Who does not want flawless skin with a brighter complexion? With age and overexposure to sunlight, one tends to develop dark patches, skin discoloration, and scars. These symptoms are clinically termed as ‘hyperpigmentation’. Hyperpigmentation is the overproduction of a skin pigment called melanin. Though not contagious or harmful, this condition can sure get annoying.
Fortunately, there are a plethora of products with signature ingredients that help even out the skin tone, brighten the complexion, and restore the youthful radiance and glow. Here, we have listed the 15 best products that help combat hyperpigmentation. Check them out!
Table Of Contents
15 Best Products For Hyperpigmentation
The SkinMedica TNS Essential Serum is a mixture of growth factors, cytokines, antioxidants, and matric proteins. These come settled into two chambers and are blended to create a powerful solution that helps treat skin aging, hyperpigmentation, dark spots, fine lines, and wrinkles. The TNS recovery formula is a protein- and amino acid-rich serum that reduces inflammation and age spots.
The signature ingredient infused in chamber 1 is the Human Fibroblast Conditioned Media (HFCM). It is an important growth factor for the skin that helps in skin cell renewal, reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, lightens the skin tone, and enhances skin texture. The chamber 2 contains the APS corrective complex, a blend of peptides, antioxidants, and other powerful anti-aging ingredients that promote smoother, firmer skin. They also protect the skin from free radical damage.
Key Ingredients: Human Fibroblast Conditioned Media, and APS corrective complex
- Reduces fine lines, wrinkles
- Ideal for all skin types
- Tightens sagging skin
- Combats free radical damage
- Defective pump
The Sunday Riley Good Genes Lactic Acid Treatment deeply exfoliates the dull skin surface. It helps slough out the dead skin cells and restores radiance and glow. Lactic acid is a potent alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA) that is used to treat hyperpigmentation, age spots, and uneven skin complexion. It helps reduce the appearance of pores, fine lines, and wrinkles.
It is also formulated with licorice root, lemongrass, aloe vera, arnica, and prickly pear extract that soothes the skin. The licorice root extract is a lightening agent that helps brighten the skin tone and leaves a smoother, healthier appearance. Lemongrass is a powerful astringent and skin-refreshing ingredient. Arnica and prickly pear extracts soothe and calm the skin.
Key Ingredients: Lactic acid, licorice root, and lemongrass extract
- Removes dead skin cells
- Blurs fine lines and wrinkles
- 100% vegan
- Prevents sun damage
- May cause breakouts
The Vichy V Lifactiv Supreme Serum 10 is an anti-wrinkle and face hydrating serum formulated with 10% rhamnose, Vichy volcanic water, and hyaluronic acid that plump your skin. Vichy volcanic water is powered by 15 essential minerals that are clinically proven to strengthen the skin’s barrier and protect it from environmental aggressors.
Rhamnose is a naturally-derived plant sugar that focuses on reducing the aging symptoms and boosts the overall skin structure. The hyaluronic acid helps reduce the visibility of fine lines and wrinkles and retains skin moisture.
The regular use of Vichy V Lifactiv Serum claims to revitalize skin and firmness in just ten days. It reduces fine lines and wrinkles, including crow’s feet, forehead wrinkles, under-eye wrinkles, and neck wrinkles.
Key Ingredients: Vichy volcanic water, 10% rhamnose, and hyaluronic acid
- Safe for sensitive skin
- Reduces fine lines and wrinkles
- Quick absorbing formula
- Corrects signs of premature aging
- Hydrating and moisturizing
- Consistency could be too thick
The Drunk Elephant T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum is made with 12% AHA/BHA to combat an uneven skin tone and a rough texture. It contains glycolic acid, tartaric acid, lactic acid, citric acid, and salicylic acid that exfoliate the skin without unclogging the pores. They also help buff away dead skin cells and dramatically improve the skin tone and texture. They help blur fine lines and wrinkles as well.
The infused raspberry extract and horse chestnut curb excess skin oil and reveal greater clarity and luminosity. They deeply absorb into the skin layers and deliver an effective level of chemical exfoliation without drying the skin out. This uniquely formulated night serum contains an ideal pH of 3.8 that is soothing to the skin.
