Everyone desires clear, even-toned, blemish-free skin. It’s often a cause of concern if one’s skin is marred by discrete dark patches or spots. Dark patches may be caused due to sunburns, environmental pollutants, or even genetic factors. Others may be just the remnants of acne or physical injury. One of the conditions causing dark spots of brown to grey-brown color, commonly on the face, is melasma. It is said to be caused by excessive exposure to harsh sunlight. However, even hormonal changes, such as pregnancy or consumption of birth control medication, may trigger melasma. 

Melasma and many benign forms of irregular skin pigmentations are not incurable. The best thing is that you can actually treat some of these right at home! In this blog, we, at Earthy Selections tell you five easy homemade remedies that you can whip up in your kitchen.

  1. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid, a gentle, natural substance to use on your skin. It’s supported by research to have improved patchy skin pigmentation. Since it is not as harsh as other organic acids like lemon juice, you can even use it for sensitive skin or acne-riddled faces. It balances out the pH level of your skin too, so it helps maintain a youthful and even skin tone.

How to use:

  • In a container, add equal parts of apple cider vinegar and water. Shake vigorously to mix well.
  • Wet a cotton pad with this diluted mix and dab it over the dark patches on your skin. Leave on for two to three minutes.
  • Rinse with lukewarm or cold water.
  • Repeat twice a day for best results.

Warning: Always conduct a patch test 24 hours before you use it.

  1. Multani Mitti/Fuller’s Earth
Multani mitti is a versatile ingredient that forms the base of many Indian home remedies for skin brightening. It can be used with water, or any other kitchen ingredients such as turmeric, lemon juice, rose water, cinnamon, and so on for specific skin-related issues. Multani mitti is well known to treat dark spots due to acne.

How to use:

  • Mix a couple of tablespoons of Multani Mitti face pack with some rose water, enough to make a runny paste-like consistency.
  • Apply over your face or affected spots, avoiding the eye area.
  • Wash off just when the face pack starts to dry.

Warning: Fuller’s earth can dry out your skin if left on for too long, so take care to wash off at the right time!

Image by riza april from Pixabay
  1. Black Tea
This Indian kitchen staple can even lighten dark spots—unbelievable, but true! It contains active antioxidants, phenolic acids, and flavonoids that can effectively act on the dark pigment (melanin) producing cells, suppressing melanin production and thus reducing dark spots.

How to use:

  • Simply steep a tablespoon of tea leaves in a cup of boiling water for a couple of hours.
  • Strain to remove the leaves. Chill the tea.
  • Soak a cotton pad in the tea brew and dab gently on the hyperpigmented areas twice a day.
  1. Aloe Vera Gel
This desert elixir contains aloin, which naturally lightens patchy, pigmented skin. If you have an aloe plant at home, simply cut a leaf off, extract the middle jelly, and rub it on dark spots for a lighter, even skin tone. In the case of more deep-seated melasma, you may add other depigmenting components like honey.

How to use:

  • Take a dollop of pure aloe vera gel and massage it gently onto pigmented areas of your skin. 
  • Leave it overnight, and then rinse off with warm water.
  1. Tomato juice
Lycopene is the wonder stuff that’s abundant in the humble tomato. Lycopene is a great skin lightening agent, while also acting as a natural sunscreen for your face. Tomatoes can also tighten skin and shrink pores, thus acting as a natural astringent.

How to use:

  • Rub a slice of tomato on your affected hyperpigmented areas.
  • Leave on for 10-15 minutes.
  • Wash off with lukewarm water.
We would like to ask readers to consider that these home remedies work on a case-to-case basis. Always take a dermatologist’s advice rather than self-diagnosing conditions like melasma, so that you know the correct treatment for your skin.