The melanin level in your body determines the color of your skin. Oxidation and polymerization of the amino acids produce melanin. There are those people who have little melanin and those with an abundance of it. However, some have no melanin at all; these are the pale white people; commonly referred to as albinos. Even the ‘white people’ who are not actually white but pale colored have melanin but in small concentration.
Due to high levels of technology and success that most of the people who live in the first world countries have shown, it is possible to reduce the melanin in your skin and have a lighter complexion. Those who pursue this route are mostly the ones with a darker skin color. The most affected are the celebrities. But how do celebrities bleach their skin? They use a variety of melanin reduction strategies. Some use HP (hydrogen peroxide) skin lightening products while others take pills.
How does melanin exactly affect skin complexion?
Melanocytes cells help in the production of melanin. It can either be Eumelanin [brown and black] or Pheomelanin [red and yellow]. Dark skinned people produce eumelanin, and pale colored Europeans produce pheomelanin. Hormones control melanin production, for example, Melanorcotin 1 receptors, KIT-ligand, and Agouti genes. Due to these facts, the skin color can be artificially controlled through a number of ways as we shall see shortly.
Melanin affects the skin complexion depending on the concentration on the skin. If it is high, there is a darker shade and vice versa. How much melanin your skin makes depends on the inherited genes. However, sun exposure speeds up the process of melanin production. This is the main reasons infants are lighter and becomes darker as they grow up.
How to reduce melanin production:
The end goal of all skin lightening efforts is to reduce the amount of melanin in the body. There are 1001 ways to do this, but we are going to outline just a few:
- Use of products with high levels of Vit A, Vit C, and Vit E
- The use of homemade remedies like honey, oatmeal, tomato juice, and sour cream
- Use natural cosmetic products like those containing Aloe Vera
- Use sun screen to protect your skin
- Through surgery
- Taking skin lightening pills
- Bleaching skin with hydrogen peroxide
- Melanin reduction naturally
- Drinking lots of fluids and maintaining proper hydration levels.
- Eating certain fruits and avoiding malnutrition of any kind.
Are celebrities addicted to skin lightening?
Celebrities are those well-known or famous characters in the society. They always want to look good and perfect. One of the things that really get on their nerves is physical appearance. All of them are working to appear nicer and fresher. The dark-skinned celebrities are the ones who carry a bigger burden. They are spending millions of money to brighten their complexion.
The Asian population is also obsessed with the skin lightening euphoria, and more than 40% of the population is estimated to be using the skin lightening products. However, there are some ambassadors, both in African countries and from the Asian countries who are preaching how to lighten skin naturally and permanently (if it has to be reduced).
One popular pop star, Michael Jackson, said it doesn’t matter whether you are black or white in his song ‘Black or White’. But did he mean it? That is a subjective discussion. Based on the metamorphoses he was going through in life, as far as his tone and skin color are concerned, it shows that skin color mattered to him. However, as usual, every celebrity has an excuse for the bleaching they get. Michael Jackson bleaching his skin was attributed to a skin disorder he was trying to clear.
Other popular celebrities accused of skin lightening are Rihanna, Beyonce, Lil’ Kim, and the list goes on. With the skin lightening waves hitting celebrities, we can clearly say many in the limelight want their skin lightened. Are they to blame? All of society might be infected. Even ordinary citizens are immensely using skin lightening products.
According to some surveys performed in Asian countries, out of every 10 women, four had used skin lightening products. A majority of the men polled expressed that their women would look more beautiful if they had a lighter complexion. Maybe all these are because in the ancient times’ blacks used to work in the fields and were perceived as inferior.
All these things complicate the equation that leaves the space open for anyone who wants to be a player in the market. Furthermore, the skin lightening products are freely sold in the market. But the population needs to be informed about the side effects of major skin lightening products. The light skin syndrome will probably not let up in the next few years.
Bleaching skin with hydrogen peroxide (HP):
Hydrogen peroxide has many uses. However, if you are using hydrogen peroxide as a skin lightener, make sure to use the food grade hydrogen peroxide. It can help you get rid of dark spots on the skin as well as improve the skin complexion. It’s one of the ingredients in most of the skin lightening soaps and creams.
