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    Updated on Aug 30, 2020. Posted on Aug 26, 2020

    25 Hyperpigmentation Products That People Actually Swear By

    Hyperpigmentation is stubborn but with consistent use of the right products and a brightening-focused skincare routine, your skin can improve. Remember, results take time, at least a month to six months.

    We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

    1. Neogen Bio-Peel Chemical Exfoliator is a physical and chemical exfoliator in one: with double-sided pads and powerful ingredients like glycolic acid (amazing for hyperpigmentation) and vitamin C, this helps fade scars, clear clogged pores, and reveal a bright, clean layer of skin. Chemical exfoliation is great for brightening dark spots!

    the container
    neogen_global / Via instagram.com

    This is one of my holy grail products for hyperpigmentation and has really helped brighten my skin and even my skin tone. Use once or twice weekly for results. Star tip: The pads are large so you really don't need one whole one for your face; cut them in half to make them last longer.

    Promising review: "I suffer from cystic acne and I turn hyperpigmentation due to the damage it causes. Using this coupled with my daily skincare routine has cleared up my skin and has helped the tone even out so I have a beautiful glowy look to my face! I have been using this exfoliant for about a year and I love the smell, the texture of the pads, and the overall results it has given me." —Miranda

    Get it for $27: from Soko Glam here and from Amazon here.

    2. Missha Safe Block Sun Milk leaves behind no oiliness or that white cast everyone hates. It has SPF 50, enhances skin tone and texture, and leaves a soft matte finish (perf for makeup). Sunscreen plays a vital role in preventing hyperpigmentation and acne scars from darkening so wear it, people!

    Amazon, amazon.com

    I feel like people don't give enough credit to sunscreen or tend to skip it, thinking it's not important. When you're using your cleansers, serums, essences, and the like to brighten scarring, sunscreen actually seals that in and helps prevent future hyperpigmentation. It also keeps your current acne scars from getting darker because of exposure to sunlight.

    Promising review: "This product has become my holy grail sunscreen! I love the fact that it has both chemical and physical sunscreen ingredients since I tend to get darker acne scars, the zinc oxide is wonderful in keeping them from getting darker. The finish is matte so you never have that greasy sunscreen feeling, and it actually makes a great primer base for foundation. The matte finish also helps me from looking shiny throughout the day. I would recommend this product to everyone!" —Sylvia

    Get it from Amazon for $12.90.

    3. Klair's Freshly Juiced Vitamin C Drop helps fade dark spots, prevent future pigmentation, firm and brighten, and reduce fine lines. Vitamin C is absolutely key for fading scars and the 5% in this one means it's gentle enough for sensitive skin, especially if you're just getting started!

    a four-photo collage of a before and after of reviewer's acne-scarred skin, showing her scars slowly fading and her skin becoming more even-toned with time
    amazon.com

    I always use vitamin C as part of my nighttime routine. If you use it in the morning, make sure to use sunscreen after, since vitamin C makes your skin sensitive to the sun. This is fragrance-free.

    Promising review: "I’ve been using this product twice a day (a.m. and p.m.) and I’ve definitely noticed results. Some of my acne marks are fading and I can tell an overall evening out of my skin tone and my dark circles under my eyes aren’t so bad anymore either. It doesn’t feel greasy on the skin and I do wear makeup over it once it’s dried. I consider my skin VERY sensitive and this does not burn my skin whatsoever. I will continue to use this product hopefully for continued results." —Kel

    Get it from Amazon for $22.

    4. Good Skin Days C's The Day Serum contains a higher percentage (10%) of vitamin C if your skin is ready for something stronger! It's balanced out with licorice root and niacinamide, both skin-brightening ingredients, and camu camu, a fruit that has 40 times more vitamin C than oranges. This will help diminish scars and fine lines and improve tone, leaving you with a radiant complexion.

    the bottle
    Soko Glam

    This is cruelty-free and vegan. To prevent premature oxidization, store it in a cool, dry place away from sunlight.

