Which Skin Lightening Products Work Best For Asian Skin?

Asians need to take special care when choosing a skin lightening product. We’ll say it right up front. Asian skin bleaching is totally safe using skin lightening products made with natural ingredients such as kojic acid, Alpha Arbutin, and Vitamin C. There are no side effects reported on Asian skin (or any other ethnic skin tone). Medical researchers sing the praises of the effectiveness.

We’ll also say right up front that anyone with Asian skin tones should stay away from hydroquinone. There can be serious side effects to Asian skin bleaching using a hydroquinone-based skin lightening product. In fact, skin color from light brown to very dark is susceptible. Many doctors refuse to use hydroquinone at all on people of color.

Doctors think Alpha Arbutin is very safe. One significant study of skin lightening products was done in Japan. Doctors in Osaka tested whether Alpha Arbutin worked as a skin lightener. The Asian doctors were impressed with the results. Alpha Arbutin inhibited melanin, which is what naturally gives Asian skin its deeper color. The doctors saw melanin decrease in new cells by 40%. On the basis of their biochemical research, the Japanese doctors wrote that alpha arbutin was safe, and effective.

The evidence against hydroquinone on darker-pigmented skin is alarming, and should be a factor in Asian skin bleaching decisions.

• An overseas study reported nerve damage in a woman using two hydroquinone-based skin fading creams for four years. Within four months of cutting out hydroquinone, the symptoms disappeared and she walked again without difficulty.

• Even if there is not that kind of crippling side effects, hydroquinone can simply backfire on Asian skin. It has turned darker-pigmented cells darker, grey, and even red or purple.

• Asians choosing a skin lightening product will note that hydroquinone has been banned in Japan.

Hydroquinone is also illegal in Great Britain. There is a very large Asian population in London. British Health Authorities actually see black market hydroquinone skin fading creams bootlegged specifically for Asian skin.

Asian skin bleaching is a not a trend but is cultural. Lighter skin in Asian society is seen as a sign of wealth and status. London Police think Asians are targeted as customers of illegal hydroquinone products. Officers recently raided an Asian importer. They found hydroquinone soap. Soap would be especially harmful. The danger that in any cut or scrapes hydroquinone will penetrate into the bloodstream to reach the liver and kidneys. There it can cause more damage.

Asians shopping for skin lightening products in the US should know that hydroquinone is still available over-the-counter and in prescription form in the US.

Another dangerous skin bleaching chemical cannot be use in US-made skin products. But it is frequently an ingredient in skin lightening products produced in Asian countries and shipped worldwide. If you have Asian skin, you will also want to beware of mercury. Mercury poisoning is known to cause nerve and kidney damage. Since overall skin tone bleaching is so prevalent in brown and Asian skin populations, mercury is a worldwide concern.

• One case involved brown-skinned people in Tanzania, who had mercury poisoning. Doctors suspected fish, or mining. It turned out all of the test cases had poisoned their bodies using mercury-based skin bleaching products.

• What mercury skin lightening cream did to lab rats is startling. Doctors found repeated application of a cream with a mercury base permanently damaged kidneys, brain and liver.

There is compelling evidence that Asian skin bleaching advocates should choose creams made from natural ingredients rather than chemicals.

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