The science behind HP comes from the fact it’s acidic and works by peeling the top layer or corrosively consuming the top layer of the skin. This results in the growth of new cells which are lighter than the eliminated aged ones. So, implicitly as the new cell ages, they become darker. As a result, the use of hydrogen peroxide to lighten the skin isn’t a permanent fix.
Hydrogen Peroxide Paste to Lighten the Skin
To prepare the hydrogen peroxide bleaching paste, you need 2.5 spoons of flour and 2 spoons of hydrogen peroxide, 1 spoonful of milk and some water to make a thick paste. Apply the paste on your face as if you are doing a face mask and leave it to stand for 15 minutes before washing your face and drying it with a towel.
It is worth noting that if you rub HP on the skin, it becomes paler almost immediately. This is not an indication of how effective it is as a lightening agent, but rather it is a manifestation of other elements. HP causes capillary embolism where it inhibits the flow of blood for a brief period. That is what causes brief whitening of the skin when it comes into contact with the skin.
Use of pills for skin lightening:
A more rampant way of melanin reduction in skin lightening efforts is the use of pills. The majority of people prefer this route since the chances of getting it wrong are minimal. You only need to follow the prescriptions, and that’s all. Most of the celebrities prefer this method because they work on tight schedules and have very many things to handle in a day. As such they automate or minimize their physical input in the majority of them whenever it is possible.
Some of the skin lightening pills celebrities use:
- Ivory caps glutathione pills
- Glutathione whitening pills
- Kyusoku Bihaku
- BeauOxi White Plus 5-in-1
- Mosbeau Placenta White Advanced Supplement
- Fairtone Skin Lightening Pills
Major skin lightening creams on the market:
Almost every beauty cream on the market today has a lightening element. Why would they put it there? That’s what sells. Everyone wants to look younger than their age and also feel softer on the skin. Dry skin is a put-off. The skin lightening activities have gone high tech, and this has triggered the manufacturers to make special creams for skin lightening only.
Some of the skin lightening creams on the market today are:
- Porcelena skin lightening cream
- Meladerm skin lightening cream
- Amaira natural skin care
- Skin bright
- Amoils creams
- Zeta white
- Illuminatural 6i
- Obagi nu-derm clear
Melanin reduction through surgery
Some of the skin whitening products in the market only works in the particular areas of application. This is most common with the soaps and the creams. As a result, you get brown people on the face but black on the feet and hands and other hidden body parts. This problem has been solved by dermatologists who do surgery to ensure balanced melanin production. The process is costly but definitely worth every dollar.
If you decide to use injections and other surgical means to lighten your skin, ensure to get treatments from registered doctors. Consult widely and even ask for before and after images of prior patients who have undergone the same treatment.
Are soaps effective in skin lightening?
One of the cheaper available options to lighten your skin is the use of certain soaps. These soaps have bleaching agents as their main ingredients. The process will take longer to show good results, but a majority of beauty practices requires patience. Some of the brands of soaps available in the market are:
- Kojie san skin whitening soap
- Relumins Advance Whitening soap
- Diana Stalder Whitening Soap
- Shouvy Kojic Acid and Glutathione Soap
- Vaadi Herbals Sandalwood Oil Bar Soap
- Beyond Perfection Kojic Acid, Placenta & Glutathione
- Professional Whitening Kojic Acid Dual Whitening/Bleaching Soap
Is skin lightening practice ethical?
This is a hard question and one that is hard to get a good discussion on. Many will deny their use of skin lightening products. If one is to use skin whitening products, they should read prescriptions properly and avoid products with mercury. There are also several cases where bleaching efforts have backfired leaving the involved party in a hospital.
As with almost all other products, too much effort to brighten your skin can be dangerous to your health. Do things in moderation and don’t go for instant options. If you need results within a short period, then the only option available is surgery. All the other skin lightening practices/treatments require time and patience. Don’t be fooled that using too much of a substance will hasten the process. What you might end up with some serious side effects.
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