    Promising review: "This is one of the best vitamin C serums I've ever used! It's gentle, feels hydrating, absorbs quickly, and I can see that it's making my skin brighter after using it for a week! I highly recommend, especially for the price!" —Amy

    Get it from Soko Glam for $26.

    5. Cosrx Snail Mucin Power Essence intensely works with 96% snail mucin for extreme repair and hydration that's still gentle. It's packed with replenishing nutrients that help prevent and repair damage, hyperpigmentation, dryness, and acne until your skin's elasticity and glow is at its best. Sometimes I have nightmares they'll stop selling this 😳.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    Snail mucin is an absolute star ingredient for fading acne scars and hyperpigmentation. It's also super hydrating, which is important for your skin barrier. This product is definitely one of the biggest credits to brightening my skin and fading hyperpigmentation. It's my true holy grail. And the extreme hydrating benefits are a plus. This is also fragrance-free and great for all skin types.

    Promising review: "This product is amazing! When I use it on a regular basis, my skin is healthy, clear, and smooth. In my experience, it’s helped with acne breakouts and hyperpigmentation scars. To me it’s a must try." —Marie

    Get it from Amazon for $17.99.

    6. Skinfood Black Sugar Mask exfoliates away dead skin cells and fights dark spots and dullness with mineral-rich Brazilian black sugar. Daily exfoliation will help lighten and fade acne scars so with weekly use, you might see smoother, brighter skin.

    skinfood_us / Via instagram.com, amazon.com

    Read my colleague's full review of the strawberry-scented version of this wash-off mask to see why it's so good!

    Promising review: "Amazing experience with this product. Not only did it help clear up any dark marks on my face, but it also gives me a natural, healthy glow." —Jus Solo

    Get it from Amazon for $9.99.

    7. Banila Co Clean It Zero Cleansing Balm starts off as a sherbet-like balm and transforms into a silky oil for the first step of your double-cleansing routine. It gently melts stubborn makeup while brightening with vitamin C-rich acerola fruit. Double-cleansing does wonders for properly cleansing and brightening your skin!

    the container
    banilacousa / Via instagram.com

    Use an oil cleanser like this first and then follow with a water-based foam cleanser like the one below. Doing this every night will keep your skin clean, healthy, and gradually fade acne scarring. Plus, the ingredients in this are so gentle, you can use this on kids.

    Promising review: "HOW!? It’s so affordable and you get so much product. I’ve only used it twice and the difference is shocking. I have never removed my makeup and gotten this clean of skin in my entire life. Also, I looked in the mirror about 30 minutes after cleansing... my skin was GLOWING! It was bright, the redness has calmed down, I looked awake even though it was late at night! Today, after my third use of the product, I’ve noticed a drastic change in my skin. My acne is clearing up, I have less redness, less dryness, less textural issues. This is literally the best thing I’ve ever purchased." —Barb Kruser

    Get it from Amazon for $18.12.

    8. Missha Super Aqua Snail Cleansing Foam rescues skin from acne scars and hyperpigmentation, helps rebuild skin cells, and restores brightness. Cleansing with this every night will put that 3% snail mucin to good use. We've already established snails are the best! 🐌

    the bottle
    Soko Glam

    Promising review: "Love it! Bought this facial foam and the vitamin C and OMG I'm in love! I've tried different kinds of facial treatments, from cheap to expensive and nothing worked for me. They almost always caused more breakouts. But these products cleared out my acne and even the old scars were slowly fading. Been using them in the morning and at night. In just a span of three weeks, I noticed some big changes with my skin. I love the smell of this cleanser and my skin feels soft after every use. Highly recommend this product." —Milady

    Get it from Amazon for $8 or from Soko Glam for $10.

    9. Mediheal W.H.P Charcoal Sheet Mask Set recharges your skin using niacinamide and açai fruit, which hydrates and brightens uneven tone and texture. The mask itself is made from ground charcoal layered over a bamboo sheet to pull out impurities. Me: *adds to cart*.

    the mask set
    Amazon

    Using sheet masks daily or weekly with brightening ingredients will help your skin in its journey to free itself of hyperpigmentation! This mask is paraben-, sulfates-, alcohol-, mineral oil–, silicone- and animal product–free.

