Don’t we girls love clear skin? We would kill for flawless skin. I certainly would! Add to the woes of acne, blackheads and whiteheads, freckles are something that most of us just don’t like to have to deal with. Though, there are a few who treat freckles as cute and unique, most of us want them gone. Nothing that interferes with our clear skin is ever welcome, is it? You can add freckles to the list of please don’t ever come back!
What Are Freckles?
Freckles are tiny brown spots the size of a tip of a needle or nail. They are seen on facial skin, arms and shoulders mostly due to over exposure to the sun. This makes them more common among people with fair skin that is sensitive to sun and sun damage. Freckles are due to an increase in the production of melanin in certain cells. Very much contrary to the common belief that it is due to the increase in melanocytes which are the melanin producing cells. This makes them appear as small spots that slightly darker than the surrounding areas of the skin.
Wondering how to get rid of freckles on face fast? Freckle treatment is invariably what you should keep as a last resort if you somehow manage to end up freckling despite the preventive measure. When we talk of treating freckles, it can be explained under the following heads. Read on.
How To Reduce Freckles Fast:
1. Sun Safe
This not only helps in reducing them, but also helps avoid the formation of freckles and fades them. Always use a good sunscreen and shield your skin against the harmful sun rays. Wear a hat for some added protection and extra oomph.
Bleaching the skin is a sure shot way of reducing pigmentation. This must be done with care though as improper bleaching might lead to worsening the freckles by darkening the area around them.
These need to be prescribed by a dermatologist as they involve a high concentration of chemicals and shouldn’t be used without proper guidance. Retinoids are known to peel the damaged skin and quicken the process of new skin generation.
4. Chemical Peels
This is another medical procedure with sure shot results. Chemical peels are known to give the best results.
5. Laser Removal
Though expensive, this is a permanent way to get rid of freckles. Make sure you are consult a certified dermatologist and get your skin checked before you opt for laser treatment. The laser will direct an intense light to the affected spots, which is then absorbed by the skin and melanin. This will destroy the dark cells, and leave the healthy cells intact.
This is a procedure where extreme cold is applied to the damaged tissues. Liquid nitrogen is mainly used in this treatment. Again, please go to a certified doctor.
7. Lemon Juice
Now stop worrying on how to lighten freckles, and start using lime juice. Being the best cure for any blemish, lemon juice works here too to reduce the pigmentation levels of freckles. The natural bleaching properties of lemon help in lightening dark spots over time.
Squeeze half a lime, and apply the juice onto the areas with brown spots using a cotton ball. Leave it for 15 minutes, and then wash off with water.
8. Vitamin C:
If you are too sensitive to lemon juice, try including vitamin C rich foods in your diet. It might not be as effective as direct application, but it will considerably reduce the occurrence.
Slice up some strawberries and use them as a mask. You can also use some apricots instead.
10. Sour Milk
A paste of sour milk and oats also helps in fading the freckles.
11. All Skin Lightening Kitchen Ingredients
These ingredients from the kitchen are known to fade the freckles – honey, cucumber, and nutmeg paste to name a few.
12. Fruit Mask
You can also try this fruit mask! Blend together two strawberries, a two inch piece of papaya, and appropriate quantities of cucumber and pineapple. Apply the mask to the face, and wash off after 15 minutes.
If there is no way out, there is always some concealer. Put your makeup skills to good use and conceal the freckles.
14. Learn To Love Yourself
Own up to them. Freckles are beautiful and an individual’s identity.
Let us say this again! Prevention is better than cure. To avoid freckle formation in first place, stay out of the sun. Though tanning sounds like a lot of fun (I mean the tan that makes us look like bronze goddesses), you are exposing your skin to a lot of sun damage. Your skin is forced to produce extra melanin and also there is a high risk of cancerous cells being generated. Tanning beds aren’t wise either.
Different Types Of Freckles
Yes, freckles have different types to them too! Like any other skin trouble, they tend to vary in types depending on the cause. As a freckle is mostly caused due to sun exposure, it can be classified into simple freckles and sunburn freckles.
