BEAUTY TIP: Disadvantages of Skin Bleaching
The Disadvantages of Skin Bleaching
By Mickey Walburg, an eHow Contributing Writer.
For many people, skin bleaching is a
way to achieve brighter, clearer skin,
and to remove dark patches on many
areas of the body. Chemical peels,
whitening creams and even lasers can
be used to lighten and even your skin
tone. Creams--which can be purchased
at department stores without a
prescription--are most commonly used.
These products can provide long-
lasting results when used correctly,
however, there can be risks and
1. Toxic Ingredients
Some topical skin bleachers may use ingredients that can be harmful to
both your skin and your overall health. These ingredients may vary by
or country, since some ingredients have been banned in specific areas.
Hydroquinone, also used in film developing, is a primary active
ingredient in many skin whitening creams. It is a known carcinogen,
and has been linked with other complications such as adrenal
dysfunction. If used continuously, hydroquinone can cause black and
blue skin discoloration, a condition known as "ocronosis." Countries
including Europe, Japan, and Australia have banned its sales of it as
a skin lightener. The U.S., however, still allows it for this purpose.
another potentially risky ingredient often found in skin lighteners.
Mercury has been linked to many illnesses,
including Alzheimers, polycystic ovary syndrome, and neurological
dysfunctions. It is known to have serious effects on the central
system, as well. It is easily absorbed through the skin, and is not
readily expelled by the body. This means that,
over time, you could build up a mercury level that could lead to
toxicity. Some states, such as Minnesota, have banned the sale of all
cosmetics containing mercury.
Many manufacturers make skin lighteners without harmful ingredients;
but, counterfeit creams that include toxic and sometimes illegal
have been found on drugstore shelves, making it difficult for
consumers to be sure they're buying safe products. In
January 2010, The New York Times reported finding many of these creams
on the shelves of ethnic beauty stores in Brooklyn, New York, for as
little as $3.99 a tube. Since the harmful chemicals are often not
listed, or listed under many different names, buying
bleaching creams in stores not monitored by a corporate structure
could mean you are buying counterfeits.
3. Skin Irritants and Other Complications
While skin lighteners can deliver the clearer, brighter skin you hope
for, they can also bring other problems.
Acne is one common side effect. The steroids sometimes used in
lightening creams may whiten skin, but they often cause acne or other
skin problems. Clobetasol propionate, one powerful steroid found in
lighteners, can cause skin irritation and acne, but it has
farther-reaching implications. Long-term use may cause your body to
stop production of its
own steroids, lead to hypertension or elevate blood sugar. Thinning
skin, which can cause stretch marks, is
another potential side effect. Thin skin may also result in easy
bruising and cause the red capillaries under the skin to become
visible. There is also the chance of an allergic reaction to a topical
medication, which could
include a rash or reddened skin, as well as lesions or flaking. The
negative effects of skin bleaching are difficult, and sometimes
impossible, to reverse.
Drugs.com: Hydroquinone Side
NewsInferno.com: Skin Lightening
Creams Putting Many at Risk
eMedicine: Toxicity, Mercury
I hope you have learnt one or two reasons why you should not bleach
your skin. Above all the reasons why you should not bleach your skin
is that God has fearfully and wonderfully made you. So guys love the
colour of skin God has given to you and be proud of it.
Thanks for stopping by.