Melasma is a common skin problem that affects millions of people every year. lt causes dark patches to form on the facial area. Treatments like chemical peels and laser treatments are available to help get rid of this skin condition, but melasma home remedies such as aloe vera gel are also effective.
Also known as chloasma, melasma is common among women, especially pregnant women or women taking birth control pills. People living in areas where there is a lot of sunlight are more likely to experience melasma because the rays of the sun can cause the dark patches to show up.
The most common symptom of melasma is a dark colored change in skin color that usually shows up on the upper lip, cheeks, nose, and forehead. The forearms and the neck area can also be affected by melasma.
Usually melasma is diagnosed by an experienced dermatologist by just taking a look at the distribution and pigmentation of the melasma on the skin. Sometimes a sample of the skin is extracted to take a closer look under a microscope.
Melasma Home Remedies
If you’re interested in melasma home remedies you’ll be happy to know there are many to choose from. However, avoiding things that can trigger the re-occurrence of this skin condition like high exposure to the sun is very important.
By protecting your skin from the sun you not only help improve the appearance of melasma, but you’ll also help prevent it from returning when it is gone. Some of the things you can do to protect your skin from sun exposure include:
- Wearing clothing that covers your face, ears, and neck.
- Wearing UV protective sunglasses.
- Wearing sunscreen that contains SPF 30 or more.
- Using a good sunscreen for melasma before going out into the sunlight.
- Reapplying sunscreen every couple of hours during the day.
Sun Protecting Foods
One of the best homemade remedies for melasma is to eat foods that build up the skin’s protection against UV damage from the sun. The reason these foods work is because they naturally strengthen your epidermal armor.
Some of these sun protecting foods include:
Tomatoes contain an antioxidant known as lycopene that can naturally help protect your skin from the sun. Not only tomatoes, but any red vegetable can act as a natural sunblock thanks to the lycopene antioxidant they contain.
However, the best source of lycopene is found in tomato paste. If you are not a big fan of eating tomatoes you can get lycopene supplements from your local pharmacy, which will be a good substitute.
Another great food to eat for natural sun protection are carrots. Carrots contain beta-carotene, which is an antioxidant that helps protect the skin from sun damage and repair skin cells.
We recommend eating around 6 carrots each day to get the daily beta-carotene needed to strengthen your skin and help reverse melasma.
Alternatively you can take 30 milligrams of beta-carotene to help protect against the sun. You can also apply beta-carotene topically on affected areas a natural treatment for melasma.
One of the best home remedies for melasma is green tea. Green tea contains catechins that help protect the skin against the effects of exposure to UV radiation.
Look for green tea supplements at your local pharmacy or health food store and take them a couple times daily to get the catechins your skin needs.
Just like carrots, sweet potatoes are packed with beta-carotene and adding them to your diet can help you strengthen your skin so it can be protected from the sun and prevent melasma.
Go for the big sweet potatoes at your grocery store and try not to cook them too long or they’ll lose a lot of their skin protection nutrients. Bake them in the oven at 400 degrees until they become soft and eat as is.
If you like salmon then you’re going to love the fact that it’s packed with omega-3 fatty acid, which helps strengthen skin cells. Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) are all omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon and can help improve your skin’s ability to tolerate UV radiation from sun exposure.
Astaxanthin is an antioxidant found in wild caught salmon that gives it its red/orange color. This antioxidant can reduce dark spots and protect your skin from solar radiation. In fact, astaxanthin is so effective at providing sun protection that some experts thought it would make a good topical sunscreen.
Salmon can be pretty expensive these days so if you can’t get your hands on salmon as much as you would like we suggest getting the 4 mg astaxanthin supplement and take each day.
Fruits contain a wide range of vitamins and antioxidants that can help reduce dark spots brought on by melasma and protect your skin from exposure of sun.
Some of these fruits include grapes, strawberries, blueberries, pomegranates, and oranges. Eating these fruits will provide your skin with the vitamins and antioxidants it needs to help with melasma and sun protection.
Another one of the best melasma home remedies are vitamins such as vitamin C. Also known as ascorbic acid, vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that can help with pigment spots brought on by melasma. It does this by stopping the production of melanin in the skin and decreasing oxidized melanin.
How to Use: If you use vitamin C powder simply combine it with a little water and apply it directly to the affected areas on the facial. If you decide to use vitamin C powder mix it with a little lemon juice to help make it an even more effective natural melasma treatment.
You can also get vitamin C liquid gel capsules and crack them open daily to remove the gel inside. Apply the gel from the vitamin C capsule on the melasma to help correct the discoloration.
Whether you use vitamin C serum, cream, or powder to get rid of melasma make sure you leave it on the affected area for at least 20 minutes before rinsing off.
Oxidation of Vitamin C
Vitamin C can oxidize very easily, which takes away its skin lightening properties that you need for treating melasma. Moreover, when vitamin C oxidizes it can actually lead to damaged skin if applied.
Well how do you know if your vitamin C serum or cream is oxidized? Most of the time you’ll notice your vitamin C serum or cream is oxidized if it turns a yellow color.
However, if your vitamin C serum, powder, or cream doesn’t turn yellow after a while then there isn’t much vitamin C in it.
