The Top 10 Best Skin Lightening Products For African American Skin

Harsh rays from the sun and environmental pollution work to make the skin darker, dryer, and blemished. Old age also factors in making the skin look dull and gray. One of the best ways to combat such skin issues is through the use of skin lightening products. They are also known colloquially as skin whitening cream, skin brighteners, skin bleaching cream, and fading creams.

Such products work by reducing a natural skin pigment known as melanin. Therefore, many people today use skin lightening products to reduce the appearance of scars, blemishes, age spots, and discoloration caused by hormone imbalance. Others use it to make naturally darker skin tones lighter.

Determining Skin Color

The color of your skin is determined by how much melanin is in the upper layers of the dermis. Melanin is a skin pigment produced by specialized skin cells known as melanocytes. Therefore, darker skin is a direct result of increased melanin production.

How much melanin the skin produces is influenced mainly by genetics. However, exposure to sunlight, hormonal imbalance, exposure to a number of chemicals, and skin damage can also have an impact on this.

With time, skin color changes caused by various conditions will typically resolve on their own. However, some scars, blemishes and age-related discolorations can become permanent.

Defining Skin Bleaching

Skin bleaching, also known as lightening or whitening, is a cosmetic technique used to reduce the appearance of discolorations on the skin. It is also used to even out a person's skin tone. A skin lightening cream contains certain active ingredients that limit the production of melanin in the skin. You can get a skin bleaching cream either via a prescription or by purchasing it over the counter.

The most commonly used active ingredient in such products is hydroquinone. In the U.S., the FDA strictly monitors the use of this substance in products. For instance, dermatologists can prescribe lighteners containing four to six percent of hydroquinone, while over-the-counter lighteners can only contain up to two percent.

Other popular active ingredients are retinoic acid, which is synthesized from vitamin A, and steroids. Some skin whiteners are formulated using naturally occurring products like kojic acid, which is produced by a fungus, and arbutin, which is found in certain plants.

How to Lighten Skin for African American?

People from different ethnicities differ in their actual skin structures. Darker skin individuals, like African Americans, tend to have thicker, more compact skin which retains more of its moisture. This helps minimize the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.

Dark skin also has more fibroblasts and melanosomes than lighter skin, which can result in more cases of keloid formation and abnormal scarring. All these factors also mean that darker skin will take a longer time to change from skin lightening products.

The best bleaching cream for black skin is one that includes intensive skin lightening agents such as kojic acid, tyrosinase, and hydrocortisone. Limiting your exposure to sunlight is also another great way to keep your skin looking light and smooth. This can be easily accomplished through the use of a good sunscreen.

The food you eat can also help lighten darker skin. These are mainly food items that have low day content and are rich in vitamin C. You also have to take a lot of water to hydrate your skin and flush out toxins.

These foods will help to give you a lighter complexion and keep your skin smooth and free from blemishes.

Risks Associated With Skin Lightening Products

It has become increasingly common for people to apply such lighteners on their whole bodies. However, this can be quite dangerous with the wrong products. This is because many such products contain mercury as an active ingredient.

A recent study showed that one out of every four lighteners contain mercury. Excessive use of such a product can lead to mercury poisoning. In excessive quantities, mercury can result in debilitating renal and neurological issues.

Other potential negative effects of using a skin whitening cream include the following:

  • Continued use over an extended period of time can result in the premature aging of the skin.
  • Prolonged usage can also lead to an increased susceptibility to skin cancer from exposure to the sun. Thus, it is advisable to use a sunscreen in concert with the skin lighting cream.
  • The presence of steroids in some skin bleaching products can lead to an increased susceptibility to acne, skin infection, and thinning. It also inhibits wound healing, meaning any injuries will heal more slowly and will most likely leave noticeable scarring.
  • Topical steroids, also known as hydrocortisone, are a great medicinal breakthrough. Synthesized from the hormone cortisol, hydrocortisone is used to treat skin conditions like dermatitis and eczema. However, its prolonged application to large patches of skin can result in certain health issues linked to steroid absorption into the body. These include skin thinning, the appearance of stretch marks in the groin and under the armpits, enlargement of blood vessels, and easy bruising and tearing of the skin.
  • Hydroquinone has been known to cause permanent, unwanted skin discoloration, or ochronosis.
  • Some ingredients used in skin lightening products can cause intense allergic reactions or skin irritation. It is generally advisable to consult your doctor or conduct a patch test before using these products.

Choosing the Best Skin Lightening Cream

With all the commitment and risks involved, the choice of using a skin lightener should not be taken lightly. You can first explore various alternative treatment options, such as laser treatment, chemical peels, or microdermabrasion. However, if these do not work, it may be time to turn to the short-term usage of skin lightening products.

The best skin whitening products generally contain no Mercury or any of its derivatives such as calomel, mercurio or mercuric. They also contain no more than two percent for over-the-counter products. It is also advisable to consult your doctor before beginning any lightening regimens. This will help ensure that you use the safest products and get the most accurate application instructions.