Key Ingredients: Alpha-hydroxy acids and beta-hydroxy acids
- Non-toxic ingredients
- Removes dead skin cells
- Blurs signs of aging
- Removes excess oil
- May not suit sensitive skin
The GlamGlow Flashmud Brigtheing Treatment is blended with salicylic acid, lactic acid, vitamin C, and white clay. These ingredients improve the skin tone, reduce dark spots, and gently exfoliate the skin. The unique blend of alpha-hydroxy acids and beta-hydroxy acids sloughs out dead skin cells and evens out the skin texture.
The botanical white tea leaf extract is rich in antioxidants that protect the skin from free radical damage and restore the youthful glow. The combination of skin translucency optimizers, like the white quartz microspheres, refined white pumice, and white clay, leaves a luminous-looking skin. The ultra-fine diamond particles mask the dark spots and make skin brighter.
Key Ingredients: AHA/BHA, white tea leaf extract, and diamond particles
- Suitable for all skin types
- Could be too grainy in texture
6. Best For Correcting Dark Spots: Murad Environmental Shield Rapid Age Spot And Pigment Lightening Serum
The Murad Environmental Shield Rapid Age Spot And Pigment Lightening Serum is formulated with the highest level of hydroquinone (2%). It claims to reduce 85% of dark spots within one week. Hydroquinone is a depigmenting or bleaching agent that lightens dark spots and reduces age spots. It lightens the skin by decreasing the number of melanocytes (cells that produce melanin pigment) present. It reduces acne scars, age spots, and freckles without clogging the pores.
This unique formula also contains glycolic acid, which is an alpha-hydroxy acid that exfoliates the skin, buffs away dead skin cells, and improves skin texture. It also allows the hydroquinone to penetrate the skin more effectively. Hexapeptide-2, a skin-brightening peptide in the serum, improves the overall skin tone and blurs excess pigmentation.
Key Ingredients: 2% hydroquinone and glycollic acid
- Suits both day and night use
- Protects from sun damage
- Suitable for all skin types
- May stain pillows
The ILUMA Image Skincare Intense Brightening Crème contains exclusive skin-lightening ingredients that illuminate skin and restore its radiance. The Vectorize Technology time-releases vitamin C for long-term skin lightening effects. This unique advanced technology, along with the botanical extracts, penetrates the skin layers and reduces the appearance of dark spots and discoloration.
Indian kudzu, another skin-lightening ingredient, mattifies and clarifies the skin. It also helps detoxify the skin by eliminating toxins and brings nutrients to the skin cells. The neem extract is a powerful astringent and antibacterial agent that reduces acne marks and restores skin health. The combined effect of the advanced technology with the botanical extracts leaves your skin with a radiance that lasts up to 48 hours.
Key Ingredients: Vectorize Technology (brightening delivery system)
- Protects from UV rays
- Reduces age spots
- Long-term protection
The Ole Henriksen Truth Serum is a daily revitalizing formula that is powered by vitamin C (an age-defying nutrient and vitamin for your skin). The True-C complex is a stabilized vitamin C derivative that brightens the skin tone, fades away the signs of aging, and protects from free radical damage. The infused collagen helps restore skin elasticity and brightens and delivers visibly firm, youthful skin.
The blend of botanical extracts, including orange and green tea, helps nourish the skin. The oil-free, fast-absorbing formula will not clog your pores. It glides easily with the skin tone and leaves a silky soft texture. The refreshing aroma of citrus fruits lifts your mood.
Key Ingredients: True-C complex, collagen, orange juice, green tea extract, and aloe vera juice extract
- All-day hydration
- Softens and conditions skin
- Combats free radicals
- Improves skin firmness
- Fights aging signs
The Cane + Austin Acne Retextured Pad is an intensive at-home facial treatment with exfoliating ingredients that address acne breakouts, even out skin tone and reduce the visibility of fine lines, wrinkles, age spots, and enlarged pores. It contains 5% glycolic acid and 2% salicylic acid that remove dead skin cells, treat acne scars, and reduce inflammation and redness. The exfoliating pads help reduce hyperpigmentation, scarring, and improve skin texture and appearance.
