Brown spots on skin, which are also known as age spots, solar lentigines, sun spots, liver spots and senile lentigo, are a very widespread form of dermatological changes.
Normally, brown spots on skin are harmless, although many people, especially women, consider them to be unattractive. There is a popular belief, that brown spots make skin look older than wrinkles. Thus, some people are doing everything in order to get rid of these skin changes.
In order to choose the right treatment, it is essential to learn the causes of brown spots, since it is very easy to get them back even after the most efficient therapy. In addition to it, you will see that there is a great deal of home remedies, which can be successfully used against brown spots.
The Causes of Brown Spots on Skin
Sometimes it is difficult to find out the real cause of brown spots on skin. Nonetheless, it is obvious that the skin pigment called melanin is responsible for the production of brown spots.
There are several known factors, which can cause the appearance of brown spots on skin. Of course, the main agent is UV (ultraviolet radiation).
Many people believe that the sun is the biggest evil producing ultraviolet rays; therefore, they prefer using tanning beds. Nevertheless, tanning beds have the same harmful impact on skin as the sun does. It means, that those, who enjoy sunbathing, as well as those who like browning in tanning beds have equal chancing of getting brown spots on their skin.
Consequently, the appearance of brown spots is more excessive with aging. Senile lentigo attacks all the visible parts of a body, which are exposed to the sun light. Thus, a face, shoulders, back sides of hands, forearms and the upper back part are susceptible to the appearance of brown spots most of all.
Although sun spots can develop on skin of people of any race, age or sex, the people with fair skin are the most vulnerable. Moreover, some people with particular genetics have more chances of getting brown spots.
The Medical Treatment of Brown Spots on Skin
Before you decide to treat brown spots on your skin with any medicaments or homemade remedies, it is advisable to visit a doctor in order to diagnose them. Undoubtedly, those, who have had freckles since their childhood won’t have any doubts concerning the nature of their brown spots. Nonetheless, in case your brown spots have just started showing and you are not sure about them, it is advisable to consult a doctor.
A doctor will examine your spots, checking their appearance. If your medical adviser has any doubts, he or she will perform a biopsy in order to rule out the possibility of oncological nature of your brown spots.
You should be serious about visiting a doctor, since t is sometimes rather difficult to understand, whether a brown spot is a harmless solar lentigo, or it is a sign of a life-threatening illness. It may be rather baffling to check your brown spots yourself, since senile lentigens can differ in their colour and texture. The only thing, which is always the same in case of sun spots, is that they are absolutely painless.
There is no actual necessity in treating brown spots on skin. It is a matter of aesthetical feelings of a person. Whereas some people consider freckles to be cute and attractive, some people have a desire for getting rid of sun spots by any cost.
Thus, modern medicine offers several ways of escape from your brown spots.
You can get a medication on prescription or over-the-counter one. These medications are creams, which will help you to bleach your brown spots, although the process can take several months. Since the creams given on prescription have higher concentration of active substances, such as hydroquinone or retinoids (for instance, tretinoin), they may work more effectively than their over-the-counter alternatives.
Other over-the-counter bleaching creams can contain such substances as deoxyarbutin, alha hydroxy acid, kojic acid and glycolic acid. Remember, that these creams have an essential side effect: they increase skin sensitiveness to the damaging effect of ultraviolet radiation.
There is a great deal of medical procedures used for bleaching brown spots, which is offered by cosmeticians, dermatologists and plastic surgeons. The most popular medical methods are cryosurgery, laser treatment, dermabrasion and chemical treatment.
Cryosurgery is a medical technology used for getting rid of tissues by freezing them with liquid nitrogen. It is widely used in plastic surgery and dermatology.
Laser treatment is a method, which focus on the cells producing melanin and destroy them.
Dermabrasion is medical treatment, which is based on the exfoliation of skin layers. It takes the layers with pigment in order to give a place for growing to new fair skin.
The chemical-based method is similar to dermabrasion, although dermabrasion usually uses mechanical force for skin exfoliation whereas the chemical method uses special chemical peels for destroying the outer pigmented layers of skin.
The Best Home Remedies for Brown Spots on Skin
The medical methods, used for bleaching brown spots, are damaging skin. Thus, beyond a shadow of a doubt, these medical treatments can cause side effects. Therefore, you can use one of the home remedies for getting rid of solar lentigo.
You will find these methods very useful and beneficial for the condition of your skin. Let’s look through the most effective remedies for brown spots on skin.
Oils as a Remedy for Brown Spots on Skin
You will find a great deal of natural oils, which can be used successfully for bleaching brown spots on your skin. Nonetheless, the most popular oils used for this purpose are castor oil, coconut oil, sandalwood oil, olive oil and almond oil.