    Promising review: "I absolutely love this mask! It really helped to brighten my skin tone, I have cystic acne so I get really bright red spots, and it helped to bring out the impurities and lighten up the dark red spots I get when I have a bad breakout. I have been hard pressed to find something that really works and trust me, this does." —Miranda

    Get it from Amazon for $9.95 (comes with five masks).

    10. Innisfree Dewy Glow Jelly Cream boosts skin's radiance and brightens with Jeju cherry blossom, sourced from South Korea's Jeju Island. The bouncy texture hydrates and absorbs quickly because of its lightweight texture, leaving you with a lovely envy-worthy glow. No one will know your secret!

    Innisfree

    The cherry blossom flowers and leaves are responsibly harvested from the island and dried, after which they are aged for three weeks in lava seawater.

    Promising review: "I love this product! Some say it is sticky but you may be applying it too generously, when applied moderately with the soy bean essence from innisfree it gives me a beautiful glow. I also ran the ingredients through a cosmetic analyzer and the product was perfect. My skin is acne prone, oily, and hormonal and this is the first moisturizer I've tried that doesn't break me out after trying at least five already. If this product is sticky for you, you should try using squalane. It kind of reminds me of aloe moisturizer because it boosts your skins elasticity but this product penetrates deeper into my skin." —yohimochi

    Get it for $25: from Sephora here and from Innisfree here.

    11. Son & Park Beauty Water cleanses, tones, mildly exfoliates with willow bark and papaya, and hydrates with lavender and rosewater because proper cleansing is the first step of course. You'll see brighter tone, smoother texture, and easier absorption of other skincare.

    the bottle
    Soko Glam

    This is great for all skin types, and has a pH of 4.5, meaning it resets your skin's natural pH. It's super versatile and refreshing and its scent is subtle but divine! You can use it as a midday mist too. Plus, the bottle's so huge it lasts forever.

    Promising review: "Great toner! I use this toner during the day and night and have noticed that my skin is brighter and the dark scars or spots have faded more quickly than before. Since using this, I also noticed that my cystic acne and whiteheads have decreased significantly. It feels cooling when you swipe it over your face and you feel very refreshed afterwards, not dry. I have dry, sensitive skin and never had any issues with this and I felt like it helped me retain moisture and feel hydrated during the day and night." —Brittany

    Get it from Soko Glam for $30.

    12. The Face Shop Rice Water Foaming Cleanser cleanses, moisturizes, and brightens with rice water (of course). Ingredients like moringa oil and soapwort purify, rejuvenating your complexion so you look, well, more alive.

    Amazon

    Fun fact: Rice water was the most favored traditional beauty treatment among the women in the royal court of the Joseon dynasty! This cleanser is sulfate-free.

    Promising review: "This face wash lasts forever! All you need is half a pea size dollop each time you wash your face. I have a lot of acne scars and hyperpigmentation that has slowly improved using this face wash along with vitamin C serum." —Katie

    Get it from Amazon for $8.55.

    13. Peach & Lily Original Glow Sheet Mask ultra-hydrates with potent brightening botanicals like ginseng and camellia flower, and ingredients like niacinamide, peptides and AHAs, blasting skin with antioxidants, plumping, soothing, and even helping keep breakouts away. You're left with glowing, bouncy skin after!

    Peach & Lily

    Promising review: "Baby soft calm and clear skin. Especially now that I’m wearing a face mask at work, I feel it’s extra important to treat myself to this sheet mask at least once a week. I wake up with glowing baby soft skin. Any irritation or acne I had prior to using this has subsided. The ingredients are all natural so I have nothing to worry about in terms of my skin sensitivity. Can’t live without this gem!" —Danielle

    Get it from Peach & Lily for $6.

