Skin Whitening / Lightening Treatment For Fairer, Lighter Skin?

Skin whitening: What you should know before using skin whitening creams

If you will never use a face cream that you know will have long-term adverse effects on your skin, then why use skin whitening creams? Skin lightening is a very controversial topic in India. While most intelligent and socially-aware people want them to be banned, a huge number of the populace still continues to use them. Studies that have been conducted have found that there are some active ingredients in most skin lightening products which have negative side effects in the long term. Even then, they continue to be endorsed by the popular icons of the day! If you are a user or thinking of using a fairness cream, it is important that you understand the realities involved.

Skin Whitening

The risk factors associated with most skin lightening products

There are many risk factors that recent studies have come up with and unless you study them with open eyes and ears, you are not going to realise why these products should be stayed away from. The truth is that a majority of these fairness products contain a chemical called hydroquinone. This is a chemical that has been continuously associated with the following:

  • An increase in the risk of mercury poisoning and all the diseases associated with it
  • An increase in the risk of skin cancer
  • It has also been linked to ochronosis, which is a rare metabolic disorder which can lead to a negative change in the tissue and skin of the body
  • Increase in the risk of hormonal problems


What did the USFDA do?

Putting into consideration the risks that have been associated with hydroquinone, the USFDA actually put forward a proposal to ban these fairness products once and for all. Still don’t see the harm in them? Well, perhaps the fact that fairness products containing the dangerous hydroquinone has been banned in countries like Japan, Australia and parts of Europe should hinder you from using them! Many other countries have gone for a partial ban by stopping the sale of such products without a doctor’s prescription.

What determines our skin colour?

The dermis and epidermis part of our skin naturally are yellowish in colour. The blood vessels that are present on the surface of the skin gives it a bluish tint. How whitish or dark a person is depends on the melanin content of the skin. Melanin is present in the basal layer of the skin. The higher the production of melanin in the skin, the darker it will be. The melanin performs vital functions including a protective role. It naturally protects your skin from the harmful rays of the sun. If you did not have melanin your skin, it would be extremely vulnerable to the rays of the sun and you would have had to protect it by always covering yourself up when you step out during the day. This is also the reason why in countries where more people have white skin, the occurrence of skin cancer is higher.

Safer products for lightening the complexion

If you have to use skin lightening products, here are the ingredients you should look for in place of mercury or hydroquinone.

  1. Licorice: This is an ingredient that prevents the darkening of the skin further due to harmful UV-B rays of the sun.
  2. Arbutin: This is also a safe ingredient and it does not have any odour or toxicity like hydroquinone.
  3. Vitamin A: This ingredient works wonderfully well for people who have skin conditions like skin infections, melasma, hyper pigmentation, etc.

Make sure you choose skin products with care.


24 thoughts on “Skin Whitening / Lightening Treatment For Fairer, Lighter Skin?

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  5. I don’t even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was great.
    I don’t know who you are but certainly you’re going to a famous blogger if you aren’t
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  9. I come across Fair cream as I was looking for some product who can work on pimples on my oily skin with out any adverse side effect on the skin.
    I decided to use fair cream as I found it complete ayurvedic solution with no known side effects. I must confess, initially, I was a bit apprehensive but when I used it for a couple of weeks, I get my pimples removed and a visible glow on my face. I would like to recommend it for anyone looking to get rid of pimples and in general as well.

  10. am very dark to look . I want to lighten my skin . As my marriage is coming near . So tel me any skin whitening cream , lotion . Which is very powerfull . Plzz do help me

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  13. Glutathione is an antioxidants that protect our cell from free radicals. And since are skin are made of cells, then this gives us a healthier skin.

  14. I needed to appreciation for an excellent read!! I am emphatically relishing every small bit of it. I’ve you bookmarked to uncover new stuff you blog post.

  15. thanks for the inspiration, your blog looks excellent! I have been having trouble getting motivated with mine but this definitely pumped me up!

  16. Totally agree with u Dr.Shome
    It’s very sad to know being fair is considered to be beautiful and many aspiring to reach that goal and in that process putting themselves at risk sometimes permanent damage as everyone is aware as that of Michael Jackson.

    Also sad to see so many commercials aired for fairness creams being endorsed by our well know film actors. Actually makes me wonder do they really know about theses products and given the choice do they truly use them??
    For a common man/ woman these endorsements by their favorite actor or actress makes a lot of impact in choosing things.

    Wonder do we really need to do it???
    As everyone is aware external beauty is only skin deep and the true one is yourself.Also are the well known accomplishmens of many famous personalities who are not so very” fair skinned”

    My take on this would be keep the skin healthy and let it breath and u will glow and radiate your beauty even by not being FAIR.

  17. I totally agree with Dr Shome and I appreciate his effort to raise awareness against skin lightening through this informative post. Our society must admit that skin ligtening is a mental and social disease. Majority of people are putting themselves through dangerous chemical mixtures all in the hopes of getting “lighter” and becoming beautiful/Handsome. Whatever the reason might be for doing this, it is important to remember that God made us, in different shades of skin color, it’s not a mistake in whatever skin, shape, we have, and God does not make any superior, or better than the other. True beauty comes from within, and that people can only see that which we radiate from the inside, and we must learn to appreciate what we have. We only have one skin, and whatever harsh chemicals we put on it cannot be reversed, instead of trying to change one’s complexion; we should focus on how best to take care of it and let it radiate the way it should 🙂
    Thank you Dr Raj, for creating such a informative portal. Your blog happens to be not only knowledgeable but also very inventive too. What puzzles me is this: “If such products are deadly and dangerous, why are they in the market in the first place?

    • Thank you, Viji, for your kind comments.

      Absolutely, Viji, We should make OUR skin the best it can be! So, fairer skin is NOT necessarily beautiful skin – Important to understand that – Fairer skin with huge acne lesions is definitely not better or more desirable than darker skin which is clearer, for sure.

      Commerce, Viji, Commerce! These beauty products are in the market in the first place so that many people can make truck loads of money! That’s how simple this is to decipher. 🙂

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