Please read below - Melasma is a yeast fungus overgrowth caused by too much Copper in the body due to birth control pills and/or a vegetarian diet. (Moisturizers in creams and makeup feeds the yeast)
Pure aloe vera gel applied 3 - 4 times a day to the face and supplements of MSM, Zinc, Calcium, iodine,liquid from kelp and vitamin C will purge the body of excess copper and your melasma will dissapear. Avoid all foods high in copper. After it is gone - Highly recommend taking an excellent Multi Vitamin w/o copper, but with all of the anti copper supplements in the vitamin and probiotics and digestive enzymes daily.
Copper Toxicity Syndrome
Other Contributing Causes of Copper Toxicity
The following factors are also major contributing factors to copper toxicity: use of birth control pills, copper intrauterine devices, antibiotic therapy, stress, strict vegetarian diets and refined food diets which are deficient in zinc.
Do you know anyone who suffers from headaches, fatigue, insomnia, depression, spaciness, learning disorders or premenstrual syndrome? These can be symptoms of a copper imbalance.
Copper, an essential trace mineral, is vitally important for both physical and mental health. It has been studied for years, including at government laboratories. However, its importance for health is still largely unappreciated. The following is but an introduction. The author is deeply indebted to Dr. Paul C. Eck, an avid copper researcher.
COPPER'S ROLE IN THE BODY
Copper is critical for energy production in the cells. It is also involved in nerve conduction, connective tissue, the cardiovascular system and the immune system. Copper is closely related to estrogen metabolism, and is required for women's fertility and to maintain pregnancy. Copper stimulates production of the neurotransmitters epinephrine, norepinephrine and dopamine. It is also required for monoamine oxidase, an enzyme related to serotonin production.
It is possible to become copper-toxic or copper-deficient, and there is a condition called biounavailable copper. In the latter, copper is present, but cannot be utilized. Toxicity and biounavailability are seen most often. This article uses the words copper imbalance when more than one situation is possible.
Physical conditions associated with copper imbalance include arthritis, fatigue, adrenal burnout, insomnia, scoliosis, osteoporosis, heart disease, cancer, migraine headaches, seizures, fungal and bacterial infections including yeast infection, gum disease, tooth decay, skin and hair problems and female organ conditions including uterine fibroids, endometriosis and others.
Mental and emotional disorders related to copper imbalance include spaciness, depression, mood swings, fears, anxiety, phobias, panic attacks, violence, autism, schizophrenia, and attention deficit disorder. Copper deficiency is associated with aneurysms, gout, anemia and osteoporosis.
Interestingly, the symptoms of premenstrual tension are identical to the symptoms of copper imbalance.
SOURCES OF COPPER
Today, many children are born with excessive tissue copper. It is passed from high-copper mothers to their children through the placenta.
Stress from any cause contributes to copper imbalance. Stress depletes the adrenal glands and lowers the zinc level in the body. Whenever zinc becomes deficient, copper tends to accumulate. Our soil is low in zinc. Refined sugar, white rice and white flour have been stripped of their zinc. The trend toward vegetarianism reduces zinc in the diet, since red meat is the best dietary source of zinc.
Copper is found in many foods, particularly vegetarian proteins such as nuts, beans, seeds and grains. Meats contain copper, but it is balanced by zinc which competes for its absorption. Chocolate is high in copper. A desire for copper may help explain chocolate cravings.
Another source of copper is drinking water that remained in copper water pipes, or copper added to your water supply. During a recent dry summer, several Oregon cities added copper sulfate to their reservoirs to reduce algae growth. Accident and disease rates increased.
Other sources of copper are copper cookware, dental materials, vitamin pills, fungicides and pesticides residues on food, copper intra-uterine devices and birth control pills. Mrs. Robinson and her 6-month-old, breast-fed baby both began to experience hair loss. The cause was a daily prenatal vitamin containing 4 milligrams of copper, far too much for this high-copper mother.
Deficiencies of manganese, iron, B-vitamins and vitamin C can cause copper to accumulate. Adrenal hormones cause the liver to produce ceruloplasmin, the main copper binding protein in the body. Therefore, sluggish liver or weak adrenal glands may cause copper to build up in the tissues.
THE COPPER PERSONALITY
There is a high copper personality. Positive traits include a warm, caring, sensitive, emotional nature, often with artistic orientation and a child-like quality. Often high-copper people are young-looking. Many traditional feminine traits are associated with copper such as softness, gentleness and intuitiveness.
When the personality is not fully integrated or the copper becomes too high, negative traits show up. These include spaciness, racing thoughts, living in a dream world, naiveté, childishness, excessive emotions, sentimentality, a tendency to depression, fearfulness, hidden anger and resentments, phobias, psychosis and violence. Artists, inventors and other high-copper types often "live on the edge", in part due to their high copper level.