A simple freckle or epehlidesis is a flat tan spot that tends to appear in the summer months when the sun is out.They tend to fade in the winters again. This is a type that is generally found in people with fair skin but it is also hereditary in some families. Red-heads and people with green eye colour are more prone to this type of a freckle than the others with fair skin.
[ Read: Best Ways To Remove Tan From Hands ]
These are a darker form of freckles that are scientifically called lentigenes. This term includes certain types of dark freckles and the sunburn freckles. Sunburn freckles occur mostly on the shoulder and back where sunburns are most common. These are very rarely genetic.
Another form of freckles that we must discuss are called the liver spots. Don’t worry. This doesn’t have any connection with liver diseases. These spots just form as a result of old age at the back of the hands. Some of them also develop non-malignant cysts around these spots that are popularly called barnacles or rice krispies. In some, they begin as darker freckles and grow into barnacles. These are invariably referred to as the barnacles of old age.
[ Read: Home Remedies for Flawless Skin ]
How Are Freckles Formed?
It is believed that the formation of freckles has a strong connection between heredity and sun exposure. Two people with the same sun exposure need not necessarily have the same results of freckles development.
Both natural and tanning lights have the wavelengths of the ultra violet rays. On exposure to this ultra violet radiation, the skin thickens. The melanin pigment producing cells, melanocytes, then increases the production and the skin tends to get darker and tanned. This production and deposition can provide further protection against the sun rays. Exposure beyond this limit ends with the formation of freckles.
Those with darker skin complexion are less sensitive to sun exposure. But even they on prolonged exposure will develop sun damage and burns. And it has been observed that those with lighter skin tones, blonde or red hair and light eye colours are more genetically prone to freckles than the rest. This proves that the heredity plays a very important role in the development of freckles on the face or any other part of the body. In a research that was conducted in comparison between two pairs of identical twins and fraternal twins, it was found that more correlative results was present between the identical twins. Thus, confirming the genetic role play. Either ways, irrespective of the skin colour, freckles are results of over production of melanin in certain areas.
Prevention is always better than cure. Especially in the case of freckles, since most people find the treatments unsatisfactory.
Since freckles are a combined result of genetics and sun exposure, we shall focus on the sun exposure solutions. Obviously as there is nothing we can do about our genetics but curse the stars and blame our parents.
Here are some freckles prevention tips –
- Begin sun protection at a younger age. Damage to the skin from sun exposure usually happens at a younger age among children under the age of 18 years. For that is when you are more likely to spend more time outside playing.
- Use sunscreens with a SPF value suitable to the environmental conditions that you live in. The greater your exposure to the sun, higher should be the SPF.
- Make sure that you reappply your sunscreen periodically. There is no such thing as a sweat proof or water proof sunscreen. They all wear off eventually, its just a matter of how long they last.
- Avoid stepping out in the sun during the peak hours that is between 10 am and 4 pm during the day. This is definitely a very simple job for those of us with desk jobs and also those who work night shifts.
- Try and stay in the shade as much as possible. If you have to wait, then wait in the shade. Avoid sun exposure as much as possible. This is especially true for those of you with fair skin, light or red hair, and light eyes for you have a genetic inclination to developing freckles already.
A warning to all those of you who exhibit sensitivity to heat, please check your skin for freckling frequently. This is a sign of UV damage that can leave you open to malignant skin cancers in the future.
[ Read: Remedies To Remove Tan Permanently ]
Expert’s Answers for Readers Questions
Can people of any race have freckles, or is just white people?
As genetics play an important role in your tendency to develop freckles, it cannot be said that only people belonging to a certain race develop them. There are many dark-skinned people who have freckles, and many white people who have never had any freckles on their face or body.
Are freckles permanent?
Freckles are not permanent. Proper sun protection measures and a healthy diet will fade them away eventually.
Do freckles block UV radiation?
The freckle spots on your skin have a high concentration of melanin, which is basically the pigment produced by the body as a protection against UV damage (photo-protector). So, yes! Freckles do block UV radiation, but this is only at the tiny sites they are present at.
Now that you know what freckles are, why they form and how to remove them naturally, let us know if you’ll give these methods a try. So girls, let me know how much you love your freckles or otherwise. Shoot a comment.