Sunday, January 1, 2012

Ingredients That Stop Melanin Production

If you want a clear and even complexion, you need to know which ingredients stop melanin production. Women throughout the world spend millions of dollars on foundation and concealers that just mask rather than prevent dark spots from occurring. Luckily for you, there are affordable products with ingredients that will stop those pesky spots from appearing on your skin.

Dark Spots

Melanin, the pigment that gives our skin color, is produced by cells called melanocytes. The darker your skin, the more your melanocytes produce melanin. Sometimes, deposits of melanin form in one area, resulting in a dark spot. Called hyperpigmentation, the dark spots are caused bygenetics, sun damage, hormonal changes, and skin irritation. Irritation from acne is a particularly common cause of dark spots.


Hydroquinone is one of the most effective ingredients that can stop melanin production. Hydroquinone decreases the skin cells' formation of melanin. While hydroquinone creams are effective, you need to be patient because it may take up to three months for you to see results. Hydroquinone creams are available in both over-the-counter and prescription products. Apply the cream only on your dark spots. Since you may over-bleach your skin if you're not careful, choose a lower-strength hydroquinone cream. Murad Age Spot & Pigment Lightening Gel, $60, DermStore, contains 2% hydroquinone in addition to glycolic acid. Glycolic acidexfoliates dead skin cells so that new, unblemished skin can emerge.

Bearberry Extract

If hydroquinone is too harsh for you or you are worried about the side effects, arbutin is a natural ingredient that stops melanin production. A natural extract found in wheat, bearberry and some types of pear, arbutin works the same way as hydroquinone. Arbutin is commonly referred to as bearberry extract. Both BioElements LightPlex Scientific Pigment Balancer, $52.50,, and Exuviance Skin Brightening Gel, $27.39, SkinElite, contains bearberry extract in addition to other ingredients that brighten the skin.

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