Medical and Natural Ways of Lightening Freckles

Spending summer holidays on the beach or soaking in the pleasures of winter sunshine results in exposure to sunlight for a long time. It may leave you with freckles (dark or light circular spots) on your face, neck, arms, or other body parts exposed to the sun.

The freckles are produced mainly due to the overproduction of melanin on exposure to the sunlight and genetic predisposition for developing freckles. The freckles commonly occur in individuals with light-coloured skin, fair skin, and red hair.

If you notice the appearance of freckles, don’t panic, as most of them are harmless.

How to Lighten Freckles?

Chemical Peeling

Using chemical facial peeling is a potent way of treating freckles. It works excellent on medium-depth pigment disorders by using compounds like TCA, phenols, glycolic acid, salicylic acid, etc. These compounds are used as chemical peels for processing visible exfoliation.

Using chemical peels also help in relieving superficial pigmentations like post-inflammatory pigmentation, post-acne marks, tanning, melasma, etc. These chemical peels smooth out wrinkles, fine lines, and uneven skin tone.

As per the severity or intensity of the freckles, the chemical peels can be performed in 6-8 sessions. Make sure you visit your dermatologist for chemical peels and do not try this at home.

Topical Retinoid Creams

The topical retinoid creams contain retinoids that absorb the harmful UV rays and protect the skin against photodamage. These retinoids not only lighten the freckles but also prevent the formation of new ones. Applying retinoids creams also promote faster skin rejuvenation.

Consult your dermatologist before applying a topical retinoid cream for treating your freckles. It is because their potent concentration requires you to include them in your skincare slowly.

If you are using sunscreen in your skincare routine, add retinoid creams to improve sunspot removal.

Laser Treatment

Laser therapy involves using pulses of intense light for targeting freckles that are deeply rooted in the skin. It is considered a highly effective treatment for freckles as it uses focused targeting and results in up to 50%-60% fading in freckles.

Laser therapy also helps in forming new collagen, growth of new skin cells, and removal of old epidermal cells. The frequency and type of laser therapy depend on the severity of freckles.

IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) Rejuvenation

IPL rejuvenation is a type of light therapy that can be used for treating a variety of skin ailments like freckles, age spots, varicose veins, unwanted hair, sun damage, etc. This therapy involves releasing scattered light of many different wavelengths on freckles.

This IPL treatment penetrates deep in the dermis layer of the skin without harming the epidermis. You may need up to 4-6 IPL sessions for lightening the freckles and achieving a glowing and clear complexion.

How to Lighten Freckles at Home?

Although there is no scientific evidence supporting natural remedies for treating freckles completely, applying these remedies might help manage freckles to some extent. You may try these natural remedies at home to lighten the freckles.

Aloe Vera

Massage your freckles with a fresh aloe vera gel for two to three minutes. Rinse it or leave it for minutes. You may also apply it for an overnight treatment on freckles.

Pomegranate Peel

Take the pomegranate peel and make a paste of it by roasting and grinding. Mix a few drops of milk and lemon juice in this paste for achieving smooth consistency. The regular application of this mixture helps in lightening the freckles over a period of time.

Lemon Juice

Make a mixture by adding a few drops of lemon juice with honey. Apply it on freckles by using a cotton pad. Keep it on for 15 minutes and then rinse off and apply a moisturizer. You can use this method twice a week for lightening freckles after some time.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apply apple cider vinegar on your freckles daily. You may also dilute it by adding a few drops of water. It helps in lightening the spots.


Prepare a thick paste by adding besan, milk, and fine turmeric powder to a bowl. Apply this paste on freckles and let it stay till it gets dried. Rinse it off gently by wetting your face and allowing the paste to soften.


Crush some organic garlic pieces and prepare a fresh paste. Apply it to your freckles, leave it for a few minutes, and rinse it off.


Massage your freckles with fresh yogurt by your fingertips. Rinse it off after 15-20 minutes. The yogurt contains antioxidants that lighten the freckles and avoid signs of ageing.

Radish Paste

Prepare a paste of radish and apply it to freckles. Let this paste stay for an hour and rinse it off. Alternatively, you can extract the radish juice and use it on the freckles for experiencing the best results.

Eucalyptus Oil

Add a few drops of eucalyptus oil with a carrier oil (like almond oil). Apply this mixture to your freckles and let it stay for 20 minutes. Use a clean cloth for wiping it off gently.

Eucalyptus oil lightens the freckles by fighting hyperpigmentation, inhibiting tyrosinase activity and reducing melanin synthesis.

Pomelo Essential Oil

Add a few drops of pomelo essential oil with a carrier oil (like jojoba oil). Apply this mixture to your freckles and let it stay for 20 minutes. Wash it off with water. It helps in reducing the freckles on your face, neck, and arms.

Banana Peels

Take a ripe banana peel and gently run it over your freckles. Keep the paste for 20 minutes. Rinse it and apply a moisturizer.

Baking Soda and Castor Oil

Mix castor oil and baking soda for making a paste. Apply this paste on your freckles, let it stay for some time, and wash it off.

The baking soda in this mix acts as a potent skin exfoliator and helps you to achieve freckle-free skin. You may need to apply this paste for many weeks for the best results.

Castor oil works wonders for dark circles as well.


Freckles result due to sun exposure, genetic predisposition or age-related pigmentation. These are common in individuals with lighter skin tones. While freckles are harmless, these represent a cosmetic concern.

As we have discussed, there are several treatment options available for lightening the freckles. You should consult with your dermatologist for selecting the suitable treatment option as per your skin type.

Chemical peeling, pigment lasers, and topical retinoids cream are effective treatment therapies for diminishing the appearance of freckles. However, you may also opt for natural remedies for lightening freckles.


Preksha is passionate about writing articles that will inspire readers to make better choices. You will find her eating desserts for lunch, dinner and any time of the day. Also, she is the chief playlist engineer for any road trip.

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