Melasma is the medical term for dark patches on the skin, most commonly seen on the cheeks, forehead and temples. The darkening of the skin is caused by hyper pigmentation, which increases with age. Melasma and brown spots are seen more often in women than men as a result of hormonal disturbance after age 40. However, stress, food allergies and some medications can contribute to melasma as well. Home remedies, as well as medical treatments, can be used to treat melasma.
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Apple cider vinegar
The acetic qualities of apple cider vinegar make it a suitable choice for treating melasma at home. Mix 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar with 2 tbsp of water to create a facial wash. Soak a clean cotton ball with the wash and apply generously to the face. Leave on for up to two minutes and then rinse off. Apply daily for lighter, smoother skin.
Make an onion paste by blending two medium size onions and squeezing out the juice. Place the ground onion in a sandwich baggie and seal closed before squeezing the onions to help prevent burning your eyes. Apply a thin layer to the affected area and let remain for 10 to 15 minutes. Rinse off the paste with lukewarm water once it has dried. Mix onion juice with apple cider vinegar for a stronger solution. Apply twice a day for best results.
Lemons, with their acidic qualities, will help to reduce the appearance of brown spots by peeling off the upper layer of the skin. Apply a thin layer of freshly squeezed lemon juice to the affected area twice a day. Leave the juice on for 10 to 15 minutes. Do not leave on the skin for more than 20 minutes because the acid in the lemon juice may burn your skin. Honey is a natural moisturiser that can be mixed with lemon juice to offset any drying of the skin from this treatment. Mix the honey with the lemon juice in equal parts. It is also excellent as a standalone mask for soft and blemish-free skin.
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