Welcome to mid-March, a bittersweet spot of the year where you’re stuck between enjoying a teeny tiny window of Spring, all the while panicking about a harshly heated Summer to come. While Summers will forever be synonymous with beachy vacays and getaways in the hills, the adult version of this season also comes with a ton of skincare scares. The worst of them being – pigmentation. After a couple of rough years of skipping sunscreen and braving through heat-induced breakout horrors, we’ve come up with a handful of skincare saviours – tried, tested, and loved – that work wonders in reducing the appearance of pigmentation on the skin.
Take a peek into our anti-pigmentation cheat sheet, and prep your skincare stash to fight this Summer’s frightful pigmentation:
1. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a potent anti-oxidant. It helps in reducing, repairing, and protecting the skin from oxidative stress. This oxidative stress includes sun damage, effects of environmental aggressors, overexposure to blue rays, etc. If you’re experiencing hyperpigmentation on your skin due to any of these reasons, Vitamin C skincare can be a game-changer for you.
How to use: Vitamin C should always be topped off with a broad spectrum SPF when used during the daytime, while you can do without for your nighttime skincare. Make sure to not pair other AHAs/BHAs, like glycolic acid, retinol, salicylic, and lactic acid with vitamin C. These combinations can prove to be harsh for your skin. Try to alternate these skincare actives on different days.
Recommended: The Body Shop Vitamin C Glow Boosting Moisturiser
The emperor of skincare town for the year, Retinol has bagged its skincare of the year award for all the right reasons. Retinol is a type of vitamin A that is a power-packed anti-aging superhero and also a strong contender for anti-pigmentation skincare. It helps supercharge the pace of skin cell turnover while exfoliating dead skin cells away.
How to use: Retinol rules the nighttime skincare due to its highly powerful nature. Suggested to be used in milder concentrations to start, it is usually recommended to be avoided for pregnant or lactating women. Avoid pairing it with Vitamin C, benzoyl peroxide, and other AHAs/BHAs.
Recommended: Innisfree Retinol Cica Repair Ampoule
Niacinamide is a type of Vitamin B3 that helps in restricting the process of skin cell pigmentation. If you have acne-caused blemishes, or pigmentation due to scars, niacinamide is the anti-pigmentation ingredient for you. It brightens the skin and increases skin cell metabolism.
How to use: Niacinamide is much simpler skincare active to deal with when it comes to mixing and matching. It is individually compatible with all other actives like vitamin C, retinol, peptides, hyaluronic acid, etc.
4. Glycolic Acid
One of the milder heroes of the AHA clan, Glycolic Acid is one of the most sought-after ingredients when it comes to hyperpigmentation or discoloration. It quickly penetrates the skin and acts fast on pigmentation by chemically exfoliating the upper layer of dead skin cells. It is the perfect choice of skincare if someone is struggling with post-inflammatory pigmentation or sun damage like age spots.
How to use: If you’re a newbie to the AHA/BHA game, try to not pair glycolic acid with powerful actives like retinol, salicylic acid, and other chemical exfoliants.
5. Azelaic Acid
Azelaic Acid is a skincare active that interferes with skin’s process of melanin production, which is basically how it combats hyperpigmentation. It is one of the most recommended skincare ingredients for pimple scars, hair bumps blemishes and uneven skin tone.
How to use: Avoid azelaic acid skincare without a dermatologist’s recommendation if you have super sensitive skin. To be on the safer side, patch test it on the back of your arm or on your lower cheek to check your skin’s sensitivity against the ingredient before going to town on the affected area.
With a myriad of skincare products hitting the market, it might get a little confusing to maneuver your way around the trendiest skincare active of the month. Use this anti-pigmentation ingredient guide to pick the best match for your problems.
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