Derived from vitamin A, retin A comes in generic prescription called tretinoin and it helps get rid of melasma by increasing the turnover rate of new skin. Some of the other benefits associated with applying retin A on the skin include:
- Producing more collagen.
- Increasing blood circulation to your skin.
- Thickens your skin layers.
All of these benefits that retin A provides helps promote reduced pigmentation or discoloration, and also helps protect your skin against the rays of the sun.
How to Use: The best way to use retin A as a melasma home remedy is to apply it at night before you go to sleep. Before you apply retin A (tretinoin) clean your face off thoroughly with a cleanser and then dry your face off completely.
You may notice a little bit of irritation during the first few applications of retin A on your facial, but this will get better after a few weeks. Use the retin A (tretinoin) for melasma treatment a couple times each week for the best benefit.
The juice of a lemon contains citric acid that can be used to naturally lighten the unwanted pigmentation caused by melasma.
How to Use: Simply apply lemon juice directly onto the affected areas on your face and leave it on for at least 20 minutes without rinsing off. There are also facial creams, lotions, and masks that contain the juice of lemons that can be used to treat melasma naturally.
Using castor oil for skin health is nothing new. It’s one of the best melasma home remedies because it evens out the skin’s pigmentation naturally when applied and left on the skin overnight.
Applying this oil onto the affected areas on your facial will also help prevent the development of melasma and heal the dark spots already present by protecting your skin from the rays of the sun.
Some of the properties of castor oil that makes a great home remedy for castor oil includes: minerals, vitamins, omega oils, fatty acids, and vitamins.
How to Use: To use castor oil to get rid of melasma naturally you can soak a cotton ball in the oil and then apply it directly to your the affected areas on your face. For the best results leave it on overnight so the castor oil can go to work lightening your skin.
Believe it or not but one of the best natural home remedies for melasma is Greek, non-fat, unflavored yogurt. It helps reduce the appearance of melasma on the face thanks to the lactic acid it contains.
Lactic acid has bleaching properties that can help even out your skin discoloration. Check out this study involving the use of lactic acid for a melasma treatment. The yogurt also helps with the production of new skin cells
How to Use: The best way to use this home remedy to clear melasma is to use it as a facial mask. Wash and clean your face thoroughly and then apply a thin layer of plain Greek yogurt and let it sit on affected areas for at least 10 minutes before rinsing it off.
This vitamin is a great melasma home remedy because it helps inhibits melanin production and helps your skin recover more quickly.
How to Use: You can apply vitamin E creams or lotions directly on the affected area to get the most benefit.
Eating more vitamin E rich foods in your diet daily can also help. Some of the richest sources of vitamin E include fish, nuts, seeds, and green leafy vegetables like spinach.
Vinegar has some very potent skin whitening properties that makes it one of the best home remedies to lighten melasma on the face. If you don’t have a problem with the strong smell or taste of vinegar then you can definitely use it as a natural melasma home remedy.
Both apple cider vinegar and white vinegar can be used to lighten dark spots created by melasma. However, to get rid of melasma on your face naturally apple cider vinegar is definitely better.
Well how does apple cider vinegar lighten skin and remove dark spots? It’s the acidic content that the vinegar contains that makes it one of the best natural remedies for melasma.
Once the vinegar is applied to the face the acidic properties will go to work getting rid of dark spots and other unwanted blemishes.
How to Use: Since apple cider vinegar can cause some stinging and burning if applied on the skin it is best to dilute it first. Dilute the apple cider vinegar with equal amounts of water and then soak a cotton ball in it.
Once the cotton ball has been soaked apply it directly to the affected areas on your face. Leave the diluted ACV on your face for at least 15 minutes before rinsing off, or better yet overnight.
If you stay consistent with this natural remedy each day and night you should be able to lighten your dark spots caused by melasma.
The gel inside the aloe vera leaf has great skin lightening properties. The main substance in aloe vera that helps lighten dark spots on the face brought on by melasma is mucilaginous polysaccharide.
This substance is what gives aloe vera gel it’s ability to treat skin discoloration and unwanted dark spots by getting rid of dead skin cells and producing new skin cells.
How to Use: To apply aloe vera to affected area simply rub the gel into your face generously and leave it be for about 15 minutes. We recommend leaving the gel on overnight while you sleep so it can be more effective.
It’s the exfoliating properties that oatmeal contain that makes it one of the best ways to reduce skin pigmentation such as melasma.
How to Use: To use oatmeal for getting rid of melasma on your face naturally you’ll need to mix it with milk. Combine 1 cup of oatmeal with 1 cup of milk and mix it up.
Once a paste has been formed apply it directly on the affected areas on your face. Allow this oatmeal mixture to remain on your face for at least 10 to 20 minutes before rinsing off.
Another way to treat melasma on the face is using turmeric. This natural remedy contains an antioxidant known as curcumin, which helps lighten dark spots on the skin.
How to Use: You’ll need to mix turmeric powder with equal parts of water or milk. Apply the turmeric paste on the dark spots on your face and leave it on for about 15 minutes before rinsing off.
These are just some of the best melasma home remedies. You have to be patient when you use these home remedies for melasma because they will take a little time to produce results. All of them help reduce the appearance of melasma by reducing the production of melanin in the skin.