How To Remove Tan & Lighten Skin

How To Remove Tan & Lighten Skin

Saturday, July 14, 2012 Sara Hassan , 87 Comments


We all know prolonged exposure to sun can cause a burn or tan. We (South Asians) don’t fancy tanning like folks from the west do. We dig fair and even skin. 

Sunlight in Karachi city is the harshest I have ever seen. Unless you are a vampire, you can’t avoid the sun. You have school, work or shopping to do; you simply cannot avoid going outside during the day, can you? And if sun exposure doesn't get you sun burnt, you’re likely to tan.

If your skin is getting dull and tanned every day and you need help, here’s what you can do to restore your original skin tone.

Please note: all of this will take time and persistence.
Alright, you have tanned but you don’t want any further damage, right? Never EVER go out without applying a sunscreen/sunblock during the day. A sunblock protects your skin from the damaging effects of sun’s radiation. Also, it prevents sunburn and delays skin darkening. Apply generously to areas that are exposed like your face, neck, hands, feet and legs thirty minutes before heading outside.

What do I do? Well, I like to apply Neutrogena Ultra sheer Dry Touch Spf 30 on my hands and feet. For my face, I love wearing SpectraBan SC.
Exfoliation removes dead cells on your skin and reveals the new skin underneath. It really helps getting rid of a tan quickly. All you need to do is get a good granular cleanser or a scrub and exfoliate at least once a week.

I like to use The Body Shop Vitamin C Microdermabrasion for my face and The Body Shop Olive Body Scrub for the rest of the body.

For a more polished look, I suggest you try Hello Glow Whitening Plus Facial Polish -- a completely natural product with no harmful chemicals.
Oh yes, they really work! Believe me, I have tested them on myself. The results come in slow but don't you dare doubt their effectiveness.

Vitamin C in potatoes has a natural bleaching effect which can lighten skin and also help in removing dark spots, blemishes and dark circles. Take some potatoes, slice them and rub over effected area every day.  Make sure the moist part of the potato slice touches your skin.  If it’s dry, make some tiny cuts in the slice to release juice.

Gram flour (Besan) is also very effective at removing tan and lightening skin. Take two tablespoons gram flour, quarter spoon of turmeric powder (Haldi), squeeze half a lemon and add some milk (rosewater if you have oily skin). Now mix them all to make a thick paste.  Apply to face or neck, leave it for at least fifteen minutes and rinse with warm water. You can do this every alternate day. Trust me, it works wonders. 

For your feet, take a small tub with slightly warm water, squeeze 2-3 lemons and soak your feet for at least twenty minutes.  During this time, you can also clean your feet with a foot brush.  After you’re done, pat your feet dry and moisturize.
Cover yourself from head to toe and try staying indoors as often as possible to prevent further damage. This one sounds hard but if your skin is severely damaged, you might want to consider it.


I hope you find this post helpful. Remember, patience and persistence is the key.

87 comments :

  1. thanks for sharing sara :) gram flour are really amazing remedy for asian skin :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Gram flour recipe works best...I've tried it myself. <3

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks for the tips Sara. I have combination skin. My T-Zone is darker than the rest of my face. How can I get an even skin tone? Would love if you help.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Seemal, you can try the home remedies mentioned in this post. They also help in getting an even skin tone :)

      Delete
  4. Nice post! Potatoes are really great for dark spots and dark circles. I have tried them myself and have advised many people to use its juice. xx

    ReplyDelete
  5. This is such a helpful post. My sis is going to sing praises. :D

    ReplyDelete
  6. nice post :) i will try foot remedy

    ReplyDelete
  7. Loved this post, thank-you Sara :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. tip : avoid sun exposure if ur skin is exfoliate , this makes it even more prone to skin damage and sun burns !
    Nice tips

    ReplyDelete
  9. Nice post!! I am tanned too, a bit more this year and I have been doing that gram flour remedy every time I am tanned and yeah I love it! :)
    Will try that one for feet today, they are tanned too! :/

    ReplyDelete
  10. Great post.... THANKS FOR SHARING SARA <3

    ReplyDelete
  11. I am going to try the potato method! How often should i use it to see results?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. you can do it daily or every alternate day. :) xx

