When you have skin discolorations and imperfections, your natural inclination may be to choose a skin lightening or bleaching product that promises to even out the flaws and leave you looking radiant and stunning.
However, not all of these products are created equal. Some use hazardous or even banned ingredients that could cause you more harm than good as you attempt to banish those unsightly dark marks and spots.
It is important to become aware of the more common banned and questionable ingredients to make sure that when you choose a skin lightening product, you’re putting yourself on the path toward a healthier and more even looking complexion, and not a list of potential side effects.
Two ingredients that are still used in many different skin products that you need to be particularly wary of are hydroquinone and steroids.
Hydroquinone – the hazards relating to this lightening ingredient have been widely publicized, and yet it is still used in formulations from many countries around the world. It is still legal to purchase over the counter creams in concentrations of up to 2 percent and prescription products with concentrations of up to 4 percent in the United States. Many other countries, such as Canada, have been quick to ban or highly restrict the use of this substance. This is because its benefits for fading dark spots are inconsistent and this ingredient is a known carcinogen. It can also cause a condition called Ochronosis, when used over extended periods of time. This causes thick blackish blue patches on the skin that look far worse than the dark spots or freckles you were trying to remove.
Steroids – topical corticosteroids (for example, hydrocortisone) can provide a rapid temporary whitening effect, but it is not safe to use these products over prolonged periods. It is illegal in the United States to sell this ingredient specifically for skin lightening, as it is considered only a side effect in treatments for conditions such as eczema or dermatitis. The use of this ingredient can lead to thin, fragile skin, excessive hair growth, fungal and bacterial infections, and irritation.
Fortunately nowadays, there are many highly effective skin lighteners that use only safe and natural ingredients. It is important to stick with these types of products when choosing a skin lightener. It is especially important to choose a lightening cream made from safe ingredients, when performing any sort of sensitive area lightening such as anal bleaching. The best anal bleaching creams are those made from entirely natural plant based ingredients.
No matter what part of your body you would like to lighten, care must be taken when choosing any sort of skin lightening product. If you have any doubts at all, it is always best to consult with your doctor first.