Bleaching one’s skin has become a common trend.
Many ladies are giving up their dark skin tone for a much fairer complexion. They think looking fairer makes them look more beautiful and attractive to men.
And for slay queens, bleaching seems like a must.
But the question most women fail to pause and ask themselves is: Will changing my skin color affect me negatively?
(A natural follow up question would be: And if it does, to what extent?)
If you have been eyeing that lady with beautiful, fair skin and you want to make your skin just like hers, then this article is specifically for you.
Before you make a mistake you will regret in the future; let’s take a look at what bleaching entails and what it can do to your body.
What is bleaching?
Bleaching is the process of reducing melanin within the topmost layers of your skin. Melanin is a pigment in your body that is in charge of skin colour.
Bleaching is sometimes called skin lightening or skin brightening, or even whitening, but they all mean the same thing. Whether you are lightening or brightening your skin, you are making your dark skin lighter and fairer.
It can sometimes be used to treat hyperpigmentation and skin blemishes like dark spots, uneven skin tone, etc.
Why do people bleach?
People, especially women, bleach mainly because of psychological reasons.
Some women have low self-esteem because they feel that fair-skinned girls are more beautiful and are more attractive to the opposite sex, or even generally.
For some women, it’s as a result of peer pressure. Everyone around is bleaching, so they do not want to be left out.
It is only a few times you see someone use lightening creams prescribed by a dermatologist for certain skin blemishes. And when that happens, it does not require full bleaching of the whole body.
So, before you even decide to bleach at all, ask yourself why you want to bleach your skin in the first place.
Is bleaching good for the skin?
I really don’t care what anyone tells you…The answer is NO!
Bleaching causes a lot of damage to your skin than you can imagine.
You probably might not notice anything wrong with your friends who bleach now. But the truth is, you will, eventually. Unless they stop early enough.
Bleaching damages your overall health gradually. It might take a long while, sometimes years, but in the end, you will wish you didn’t bleach your skin.
How does bleaching destroy one’s skin and health?
Bleaching your skin can be very damaging to your body. Below are some of the dangers of using bleaching products:
- Bleaching causes skin cancer
Skin cancer is a major reason you should rethink your decision to bleach your skin.
One of the functions of melanin in black skin is to protect your skin against the harmful carcinogenic effect of ultraviolet rays from the sun.
This is one of the reasons why dark-skinned people are at a lower risk of having skin cancer than light-skinned people.
When you bleach your skin, you deprive your skin of this protection, and this makes you prone to having cancer.
Also, many bleaching creams contain mercury, which is carcinogenic also, that is, it can cause cancer.
- It can lead to ugly skin and premature aging
Skin bleaching products that contain hydroquinone and mercury stop the production of melanin in your skin. This naturally makes your skin lighter.
When you use these products for an extended period, the chemicals in the products react to ultraviolet rays from the sun. They become oxidized, and this can make your skin color very unattractive.
Also, hydroquinone tampers with the production of collagen. Collagen is responsible for your skin’s elasticity.
If you have low levels of collagen, you begin to develop aging signs quickly.
- Bleaching makes your skin prone to injuries
Many of the bleaching products contain steroids.
When you use steroids for a long period, it destroys your skin and causes skin atrophy. This is a skin condition that reduces the thickness of your skin.
With your skin in that condition, your skin becomes very prone to injuries like cuts, abrasions, and bruises.
You might also develop marks on your skin that are unpleasant to look at.
- Bleaching can damage your internal organs
It is possible that bleaching products can affect your internal organs, especially if you continue using them for a long time
Bleaching products contain mercury which is a heavy metal known to be one of the causes of kidney failure.
You can get mercury poisoning by inhaling, injecting, ingesting mercury or absorbing it through your skin.
So, if your bleaching product contains a lot of mercury, then you might get mercury poisoning.
Sadly, mercury poisoning can affect your liver and might cause irreversible damage to your brain.
It could cause dysarthria, ataxia or tremors.
- It can lead to numerous skin allergies and infections
Skin irritations are very common with skin bleaching.
You might experience a lot of skin irritations and allergies, and it is worse when you have very sensitive skin.
You might experience skin rashes, burning sensations, redness, and excessive drying of the skin which can make your skin crack or peel.
Also, the compounds in bleaching creams can lead to skin diseases such as eczema, dermatitis, acne and many more.
What is the best decision for your skin?
Some people would say that if you must bleach, use natural alternatives. But I say, DO NOT EVEN BLEACH AT ALL!
I believe in everyone’s right to make whatever personal choices they like, as long as it doesn’t affect the next person negatively… But why subject your skin to a long journey of decay and put your health in danger just because you want to look fairer than you naturally do?
Instead of bleaching, it is better you treat your skin to a daily skincare routine, use the best of skincare products and get your dark skin glowing so beautifully, that every other woman stares in envy.
Trust me, your skin will thank you for it!
If you have any more questions about skin bleaching, do leave a comment below. I will be glad to answer all of your questions.
And even if it’s an argument or objection or contrary opinion, drop it in the comments too; I’d be glad to discuss this further.