    14. Missha Time Revolution Ampoule uses powerfully charged ingredients, including 10 probiotics and five purple superfoods like purple carrots, plum cabbage and more, to strengthen your skin barrier, improve elasticity and tone, and moisturize so you'll end up looking like you should be doing skincare commercials. Its reparative properties mean it's (rightfully) gained a cult following too!

    the bottle
    Soko Glam

    This is gentle enough for sensitive and acne-prone skin. Hydration really helps when you're doing a skin regimen to rid your skin of dark spots because it protects your skin and prevents acne. I've used this every night and can confirm that with regular use, you start seeing a difference in your skin! My texture smoothed out, I stopped breaking out (which prevents acne scarring in turn), and my skin always felt hydrated to the touch. Definitely worth it.

    Promising review: "Thank you for giving me back my skin! I have been considering buying this product for a while. I finally decided to buy it, and I was MORE than pleased! I rarely have acne, but when it hits, it leaves scars. I am Black so hyperpigmentation is a lifelong battle. I have been fighting these acne scars for years. Literally, after using it for only two days (day and night), my acne scars were noticeably lighter and the dark spot I have been trying to lighten since I was in elementary school (that I will probably need laser treatment to completely remove) had also lightened in parts. My overall complexion also looked brighter and more even. I can truly say that this product has secured its spot in my skincare regimen for life! Everyone’s skin is different, but for someone who’s spent my whole life spending hundreds of dollars trying to achieve an even skin tone, this product is helping get my skin back to normal." —Alana

    Get it from Soko Glam for $52.

    15. A derma roller helps transform skin so you wake up a new person. Use it in tandem with a hydrating serum like the one above; micro-needling is painless and consistent use helps rid skin of hyperpigmentation, large pores, dark circles, and wrinkles, smoothing texture to reveal vibrant skin. With professional sessions costing hundreds, this alternative is both effective and affordable.

    reviewer's bumpy skin before, then smoother texture and skin after using roller
    Amazon / Via amazon.com

    A hydrating serum serves as a primer over your skin as you roll. The derma-rolling allows the serum to sink into your skin even deeper, allowing you to reap its benefits. Make sure you learn how to derma-roll properly before going at it!

    Promising review: "My derma roller arrived very quickly and was packaged to perfection. I've only used it less than a week and can already see a difference in my skin. I primarily purchased this to help my hyperpigmentation serums sink into my skin deeper, which it's totally doing! My dark spots have already started to lighten with only three uses (I use the roller every other day). I was worried about the pain this would cause, but it's really not that bad — kind of just feels like a sunburn for a couple of minutes afterwards, but my serums help to soothe it quickly. If you're on the fence about purchasing this...just do it! You won't regret it." —Louisa

    Get it from Amazon for $21.97.

    16. Bomb'd Aesthetics Turmeric Milk Bar helps reduce inflammation, irritation, and redness with turmeric, which also brightens and corrects acne scars and dark spots. Its strong blend also fights free radical damage and leaves skin nourished and soft. It's a win-win!

    the soap bars
    Bomb'd Aesthetics

    This is vegan and cruelty-free.

    Promising review: "I live in the desert where the water is almost as harsh as the sun. I suffer from both dry skin and an oily T-zone and I feel like this soap is perfect for me. I would get dry patches of skin on my cheeks, especially in the winter. After using this for almost a year now, I can say those spots have not returned this season. I love how soft it is, and how much it lathers. It feels like it’s really getting in there but it’s also leaving behind that protective layer I need to combat the elements and pollution. I come back to this cleanser time and time again, and I’m so happy to have found something that has cleared my skin of eczema and dark spots." —Kaelaunie

    Get it from Bomb'd Aesthetics for $8.50.

    17. Acwell Licorice Cleansing Toner lets you achieve the much-coveted "honey skin," which is skin that's luminous, dewy, and smooth. This'll deep clean, balance, and brighten with peony, licorice water, and green tea. It'll also help drastically reduce hyperpigmentation so this one's holy-grail status, people.

    the toner
    The Klog/Soko Glam

    I always see a noticeable difference in the brightness and texture of my skin when I use this!

