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Do you have any light-brown spots or flat small tans on your skin? Those are actually freckles that are formed due to exposure to ultraviolet rays overtime. They are formed due to an increase in dark pigment, melanin, being produced by pigment producing cells, melanocytes, as a “self-defence” against future sun exposure.

How they appear on your skin might differ based on the individual’s skin tone and tend to be more obvious on those with fairer skin. That being said, not everyone has an equal chance of developing freckles. On top of sun exposure over time, genetics do play a part as well.

While they’re usually harmless and unlikely to develop into any sort of skin cancer, many women are bothered by it because of aesthetic reasons.

How to prevent freckles from appearing

If you’re worried about freckles, it’s time to prevent them from appearing. Prevention methods aren’t very complicated, but require some discipline.

1. Apply sunscreen regularly: Wearing a sunscreen is the best way to ensure that your skin is not subjected to damage from UV rays. Freckles typically appear at the high points of your face (around the nose and on the apples of your cheeks) so make sure you’re most conscientious with applying sunscreen at these areas. But don’t neglect your body, areas that are most exposed to the sun, such as your shoulders and the back of your hands can also see the appearance of freckles.

2. Wear sun-protective clothing: Especially on days when you know that you’ll be spending long hours outdoors, consider putting on a wide-brimmed hat to shield your face from the sun. If you’re also very concerned about your body and aren’t worried about the heat, wearing long sleeved tops and and long pants can help to protect your skin from UV damage too.

3. Be extra careful during peak sunny hours: This is usually from noon to around 3pm. It’s hard to avoid this period because it falls during our lunch hour, but it doesn’t mean you can’t do anything about it. Reapply your sunscreen at least ten minutes before you head out for lunch to give your skin extra protection.

Basically, make use of all the sun protection tools you can find to reduce the amount of time your skin is exposed to the sun! Prevention is definitely better than having to turn to solution. Notably, to mothers who know that their genes have a higher tendency for freckles to form, follow the above sun protection measures to aid your child in avoiding the development of freckles. Habits should form from young!

How to get rid of freckles

Just like how freckles don’t form overnight, unfortunately, they will not completely fade overnight just because you use a whitening cream. However, there are a few ways you can try to lighten their appearance. Once they’re lightened, you’ll find it very much easier to conceal them with makeup.

1. Using topical creams: Look out for products that contain hydroquinone and kojic acid. Creams with these two ingredients can help to reduce freckles over time if applied consistently. To increase the effectiveness of this method, integrate it with the above-mentioned sun protection measures.

2. Include retinoid in skincare routine: Retinoid has a slight peeling effect on skin that can get rid of dullness on the surface of skin to help make freckles look more faded. Using topical creams with retinoid, together with other whitening skincare products can help improve their effectiveness.

3. Consume vitamin C: Don’t forget that your diet matters too. Vitamin C is well known for its brightening effect on skin and can help to visibly lighten freckles overtime. Take more fruits and vegetables that are rich in vitamin C for a holistic approach to lightening freckles, but if you find it hard to do so, you may want to consider dietary supplements to ensure you’re receiving sufficient vitamin C.

4. Go for chemical peels: Make use of chemical peels to peel away the top layer of your skin. This may even result in the removal of lighter freckles on your skin. However, chemical peels are one of the harsher treatments out there and thus, it is not recommended to use this method repeatedly within a short period of time. Check with your dermatologist to see if you’re suitable for this treatment. If you’re unsuitable for it, go for gentle exfoliants that can help you slough off dead skin cells at home to reveal fresh-looking skin.

5. Try laser treatments such as photofacials and IPL: These aesthetic treatments are well known for their effectiveness of lightening freckles, and in some cases, may even eliminate them after a few sessions. While they’re definitely more expensive than topical creams, their high success rate makes it worthwhile for some people to consider them. The only downside is that you may experience some discomfort during the sessions, and may have to deal with a few days of redness and peeling on your face.

Want more tips to achieving radiant skin? Check out the Daily Vanity Radiant Skin Guide for more useful advice and product recommendations!