Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

Products for Dark Spots

Products for Dark Spots Products for Dark Spots

If dark spots mar your complexion, skin care specialists at Free Beauty Tips say they can be cured. Also called age or liver spots, they come in shades from light tan to dark chocolate. Dr. Kevin Berman, at the Atlanta Center for Dermatologic Disease, in Georgia, says sun exposure is the major cause, so the first product to consider is sunscreen, but he urges a talk with your doctor first, as some skin cancers look like age spots.

Sun Blockers

According to a 2008 report published on the MedlinePlus website by dermatologists with the National Institutes of Health, or NIH, excess sun exposure is relatively easy to prevent. No other dark-spot treatment will be effective unless sun exposure is limited while you work on lightening your spots. NIH specialists also warn that tanning beds are as damaging as direct sun exposure and incompatible with effective treatment. The most important attribute of a sun-blocking cream is its sun protective factor, or SPF. Apply a cream with an SPF of at least 30, at least 30 minutes before you go out into direct sunlight. If you are sunbathing, apply at least 1 oz. of cream evenly over your whole body or a proportionate amount if only your face and arms are exposed. A thin application is ineffective. In winter, don't let the cold temperatures fool you; the sun is still very bright, especially over snow. Use sun-blocking creams with a high SPF in winter too.

Bleaches

Michelle Jacobs, a staff writer and skin care specialist at the Skin Treatment Association, warns against skin bleaches, or dark-spot lightening agents, containing hydroquinone. This chemical has been proven to be cancer-causing and skin-damaging in many ways. A number of European countries and the UK have banned its use entirely. The STA lists four products, without specific endorsement of any, as superior or excellent due to their exclusion of hydroquinone and inclusion of safer, effective ingredients, available in 2010 in the U.S.: MEDliten, Lucederm, Revitol and Makari. These are only a few of many good products whose ingredients include safe and effective lightening agents, without hydroquinone.

Other Ingredients

According to skin care specialists at Skin-Cares.net, you should read the ingredient label of any product advertised for lightening dark skin spots and, making sure hydroquinone is absent, look for at least one of three other compounds known to work well. Kojic acid, mandelic acid and alpha- or beta-hydroxy gels are newly discovered agents that bleach without irritation or inhibit the production of the dark pigment called melanin, nature's built-in sunblock. Melanin shades the delicate cellular components in your skin from excess sunlight, but when too much is produced, dark spots appear. The STA also lists alpha-arbutin as a safe and effective skin spot lightener.

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