Freckles and Dark Spots

Woman-with-Freckles

Freckles and dark spots are rarely something serious to look at, but they can be annoying and frustrating to some. Freckles are tan or light brown spots on your skin that are triggered by sun exposure. If you have a lot of freckles, they may be genetic. They usually aren’t harmful or painful. Dark spots are also caused by the sun, acne scars or hormonal imbalances. If you don’t like the look of your freckles and dark spots, here are some ways to prevent or lessen their appearance:

  1. To prevent both freckles, dark spots and other more dangerous things like moles, always wear sunscreen. Even when it appears cloudy, you could still get sun damage on your exposed skin. Choose a sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher if you burn very easily, apply at least 15 minutes before going outside and reapply every few hours, especially if you are swimming or sweating.
  2. To remove freckles or dark spots, ask your dermatologist about topical treatments or laser treatments. Your doctor may prescribe you a retinoid cream or topical fading cream to work on fading those freckles or dark spots. Specifically, for dark spots, your doctor may prescribe you hydroquinone or retinol creams or serums. If this doesn’t work or you want to try something else, laser treatments can work to remove both. However, these treatments are generally more expensive and could have side effects like itching, swelling, redness, irritation, peeling or even long-term scarring, although it is rare.
  3. You can try natural remedies at home to fade freckles and dark spots.
    1. Lemon juice is a great natural skin brightener. Apply lemon juice directly to your skin with a cotton ball and then wash off. You can also try any other citrus fruits, but lemon is said to work the best.
    2. Use honey with salt or sugar to make a scrub to help lighten pigmentation.
    3. Sour cream, plain yogurt or buttermilk. These contain lactic acid, which is said to lighten skin. Apply directly to the skin.
  4. Keep in mind, some freckles and dark spots may go away on their own after a period of time. If you are worried or if they become larger, see a dermatologist.

Do you have a lot of freckles or dark spots? Do you hate them or embrace them? What treatments have you tried? Share with us!

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