#Your body is the most priceless possession..so take care of it# #If you listen to your body when it whispers, you don't have to hear it scream# #It is not a short term diet, It's a long term lifestyle# #So many people spend their health gaining wealth, and then have to spend their wealth to regain their health# #It's never too early, nor too late to work towards being the healthiest you# #Health is much more dependent on our habits and nutrition than on medicine# #Skip the diet, just eat healthy# #Junk food you've craved for an hour or the body you've craved for a lifetime!! Your Decision# #Health is like money. We never have true idea of its value until we lose it# #The greatest medicine of all is to teach people how not to need it#

Aug 1, 2016

Embarassing Dark Patches on Face! Melasma, Lighten it Naturally!

Melasma, also known as, Chloasma or Hyperpigmentation, is a skin condition that causes an overproduction in melanin to occur in an area of skin causing irregular darker patches of skin to visibly appear. The discoloration typically covers different parts of the face including the cheeks, forehead, bridge of the nose, above the upper lip and chin. The condition typically appears in women ages 20 to 50 years old. The cause of melasma is not known; however, it is commonly associated with exposure to the sun, oral contraceptives and pregnancy.

Hyperpigmentation is one of the most common and one of the hardest to get rid of. There are plenty of different reasons for dark spots to show up on our face that have nothing to do with acne or a poor skin routine. Often, melasma is caused by the UVA rays from the sun which is why suncreen or natural protection from the sun is essential in our skincare. Even if you're diligent about your daily SPF, melasma can also occur from hormonal changes from pregnancy and birth control pills.

Several factors trigger the formation of dark patches on the face. Some of these include the following:

Hormonal fluctuation is the leading cause of melasma in many people. It occurs when the hormone estrogen stimulates the formation of pigmentation, causing dark, blotchy and uneven patches on the face.

Prolonged exposure to the sun can trigger melasma.

Genetic predisposition is another reason for melasma to appear on the skin.

Use of oral contraceptives, drugs such as tetracycline and quinine may also trigger the formation of pigmentation on the skin.

Good news for pregnant ladies is that your pregnancy and melasma will most likely be over soon. Natural and conventional treatments for hormonal melasma should only be started when birth control is stopped else there are chances of making it worse.

Following are some of the natural treatments that you may try-

Lemon- Apply lemon juice on the affected skin every day. Lemons contain citric acid, which can naturally lighten skin. Cut lemon in half and squeeze lemon juice into a glass bowl. Apply using fingers or cotton bud wherever melasma is present. Leave on for 15-20 minutes then wash off with cold water. Do this every day for best results. Do a patch test if you have sensitive skin.

Apricot Kernel Oil- Apricot Kernel Oil is natural, light-colored and rich in fatty acids, vitamins A, C and E. When applied to the skin, apricot kernel oil nourishes the skin and eliminates inflammation, soothing and healing melasma.

 Turmeric- Apply turmeric paste to the affected areas or entire face every day. Curcumin is the active ingredient of turmeric which has antioxidant and skin-lightening properties. Mix 1 tablespoon of turmeric powder to 2 tablespoons of milk. Add 1 tablespoon of gram flour to thicken the mixture so it’ll be easier to apply to the skin. Gently massage the paste into the skin and leave on for about 30 minutes; rinse off with lukewarm water and pat dry.

Beta Carotene- A member of the carotenoid family, Beta Carotene is a potent antioxidant. The compound also contains an extremely high level of vitamin. These two characteristics combined make it effective for treating the discoloration associated with melasma. Likewise, when applied topically, the compound alleviates inflammation of the skin.

Gotu Kola: Gotu Kola Powder is a Chinese herb that fades dark skin patches. In order to increase the effectiveness of this herb, you can add ginseng to it. Take half a teaspoon of powdered gotu kola and ginseng herbs and mix them well to make a paste. Apply this paste on the affected areas of the skin and leave for 20 minutes. Rinse with lukewarm water.

Aloe vera- Aloe Vera contains a potent substance called mucilaginous polysaccharide (MPS), which softens and lightens brown spots and other discolorations. Apply the aloe vera gel to the affected areas and massage in circular motions for 15 minutes and leave on overnight.

Triphala- Take 2 spoons of Triphala Powder and add it to 300 ml of water. Let it soak overnight. Next morning boil this water till you get 100 ml of brown color water mixed with triphala powder. Now filter the powder below and use this warm water to clean the effected area gently and later apply the filtered mixture. Leave it for 15-20 minutes and rinse off with lukewarm water.

Tulsi- Extract juice from fresh tulsi leaves and mix camphor powder in it. Apply this thick juice on effected area and wash it after it dries.

Horseradish (aka Sahijan in Hindi): Horseradish is a natural cure for melasma, skin pigmentation acne scars and other skin blemishes. You can apply a paste of horseradish directly on the affected areas and leave it to dry for at least 20 minutes. Do this once or twice a week.

Sugar, Nutmeg, and Coconut Milk Mask-  Start with 1/4 cup of brown sugar, 1 teaspoon of nutmeg, 1 tablespoon of coconut milk, and add 2-3 drops of clove essential oil. Leave the mask on your face for at least 15-20 minutes and rinse off with luke warm water followed by SPF. Do this daily once.

Brown sugar is high in glycolic acid, which is known to improve melasma.

Coconut milk is high in lactic acid, another great way to treat melasma.

Both lactic and glycolic acids are able to remove the topical layer of infected skin and promote tyrosinase activity. Tyrosine helps with pigmentation and melanin.

Clove essential oil is well-known for balancing hormones and it won't cause further pigmentation issues when applied topically.

Additional tips-

The average human should drink 6-8 glasses of water a day and the human body is 70% water. Water is useful for thousands of tasks and can help quicken melasma fading when used with Turmeric or lemon. Always remain hydrated.

Probably one of the most important tips for melasma is using SPF, protection against the sun; not using sun protection can make melasma darker.

Fruit and vegetables do wonderful things for the body and shouldn’t be ignored.

(NOTE: Melasma is very difficult to treat. So patience is the key. Follow any of these natural remedy consistently and religiously for 3-6 months to see improvements, depending upon the level of hyperpigmentation. Do a patch test before applying anything to your melasma if you have sensitive skin.)

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