Suffer from acne scars or post-summer dark spots and discolouration? Then it may be time to consider adding one of our natural brightening super-serums to your #greenbeauty repertoire. Great for encouraging an even skin tone, reducing pigmentation and reviving a tired or dull complexion, we’ve rounded up our favourite products featuring ingredients from some of nature’s most nutrient dense habitats, to treat, correct, maintain and prevent hyper-pigmentation in all it guises.
Designed to both prevent and correct Brightening Serums offer a concentrated source of targeted ingredients. Below we reveal some of our favourite ingredients sourced from Nature's own apothecary and where to find them....
From the Ocean - Algae and Seaweeds
Utilising the potent antioxidant content present in sea-plants, studies have shown that bio-active compounds derived from marine algae act as effective skin lightening agents*. It makes sense when you think about it - all that time spent in the sun at sea, it's no wonder algae and seaweed is adept at protecting itself from discolouration and make up a core part of our most popular natural skin brighteners:
- Norwegian Kelp & Sea Fern - Norwegian Kelp has been proven to boost the skins melanin elimination process, with visible signs of skin renewal apparent after only 3 days,** whilst Sea Fern works to target the transfer process of melanin to pigmentation before skin discolouration is able to occur. Find both in the Tata Harper's Concentrated Brightening Serum and the Norwegian Kelp in Amala's Brightening Corrective Concentrate.
- Laminara Ochroleuka - Otherwise known as brown algae this seaweed extract has clinical trials showing it is proven to combat skin damage from excessive sun exposure whilst reducing inflammation and immune related ageing.*** Find it in the S5 Skincare's illuminate Serum.
- Japanese Wakame - Rich in vitamins A, C, E, and K, Wakame is thought to strengthen skin protecting it against UV rays and may also delay wrinkles. Find it in the Kahina's Brightening Serum.
From the Garden- Herbs and Flowers
A field of wild flowers may be as pretty as a picture but when it comes to skin brightening they pack a powerful punch. Clinically proven to increase skin lightness, the following herbs and flowers have been shown to assist in blocking and reversing skin discolouration
- Seven Alpine Herbs - Cultivated in the Alpine mountains, a blend of seven alpine herbs including Mallow, Peppermint, Cowslip, Lady’s Mantle, Veronica, Yarrow and Melissa makes a blend of organic herbs proven to reduce the colour intensity of age spots and help reverse melanin synthesis at its source. Tests show this synergistic blend increases skin lightness by 15% and reduces colour by 30%, Find them in the Amala's Brightening Corrective Concentrate and S5 Skincare's illuminate Serum.
- Narcissus - has the ability to slow down the synthesis of melanin reducing the occurrence of dark spots. Extracted from the bulb, which in Winter becomes dormant and slows down cell growth, the topcial affect is the same - slowing down the production of melanin. Find it in the Amala's Brightening Corrective Concentrate.
- Madonna Lily - Clinically proven, Madonna Lily has been shown to assist in blocking melanosomes (melanin's cellular site of synthesis) from absorbing melanin that leads to the formation of skin discolouration. Find it in the Tata Harper Concentrated Brightening Serum.
From the field - Fruits, Fungi and RootsHere at Content we love our #skinfood, and these super varieties are no exception!
- Tibet Kombuchka - Some of you may recognise this as the name of your favourite fermented beverage, but did you know it just as good for your skin when applied topically? Often referred to as the 'long life mushroom' in Tibet it is traditionally fermented from sweet black tea and this particular variety has been proven to enhance the appearance of radiance by 15% and clarity by 11% whilst plumping and smoothing the skin.*** Find it in the S5 Skincare’s Illuminate Serum.
- Papaya Seed Oil - We have been using this one as a targeted treatment for a rather large 'sun-spot' and the results are impressive. Containing the enzyme papain, which dissolves dead skin cells and helps the skin to renew itself it also has a gentle lightening effect which helps to fade brown spots. With only a few drops needed it's easy to add into your daily skincare regime. Find it in the Odacite Hyperpigmentation Concentrate
- Licorice, Songyi & Vitamin C - These super #skinfoods feature clinically proven brightening actives which work together to brighten and even skin tone, whilst the added vitamin C fights free radicals and premature ageing, the Licorice fades dark spots and Songyi gently lightens and promotes new cell growth. Find this trio in the Suki Skincare Even Tone Brightening Serum
One of our favourite rituals for a quick brightening treatment at home is the Amala Radiance Ritual. Try this as a post-summer sun repair treatment or treat your skin prior to a special event
Amala’s Intensive Radiance Ritual
- Start by exfoliating with the Brightening Face Polish
- Follow with a generous application of the Intensive Brightening Mask, rich in tone-brightening actives.
- Leave for 10-15 minutes and rinse.
- Follow with the Brightening Corrective Concentrate and the Brightening Treatment Moisturiser
*Evidence and utility of melanin degrading enzymes; Mammone T, Marenus K, Muizzuddin N, Maes D; Journal of Cosmetic Science; 2004 Jan-Feb;55(1):116-7.**Tata Harper Concentrated Brightening Serum. Retrieved September 15, 2014, from Tata Harper Skincare: http://www.tataharperskincare.com/concentrated-brightening-serum ***S5 Skincare Illuminate Serum . Retrieved September 15, 2014, from S5 Skincare: http://www.s5skincare.com/illuminate-serum-10ml-mini.html