The copper personality tends to accumulate copper easily. Copper functions as a psychological defense mechanism. It causes one to detach slightly from reality. This provides relief from stress for the sensitive individual. It works well as long as the copper does not become too high. Very high copper can cause a psychotic break from reality, a type of schizophrenia.
An 18-year old schizophrenic patient had a hair copper level of 40 mg% (normal is 2.5 mg %). She hallucinated and attempted suicide twice while in the Scottsdale Camelback Mental Hospital. When her copper decreased to normal through a diet and supplement program, her symptoms disappeared and she has remained well.
COPPER AND SOCIETY
Is it possible that our mineral balance affects our attitudes? Copper is called the 'psychic' mineral, the 'intuitive' mineral, and a 'feminine' mineral because it is so important for the female reproductive system. Its level generally parallels that of estrogen. While many factors influence our attitudes and values, the rise in tissue copper levels in both men and women in the past twenty years parallels renewed interest in feminism, in psychic and intuitive knowledge, and 'nurturing' movements such as environmentalism.
COPPER AND SEXUALITY
Women tend to have higher levels of copper than men. Women also have more symptoms related to copper imbalance. These include yeast infections, migraine headaches, adult acne, various menstrual symptoms and depression.
Copper-toxic women are often estrogen dominant. They may benefit from progesterone therapy to help balance their hormones. Women with biounavailable copper are often low in estrogen. Their bodies are often more linear in shape. Of course, copper is not the only factor affecting hormones. Some pesticides, for example, mimic the effects of estrogen and can affect the hormone balance.
Men, by contrast, should be zinc-dominant. Zinc, a 'masculine' element, balances copper in the body, and is essential for male reproductive activity. Today, however, many men have symptoms of copper toxicity including depression, anxiety and other symptoms. Homosexuality may be related to copper levels.
COPPER AND CHILDREN
Children are often born with high copper levels. Young children are very sensitive and intuitive. They often lose some of their sensitivity and 'psychic abilities' as their copper levels diminish around age four.
Persistent elevated copper levels in children are common today. The problem often begins during gestation, when high-copper mothers pass on excessive copper (and often low zinc) to the fetus through the placenta. This is called congenital, rather than genetic high copper. It can be prevented by correcting one's copper metabolism before becoming pregnant. After birth, poor nutrition, stress in the home, and overuse of prescription drugs can aggravate a child's copper imbalance.
Copper imbalance in children is associated with delayed development, attention deficit disorder, anti-social and hyperactive behavior, autism, learning difficulties and infections such as ear infections.
Excess copper interferes with zinc, a mineral needed to make digestive enzymes. Too much copper also impairs thyroid activity and the functioning of the liver. If severe enough, a person will become an obligatory vegetarian. This means they are no longer able to digest meat very well. Conversely, if one becomes a vegetarian for other reasons, most likely one's copper level will increase. Vegetarian proteins are higher in copper, and lower in zinc.
At times, the vegetarian orientation is health-producing. In many people, however, restricted diets do not work well. Fatigue, spaciness and other symptoms begin to appear. Many people, including the author, felt they were becoming more spiritual on a vegetarian diet, when in fact it was just copper poisoning! The taste for meat often returns when copper is brought into better balance.
Some people with high copper dislike all protein. They crave high-carbohydrate diets. Protein feels heavy or causes other symptoms. Eating protein stimulates glandular activity. This releases stored copper which causes the symptoms. However, these individuals usually need to eat protein. The symptoms will eventually disappear.
Copper-toxic individuals may also be drawn to sweets or salty foods due to adrenal insufficiency. Some sea salt is often beneficial. Sweets, including fruit juices, provide a temporary lift but may worsen the condition.
Adrenal burnout, characterized by chronic fatigue and other symptoms, is often related to fear and copper imbalance. Although correcting emotional and other factors are necessary, improving the copper imbalance, supporting the adrenals and releasing fearful thoughts go hand in hand to restore optimum health.
COPPER AND ADDICTION
Compulsive behavior may be related to copper and the adrenals. Exercise, for example, stimulates the adrenals. This helps keep copper available and makes one feel better. If one stops exercising, unbound copper builds up and one may feel fatigue, mood swings and depression. In some people, this can create a compulsive need to exercise. Other ways to temporarily control copper toxicity include the use of caffeine or other stimulants.
Part of the appeal of cocaine, Ritalin and amphetamines may be their ability to help lower copper temporarily by stimulating the adrenals. Cadmium found in marijuana and cigarettes drives copper back into storage. These drugs may make one feel better by affecting the copper balance.
COPPER AND YEAST INFECTION
Our bodies use copper to help control the growth of yeast. This may be because copper favors aerobic metabolism. Copper is required for the electron transport system, where most of our cellular energy is produced. Yeast organisms use anaerobic metabolism.
Copper sulfate is often sprayed on crops to kill yeast and fungus. Copper is also used in some swimming pools and hot tubs to control yeast and bacterial growth.
