Brightening Skincare 

What triggers pigmentation? 

The biggest culprit is excessive sun exposure, which disrupts the skin’s natural protective response and prompts overproduction of melanin (and subsequent hyperpigmentation). Ageing, hormones, trauma to skin caused by conditions such as eczema and acne, certain medications, and skin injuries (like cuts, burns or even attacking a pimple) can also lead to hyperpigmentation as our body’s healing response triggers increased melanin. 

How to treat pigmentation 

The visible effects of hyperpigmentation can be smoothed and brightened with skincare that champions ingredients such as Vitamin C, Vitamin A (Retinol), Niacinamide, and Alpha- Hydroxy Acids (AHA). Vitamin C helps to brighten skin and fade hyperpigmentation by interacting with Copper at the active site of tyrosinase, the enzyme that signals melanin production. Complemented by Niacinamide, which helps to inhibit the transfer of melanin from melanocytes, minimising changes to pigmentation. Glycolic Acid performs a gentle chemical exfoliation, supporting cell turnover to shed discoloured, damaged cells. 

Tips for brighter skin 

  • Protect your face from damaging UV rays by wearing SPF50 every day, along with a hat, sunglasses and ample shade. 
  • Be ultra-aware that any change in your skin colour signals skin in distress — a tan is never healthy, it’s your melanin in overdrive trying to protect you. 
  • Embrace advanced treatments such laser therapy, which targets pigmented lesions on the skin; and microdermabrasion or chemical peels, which work to resurface the skin and stabilise epidermal melanin. 
  • Try to limit extreme heat exposure, including piping hot showers.   
  • Don’t pick spots – ever!   
  • Avoid highly irritating soaps and anything overly fragranced.

How to deal with hormonal pigmentation 

A clear, unified complexion sounds like a goal that’s simple enough, but the reality is pigmentation is a very common and very complicated concern.  

Characterised by dark patches and discolouration, it’s a tough one to manage because there are so many factors at play, including our hormones.   

Hormonal pigmentation, specifically, is a chronic condition that can appear out of nowhere and then can take years to sort out. However, with the right steps and ingredients, it is possible to brighten up your skin and unveil a much more even complexion.   

The best ingredients for hyperpigmentation 

When it comes to brightening and correcting skincare, look for formulas and ingredients that will regulate melanin production, exfoliate discoloured cells and speed up cellular turnover.   

These are our top five recommendations:   

Vitamin C for brightening skin 

It’s the gold-standard ingredient when it comes to glow! Skinstitut’s pure powdered form of Vitamin C (L-Ascorbic Acid) can be mixed with your serum or moisturiser to boost antioxidant protection. In the long run, Vitamin C helps to prevent dark spots, unify skin tone, increase luminosity and firm the look of wrinkles. *adds to cart*  

Shop Vitamin C 100%   

Retinol for hyperpigmentation 

Fact: Retinol (Vitamin A derivative) might just be our all-time favourite ingredient for clear, radiant skin. It works to speed up cellular turnover, allowing fresh, healthy cells to replace those that are dull or discoloured. With ongoing use, it will also improve overall clarity.   

Our Retinol Serum utilises a smart micro-encapsulated delivery system to ensure the ingredient retains its potency. Expert Reveal Retinol Face Oil contains 0.9 per cent active Retinol alongside nourishing plant oils to foster brighter skin (as well as the ultimate glow).   

Shop Retinol Serum   

Shop Expert Reveal Retinol Face Oil   

What is good for evening out skin tone?  

A powerhouse serum with skin-brightening properties, our Even Blend Serum formula is bolstered with both Glycolic Acid and Wakame (Japanese seaweed extract) to fade marks and gently lift dull surface cells. Use it daily under your favourite moisturiser.   

Shop Even Blend Serum   

Best AHA for hyperpigmentation 

Alpha-Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) are water-soluble molecules that dissolve the bonds between skin cells, allowing them to be exfoliated away. This results in improved clarity, a softening of dark marks and a smoother appearance overall.   

A brightening exfoliant, Glycolic Scrub 14% contains a duo of biodegradable Jojoba beads plus Glycolic Acid, an AHA that both refines and rehydrates. The formula works immediately to illuminate the skin, while also brightening over time.   

For more sensitive complexions, L-Lactic Cleanser contains Lactic Acid, an AHA that's smaller in molecular size for gentler results. It's highly tolerable, but still works to refine and resurface pigmented skin.   

Shop Glycolic Scrub 14%   

Shop L-Lactic Cleanser   

More on pigmentation skin care 

HYPERPIGMENTATION: PART 1 

HYPERPIGMENTATION: PART 2 

ARE HORMONES CAUSING PIGMENTATION ON YOUR FACE? HERE’S HOW TO TELL 

HOW TO: DEAL WITH HORMONAL PIGMENTATION 

LET THERE BE BRIGHT 

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