We all wish to have that “perfect” glowing skin, don’t we? Well, I’m sure most of us keep trying out various skin care products that can help achieve the perfect glow on our skin. Achieving that perfect glowing skin and getting that radiant complexion will mean that your skin should be free from dark patches, hyperpigmentation, scarring, etc.


So why lookout for commercial skin care products when we have so many naturally-derived skin care ingredients available to help brighten our skin, even out skin tone, reduce scarring, dark spots, and hyperpigmentation, and can improve overall skin health?

Check out the best ingredients for skin brightening, below.

Six Best Ingredients for Skin Brightening

  1. Licorice

Licorice is an herb of whose roots are used for medicinal purposes and is also known as glycyrrhizic acid. The root of licorice contains iso-flavonoids that can help keep pigmentation at bay.

Licorice extract can act as a natural skin-lightening alternative to the chemical hydroquinone. It can help promote skin brightness. Licorice in the form of topical gels is also used to treat skin conditions like acne or eczema.

  1. Alpha Arbutin

Alpha Arbutin is an antioxidant that is a naturally occurring derivative of hydroquinone (a popular skin-lightning/skin-bleaching ingredient) extracted from the dried leaves of plants like blueberry, cranberry, and bearberry.

Alpha Arbutin contains compounds that can disrupt the production of melanin in the skin and can reduce the appearance of dark circles under the eyes by lightening them. Higher the melanin content, the darker the skin color. A common cause of hyperpigmentation is an excess production of melanin.

Using Alpha Arbutin will help reduce the formation of melanin and improve the skin’s appearance by reducing dark spots, scars, freckles, melasma, pigmentation, etc.

  1. Azelaic Acid

Azelaic acid is found in grains and is a naturally occurring acid. It has anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties which make it effective in the treatment of skin conditions like acne, rosacea, skin lightening and hyperpigmentation.

It can help even out skin tone and improve skin health. It can help brighten the skin and improve one’s skin’s natural glow and radiance.

  1. Tranexamic Acid

Tranexamic Acid can be used for people with skin discoloration issues like hyperpigmentation and melasma.

When the skin with dark spots or dark patches comes in contact with the ultraviolet (UV) rays of the sun, the production of melanin gets activated and increases. Tranexamic Acid helps to inhibit this melanin production as it can help inhibit the interaction between the skin cells (keratinocytes) and melanocytes (the cells that produce the melanin in the body).

It can not only prevent the further formation of dark spots or dark patches, but it can also help in the reduction of already existing discolored patches caused by melasma or hyperpigmentation.

  1. Kojic Acid

Kojic acid is a natural ingredient that can help in skin whitening and it is often used to decrease hyperpigmentation. Since Kojic acid is a tyrosinase inhibitor, it can reduce the production of melanin, in turn helping the dark circles fade away. Melanin is the skin pigment responsible for the skin, hair, and eye color of a person. Sometimes, there is an excess buildup of melanin in certain parts of the body, which causes the darkening of the skin, which is called hyperpigmentation.

Research shows that cosmetics or beauty products with 1% to 4% of kojic acid are safe to use. You can find kojic acid in products like creams, soaps, lotions, serums, etc.

  1. Ascorbic Acid

Ascorbic acid, also known as vitamin C, is a well-known antioxidant that is an important nutrient that protects the skin from free radical damage and can help reduce dark spots and hyperpigmentation by penetrating into the skin. It can help strengthen the skin and help to build the protein, collagen, which helps strengthen the skin, providing it structure, making it more resilient, and promoting skin elasticity.

Ascorbic acid has properties of skin brightening as it can even out the skin tone and improves the skin’s dull, tired and damaged appearance due to ultra-violet (UV) rays damage or pollution. It improves the skin’s condition, making the skin look fresh, and radiant and giving it a natural glow.

General Caution:

  • Do a patch test before completely applying, to see if these ingredients suit your skin.
  • If it causes any irritation, rinse it off immediately and discontinue its usage.
  • You can also consult your dermatologist before starting to use any of these products.
  • Read the instructions properly before using any of these products, to make sure you use it the right way.