      Delete
  12. Granular cleanser like l'Oreal pure zone exfoliating gel wash,its my favourite!!.. btw nice post :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. I'm from California and most people love to be tan, but I hate it. xD Especially since I don't tan evenly at all and I have such unpigmented cheeks. Thanks for these tips Sara. I'm sure they'll be useful.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I recently went out in the sun and my exposed feet got slightly tanned, argh so frustrating. Thanks for all the tips, will try the soaking-feet and scrubbing method. I miss my fair feet LOL

    ReplyDelete
  15. Thank you so much for the tips - I hate tanning on my shoulders, I have a lot of old acne scarring (icepick type, so it takes YEARS for them to heal and fade out) and tanning just makes them stand out even worse...I've yet to find a sunscreen that doesn't trigger breakouts though. (Invisible Zinc is okay for my back and the rest of me, but on my face it's just too thick and gives my face a horrible whitish cast that makes me look ill; their tinted moisturizer is far too dark for me and only SPF15 though. I don't wear anything under SPF30+ - the sun here in Australia is almost as bad as Pakistan in summer and somehow, I've managed to tan in winter! I guess the ozone layer really *is* in trouble...)

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hey sara, i was just wondering if the besan flour remedy could be just used as a facewash for people who arent so tan. or is lightninng the skin is its only purpose?
    Also, if u do use it, do use ur normal moisturiser after it?
    Thanks heaps, btw ur doing great! Keep it up <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Of course, you can use it as a facial cleanser too. It's not necessary to have a tan. It's best for combination to oily skin types. If you feel any drying effect, use a moisturizer after it.

      Thanks for the lovely words ^_^

      Delete
  17. Hey Sara, does besan have bleaching quality??Really making skin fair or is it the improvement in texture??Also please tell how long it takes for these tips to work?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Besan has bleaching qualities and it has been proven. Home remedies need to be followed very strictly for months. You can appreciate a visible difference after two months.

      Delete
    2. I tried using besan paste on my face for two months and my skin has really improved..although i missed it for some time but still the texture of my skin really has improved a lot..i saw myself closely in the mirror yesterday and i cudnt believe wat i saw!..my skin was very even and more closely matches my neck(which is very white).this article made me try this greatness and im so thankfull to Sara!
      i came across an ubtan from marhaba called nikhar ubtan and one of the ingredients in it "husn-e-yusuf" sounded really fascinating..ill try it and then let you know..marhaba is a nice company...

      Delete
  18. I am a testimony to the besan thing, not only it improved my complexion but my acne prone skin looked brighter and healthier.

    Thanks for such a nice post! :)

    ReplyDelete
  19. thanks sara..i'll try these inshaallah:)

    ReplyDelete
  20. hey can we wash our face with face wash right after applying potato?

    ReplyDelete
  21. can we wash our face with a face wash right after applying potato or besan thing?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Of course, you can wash your face after you have removed the masks. :)

      Delete
  22. n secondly can we use scrub to exfoliate with using this home remedy? thankx. sorry i question alot :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wouldn't suggest mixing anything synthetic to homemade masks. You could however exfoliate prior to it :)

      Delete
  23. hye,how many tablespoon for milk/rosewater?
    also i just starting trying the potato method today ^^

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Kojipa, it depends on the quantity of gram flour. Keep on adding rose water or milk until you get a thick paste so that you could easily spread it on. :)

      Delete
  24. paste of multani earth powder plus pinch of haldi n lil bit of sandalwood powder n yogurt ...wil it help in removing acne n wil make mah skin more glowing ..???
    Thnku..:))

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey dimple, I haven't yet tried this remedy but it sure sounds good to me. Haldi is bactericidal so I think it should help with the acne and yogurt will of course give you that glow. I say give it a go! :) xx

      Delete
  25. sara can excssive scrubing damage skin!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  26. I am going to try the gram flour method! How often should i use it to see results....?

    ReplyDelete
  27. Are these remedies helpful for boys, because male and female skins are much different.
    i am playing cricket during the daylight and strong light has affected my skin colour.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Men need to exfoliate and protect their skin from sun as much as women need to. Yes, I am sure the post would help you as well.

    ReplyDelete
  29. My hands n feets are become very dark becose of over exposng in sun and i want even skin tone someone suggest me to use facial bleech on hands and feet should i try this or do u think it will work ?