    Promising review: "The best toner! Leaves skin hydrated with a subtle healthy glow. Helps your skin absorb other products so much better and helps with hyperpigmentation! Since using this my skin looks and feels healthier, and dark spots fade away more quickly!"Giselle

    And check out our picks for best toners at BuzzFeed Reviews!

    Get it from Soko Glam for $18.

    18. Missha Snail Hydro-Gel Mask uses snail mucin and ✨gold✨extracts to smooth texture and restore your skin to a bright and hydrated complexion.

    Soko Glam

    Promising review: "The mask itself is very comforting and relaxing. The first time I used it, i was very surprised to notice that some darker/redder acne spots I have been trying to get rid of looked noticeably faded. I was not expecting that at all and was very pleased. So i ordered a bunch more! I plan to use this once a week going forward." —Ayesha

    Get it from Soko Glam for $6.

    19. Saturday Skin Brightening Mask boosts your natural glow and helps your skin become translucent with a dose of antioxidants. A peptide complex supports your skin's renewal process and evens tone. Your skin will thank you!

    the sheet masks
    instagram.com

    This mask is sulfate-, paraben-, formaldehyde-, mineral oil-, coal tar-, and hydroquinone-free. It's also vegan, cruelty-free, and gluten-free, and comes in recyclable packaging.

    Promising review: "Goodbye dark spots! I had broken out horribly. I mean I hadn't had acne this bad since high school. I used this face mask along with my usual products. HOLY COW. Three days in and most of my acne is gone. The cystic ones are still healing, they are now small bumps and the dark spots I had gotten from constantly picking at my face are lightening. I went from 11 dark spots to only 4 being noticeable. I saw some reviews about the mesh being uncomfortable, you're supposed to remove that part of the mask. Please read the directions before posting a negative review." —LadyOtaku

    Get it from Sephora for $6.

    20. Alaffia Neem Turmeric Cleanser uses skin-brightening turmeric, neem leaf, and nourishing moringa to clarify and wash off impurities, making it a good choice for uneven skin tone and acne!

    the bottle
    Alaffia

    Promising review: "I am actually surprised about this cleanser. For a long time, I have been looking for something to help even my skin tone from my acne marks. This has actually helped. I have occasional breakouts and this cleanser has helped a lot. It takes about three weeks for me to see a difference. I was a little hesitant to believe the hype but it actually has been working for me. Look into trying it. It is possible that it could take weeks to even months for you to see a difference. Especially if you have acne." —ten

    Get it from Alaffia for $13.99.

    21. Dermal Collagen Essence Sheet Mask Set comes with 16 sheet masks, each targeting different concerns to truly pamper your skin and brighten it up! contain vitamin E and collagen for plump, hydrated skin. *Cue happy dance.*

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    I use these and absolutely love how refreshed and healthy my skin feels afterward. It doesn't feel thirsty or starved for nutrients after, and my skin naturally looks brighter and dewier.

    Promising review: "These sheet masks are legit. I use one every night. My skin has never looked better! I haven’t had the confidence to step out without foundation in a while. After using these sheet masks consistently, I actually want to go out without foundation. My skin feels smooth, it looks soft, clear, bright, and glows! Not only does it work on me but my mom has been using them with me and there has been obvious improvement in her skin texture. After washing my face at night, I slap one of these babies on for 30 minutes and remove the sheet. Massage the extra essence into my skin and neck and I wake up with dewy, soft, supple, and glowing skin. My skin stays moisturized all day. I can’t live without these now. The price is so worth it for the results." —Amy

    Get it from Amazon for $9.99 (available in four amounts).