Below are some other tips that will help you select the best skin bleaching cream:

1. Determine your skin type

An individual can have either normal, dry, oily or combination skin. Some bleaching agents contain products like lemon juice that can excessively dry out your skin. Others are formulated with particularly harsh chemicals that cause irritation and other negative side effects when used on sensitive skin. Knowing your skin type will help you avoid products that can cause adverse effects.

2. What result are you hoping to achieve?

As explained above, people use skin lighteners for a variety of reasons. Determine exactly what you would personally like to achieve from using these products. Do you want to lighten your complexion? Or, would you like to treat a specific skin condition?

A good skin whitening cream will treat conditions such as acne scarring, blemishes, hyperpigmentation, age spots, Melasma or chloasma, sun damage, and uneven skin tone among others. They do this through components such as tyrosinase, which inhibit melanin production in the skin.

3. Consider the ingredients

It is critical that you carefully go through the list of ingredients for any product before buying it. Avoid skin lighteners that contain mercury, hydroquinone, and steroids. If possible, concentrate on all-natural or organic products.

Alternatively, you can choose products that contain beneficial ingredients such as arbutin, liquorice extract or Glycyrrhiza glabra plant, kojic acid, vitamin C, mulberry extracts, or Gigawhite.

4. Do not forget the sunscreen

Any skin lightening regimen will invariably make your skin thinner and more sensitive to the sun's rays. It is, therefore, important to limit your exposure to the sun during treatment. However, since this may not always be possible, you must couple the usage of skin lightening creams with the use of sunscreen.

Select a sunscreen with a high SPF as this will offer deep cell protection and block both the sun's UVA and UVB rays. UVA rays cause the skin to tan and age, while UVB rays lead to sunburns and increase the likelihood of skin cancer.

The Top 10 Best Skin Lightening Products

#1. Olay White Radiance Advanced Whitening Intensive Moisturizer

The Olay White Radiance Advanced Whitening moisturizing cream is one of the best face bleaching cream in the market today. It works to lighten the skin, reduce the appearance of blemishes and dark spots, and enhance the skin's natural radiance.

This cream effectively gets rid of blemishes, dark spots and acne scars. Its formulation also contains SPF 24, which blocks harmful UVA and UVB days from the sun. Its main active ingredient is celLucent whitening active and vitamin B3, which penetrates deep into the epidermis.

To use this product, it is recommended that you begin by cleansing your face before liberal application of the cream to your face and neck at least twice a day. This will help you achieve the best results in the shortest time. Correctly using this cream will give you fairer skin within four weeks.

The Olay White Radiance cream prevents the appearance of dark shadows in the skin by inhibiting melanin transfer. Further, the cream is a great moisturizer, helping the skin maintain the ideal amount of hydration to keep it looking radiant.

However, this cream is not suitable for dry skin types. It is also quite expensive and not travel-friendly.

#2. Pond's White Beauty Daily Spot-Less Lightening Cream

Many people consider this product to be the best bleaching cream currently on the market. Not only does it give you a lighter complexion with regular use, but it also acts as a sunblock from harmful solar rays. It should be used as a daily cream after cleansing the face.

This cream is formulated to provide its users with a wide range of benefits. It minimizes the visibility of dark spots while making your skin look brighter and more radiant. It also contains SPF 20 for sunscreen action. It contains active Gigawhite which seeps deep into the skin to get rid of blemishes and dull skin. It also contains antioxidants which help to lighten dark circles on the skin.

This cream is suitable for normal to oily skin types. It visibly lightens your skin tone, giving it a pinkish glow after a few weeks of regular use. It is also very affordable. However, people with set skin should not use this product as it may cause breakouts. It also does not blend easily into the skin; neither is its packaging travel-friendly.

#3. Kaya Pigmentation Reducing Complex

Kaya's Pigmentation Reducing Complex is one of the best skin whitening cream. It is a lightweight moisturizing cream that helps to reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation, acne scars, age spots, blemishes, tanning, and dark spots. The best thing about this cream is that it works on all skin types.

It is dermatologically tested and proven to reduce skin blemishes by 75 percent within a week of regular use. Within two weeks, it visibly lightens and evens out your skin tone.

This cream contains phytic acid, kojic acid, and azeloglicina, which are potent skin lightening agents known to get rid of blemishes age spots and freckles. It also contains other compounds which keep your skin from darkening further. The vitamins A and C included in its formulation helps to stimulate the repair and renewal of epidermal cells. This serves to refine skin texture and even out the skin tone.

This cream should be used after cleansing the skin every morning and before going to bed every night.It is very gentle on sensitive skin. However, it is quite expensive. It also does not contain any SPF protection. Further, the cream does not work very well on its own and must be used in conjunction with other products like cleanser, toner, and sunscreen.

#4. L'Oreal Paris White Perfect Laser Day Cream

L'Oreal Paris White Perfect Laser Day Cream is a potent lightening cream that leaves your skin fairer and well nourished. It is a lightweight cream that treats a wide range of skin conditions she reducing the appearance of any blemishes. It also contains SPF 19 which protects your skin from harmful sun rays.

