Which Face Mask Is Best for Dark Spots?

Keep your face bright, clear, and youthful with the help of the best face mask for dark spots. There’s a wide range of great products to choose from, each capable of addressing different skin issues that can cause skin blemishes. The right product can help you ensure proper cell turnover, which is important to maintaining good skin.

Dark spots can be caused by acne scars, aging, sun exposure, hormones, and even genetics. No matter the root of the problem, however, you can take matters into your own hands by checking out the tried and tested skin-brightening masks that can restore your youthful glow.

Dark spots are caused by an increase of melanin in your skin and are commonly referred to as hyperpigmentation.

Use face masks for dark spots containing exfoliating and brightening ingredients, such as turmeric, licorice root and castor oil.

Alternative skin care treatments for dark spots include alpha-hydroxy acids, chemical peels and microdermabrasion.

Dark spots on your skin are commonly referred to as hyperpigmentation. They can be caused by several factors, including sun damage and aging. 

While there is no quick fix to remove hyperpigmentation from your skin, face masks containing active ingredients, such as turmeric, castor oil and licorice, may help to reduce its appearance over time.

What Are the Causes of Hyperpigmentation?

Hyperpigmentation is characterized by dark spots and patches on the skin. These darker areas occur due to excess melanin, a pigment produced by the body to give your skin its natural coloring.

Multiple factors contribute to the development of this common skin condition, including sun damage, skin injuries, hormonal changes and acne flare-ups.

Whether you’re dark or fair, your skin contains a pigment called melanin. Produced by cells called melanocytes, melanin acts as a form of protection for the skin. However, when hyperpigmentation occurs, your skin produces excess melanin, which forms deposits, creating spots and patches darker in colour than the surrounding skin. Although hyperpigmentation affects people of all skin colours, it tends to affect darker skin types more frequently. Here are three reasons why you could be suffering from dark spots:

Sun Exposure

The number one cause of dark spots is sun damage. When stimulated by harmful UV rays, melanocytes react by releasing melanin which acts as a natural sunscreen. Melanin is useful because it absorbs the energy from UV rays and redistributes it. However, the sun can trigger the production of too much melanin, causing dark patches of skin.

The sun is not just the root problem for sunspots; it also causes the dark marks that we call age spots or liver spots. This type of hyperpigmentation is also caused by sun damage accumulated over many years of exposure. “As you age,” says Harvard Medical School, “Years of being in the sun start to add up.” Most common in adults over the age of 55, these tan, brown or black spots tend to speckle the areas most exposed to the sun: face, hands, back, feet and shoulders.

Aging can also intensify the appearance of hyperpigmentation for two reasons. First, as we age, melanocytes decrease in number but increase in size and pigment production. Second, older skin tends to look thinner, paler and more translucent, emphasizing the appearance of dark spots.

Hormones

When hormone levels zigzag up and down, one of the most common side effects is a change in pigmentation called melasma. Frequently seen during pregnancy, hormonal therapies or even changes in birth control, extra hormones stimulate melanin production. Pregnant women often develop dark patches on the nose, cheeks, jawline, forehead or chin, creating a pattern called “mask of pregnancy” or “chloasma.” This type of hyperpigmentation typically lasts until pregnancy ends or hormonal levels return to balance.

Exposure to the sun and heat can worsen the appearance of this hormonally triggered hyperpigmentation. If you suffer from melasma and hope to unwind in a sauna or a session of hot yoga, you may want to rethink your chillaxing plans. A high-temperature environment can affect your hyperpigmentation, helping dark patches enlarge and spread.

Inflammation

Dark spots can sometimes develop after inflammation or an injury to the skin, especially for those suffering from acne, eczema, allergic reactions or other skin conditions. Termed post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, this type of discoloration is the skin’s natural response to inflammation. After a wound occurs, the skin becomes inflamed and, as it heals, the skin naturally produces excess melanin, which darkens the skin.

Hyperpigmentation due to inflammation is especially common after breakouts. As the irritated skin heals from acne, a dark spot is left behind, ranging in colour from pink to red, purple, brown or black. The worse the inflammation, the larger and darker the spot can be. Also, there’s a reason why the experts warn you to avoid picking your acne - popping those pimples can increase the likelihood of developing a dark spot.

face mask dark spots

Why Use a Face Mask for Dark Spots?

In-office hyperpigmentation treatments, such as microdermabrasion and chemical peels, require multiple visits to a dermatologist, and the costs can quickly add up. Face masks are a quick, cost-effective and pain-free option for targeting hyperpigmentation.

