The products we really rate for protecting skin from pigmentation.

Uneven skin tone, dark spots and pigmentation can occur all year round, caused by hormonal changes or skin damage. However, during the summer months, sun exposure is hands-down the biggest culprit. This week we have a run down on the causes of pigmentation, tips on how to avoid it and nine of the products we rate for repairing and protecting skin from pigmentation

What causes pigmentation?

Pigmentation is caused by changes in our skin’s melanin production. Hyperpigmentation happens when it is producing too much; too little – known as ‘depigmentation’ – and we get light spots. Hyperpigmentation can be caused by a number of factors, but sun exposure is a common cause, as well as a condition called ‘melasma’ or ‘the mask of pregnancy’, which can trigger large areas of hyperpigmentation – often on the face – caused by changing hormones.

How can you avoid it?

Prevention is always better than a cure when it comes to pigmentation – especially when it’s caused by sun exposure. Wearing a 50+ SPF all year round, not just on the face but neck, décolleté and backs of the hands, as well as wearing a hat will reduce your potential damage.
Incorporating a vitamin C product regularly into your skincare regime can also help as it protects the skin from UV-induced pigmentation.

Do products alone really work to fade dark spots?

There is a wealth of products on supermarket and beauty counter shelves that are billed to target pigmentation. If you’re considering purchasing one, do make sure the formulations and concentrations of active ingredients are high enough to actually have an impact – look for those with independent studies to verify their claims. And do note that continuity with any skincare treatment is key to see any results. Every skin tone will react differently to treatment, so the best way to track your own skin’s progress is to take regular photos and see how you get on.

If you are looking for more instant results, dermatologists or medispas can offer targeted laser pigmentation removal that breaks down the melanin to fade dark spots.

9 Pigmentation Products To Try

Allies of Skin

Mandelic Pigmentation Corrector, £89

With 11 per cent mandelic acid, lactic and salicylic acid, this corrector will gently but effectively dissolve dead skin cells to battle stubborn pigmentation and also reduce large pores, blackheads and uneven texture. Buy it here.


Hyperpigmentation Serum Concentrate, £38

A beautifully scented elixir rich in papaya seed oil with resurfacing enzymes to fade existing pigmentation and geranium and lemon oils to brighten skin tone. Buy it here.


Rapid Dark Spot Correcting Serum, £75

With 84 per cent of people experiencing reduced hyperpigmentation in just 14 days, this Rapid Dark Spot correcting from Murad lives up to its name. It has 30 years' technological know-how packed into an acid-complex to exfoliate, brighten and smooth. Buy it here.

Dr Dennis Gross

Professional Grade IPL Dark Spot Concentrated Serum, £99

Formulated by practicing dermatologist Dr Dennis Gross, this professional-grade pigmentation treatment delivers 15 per cent L-ascorbic acid and lactic acid to fade dark spots. Eighty-eight per cent of users in a clinical trial saw their pigmentation fade after use. Buy it here.


Vinoperfect Dark Spot Correcting Glycolic Night Cream, £35

A gentle overnight treatment cream from Caudalie, the bio-peeling complex, combined with glycolic acid, gently exfoliates and renews skin whilst you sleep. Buy it here.


Face SPF50+ Anti-Pigmentation, £32

If you’re looking for prevention and treatment in one step, this super protecting facial SPF from UltraSun repairs and protects skin from future damage. The matte effect makes it a great base under make-up – good for neck, hands and décolleté, too. Buy it here.


Anti-Pigment Dual Face Serum for Pigmentation and Dark Spots, £38

With Thiamidol to treat and reduce pigmentation in as little as two weeks, this dual serum from Eucerin also has hyaluronic acid to hydrate in a lightweight texture. Perfect for summer skin. Buy it here.

La Roche Posay

Pigmentclar Anti Dark Spot Day Cream SPF30, £27

A great option for sensitive types, this daily moisturiser with added SPF30 melts into skin with no white cast and not only treats and fades dark spots but protects from future damage, too. Buy it here.

No. 7

Dark Spot Correcting Booster Serum, £35

Designed as a targeted treatment to be applied topically to dark spots, the fast-acting serum contains vitamin C, emblica and sophora to reduce pigmentation and uneven skin tone. Buy it here.

By Lydia Mansi
July 2022

Lydia Mansi

Lifestyle Editor

Lydia is an all-round lifestyle guru, tireless champion of women in business and our resident expert on beauty.