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omi

Cosmetics with "whitening properties"

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I decided to post this here instead of in cosmetics because I just wanted to hear the opinions of those who know about dark marks and chemicals that supposedly heal them.

I'm a big fan of BB creams. They're an asian (mostly Korean) product that is basically a moisturizer, foundation, sunscreen all-in-one and usually have various healing properties like oil control, anti-acne or wrinkle control.

However, I've noticed the new trend in BB creams is to include whitening properties, like adenosine and arbutin. This is a fairly typical (more high-end) BB cream: (Oops, I guess links don't work. I was looking at Skin79 Diamond the Prestige BB cream. You can google it and see what I'm talking about)

Usually products like this do contain what they say they contain but not in incredibly high amounts. After a bit of research, reviewers have said that the product does lighten skin and hide scars, etc, but my question is about long-term effects.

Would using chemicals like these actually improve skin, or just provide a temporary fix? Would they be dangerous, since the purpose of some is to inhibit melanin production?

One of the reasons why researching for acne purposes is difficult is because the huge push to put whitening chemicals in asian beauty products is cultural. Pale skin is considered pretty, so most expensive products will usually contain some form of whitening. (The same way most toothpastes now contain whitening)

My personal questions just regard teh safety and long-term effects of supposed whitening ingredients. I'm caucasian, and I'm already very fair. I don't need my skin to be any lighter, but I do have a good amount of leftover marks from some bad cystic acne on my chin. I've used non-whitening BB cream before, and I like the moisturizer + sunscreen + foundation combo.

Does anyone have experience with whitening ingredients like arbutin and adenosine being used in facial products? Does it help? Is it dangerous?

Edited by omi
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Arbutin is basically hydroquinone etherified with glucose. Once it hits the skin, the glucose is cleaved off and hydroquinone inhibits tyrosinase in the normal fashion.

Hydroquinone is a controversial ingredient, but after decades of use, the general consensus is that it is safe effective, with extremely rare side effects. Personally, i still wouldn't slather it all over my face... i use it on hyperpigmentation occasionally.

Paula Begoun explains it better than I can: http://www.cosmeticscop.com/hydroquinone-s...ngredients.aspx

I don't know anything about adenosine as a lightening agent, but it's interesting :P

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