You can easily apply masks as part of your daily regime and even make your own DIY formulas at home that brighten and exfoliate your skin.

Skin brightening

As hyperpigmentation is caused by too much pigment in your skin cells, you’ll want to treat it using ingredients with skin brightening properties. Turmeric is an ingredient used in masks that has been found to lighten dark patches on the skin. However, current research into its benefits is still limited.

Skin exfoliation

Your body regularly replaces your skin cells – this is known as cell turnover. This process helps clear away dead and damaged cells to make way for new, healthy cells. Skin cells with too much melanin are often replaced during this process.

Exfoliant ingredients facilitate your skin’s cell turnover process and help to reduce hyperpigmentation at a faster rate. Common exfoliants include glycolic, lactic and azelaic acid.

 

What to Look for When Choosing a Dark Spots Face Mask?

Now that we’ve discussed the best face masks for dark spots, it’s time to talk about what you should be looking for.

I’ve had experience with each of these, but my skin is not your skin. So, think about the following points when trying to decide which one of these to try first.

Fading dark spots

If your biggest concern is dark spots from the sun, aging, or remnants of a scar or blemish, you will want to choose formulas with the brightening ingredients you need to get the job done.

Vitamin C is just one of those. Azelaic acid, kojic acid, arbutin, and licorice also work well to stop the enzyme that causes the pigment to build up and send melanin to the surface while brightening existing spots.

If you use formulas that stop those enzymes, you will see brighter skin.

Remove dead skin cells

When we’re young, like really young, our skin does all this for us. But as we move through our 20s into our 30s and so on and so forth, our skin needs a little more assistance from us.

If you want brighter skin, you need to get rid of those dead skin cells. Some of these brightening masks have things that exfoliate like glycolic acid, AHAs, or retinoids.

As they remove those dead skin cells, they reveal softer and newer skin and a fresh-faced look.

Hydrate and soften

Aging skin is a problem too. You will want your brightening face mask to hydrate and plump up the skin to keep it looking younger.

Seek out hyaluronic acid to help fuel it with the hydration it needs while smoothing away lines and wrinkles.

How to Choose a Brightening Mask

As you look for your best face mask for dark spots, make sure you read the labels to see those key ingredients.

I don’t know your skin type or your other skin concerns, so you’ll have to take that information and run it by my list above to find the best mask for your dark spots.

For example, if you have dry skin or use acne medication, you should stick with something that helps hydrate your skin.

Retinol is great for aging skin and clearing it up too, but high concentrations can leave skin feeling dried out, which can make those pores clog up with dead skin cells again.

It’s not to say retinol won’t benefit you, but you should make sure its concentration is low to avoid trouble.

Ultimately, if you want the best face mask for dark spots, think of the following:

It should lighten and exfoliate

Exfoliating doesn’t always mean having gritty bits in it for scrubbing (think AHAs)

It should have ingredients that fade hyperpigmentation

Some people say hydroquinone is the best for fading dark spots. However, you should do so only with the blessing of your dermatologist.

The FDA has not approved it as safe yet, and it is banned in Europe as well as some areas in Asia. Hydroquinone also may make discolourations worse for darker skin tones.

Better choices are kojic acid or arbutin (which you may see as bearberry). These both act like hydroquinone. Licorice root is another great ingredient to fade discolouration, while vitamin C not only fades but also stops new spots from coming in.

You also need to find exfoliating ingredients to resurface your skin. These take the dullness away and help your skin cell functions renew to improve your complexion more quickly.

So look for AHAs such as glycolic acid or lactic acid. You can also try salicylic acid, which is a BHA. On labels, they will appear as fruit juice enzymes or sugarcane extract.

If your skin can handle it, definitely go for retinol. It’s probably my favourite ingredient there is. But my skin is pretty tolerant, so do start slow and low with it and see how it works for you.

DIY Natural Remedies: How to Get Rid of Dark Spots on Face

Those dark spots occur when your skin produces more melanin, which gives your skin its colour. The good news for you is that there are different ways to treat hyperpigmentation, including strict sun protection, topical medications like Retin-A, chemical peels, manual exfoliation, glycolic acid pads, microdermabrasion, laser treatment, a great concealer, and more. At Ovi Skin, we’re all about natural skincare. We will reveal DIY beauty treatments and masks for removing dark spots that you can make from everyday ingredients found in your kitchen. BTW, make sure you always conduct a patch test for sensitivity before applying these homemade natural remedies on your entire face. You can expect to see results within 4-6 weeks.

women applying volcano ash cream

How to Remove Dark Spots on Face and Neck

Aloe Vera Gel

  • Apply aloe vera juice or natural aloe vera gel directly to the dark spots for 30 minutes in the morning and evening.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.