Castor Oil, Almond Oil, Olive Oil
Castor oil can be used for a gentle massage of the areas of your skin covered with brown spots. It can be applied on your skin with a cotton ball and then massaged in your skin gently. You can leave castor oil on your skin for several hours before rinsing your skin.
The same procedure can be done with almond oil and olive oil.
Sandalwood oil is a very effective substance used for reducing hyperpigmentation. You can apply this oil on your brown spots and live it on your skin overnight. Mixing sandalwood oil with the oils, which have been described above, can increase the effectiveness of the bleaching activity of sandalwood oil.
Juices as a Remedy for Brown Spots on Skin
Lemon juice is an extremely beneficial substance, which can be used for the beauty of your skin. Not only does lemon juice help to bleach brown spots on your skin, but it also cleanses the skin, makes it soft and fresh.
You can apply fresh lemon juice on the area of your skin, covered with brown spots, and keep the juice on your skin for 30 minutes. Use cold water for rinsing your skin. The procedure should be repeated twice a day during two months.
In case your skin is very sensitive, you should dilute the juice before using it. You can use honey or water for this purpose.
You can also make a paste of lemon juice and sugar. In order to get the consistency of a paste, you just need to add enough of sugar to the juice. Such a substance can be used effectively as a scrub.
Apply the paste on your face and massage the skin gently for 5-10 minutes. Don’t forget to rinse the mixture. This procedure can be repeated several times a week.
Aloe Vera Juice
In case your brown spots have appeared after the exposure to the sun, you will find the juice of aloe vera particularly beneficial. This substance is featured with extremely effective healing properties.
Apply the juice on your brown spots. Leave the substance on your skin for 30 minutes. Rinse it off with cold water. You can repeat this procedure twice a day. You will see, how your brown spots are vanishing, after a month of applying aloe vera juice on your skin.
If you have an opportunity to purchase fresh aloe vera, you can apply the parts of this plant directly on your skin.
Onion or Garlic Juice
Despite their specific smell, onion and garlic juices have notable bleaching features due to their acidic properties. Thus, you can use these juices effectively as a home remedy for getting rid of solar lentigens.
For example, you can take the slices of several onions and apply them on your brown spots. This procedure can be repeated three times during a day.
You can also prepare onion juice or garlic juice and mix it with honey (add two tablespoons of honey to a tablespoon of juice). Cover the affected area with this mixture and leave it for 15 minutes. It will be good to repeat this procedure twice a day.
Pineapples contain bromelain, an enzyme, which can help you to get rid of your brown spots without any damaging impact on your skin.
You can use fresh pineapple juice (only that one, which does not contain any sugar) as a toning lotion for your skin. You just need to apply it on your brown spots with a cotton ball. When the juice dries on your skin, you can clean it with cold water.
Another way of using the bleaching properties of bromelain is to make a cosmetic mask of a pineapple. You just need to take several slices of this fruit and cover your brown spots with them. Wait until the slices dry, then take them away and clean your skin with cold water.
Other effective homemade remedies
Sandalwood is an extremely beneficial substance for your skin, since it is featured with active anti-aging and antiseptic qualities. Thus, using sandalwood for bleaching brown spots will also help you to make your skin healthy and beautiful.
Sandalwood powder can be used effectively with orange juice and vitamin E. Mix 2 tablespoons of sandalwood powder, a tablespoon of orange juice and two capsules of vitamin E. This agent should be applied on your skin and leaved there for at least half an hour. Then you can clean your skin with cold water.
You can also try a modification of this homemade lotion. You should mix 2 tablespoons of sandalwood powder with rose water (up to 2 teaspoons). Add a teaspoon of lemon juice. The mixture will have better properties if you add a teaspoon of glycerin.
This substance should be applied on your brown spots. Leave the mixture on your skin until it dries. The mixture should be rinsed off with cold water. You can use this remedy several times a week.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Try apple cider vinegar as an effective home remedy for brown spots. You can use it in the solution with orange juice (you can take several tablespoons of juice and a couple of vinegar drops). The mixture should be applied on the sun spots just for several minutes. It is advisable to do this procedure once a day. Do not forget to clean the substance from your skin.
You can also use apple cider vinegar in the mixture with honey and water. According to the recipe, you need to take equal amounts of water and vinegar. You can add as much honey to the solution, as you like. The substance should be applied on brown spots and left for several minutes. Like the previous remedy, this one can be used once a day, as it may dry your skin.
Buttermilk is a side product of the production of butter from milk. This liquid is used as a drink, although it can be used as natural cosmetics. It have a very positive impact on skin, since there is lactic acid in buttermilk.
Lactic acid can be used for mild exfoliation of skin layers, thus, you can use it for bleaching brown spots without damaging the skin.