    ReplyDelete
  30. Hello, i was wondering, what days can i use those? is it okay to use them daily? because what i want to do is to try out the three homemade remedies. If it's not okay to try the 3 of them, what's the best one to go with? I'm currently living in southern California and it's quite hot that i (and the rest of my family) got a very dark tan even though we were using sunblock. Later that, we stopped using it for the fact it was hopeless for us to block the sun away. I don't know if it was the block that's not good, so i would also like it if you recommended a good sunblock. thank you! I also want a homemade remedy for my hands, is it different than the ones we normally use for the face and feet? or same? thank you again!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi there, for hands, arms and face you could use the gram flour mask and potato slices I mentioned. You could also apply some left over gram flour mask to your feet. It's totally ok that way. I personally find Neutrogena sun blocks very effective so be sure to check that out. :) x

      Delete
  31. Hey sara...love your posts.. i have a problem, my face nd feet are fair but my body is many shades darker..could u please suggest any tip or product that would help me out i'd be grateful.. keep up the good work<3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Get a body scrub and exfoliate your body once a week. This should reveal your true skin color within a few months. :) xx

      Delete
  32. love the fact that its an year old post and still comments keep coming. x

    ReplyDelete
  33. Hi, Sara! Love your site.
    As someone from another country, is gram flour like all-purpose baking flour? Is Haldi a brand of turmeric? In case I can't find that brand, will other turmeric brands do as well?
    Thank you for your informative, lovely posts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey there! Thanks for appreciating. ^_^

      Gram flour, which is also known as Chickpea flour/Garbanzo flour, is a bit thicker in texture compared to the all-purpose flour. Also, it's different in content and color (it's yellowish). Haldi is Turmeric powder in Urdu language. You can go with any brand. :)

      Delete
  34. HI Sara..nice blog. And you look beautiful. Btw..I am from India. I want to ask you how long should we use any ubtan/ cream/ treatment before we can decide whether it works or not? Is it possible to get rid of the tan completely?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey, you can get rid of the tan completely but it takes some time. Also minimal exposure to sun and weekly exfoliation with help remove tan quicker. :) x

      Delete
  35. Hey sara,nice post... but actually my problem is when my skin comes in contact with sunlight dark patches are formed on my forehead along with sweat so how can i overcome this problem.....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It sounds like a serious issue. Please consult with a physician about this.

      Delete
  36. hey i am having tanned skin with pimple marks on my face.which remedy should i use.
    either potato remedy or facepack.

    Tel me..

    ReplyDelete
  37. Hey, i have oily sensitive skin and its easily gets tan. I am taking some treatment for acne scars. So i can't use any scrubing element. Which remedy i use for removing tan?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you should use a face polish instead of a scrub. It's very mild and wouldn't cause any irritation. :) x

      Delete
  38. I am real bad oily skin, and a lot of skin tan too. This is from past 5 years. Please suggest some very effective home-made remedies which will work wonders. It's really embarrassing to have such a state of skin on my face. I am a south asian. Please help me

    ReplyDelete
  39. Hello! Approximately how long did it take you to even out and lighten your skin tone by using those home remedies? Please reply! Thank you for your time :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey there, well it depends on how much you're getting yourself exposed to the sun. If you're sitting at home, you can appreciate some difference within two to three weeks. :)

      Delete
  40. hi, i m not able to get husn e yusuf powder in india...so can u tell me d ingredients with d quantities...so that i can make it at home.....thanq

    ReplyDelete
  41. Hi Sara! Please let me know if a sunblock with spf 24 works or not. And some home remedies for getting glowing skin like for face, legs, hands would be great... :P

    ReplyDelete
  42. Salam Sara Hassan, i read ur postx n they r great as usual :) i love them :) i want to ask u tht my face n neck color is slightly darker than rest of the body i hav strted using VLCC Sunblock broad spectrum spf60 wid mango seed oil since 1 month aprox n sumtimex like 3 timex a week at night i apply milk on my face then another layer of it when it driex n when tht driex i wash my face n use dxn aloevera cleansing gel 2 timex once at morning or mid day n once at night it is my favourite itx the best i do this all n my skin is nice Masha Allah but my face n neck r slightly darker than my rest of the body so how to make it same as rest of the body? Please do reply dear i really need help i wanna look perfect waiting 4 ur reply t.c dear <3 :)

    ReplyDelete
  43. Hey Sara..i have acne on my chin..and i really hate it..:@
    can u tell me how to get rid of them..?
    and how can i glow my skin..btw you're doing a really great job..keep it up..:)
    waiting for your answer

    ReplyDelete
  44. Hi Sara, the besan paste seems to be very good but won`t the tumeric stain and turn your face yellowish???