Apple Cider Vinegar

  • Mix equal quantities of apple cider vinegar and water in a bowl. Stir well and apply on the dark spots.
  • You can also try mixing a few drops of lemon juice with the vinegar.
  • Another recipe is to combine 3 tablespoons of orange juice and ½ tablespoon of vinegar.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.

Buttermilk

  • Apply buttermilk to dark spots and leave on for 15-20 minutes.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.
  • If you have oily skin or suffering from acne, add a little lemon or lime juice.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.

Castor Oil

  • Rub a little oil with Qtip on the dark spots in the morning and the evening.

Horseradish

  • Apply horseradish paste on the skin for 15 minutes.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.
  • Repeat 2 to 3 times a week.
  • If you want a more aggressive remedy, combine one piece of grated horseradish 4-5 inches long and ½ a cup of apple cider vinegar in a glass jar. Mix well and leave for 2 weeks, shaking the mixture once a day. After two weeks, apply to your dark spots three times a day for one month. Place in the refrigerator.
  1. Hydrogen Peroxide
  • Combine 1 teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide and 1 teaspoon of milk in a glass bowl.
  • Dip a cotton pad or Q-tip in the bowl and apply to dark spots.
  • Leave on for 15 minutes.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.

Garbanzo Beans

  • Combine a can of mashed chickpeas and 1/3 of water.
  • Apply the paste to dark spots.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.
  • Repeat daily.

Lemons

  • Cut a slice of lemon and gently apply it to the affected area for 10 minutes, morning and evening. 
  • If you have sensitive skin, combine 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of water or rose water in a glass bowl. Dip your cotton pad and apply it to the skin.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.
  • You’ll see a difference in lightness within two months.

Papaya

  • Peel and remove the seeds from the green papaya.
  • Next, use a blender or food processor until it forms into a paste.
  • Leave your face and neck for 20-30 minutes in the morning and before going to bed.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.

Alternatively, we recommend OVI Skin Deep Cleansing & Detoxifying Face Mask to refresh and brighten your delicate facial skin with the freshest of tropical ingredients. Our mineral-rich, age-defying Volcanic Ash facial mask gently absorbs oil, helping to reduce large-sized pores and eliminate built-up impurities leaving tired and stressed skin feeling energetic, vibrant and whole again. OVI is a powerful raw detoxifier & cleanser made for stressed and sensitive skin with natural oils and rich nutrients found from volcanic islands worldwide.

Parsley

  • Combine 1 cup chopped parsley, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, and 1 tablespoon yogurt in a glass bowl. Mix well.
  • Apply mask to face, neck and chest for 15 minutes, then rinse.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.
  • Repeat twice a week.

woman applying cream for dark spots


Sandalwood

  • Combine 1 teaspoon sandalwood powder, 1 teaspoon orange zest, and orange juice as needed. Mix ingredients together in a bowl.
  • Add enough orange juice until you get a smooth paste.
  • Apply to your face and neck.
  • Leave on for 15 minutes.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.
  • Repeat 1 to 2 times a week.

Turmeric

  • Combine 2 tablespoon rice water, 2 tablespoon flour, and 1 teaspoon turmeric in a glass bowl. Mix well.
  • Dip Q-tip on the bowl and dab on to dark spots.
  • Leave on for 20 minutes.
  • Rinse with lukewarm water and finish off with your favourite serum and moisturizer.

You must take a conservative approach with these DIY homemade beauty remedies. Apply a small amount to your face and leave it on for a short amount of time, then work your way up to larger amounts and longer times until your skin can handle it. If you feel any discomfort, stinging, or a burning sensation, rinse off the mixture immediately with lukewarm water. 

Bottom Line

Face masks are an efficient treatment for hyperpigmentation, although it’s important to use the right ingredients to achieve optimal results.

Turmeric, castor oil and licorice root have all shown promising results when reducing the appearance of dark spots on the skin. When making a DIY mask, it’s also useful to add ingredients that will benefit your skin type, such as coconut oil for dry skin and honey for acne-prone skin types.

Alternative treatments for hyperpigmentation include microdermabrasion, chemical peels, and products containing strong exfoliants, such as glycolic acid.

With the best face masks for dark spots, you not only want to get rid of any existing hyperpigmentation, but you also want to protect your skin from it happening in the future.

You don’t need to get expensive treatments since great products are out there that you can click and get sent right to your home. 

By the way, don't forget, your skin deserves to be treated like royalty! Give it what it needs with OVI Skin products today!