatologist. According to the National Institutes of Health, you can experience what's known as skin bronzing to the elbows, knees and knuckles as a result of an underlying condition involving your endocrine system.

Step 2

Apply hydroquinone to the darkened knees and elbows, urges the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. This topical lightener breaks up the excess melanin contributing to the hyperpigmentation. The National Institutes of Health advise its use for only three weeks at a time.

Step 3

Cover the knees, elbows and other areas of the skin with a sunscreen. Sun exposure is known to darken areas of hyperpigmentation by stimulating the production of melanin, which can offset any improvements to the skin through the use of hydroquinone. Look for a sunscreen with a sun protection factor of 30 or more.

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