Melasma refers to a condition of the epidermis in which brown patches start appearing on skin, especially the face and body parts mostly exposed to sun. Melanocytes stimulation and increased female hormones result in melasma. When melasma occurs during pregnancy it is called chloasma.
Melasma can be effectively cured with natural remedies that are easily available at home. Here are some of the best home remedies for melasma that cure the condition without side effects that chemical peel, laser therapy and other such cosmetic treatments may cause.
Top 11 Home Remedies For Melasma
1. Lemon Juice
The acidic nature of lemon juice helps in peeling off the outer skin layer and hence remove melasma pigmentation. Lemon juice contains high amounts of vitamin C that reduce all types of pigmentation. Regular use of lemon juice on the skin fades away the grayish brown patches on it.
Lemon juice bleaches the melanin pigment on the skin and reduces appearance of hyper pigmentation on cheeks, upper lip, nose and forehead. Results are visible within three weeks of using lemon juice as a remedy for melasma.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
It not only removes the dark spots but also makes the face brighter and radiant. It contains ‘the mother’ i.e. raw enzymes and friendly bacteria that makes it a good skin and hair care product and remedies other gut-related diseases like indigestion. You should mix apple cider vinegar with water in the ratio of 1:1 and apply the mixture directly on the melasma discoloration spots.
Turmeric lightens the dark spots caused by melasma and reduces the tan caused by sun exposure. Turmeric is well known for reducing melanin pigmentation. It also has antioxidant properties that flush out toxins from the skin. Turmeric is also a good remedy for acne.
Milk turmeric powder and milk in the ratio of 1:2 (i.e. for every tablespoon of turmeric powder add two tablespoons of milk) and make a smooth paste. Apply the mixture on the face and other affected parts and leave it for at least 10 minutes. Rinse the mixture off with lukewarm water and pat dry the skin with clean towel. Daily use of this face pack gives effective results faster.
4. Onion Juice
Onion contains various sulfur compounds such as sulfoxides and cepaenes that remove and reduce the melasma pigmentation on the skin. Besides, onion removes blemishes caused by acne or any other wounds. It nourishes the skin in a holistic manner. Squeeze the juice out of finely chopped onions and mix it with apple cider vinegar in the ratio of 1:1.
Dip a cotton ball into the mixture and apply it on the affected parts twice daily. Regular application of onion juice on melasma spots reduces melanin pigmentation or dark discoloration. Make sure that you have washed your face and removed all types of makeup from face before applying onion juice.
5. Aloe Vera Gel
It contains mucilaginous polysaccharides that lighten dark spots on skin caused by ageing, sun exposure and melasma discoloration. Aloe Vera also has strong antioxidant properties that protect from skin damage and removes patches on the skin. When mixed with vitamin E, the effectiveness of aloe vera increases.
Aloe vera gel is easily available across all health food stores as well as pharmacy. Apply aloe vera gel on the affected skin directly, leave it for sometime and rinse off with water after at least 15 minutes.
Oatmeal naturally exfoliates the skin and helps in reducing brown or dark spots. It dissolves dead skin cells and leaves the skin glowing and brighter. Mix some mashed oatmeal with honey and apply the mixture on the affected parts on skin. Leave the mask for at least half an hour. Rinse off the mixture with lukewarm water. It is highly effective in alleviating chloasma during pregnancy.
7. Gotu Kola
Native to China, this herb reduces dark pigmentation on the skin. When added to another herb called ginseng, the efficiency of Gotu Kola in alleviating melasma increases. You have to mix gotu kola and liquid ginseng tea in equal proportions (ideally 1/8th of a teaspoon each) and make a smooth paste. Apply the mixture on affected parts and leave for at least 15 minutes. Rinse off with lukewarm water and repeat the process at least twice a day for best results.
Papaya is well known for reducing dark spots on skin caused by freckles, liver problems and melasma. The natural active enzyme in papaya is papain that acts as an exfoliant. Papain helps in reducing damaged as well as dead skin cells.
Papaya also establishes an even skin tone and makes the skin healthier and you look younger. All you have to do is to mash the papaya and apply it directly on the affected part. Leave it for at least 20 minutes and rinse off with water afterwards.
Horseradish effectively reduces all sorts of skin discoloration, scars, blemishes and pigmentation on skin. It stimulates skin and bleaches out undesired pigmentation and discoloration of the skin. It contains mustard oil and vitamin C which together reduce pigmentation. Skin discoloration caused by freckles and melasma is cured by horseradish effectively.
Apply it on the affected parts and leave it for at least 20 minutes. Repeat the process at least once a week. Horseradish will peel off the damaged skin and reveal a much lighter skin from underneath. You can also mix yogurt with horseradish. This mixture will leave the skin moisturized. Horseradish is easily available at grocery stores.
Sun exposure being the chief cause of melasma, one should avoid standing under the sun for more than 15 minutes. People who cannot do so for some reason or the other should make sure that they put on a good sunscreen lotion of SPF 30 and more and one that protects from both UV-A and UV-B rays. One should go for sunscreen lotions that constitute titanium and zinc oxides. Both these constituents protect your skin from broad-spectrum ultraviolet rays and also do not cause any sort of irritation.
Another natural way to get rid of melasma spots is to eat a fibre-rich diet that would help in flushing out harmful toxins from the body. Some foods rich in fiber are wheat, rice, oat, pepper, flax seeds, soybeans, nuts, sunflower seeds, etc.
One should also drink at least 10 to 12 glasses of water which would make the skin supple. Adequate water content in the body helps fight melasma as well as hypermelanotic disorder.