Skin bleaching has been around for years. Hundreds of years. But that doesn’t mean it’s something you should get onboard with.
Skin Bleaching – The Origins
The practise of skin bleaching is thought to date back to 200 BCE when olive oil and honey was used by the Greeks, Romans, and Egyptians to lighten their skin. Olive oil and honey? Doesn’t seem too bad. But the Ancient Greeks also had a habit of using white lead facemasks to go a shade lighter. That’s a definite no. (It caused hair loss, erosion of tooth enamel, swelling, and discoloration of the skin – really not a good look).
Then there was the colonisation period when white-skinned Europeans enslaved African and Asian people, and white skin was seen as powerful and civilised. The Victorian period also saw women taking poisonous arsenic wafers to induce a paler complexion. Some things just need to be buried in the past – and at Este, we think skin bleaching is definitely one of them.
Is Bleaching Skin Bad?
If you suffer from hyperpigmentation, melasma, or chloasma, you may be tempted to try to bleach your skin in the hope that you will gain a more even skin tone. However, at Este, we strongly advise you not to. Is bleach bad for skin? Yes, and these side effects of skin bleaching will explain why -
- It thins your skin – want skin that’s easy to bruise? Prone to stretch marks? Isn’t able to heal easily? That’s exactly what skin bleaching can do for you. Yay
- It poses a cancer risk – ingredients in skin-lightening creams are hardcore and that’s why they’ve been banned in some countries. Creams that contain hydroquinone, mercury, or corticosteroids are illegal in the UK as they can be harmful when used incorrectly. Hydroquinone has been linked to squamous cell carcinoma – a type of skin cancer
- It can cause high blood sugar levels – skin lightening creams have been linked to people developing high blood sugar and diabetes. This is because ingredients such as steroids and hydroquinone can affect the endocrine system
- It will expose your skin to harmful UV rays – bleached skin is much more vulnerable and exposed to the sun’s UV rays, and this is well known to be linked to developing skin cancer
- Mercury poisoning – there are toxic levels of mercury in one out of every two skin lightening creams, so it’s best to leave them well alone
An At-Home Alternative to Skin Bleaching
With skin bleaching creams strictly off the radar and seriously bad for your health, we really don’t recommend trying this method of lightening your skin. If you’re still looking for a product that promises to deliver a brighter complexion that will fade discolouration, then take a look at the Mario Badescu Whitening Mask.
In-Salon Alternatives to Skin Bleaching
At Este, we’ve achieved great results for clients suffering from pigmented skin using two tried and tested methods. They are the Cosmelan Peel and Harmony Clearlift laser for pigmentation.
Take a look at our before and after pictures here, or check out Lara’s before and after results from her pigmentation peel. And it’s not just women who experience pigmentation issues, we’ve helped many men overcome problem pigmentation too. Check out the results we achieved for this man here.
The Cosmelan Peel
If you’re keen to avoid skin bleaching gone wrong scenarios, but you’re still desperate to improve your complexion and even out your skin tone, you have some great alternatives to treat yourself to at Este. Instead of skin bleaching dark spots pigmentation, you’d be much wiser to try the Cosmelan Peel.
This type of peel is ideal if you suffer from hyperpigmentation or melasma. Inhibitors that have a depigmenting effect mean that this peel works to target the skin cells that are producing your pigmentation. The melanin in these skin cells is reduced, and the area of skin that’s being treated is lightened. At the same time that this happens, the peel also works to promote the thickness and strength of your skin’s epidermis layer.
The Cosmelan Peel includes active ingredients such as Azelaic acid and Kojic acid which -
- Attack and kill bacteria
- Boost skin cell turnover and production
- Inhibit the production of melanin
- Inhibit the enzyme tyrosinase which also produces melanin
- Promotes a smooth and even complexion
Laser for Pigmentation
As well as the Cosmelan Peel, there’s another treatment for skin pigmentation issues that you can try. And, once again, this is a much safer alternative to skin bleaching. Your second option is laser for pigmentation.
The Harmony Clearlift laser uses wavelengths of light to target your problem pigmentation. As your skin absorbs this light, the melanin pigment that’s causing the discolouration is shattered – or broken up. Your body’s lymphatic system then kicks into action and works to dissolve this broken, unwanted pigment.
Over the course of a few treatments your pigmented areas will gradually reduce and disappear. Using laser for pigmentation problems instead of bleaching pigmentation skin is much safer, can be used on all skin types, and applied to any area of the body.
Don’t Reach for the Bleach. Call Us Instead
With the numerous associated risks of skin bleaching creams, please don’t take the risk. Instead, give your skin a break, keep it safe, and help it out with our FDA-approved technology that can beat pigmentation problems for all skin types.
Book your consultation and get the skin you want!
January 19, 2023