In this article, I am going to explore the causes, prevention, and natural remedies for age spots.
Age spots are caused due to prolonged exposure to the sun. Age spots are otherwise called solar lentigines or liver spots and they are flat and darker than surrounding skin.
They are usually harmless but can be mistaken for skin cancer. For cosmetic reasons, people like to get rid of age spots.
Causes Of Age Spots
Melanin is the pigment in our skin which is responsible for imparting color to it. Age spots occur when our body produces excess melanin.
When we are exposed to the sun for long hours, the body produces melanin in excess to protect the skin from harmful UV rays.
When the melanin gets clumped up in a region, age spots appear. The use of commercial tanning lamps and tanning beds may also contribute to the development of age spots.
Age spots mostly appear in regions of the body regularly exposed to the sun like face, eyes, shoulders, arms, and top of the feet. It tends to form in people aged over 40 but can affect younger people as well.
Prevention is the best option as always.
How To Prevent Age Spots?
Sun rays are strongest between 10 am and 4 pm. If you are unable to stay indoors during this time, try to stay in the shade or wear sun protective clothing.
Use UV blocking sunglasses, long-sleeved cotton shirts, broad-brimmed hats, and try to cover exposed areas of skin with an umbrella. Here are some more tips for preventing age spots.
- Apply coconut oil over your skin after bath. The rich antioxidants and healing properties of coconut oil can help prevent the sun’s rays from harming the skin.
- Consume Vitamin-D rich foods such as fatty fish, like tuna, mackerel and salmon, dairy products, orange juice, soymilk, and cereals, egg yolk, cod liver oil, and cheese.
- Drink plenty of water and avoid very hot water for baths and showers (if your skin is photosensitive) to keep your skin properly moisturized and protect it from the sun.
Natural Remedies For Age Spots
- Squeeze aloe vera gel out of the leaves into a bowl. Add a few drops of lemon in the gel. Use your fingers to mix both the ingredients and apply it to the affected area(s). Keep it on for around 20 minutes before washing it off with cold water.
- Apply yogurt on age spots and leave it on for a while. The lactic acid will make your skin lighter wherever you have age spots.
- Applying cucumber juice or tomato juice over your skin at bedtime can help lighten the age spots.
- Avocado is an excellent source of Vitamin E. Mash an avocado and add a tsp. of honey to it. Apply this face pack over the face for 20 minutes and wash off with warm water. Repeat twice or thrice a week for excellent results.
- Extract the juice of 1 onion. Mix with an equal quantity of apple cider vinegar. Put into a spray bottle and spritz your face in the morning before bath. Leave it for 20 minutes and was off. The methanol extract of dried skin of red onion (Allium cepa) has shown potent melanin biosynthesis inhibitory activity on B16 melanoma cells.1
- Lemon contains citric acid which is a natural bleaching agent. This acid can lighten the age spots. Apply lemon juice over the spots at bedtime.
Remember, age spots do not disappear suddenly. You will have to use these remedies consistently for at least 3 months for results.
Consult your Ayurvedic practitioner before trying these remedies for age spots.
- Z. Naturforsch. 66 c, 209 – 214 (2011); received July 13, 2010/February 15, 2011 http://www.znaturforsch.com/ac/v66c/66c0209.pdf