Nearly everyone has a few freckles, but some people seem to be covered with them. The dark spots can be a beauty concern for both men and women.
According to the American Academy of Dermatologists, freckles are a sign of sun-damaged skin. Prolonged and repeated exposure to the sun’s harmful rays cause melanocytes, the melanin pigment-producing cells, to multiply. As a result, the skin becomes darker and gradually freckles are formed.
Freckles can also be due to a hormonal imbalance or genetics. In general, light- or fair-skinned people are more prone to freckles.
Though freckles can appear any where on the body, they are most common on the face, especially on or around the nose. There are many simple remedies to get rid of them that are quite easy and safe to try at home. Unless otherwise noted, use these remedies until you achieve the desired results.
Here are the top 10 ways to get rid of freckles.
1. Lemon Juice
Lemon juice is a tried and tested remedy for getting rid of freckles. The active ingredient in lemon juice is citric acid, which is a natural bleaching agent. Hence, lemon juice can lighten freckles and even make them disappear with time.
- Extract the juice from a lemon and apply it on your freckles. Gently massage it into the skin for five to 10 minutes, and then rinse it off with lukewarm water. Do this twice daily.
- You can also mix the juice from one lemon with one tablespoon of beaten yogurt and apply it on the affected area. Allow it to dry on its own and then rinse it off with cool water. Do this once daily for about two months.
- Alternatively, mix one tablespoon of lemon juice with a pinch of salt and one tablespoon of honey. Apply it on your freckles. Leave it on for 10 minutes, and then wash it off with water. Use this treatment once daily.
Honey is another ingredient with natural bleaching properties that can help minimize the appearance of freckles. It can reduce the excess production of melanin and thus skin pigmentation.
- Mix equal amounts of honey and water and heat it slightly. Apply it on your freckles and allow it to dry on its own. Then rinse it off with warm water. Do this daily one hour before going to bed.
- Combine two tablespoons of warm honey and one tablespoon of wheat germ to make a thick mask. Apply the paste on your freckles. Leave it on for 10 minutes, and then rinse it off with warm water. Finally, splash some cold water on the freckled area. Do this twice a week for at least two months.
- Another option is to make a paste of equal amounts of honey and yogurt. Put it on your freckles for 30 minutes and wash it off with cold water. Use this treatment regularly for one or two months.
3. Red Onions
Onions have exfoliating power just like lemons. Plus, red onions contain sulfur, which helps keep the skin free of freckles. For treating freckles, you must use red onions instead of white onions.
- Cut one medium-size red onion into thick slices. Rub the slices gently on your freckles two times a day.
- Alternatively, grate a red onion and extract its juice. Mix equal amounts of the onion juice and apple cider vinegar. Soak a cotton ball in the solution and apply it on your freckles. Allow it to dry on its own and then rinse it off with cool water. Repeat the treatment daily.
The lactic acid present in buttermilk promotes gentle peeling of the skin without irritation or dryness.
Also, it enhances skin elasticity, improving the smoothness and radiance in your skin.
- Dip a cotton ball in buttermilk and apply it on your freckles. Leave it on for 10 minutes and then rinse it off with lukewarm water. Use this treatment two times daily.
- Add enough buttermilk to two tablespoons of powdered oatmeal to make a thick paste. Put the paste on your freckles and leave it on for 30 minutes. Wash it off with cold water. Do this once daily.
You can also use papaya to diminish the appearance of freckles. Papain, an enzyme present in papaya, helps speed up skin regeneration, eliminating dead skin cells and promoting new cell growth.
- Put a few slices of ripe papaya in a juicer to extract the juice. Use a cotton ball to apply the juice on your freckles. Massage it into your skin. After 10 minutes, rinse it off with cool water. Repeat once daily.
- Alternatively, you can rub the inside of the papaya peel on the affected skin for a few minutes. Let it dry for 15 minutes and then rinse off the skin with cool water. Use this simple remedy once daily.
Parsley is a great remedy for freckles due to the high amounts of vitamin C, calcium, potassium and manganese present in it. All these nutrients are needed by the skin to maintain normal production of collagen and an even skin tone. Plus, parsley has bleaching agents.
- Grind fresh parsley leaves to extract the juice.
- Mix the parsley juice with equal amounts of lemon juice and orange juice. You can also add an equal amount of red currant juice (optional).
- Apply the mixture on your freckles and leave it on for 10 minutes.
- Rinse it off with lukewarm water.
- Repeat the procedure once daily.
Horseradish has powerful bleaching ingredients that can help lighten freckles and make the skin look evenly pigmented.
- Blend one grated horseradish with the juice from one lemon. You can also add one tablespoon of sour cream to make a paste.
- Apply this paste on your freckles and allow it to dry naturally.
- Then wash it off with cold water and apply some moisturizer.
- Use this treatment every other day.
8. Castor Oil
Castor oil normalizes skin pigmentation and thus helps freckles fade away. Plus, it is loaded with nutrients your skin needs to be healthy. For this treatment, buy odorless castor oil.
- Apply a liberal amount of castor oil on your freckles before going to bed.
- Leave it on overnight.
- In the morning, wipe it off with a soft tissue and wash your face with lukewarm water.
- Continue this treatment daily.
The high vitamin C, K and A content in cucumbers helps fight free radicals that can damage the skin. Plus, cucumbers help bleach the skin and make it more evenly toned.
- Cut a medium-size cucumber into small pieces.
- Put the pieces into a blender to puree it.
- Pour the puree into cheesecloth and press on it to extract the juice.
- Mix one teaspoon of cucumber juice with two teaspoons of water.
- Apply this mixture on the affected skin.
- Leave it on for 20 minutes, and then wash it off with cool water.
- Use this treatment twice daily.
Strawberries have a high amount of citric acid, which plays a key role in fading freckles. Plus, the antioxidants present in strawberries fight against free radicals, nourish the skin and keep it properly hydrated.
- Mash two to three fresh strawberries to make a paste. Add one-half tablespoon of honey to thicken it.
- Apply the paste on the affected skin.
- Leave it on for about five minutes, and then rinse it off with lukewarm water.
- Repeat the remedy once daily for several weeks.
You can also eat strawberries to get results faster. If you do not have strawberries, you can use cranberries or blackberries.
These remedies need to be practiced regularly and with patience to get positive results. Plus, you must not forget to wear sunscreen with at least SPF 15 when going out in the sun. If possible, avoid being in the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when the sun’s rays are strongest.