Dark spots are often caused by sun exposure, which triggers our skin to produce melanin (a tan) to protect us. Great when the tan is even, but more often than not we can end up with a cluster of melanin known as dark spots. (We'd always recommend faking a tan instead).
These cluster of pigmentation can also appear out of nowhere with age (although doctors tend to see a correlation between sun exposure and age spots). Then there are the dark spots that occur post-acne, these are red or dark brown (depending on your skin tone), and they hang around long after the blemish has run its course.
Hormones are another trigger, either during pregnancy or if you go on the contraceptive pill, that can cause pigmentation to appear on the skin (called melasma). Oh, and lastly researchers now believe pollution could be contributing to our patchy complexions.
So how do we tackle these dark spots? You need to add a skincare product to your routine that contains ingredients to fade the pigmentation while also preventing future dark spots from occurring. Our pals over at Rank & Style have collated the best dark spot correctors on the internet, and we have listed them out below from five to one. Keep scrolling to find the best dark spot corrector that will give you clearer, more glowing skin all year round.
Shiseido's offering fades dark spots, while also tackling smaller more blurred pigmentation that can make your complexion appear dull. Japanese cherry blossom extract works to prevent future dark spots. One user said, "I use this product daily. Honestly, I've only been using it once a week, and my dark spots are nearly gone! I'm looking forward to week number two!"
If you're looking for something natural, try this lightweight serum, which uses viniferine (an extract of grapevine sap) to tackle dark spots. It's oil-free, so it's suitable for all skin types to use morning and night, and it is seriously hydrating too.
When Clinique launched its original dark spot corrector, it was proven to be as effective as the prescription-grade ingredient for tackling pigmentation. This new dual-chamber version includes a soothing serum that calms stressed skin (because when skin is stressed it can overproduce melanin). The new addition contains Gyokuro Extract, rich in antioxidants and anti-irritants to protect the skin and prevent further dark spots.
On the face of it, this gel serum is for acne sufferers, but the hydroxy acids combined with licorice speed up cell turnover and brighten dark spots for a glowing, flawless face.
When you have dark spots, the smartest thing to do in the summer is to add a vitamin C serum into your routine. It brightens existing spots and it's an antioxidant, so it protects the skin from pollution and free radicals that can cause future pigmentation. Of this number one serum, one user said, "within just two weeks of usage, I have seen my acne scars start to fade away and my skin has started to brighten up. It smells good too!"
Here is the full top 10 list of dark spot correctors over on Rank & Style.