Buttermilk can be applied on your skin directly and left there for several minutes. You can also mix buttermilk with tomato juice (take twice as much buttermilk as the juice).
These procedures can be used twice a day.
Buttermilk is not the sole dairy product, which can be used as a remedy for brown spots. You can use yogurt for this purpose as well.
Yogurt can be applied on your skin directly and leaved there for as long time as you like. You can leave it on your skin even through the whole night.
You can add some kinds of herbs containing bioflavonoids and antioxidant substances into yogurt in order to increase its beaching properties. For instance, you can add a tablespoon of turmeric powder, mustard powder or aloe vera gel.
You can also make a cosmetic mask of yogurt, lemon juice and ground oatmeal. Take 2 tablespoons of ground oatmeal and soak them in a tablespoon of yogurt mixed with fresh juice. You can leave this paste on your skin for approximately 30 minutes. It is better to rinse it off with cold water afterwards.
It is advisable to use moisturizing cosmetics after this procedure.
Papaya can be used as a “tasty” remedy for brown spots on skin. The bleaching activity of this fruit is based on its contents of alpha hydroxyl acids and certain enzymes. These chemical substances work as an enzymatic scrub on your skin, exfoliating the pigmented layer.
The best way to use papaya for your skin problems is to grate it and apply a tablespoon on your skin. You should leave this mask for approximately 20 minutes. Rinse papaya off with water.
The procedure can be used daily. Remember, that papaya can also help you to heal acne, cleaning your skin in a gentle way.
Another extremely beneficial plant for your skin is horseradish. This plant has fantastic lightening activity, thus, you can use it as a remedy for solar lentigens on your skin.
There are two popular ways of making a natural cosmetic product from horseradish.
The first one is a paste made from this plant. The paste can be applied on your skin for 20 minutes.
There is also a recipe for a homemade cosmetic toning lotion. You should soak a piece of horseradish (take a four-inch piece of the plant) in apple cider vinegar (you will need a quarter of a cup of this vinegar). Horseradish should be left in the vinegar for two weeks. Afterwards you will need to strain the lotion and apply it with a cotton ball on your skin.
This remedy can be used several times as day. You will see the results in a month.
You will certainly be surprised to learn, that such a popular vegetable as potato has bleaching properties as well. This plant has a special enzyme named aspartic protease, which attack melanin in the skin converting it into small parts. These parts of pigment do not have their colour after being treated with aspartic protease.
You can make a cosmetic mask of potato easily. You will need a medium potato for one appliance. You should grate it and add some honey to the substance. Cover your brown spots with this mixture and leave it for at least 15 minutes. Then, you can rinse it off with cold water.
Garbanzo Bean Mask
Garbanzo beans, which are usually called chickpeas, can be also effective in the battle against solar lentigens. You can prepare a paste of this plant, which can be used as a mask.
You should take half a cup of garbanzo beans and the same volume of water. Cook chickpeas by boiling them until they are soft enough (it will take you an hour in case of cooking dried beans and only 15 minutes to prepare canned beans).
Now you need to leave the beans until they are cool and mash them in order to get the consistency of a paste. Cover your brown spots with the paste and leave it until it dries. Rinse it off with water.
The Prevention of Brown Spots
The medical treatment used for bleaching brown spots has a great deal of side effects, whereas home remedies should be used for several month before giving actual results. Therefore, it will be reasonable to consider possible ways of prevention of senile lentigo.
Although it is not always possible to prevent the appearance of solar lentigens on your skin, there are several tips, which will notably decrease the possibilities of hyperpigmentation.
Avoid the Sun
Without a shadow of a doubt, the main rule is to avoid sun as much as it is possible. As it won’t be so easy, you need to avoid sun at least during the period between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. This is the time, when the sun radiation is extremely intense.
Wear a Sunscreen
You should also learn to use a sunscreen on a daily basis. The minimal SPF (a sun protection factor) of your sunscreen should be 15, although the best protection can be provided by the sunscreens with UPF (an ultraviolet protection factor) over 40. There should be UVA protecting in your sunscreen as well as UVB protection.
You can even find special clothes on the market, which will protect your skin from the solar radiation. For instance, there are long sleeved shirts, hats and other clothes with UV filters offered in shops.
Bear in mind, that swimming outside in sunny weather will give you even higher sun exposition then sunbathing. This means, that you should use special UV filters, which can’t be rinsed off right by the first contact with water.
Avoid Tanning Beds
Don’t let advertisements and merchandisers to delude you into the false belief of harmlessness of using tanning beds. Always remember, that these devices use ultraviolet radiation in order to colour your skin, which has the same negative impact on your health as the sun.
Nonetheless, do not let yourself to get obsessed with the fear of getting brown spots, as solar lentigens are absolutely harmful for your health.