Key Ingredients: 5% glycolic acid and 2% salicylic acid
- Cleanses clogged pores
- Smoothens complexion
- Hydrates skin
- Reduces signs of premature aging
The iS Clinical White Lightening Complex is a distinctive formula that brightens, hydrates, and protects the skin. The innovative blend of Norwegian kelp extract, vitamin C, arbutin, and mushroom extract along with glycerin, squalene, and the Imperata cylindrica root extract optimize the skin’s hydration levels and improve overall complexion.
The Norwegian kelp extract is rich in antioxidants and minerals that soften and hydrate the skin. It also helps reduce uneven skin tone and works on brightening the skin complexion. Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that protects the skin from photodamage. Arbutin is a peptide extracted from the bearberry plant that prevents the formation of melanin. It also helps lighten dark spots, lessens the appearance of acne scars, and helps even out skin tone. It works well when combined with vitamin C. The emollient property of hyaluronic acid retains skin moisture and delivers an instant plumping effect. The sugarcane extract exfoliates the skin for a renewed complexion.
Key Ingredients: Norwegian kelp extract, arbutin, ascorbic acid, and sugarcane extract
- Suits acne-prone skin
- Reduces aging signs
- Mildly exfoliates the skin
- Hydrates the skin
Dr. Andrew Weight For Origins Mega-Bright Dark Spot Correcting Serum is a highly fortified formula with a light-infusing complex that helps brighten the skin tone. It is formulated with Rosa roxburghii that helps reduce visible dark spots while correcting the skin tone. Peony extract is an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory ingredient that calms the skin, makes it feel smooth, and reduces redness. Licorice, a potent skin-brightening ingredient, protects the skin from environmental aggressors.
Key Ingredients: Rosa roxburghii, and peony and licorice extracts
- No paraffin
- No petrolatum
- No formaldehyde
- 100% vegan
The Urban Skin Rx Even Tone Night Treatment contains 2% hydroquinone that brightens and lightens the skin tone. Hydroquinone helps limit the skin from creating excess melanin. It is an over-the-counter (OTC) ingredient that lightens stubborn dark spots too.
The product also contains kojic acid and vitamin A that lighten the visible signs of sun damage, age spots, and scars. It has anti-aging and antioxidant properties that blur the signs of aging and protect the skin from environmental toxins. This effective, gentle formula helps reduce pore size and the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Key Ingredients: 2% hydroquinone, kojic acid, and vitamin A
- Minimizes aging signs
- Protects from sun damage
The Herbivore PRISM is infused with natural fruit acids along with a 5% exfoliating glow portion that exfoliates, brightens, hydrates, and plumps the skin. It is formulated with lactic acid, sugarcane extract, apple, orange peel, and Kaduku plum for a clearer complexion.
Lactic acid, a potent AHA extracted from bilberry extract, helps reduce acne breakouts by gently exfoliating the skin.
The glycolic acid from sugarcane extract removes unwanted dead skin cells from the top layer of the skin. Malic acid from apple helps brighten and smoothen skin texture. Orange peel is rich in ascorbic acid that protects the skin from toxins and chemical aggressors. The Kaduku plum helps even out the skin tone to restore and brighten the complexion. The gentle fruit acids help clear the skin tone, remove thin layers of dried, dehydrated skin cells, and seal skin moisture.
Key Ingredients: Fruit acids
- Hydrates skin
- 100% vegan
- Clarifies skin tone
- Not suitable for acne-prone or sensitive skin
The SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic is a daytime vitamin C-enriched serum that protects the skin from environmental and chemical aggressors. The signature ingredients infused are 15% l-ascorbic acid, 1% vitamin E, 0.5% ferulic acid, and a power booster of antioxidants to enhance protection against free radical damage. It claims to reduce the combined oxidative damage caused by UVA/UVB rays and ozone pollution by up to 41%. The advanced anti-aging formula improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, brightens the skin tone and complexion, and provides long-term protection.