    22. Mizon Snail Repair Intensive Ampoule uses 80% snail mucin to moisturize, smooth, and brighten acne scars, and regenerate skin damage so your skin is restored to its former glory once more! Like I said. Snails are our friends.

    reviewer with bumpy red skin before and smoother less red skin after use of product
    amazon.com

    Promising review: "Let me start off by saying I have extremely temperamental skin. I have hormonal acne with severe clogged pores. My skin became extremely dry and started to look like leather from all the products I was trying. I’ve tried everything in six-week increments as they say you don’t see the true benefits till that time for a product...even every brand (without exaggeration) you can think of from Sephora just to find a way to get rid of these issues. I couldn’t find anything that wouldn’t cause an instant and constant flare up. I couldn’t find anything to fix my constant acne. After the thousands of dollars spent, I’ve found that this serum works miracles for my skin. No more clogged pores...no acne rising... scars diminishing... it's insane. Buy this. It turns my stomach thinking about all the money wasted on expensive treatments I’ve purchased to rid my acne, clogged pores and flakey skin. This serum is a gold mine of moisture. My face feels supple and not sticky when using it. I don’t get greasy midday either, which is amazing considering I live on an island. BUY IT." —Erika

    Get it from Amazon for $15.89.

    23. Glow Recipe Watermelon + AHA Sleeping Mask works overnight to exfoliate, refine pores, brighten, moisturize, and boost your glow. With peony root, hyaluronic acid, and glycolic acid added, it'll unveil a brighter complexion, soothe, and smooth. I'm already making heart eyes.

    the jar
    instagram.com

    This is vegan and cruelty-free.

    Promising review: "Acne marks begone! This is amazing for acne marks! If you’re the type to get those red pigmented marks that never seem to go away, you need to get this. I have olive South Asian skin tone and my skin marks easily. It also seems to take a mountain for it to go away! If I use this a couple nights in a row, it makes a big difference. Three to four days nightly makes a huge difference. I rotate it so that I don’t irritate my skin with the other masks and scrubs I use on a regular basis. You only need a little. If you suffering from acne or a pigmented girl, you need to get this." —nyfashionista

    Get it from Sephora for $22 (available in two sizes)

    24. TruSkin Naturals Vitamin C Serum contains hyaluronic acid and vitamin E to support the vitamin C, helping to lighten dark spots and sunspots. Reviewers also say that it helps prevent breakouts and lighten dark circles!

    reviewer's  acne scars and red textured skin before, then smoother texture and lesser acne and redness after using product
    amazon.com

    Promising review: "This product saved my skin. I seldom write reviews but just had to review this product. I’ve been struggling with acne for YEARS. I have very acne-prone skin. I get a new pimple almost every day and it seemed like there was never a time I didn’t have a pimple on my face. Acne leaves super dark blemishes/scars on my face. I’ve tried all different types of moisturizers and cleansers. Nothing worked. However I bought this serum on a whim. OMGGGG. Guys. Literally my face stopped flaring within 3 days. I was PIMPLE-FREE FOR MORE THAN 48 hours (a new record). Exactly two months later, blemishes have faded DRASTICALLY and I have no active breakouts. This hasn’t happened in years. I truly and honestly think it is due to this product. If you are hesitant, don’t be, BUY IT! It has also helped my under eye bags (use one drop for both under-eyes; pat gently with fingers.)" —Brandon

    Get it from Amazon for $19.99.

    25. Radha Beauty Rosehip Oil organically deals with blemishes, discoloration, and dry skin — all those pesky things that contribute to a dulled-down complexion with a blend of fatty acids and antioxidants. It has thousands of 5-star reviews for a reason!

    before and after of a reviewer with flushed uneven skin, then clear, more toned, less red skin after use of product
    amazon.com

    Promising review: "After having my baby I suffered from a horrible bout of acne and then scars! I went from perfect skin to disaster and my self-esteem was on the line. I even looked into the hundred-dollar face peels from the dermatologist! I found an article on rosehip oil randomly and gave it a try. Holy grail! Left photo is during when the scars were pretty dark and the right is now. I used to pile on the makeup, not anymore. This is about a four-month difference. The bottle lasts forever and I'm forever a customer." —Audrey

    Get it from Amazon for $14.95.

    Your skin after all of these:

    Nickelodeon Animation

    Reviews have been edited for length and/or clarity.

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