Scientist Lists Dangers of Homemade Bleaching Creams

 Bleaching Creams
Homemade bleaching cream – Photo credit: New York Post

The world is filled with a vast array of skin tones, from the lightest ivory to the deepest ebony. And while there is beauty in every shade, many people still desire to achieve a lighter complexion. One way to do this is by using bleaching creams.

Bleaching creams are cosmetic products that contain agents that lighten the skin. These agents can include hydroquinone, kojic acid, and azelaic acid. While there are many commercially-available bleaching creams on the market, some people opt to make their own at home.

There are a few reasons why someone might want to make their own bleaching cream. For one, it can be more affordable than buying a bleaching cream from the store. Additionally, you may be able to customize the bleaching cream to better suit your needs.

Homemade bleaching creams are a type of bleaching cream that is made at home using natural ingredients. These creams are often used to lighten the skin, get rid of dark spots, and even out the skin tone. While bleaching creams can be effective at lightening the skin, it’s important to use them carefully.

A scientific study, conducted by researchers from the University of Manchester, looked at the effects of homemade bleaching creams on a group of women in Nigeria. The results were alarming: almost all of the women in the study had severe skin damage, and one even died as a result of using a homemade bleaching cream.

The study’s lead author, Dr Virginia Murray, said that the dangers of these creams are very real and very serious.  She warned that people should not use them, especially if they don’t know what’s in them.

“These creams can contain a cocktail of dangerous chemicals, including mercury, hydroquinone, and steroids. They can cause skin irritation, inflammation, and even burns. In some cases, they can lead to kidney failure, brain damage, and death,” she said.

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While the risks of using bleaching creams are well-known, the new study highlights the dangers of using homemade versions. Dr Murray warned that people should be particularly careful of any bleaching creams that are sold on the streets or in markets.

“These creams are often made in makeshift laboratories with no regard for safety or quality, they can contain extremely high levels of dangerous chemicals, which can lead to serious health problems,” she said.

What are the ingredients used in preparation of homemade bleaching creams?

FDA warns of dangers from skin lightening creams
Homemade bleaching creams – Photo credit: Medical Express

There are a variety of ingredients that can be used in homemade bleaching creams, depending on what type of results you are hoping to achieve. For example, if you are looking for a bleaching cream that will lighten your skin tone, you might want to use ingredients like lemon juice, honey, and yoghurt.

However, if you are looking for a bleaching cream that will help to fade dark spots or pigmentation; you might want to use ingredients like turmeric, potato juice, or aloe vera gel.

Some common ingredients that are often used in homemade bleaching creams include:

Lemon juice: Lemon juice is a natural bleaching agent due to its high acidity. It can help to lighten your skin tone and is also a good source of vitamin C.

Honey: Honey has antibacterial and antioxidant properties, which can help to fade dark spots and pigmentation. It also helps to moisturize your skin.

Yoghurt: Yoghurt contains lactic acid, which can help to exfoliate your skin and fade dark spots. It also helps to moisturize your skin.

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Turmeric: Turmeric is a natural bleaching agent that can also help to fade dark spots and pigmentation. It contains antioxidants that can help to protect your skin from damage.

Potato juice: Potato juice can help to lighten your skin tone and fade dark spots. It also contains a type of starch that can help to absorb excess oil from your skin.

Aloe vera gel: Aloe vera gel is a natural bleaching agent that can also help to fade dark spots and pigmentation. It contains antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory properties that can help to soothe your skin.

Dangers of homemade bleaching creams

The first thing to consider when using any kind of bleaching cream is the potential risks involved. Though there are many store-bought options available, some people prefer to make their own homemade bleaching creams. However, there are dangers involved in using these homemade versions.


Bleach is a powerful chemical, and when it is not diluted properly, it can cause serious irritation and even burns. When used on the face, it can damage the delicate skin there, leading to redness, swelling, and peeling. In extreme cases, it can even cause permanent scarring.

Allergic reaction:

Another risk to consider is the possibility of an allergic reaction. Because homemade bleaching creams often contain different ingredients than store-bought options, there is a greater chance that someone could have an allergic reaction to one of the ingredients. This can cause a variety of symptoms, including hives, difficulty breathing, and swelling of the face, lips, and tongue. If not treated immediately, an allergic reaction can be life-threatening.


Another risk is that of hyperpigmentation, or the darkening of the skin. This can occur when the bleaching cream contains an ingredient called hydroquinone, which can be harmful to the skin. Hydroquinone can cause the skin to become thin and sensitive to sunlight, and it can also lead to permanent darkening of the skin.

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They are not regulated:

Homemade bleaching creams are not regulated by any government agency, so there is no way to know what ingredients are actually in them. This makes it very difficult to determine if a cream is safe to use. In addition, these products are often sold by unregulated businesses, which mean that they may not have been properly tested.

Sun damage:

Using these homemade bleaching creams can make your skin more sensitive to the sun. This means that you’ll need to be extra careful about using sunscreen and avoiding sun exposure.

Causes cancer:

Using bleaching creams of any kind, whether homemade or not, can increase your risk of developing skin cancer. So, if you’re considering using a bleaching cream, be sure to talk to your doctor first and weigh the risks and benefits before making a decision. They can help you determine if a product is safe for you to use and will be able to provide you with the best options available.

Wrapping up

All in all, it is always best to consult with a professional before using any type of bleaching cream, whether it is homemade or not. Professionals have the experience and expertise to ensure that you are using a safe and effective bleaching cream and that you are applying it correctly. Furthermore, they can provide you with guidance on how to maintain your newly bleached skin so that it remains healthy and glowing.


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