Key Ingredients: Vitamins C and E, and ferulic acid
- Ideal for normal, dry, and sensitive skin
- Neutralizes free radicals
- Protects from sun damage
The Kiehl’s Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution is formulated with activated C, white birch, and peony extract that effectively corrects dark skin spots and boosts skin radiance. The unique brightening formulation corrects skin tone, and reduces the appearance of dark spots, post-acne scars, and discoloration.
Activated vitamin C penetrates the skin, absorbs fast, and improves skin clarity. It helps prevent skin discoloration. White birch extract is a sugar-derived ingredient that restores hydration and nutrients to the skin. Peony extract is rich in antioxidants that protect your delicate skin from oxidative damage.
Key Ingredients: Activated vitamin C, white birch, and peony extract
- Reduces post-acne marks
- Gentle on skin
- Suitable for sensitive skin
- Protects from UV damage
- Reduces aging symptoms
[ Also Try – Mad Hippie Advanced Skin Care Vitamin C Serum ]
These are the 15 best skincare products that help reduce hyperpigmentation and dark spots and protect the skin from damage. Let us further discuss hyperpigmentation in the following section.
What Is Hyperpigmentation?
According to the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology, hyperpigmentation is a harmless condition where skin patches become darker due to excess production of melanin. Hyperpigmentation can be the result of sun damage (lentigo), hormonal changes due to pregnancy (melasma), or can be a result of the natural aging process (1).
Mechanism Of Hyperpigmentation
The pigment-producing melanocytes form a specialized structure called melanosome. Melanosome produces a versatile pigment for skin and hair. Several skin conditions can alter the production of melanin in our body. Over accumulation of melanin leads to a condition called hyperpigmentation (2).
Hyperpigmentation can occur in different types.
What Are The Types Of Hyperpigmentation
- Sun Spots Or Lentigo: This condition is also called ‘liver spots’ or solar lentigines. Overexposure to sunlight results in the overproduction of melanin on the skin. This results in hyperpigmentation. This can be seen on the cheeks, neck, or even on the heads of the elderly (3).
- Melasma: This condition is often termed as age spots that occur most commonly due to hormonal changes. Even most women during pregnancy experience this condition on the face, abdomen, or other areas (4).
- Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation: This could be a result of an injury to or inflammation of the skin. Acne breakouts are a common cause.
The following section discusses how you can treat hyperpigmentation. Take a look.
How To Treat Hyperpigmentation?
- UV light increases melanin production and may lead to hyperpigmentation. Using a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 can help.
- The topical application of hydroquinone, the OTC ingredient, lightens dark spots. But do consult with your doctor/dermatologist before going for it.
- Select ingredients that contain kojic acid, ascorbic acid, retinol, and salicylic acid that gently remove the dead skin cells, offer hydration, and blur the aging signs.
Hyperpigmentation is not a harmful or serious medical condition. It can happen to anyone due to aging, overexposure to sunlight, or hormonal changes. The topical application of skin serums or creams can offer a solution. They help blur skin spots, rejuvenate the skin, and help reduce the appearance of age spots. Choose your favorite product from this list today. However, also consult with your doctor or dermatologist if you have serious symptoms.
- Nouveau, Stephanie et al. “Skin Hyperpigmentation in Indian Population: Insights and Best Practice.” Indian journal of dermatology vol. 61,5 (2016): 487-95.
- Ebanks, Jody P et al. “Mechanisms regulating skin pigmentation: the rise and fall of complexion coloration.” International journal of molecular sciences vol. 10,9 4066-87. 15 Sep. 2009.
- Kasprzak, Julia M, and Yaohui G Xu. “Diagnosis and management of lentigo maligna: a review.” Drugs in context vol. 4 212281. 29 May. 2015.
- Ogbechie-Godec, Oluwatobi A, and Nada Elbuluk. “Melasma: an Up-to-Date Comprehensive Review.” Dermatology and therapy vol. 7,3 (2017): 305-318.
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