I won’t say we all want a snow white complexion, because that is very obviously not true. In some parts of the world, tan skin is what is considered beautiful and fashionable. Looking like you just came back from an amazing tropical vacation is the look many people in the United States and parts of Europe aspire to. Many of these people are skinnaturally on the more fair side, and it seems like the grass is always greener on the other side. You tend to want what you don’t have. If we are honest with ourselves, we would realize that all skin tones are beautiful. When it comes down to it, we have more of a problem with our attitude of not being happy with what we have.

Still, in other countries such as Asia and Africa, people want more of a fair complexion and go through various means to achieve that. Here too we see that people are not happy with what they have. They find the opposite of themselves beautiful. However, the desire for fair skin has gone back hundreds of years and was even very popular in Europe for a time. The reason that fair skin was beautiful is that upper-class people tended to have it since they didn’t have to be out in the fields to make a living. So it didn’t come from a standard of beauty as much as a standard of class.

So where does today’s obsession with fair skin come from? It’s hard to say, it is likely a combination of various factors. There have been various methods for achieving fair skin throughout the ages. Some have been safe and others could be downright dangerous. But there is one ingredient used for skin lightening that is just as effective as it is controversion.

The FDA proposed a ban over hydroquinone because it was feared that is might be a carcinogens substance. It was found that when given to rodents in high doses, it caused liver tumors in the rodents. It has also been linked with ochronosis which is a medical condition where the skin becomes darker, thicker and even greyer. Some studies also claimed that adrenal glands were negatively affected and high levels of mercury were found in people who were using hydroquinone.

Still, this was only a proposed ban, and no ban has actually taken effect. As it turns out, many experts agree that in skin1the amount of that is found in most over the counter formulations is safe for most people. Hydroquinone is best suited for lightening dark spots rather than an overall whitening of the skin. It is important to know the additional skin care steps one must do when using hydroquinone.

Perhaps the most important thing is to use sunscreen every time you are outside. Hydroquinone will make your skin extremely sensitive and vulnerable to the sun, and without using sunscreen could cause damage and even dark spots which is obviously not the look you are going for if you ar e using hydroquinone. You also do not want to use benzoyl peroxide when using this skin lightener as the combination of the two could cause skin darkening as well.

As can be seen, it can be concluded that using hydroquinone in small doses, could help brighten your skin tone and hyperpigmentation. Just be sure you are using safely. However, there are other natural means of skin lightening such as vitamin C or licorice root.

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