    ReplyDelete
  45. i like the lime mixed with tumeric

    ReplyDelete
  46. Hi Sara,
    I think these tips can help me out to even my skin tone.
    I will try this tips for sure and let u know the result.
    Thank You So Much

    ReplyDelete
  47. Hi sara, home remedies you suggested sounds good but I have problem whenever I try new thing my face reacts immediately in the form of red pimples which upsets me how do I combat it and I have dark circles as well as uneven skin tone.. and one more thing does a papaya, lemon and honey paste lighten skin tone....

    ReplyDelete
  48. Hi sara! I want to try besan treatment everyday before shower, please tell me how much time should i keep the besan on my hands??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You should keep it on for at least 20 minutes. :)

      Delete
  49. Hey Sara :) is it ok to store the mixture in fridge to use it next day?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey there, yes you could do that! :) x

      Delete
  50. I have a burn mark in the middle of my chest I'm very fair skin so it's a little dark spot in the middle of my chest how long will it take for the dark spots to go away with the potato remedy and which remedy is faster for removing dark spot

    ReplyDelete
  51. hi..i had a bright and fair face but now it is tanned due to my exposure in sun. I will be at home only for 6 months.Will it be healed soon if I started to follow your suggestion for tanned-skin.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Thilagavathi, yes of course! You will see a visible change within a month if you follow this religiously. You could also experiment with plain yogurt+lemon+gram flour mask if it suits your skin type. :) x

      Delete
  52. Hi Sarah. Do you have any home remedy for uneven skin tone? I have been applying fresh aloe vera gel every night for last two weeks but results have been really slow. I mean I want to make my skin tone completely even if you know what I mean.

    ReplyDelete
  53. Hey thanks for the remedies! Will scrubbing lemon in face everyday help or will it damage sensitive skin? Also I use body shops apricot body scrub and it just doesn't help in making me fair :/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, that is why its mentioned to squeeze half a lemon. Of course sensitive people should avoid using this concoction everyday, you're right about that. And this post isn't about becoming fair because that will never happen. You cannot simply alter your genetics. It simply guides you to remove a tan and reveal your true complexion. :) x

      Delete
  54. Hi sara...I have been facing this problem with dark circles for about 2 months now since I have been workingIin shifts..I dnt have tan and not too much shadows as well but still they are not going away...is it just because of the inadequate sleep or any other reason alongwith...could you please suggest a way to get rid of them fast coz I really cant bear these shadows...thankx in advance!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, I would advise you to consult a dermatologist for a prescription product that could help with this. In the meanwhile, you can use a yellow based concealer to hide them. :)

      Delete
  55. i have few questions........
    1. suggest a eye cream for dark circles that really works.
    2. can cleansing milk be used on oily skin and how often
    3. how often should i exfoliate or scrub my skin.
    waiting for reply
    thanx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Alizay, for dark circles please visit a dermatologist as only they can prescribe you an effective product for this issue. Yes, cleansing milk can definitely be used on oily skin. If you wear makeup on daily basis, you should remove it first with cleansing milk followed by your regular facewash. You can try Nivea Visage Cleansing Milk for Normal/Combo Skin. Since your skin is oily, you can safely exfoliate your skin twice a week. :) x

      Delete
  56. let me first just say, u r ding a gr8 job, plz can u let me know which is the best antiwrinkle eye cream, i have tried loreal, dermalogica and clinique for a long period of time. But, even after using each product for months, i didnt get the results i wanted. If any one else has had success with a product, plz pitch in. Thanx

    ReplyDelete
  57. Hey Sara, I have a 12 year old son who plays a lot of tennis and hence is tanned quite a lot. He also has a dry skin. Can you please recommend something that is very effective on his tan, moisturizes him at the same time and is fast as well, as you know boys can be so difficult to catch for such things. Thanks in advance.

    ReplyDelete

Feel free to comment. Your lovely comments make my day. <3

Please avoid rude or inappropriate comments. Also, this is the comments section. No queries will be entertained unrelated to the post.

For queries, please write to info@sarahassansblog.com.

NOTE: Comments with LINKS will NOT be entertained. Thank you. :)