What Is Skin Bleaching?
Skin bleaching is the practice of using chemicals to lighten the skin. It’s a popular procedure in many countries, especially among people with darker skin tones. Skin lightening is often used to treat skin conditions like acne scars, dark spots, and melasma. It can also be used for aesthetic reasons, to achieve a more even skin tone or lighter skin color.
Some beauty clinics post skin bleaching before and after pictures showing the whole face lightened by several shades. Others focus on removing birthmarks, dark patches, or other skin blemishes.
Whether you want to lighten your skin for medical or cosmetic reasons, it’s important to understand the skin bleaching process before you begin. Keep reading to learn more about it.
Types of Skin Lightening
There are two main ways to achieve lighter skin: skin-lightening creams and laser treatments.
Skin-lightening creams are the most popular method of skin bleaching. These products work by reducing the production of melanin, the pigment that gives skin its color. They’re available over the counter and by prescription, depending on where you live.
The creams typically contain hydroquinone, a bleaching agent that can cause skin irritation, redness, and swelling. Long-term use of hydroquinone has been linked to a condition called ochronosis, which causes blue-black skin discoloration. For this reason, hydroquinone is banned in many countries.
Alternatively, the creams might contain corticosteroids, such as hydrocortisone. These can also cause skin irritation and should only be used for a short time. Many skin bleaching before and after pictures show people who have been using them for much longer than recommended.
Laser Skin Lightening
Laser treatments are another option for skin lightening. These procedures use intense pulsed light to damage melanocytes – the cells that produce melanin. The treatments can be painful and may require numbing. They work on some people but not others, and they’re not permanent.
Because of the high price tag and potential risks, laser skin lightening is typically only done on small areas of skin, such as dark spots on the face. It’s not recommended for large areas of skin, such as the whole body. Each session lasts 30-60 minutes and you may need multiple sessions to see results.
How to Prepare for Skin Bleaching?
No matter which skin bleaching method you choose, it’s important to take some time to prepare your skin beforehand. This will help reduce the risk of skin irritation and other side effects.
First, you’ll need to cleanse your skin thoroughly. Use a gentle cleanser that won’t strip away your skin’s natural oils. Next, exfoliate your skin to remove dead skin cells and allow the bleaching agent to penetrate more deeply. You can use a physical exfoliator, like a sugar scrub, or a chemical exfoliator, like glycolic acid.
Once your skin is clean and exfoliated, you’re ready to start bleaching. If you’re using a bleaching cream, apply it to the desired area according to the instructions. If you’re getting laser skin lightening, make sure to follow your doctor’s instructions on how to prepare for the treatment.
Talk to Your Doctor First
Skin bleaching is a decision that should not be taken lightly. Before you begin, it’s important to talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits. They can help you decide if skin bleaching is right for you and, if so, which method is best.
They can also provide you with skin bleaching before and after pictures to give you an idea of what to expect. Keep in mind that results vary from person to person, so you may not achieve the same results as someone else.
Skin Bleaching Before and After – What to Expect?
If you’re going to try skin bleaching, it’s important to have realistic expectations. In most cases, skin lightening creams will only lighten the skin by a few shades. Laser skin lightening can provide more dramatic results, but it’s not guaranteed to work for everyone, and it’s only used on dark patches and birthmarks.
It’s also important to note that skin bleaching is not permanent. You will need to keep using the product or getting laser treatments to maintain your results. This is because your skin is constantly renewing itself, so the bleaching agent will eventually be removed.
What Could Go Wrong?
Skin bleaching can cause side effects, such as skin irritation, redness, and swelling. Long-term use of hydroquinone has been linked to a condition called ochronosis, which causes blue-black skin discoloration. Here are some other risks associated with using skin-lightening creams:
- skin turning out too light or even darker than before;
- skin becoming thinner;
- visible blood vessels (spider veins);
- kidney, liver or nerve damage (if the product contains mercury).
Because skin bleaching can cause irreversible damage, it’s critical to consult with your doctor before using any specific product or undergoing any skin lightening treatment.
How to Care for Your Skin After a Lightening Treatment?
After skin lightening, it’s important to take care of your skin to help reduce the risk of side effects and skin irritation. Here are a few tips:
- cleanse your skin gently with a mild cleanser;
- exfoliate regularly to remove dead skin cells and help the skin regenerate;
- moisturize your skin to keep it hydrated;
- use sunscreen every day to protect your skin from damage.
You should also avoid touching or scratching your skin, as this can lead to skin irritation. If you experience any side effects, such as rashes or redness, be sure to talk to your doctor. Don’t try to wait it out or cover it up with makeup, as this can make the problem worse.
The Dangers of Skin Bleaching – Shady Products and More
Skin bleaching is a process that has been used for centuries to lighten the skin. However, it’s important to be aware of the risks involved before you decide to try it.
There are many shady skin bleaching products on the market that can cause serious side effects. Over-the-counter creams sold in Asian countries often contain mercury, which is very toxic and can lead to kidney, liver, and nerve damage. There have also been reports of skin lightening creams causing skin cancer.
Before you buy any skin bleaching product, be sure to do your research. Make sure you know what ingredients are in the product and whether or not they have been linked to any health risks. Test the product on a small area of skin before using it on your face. And always consult with your doctor before using any skin lightening product, especially if you have a skin condition.
Side Effects After a Laser Treatment
We’ve covered all the risks associated with skin bleaching creams, but what about skin lightening treatments? It will take 1-2 weeks to recover from the laser treatment. During this time, your skin might be red and swollen, bruised or crusty. You might also experience skin irritation, itching, and peeling.
Once the scabs have fallen off, you might notice that your skin is lighter than before. For the next 6 months, it will be important to avoid sun exposure, as your skin will be more susceptible to damage. You should also use sunscreen every day and moisturize your skin regularly.
Proceed With Caution and Get Help If Necessary
Skin bleaching can be an effective way to lighten your skin. However, it’s important to proceed with caution and consult with your doctor before using any skin lightening product or undergoing any skin lightening treatment. Be sure to do your research and only use products that have been tested and proven to be safe. If you experience any side effects, talk to your doctor immediately.
Have you looked at skin bleaching before and after pictures? What did you think? Share your thoughts in the comments below!