This cream contains PRO-VANISH, a potent whitening complex that inhibits the excessive production of melanin in the skin. It does this while helping the skin retain the appropriate amount of melanin. This helps the skin gradually become lighter. It also fades any existing dark spots and blemishes. This is one of the best fade cream.

This cream is also a long lasting moisturizer, working to hydrate and nourish the skin throughout the day. People with sensitive skin will find this product beneficial. However, it can cause breakouts in people with oily skin. It is also fairly pricey.

#5. Biotique Bio Dandelion Ageless Lightening Serum

This serum is very effective for lightening skin as well as removing blemishes and dark spots. It is a mild formulation, making it suitable for individuals with sensitive skin.

The Dandelion Ageless Lightening Serum contains pure dandelion oil blended with nutmeg oil. It is enriched with vitamin E as well as other critical mineral elements. It is recommended that you use it every night before bed. It can also be used as a base before the application of moisturizer or makeup.

This Serum is an all natural product and does not contain preservatives or any other artificial and chemical additives. It also visibly lightens the skin's complexion over a short time with repeated use. Further, the cream is affordable and works well with any skin type.

However, it is a herbal concoction with a distinct smell that some people could find repulsive. It also does not contain any SPF, nor does it moisturize or hydrate the skin.

#6. Garnier Skin Naturals White Complete Multi Action Fairness Cream

This cream uses pure lemon essence as the main active ingredient. This component effectively clarifies your skin tone and smoothes it out at the same time. It also provides an instantaneous whitening effect that lasts for a long time.

Further, the Garnier Skin Naturals White Complete Multi Action Fairness Cream contains vitamin C, which has proven skin lightening properties. Its formulation also includes SPF 17, which protects the skin from the effects of the sun's harmful UVA and UVB rays.

You should apply this cream on freshly cleansed skin every morning. Regular users of the product have reported visible lightening effects within up to two weeks. It comes in a travel-friendly package and is quite affordable.

However, the formulation dries out the skin a bit too much. People with dry skin should avoid this product. It is also liable to cause breakouts in some users.

#7. Lotus Herbals Whiteglow Skin Whitening and Brightening Massage Cream

This product contains intensive whitening agents that work by penetrating feel into the skin to leave it lighter and brighter. It also has a potent moisturizing action to refresh, nourish and energize the skin.It enhances your complexion and skin tone naturally. This is one of the best bleaching cream for face.

This cream can be applied on the face, hands, and neck. It works well on all skin types. It is also easy to apply, ensuring you require minimal product with every use. This cream also improves your circulation to the areas it is applied, thus tightening your skin and pores.

It also refines the texture of your skin and leaves it looking luminous. Preferably, the cream should be applied on freshly cleansed skin at least two times every day.

#8. Fair & Lovely Advanced Multi Vitamin Daily Fairness Expert

Fair & Lovely is a favorite among younger women. It is a multipurpose product that keeps skin in the best condition possible. It contains SPF 15 which protects the skin from the effects of sun exposure. It also lightens the skin and brightens dark spots considerably with consistent use.

It also contains vitamins B3, B6, C, and E. These help to keep the skin nourished and looking healthy. It is recommended that you use this cream two to three times every day.

Fair &Lovely is a very affordable skin lightening cream. However, it is not suitable for use by people with dry skin. Further, it is known to make the skin more oily a few hours after application. It can also cause breakouts.

#9. Neutrogena Fine Fairness Serum

The Neutrogena Fine Fairness Serum is a lightweight skin lightening agent. It works by inhibiting the excess production of melanin to leave your skin visibly lighter within a few days. It is also easily absorbed into the skin to refine its texture and leave the skin with a radiant glow.

The serum is non-greasy, free of alcohol and oil, and has a very pleasant scent. It effectively gets rid of blemishes and dark spots. It has a gentle formulation that is great for people who have acne prone skin. It should be applied once or twice every day on a freshly cleansed face.

However, this serum is quite expensive. It is also not a good option for people with dry skin.

#10. Lotus Herbals Fairness Gel with Liquorice and Green Tea

This product is one of the best lightening agents. It works to lighten the skin pigmentation. This gel is an oil-free option that makes the skin lighter, slows down aging, and enhances the skin's natural glow. It also penetrated deep into the skin to revitalize its cutaneous cells.

The Lotus Herbals Fairness gel is a great product for people with oily and combination skin. It is also very affordable. The gel should be applied on a cleansed face. It can be used as a base before the application of sunscreen or makeup.

However, drastic changes in skin complexion may not be seen from this product, even with constant use. It also does not contain SPF and is not suitable for people with dry skin.


Experts agree that relying solely on creams, serums and gels are not enough for healthier skin. You must also incorporate healthy choices into your lifestyle. However, these tips and products will go a long way in helping you get lighter, healthier skin.