When copper is out of balance, our bodies cannot control yeast overgrowth. This often led to chronic Candida albicans infections that are resistant to treatment.
DETECTING COPPER IMBALANCE
Blood, urine and even hair analysis may not reveal copper toxicity directly. Copper is stored mainly in the brain, liver and other organs, not in the blood or urine.
Challenge tests with a chelating agent such as EDTA may be used to detect excess copper. Several indirect indicators on a hair mineral test are also excellent to detect copper imbalance. These include a hair calcium level greater than about 100 mg%, a potassium level less than about 3 mg%, a sodium/potassium ratio less than 2.5:1, a zinc/copper ratio less than 6:1, an elevated mercury level or a copper level less than 1.0 mg%.
The author dealt with severe copper imbalance in himself and with many others for the past 18 years. Six methods are used to reduce copper in the tissues:
1) Reduce exposure to sources of copper.
2) Antagonists such as zinc, manganese and iron compete with copper for absorption and utilization. Vitamins B6 and folic acid may also be helpful. Selenium and cysteine may be helpful. Research indicates copper may be excreted by binding with glutathione and metallothionine which require these nutrients.
3) Chelators of copper include vitamin C, molybdenum and sulfur-containing amino acids. These bind and remove copper. More powerful chelators may be used, but can have side effects.
4) Enhance the eliminative organs, such as the liver, skin and colon.
5) Balance body chemistry, enhance energy production and improve adrenal gland activity. To support the adrenal glands, avoid sweets, eat protein with each meal, and supplement your diet with vitamins A, C and E, manganese, zinc and B-complex vitamins. Animal protein is very helpful due to its higher content of zinc, B-vitamins and sulfur amino acids including cysteine and taurine. Adrenal glandular substance is also frequently helpful.
6) Reduce fear and stress. Methods range from a change in location or work to meditation, therapy, more rest and other changes.
COPPER DETOXIFICATION SYMPTOMS
One of the difficulties in reducing excess copper are symptoms that arise during the process of elimination. As the body begins to mobilize excess copper from tissue storage sites, it enters the bloodstream on its way to the liver and kidneys for elimination. While in the bloodstream, the copper can cause headaches, skin rashes, racing thoughts, strange odors, digestive upset, mood swings and energy fluctuations. In men, testicular pain is not uncommon. Women's periods may be affected. If one knows what is occurring, it is possible to take measures to minimize these temporary elimination symptoms. Enemas, sweating, and drinking more water can help promote copper elimination. Reducing the nutrition program for a few days may also help slow the reactions and reduce symptoms if they are severe. Supplements particularly molybdenum, bile acids, laxative herbs and vitamin B6 may also mitigate elimination symptoms.
ATTITUDES TO HELP BALANCE COPPER
Adequate rest and sleep are important. Any technique to help handle stress is also helpful. A simple but powerful technique for handling all negative emotions is given in an excellent book, Emissary of Light, by James Twyman. He suggests feeling our negative emotions purely, dissociating them from thoughts. Feel them in the body. Then move the feeling to the heart area, visualize a small door just in front of you, open the door and release the emotion. Realize that all feelings are just energies. They can be transmuted, sent forth and used for good.
High copper people are often sensitive, must acknowledge this and 'live their own truth'. At the same time, a careful look at one's attitudes, especially hidden fears, angers and resentments, is very important. Overcoming copper imbalance often involves overcoming deep fears.
Life is not always easy for the copper-toxic person. There is a temptation to become resentful or depressed at times. With understanding, nutritional help and endless compassion for oneself, these obstacles can be overcome. Then the creative, intuitive and loving qualities of the high-copper individual can shine through to the world.
1. Eck, P. and Wilson, L., Toxic Metals in Human Health and Disease, Eck Institute of Applied Nutrition and Bioenergetics, Ltd., Phoenix, AZ, 1989.
2. Gittleman, A.L., Why Am I Always So Tired? Harper San Francisco, 1999.
3. Nolan, K., "Copper Toxicity Syndrome", J. Orthomolecular Psychiatry, 12:4, p.270-282.
4. Pfeiffer, Carl, MD, PhD, Mental and Elemental Nutrients, Keats Publishing, New Canaan, CT., 1975.
4. Twyman, James F., Emissary of Light, Warner Books, New York, 1996.
Most health problems are related to nutritional deficiencies.
Hi there, Well I have been using Apple Cider Vinegar diluted in 1:1 ratio of water and Apple Cider Vinegar for a week. I also use flaxseed oil on my skin once in a day, my melasma on side of my cheeks has become lighter in colour but there is no peeling off the skin. I have read so much benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar on treating melasma and many people claiming complete removal of those dark patches.
Well my melasma is just a year old and its not very dark also but I dont see it going away. I will be continuing this mixture and lets hope for the best... Can anyone help me.... can I use Apple Cider Vinegar mixture during daytime? and what else can I do to treat my melasma asap.
Rosehip Seed Oil, Squalene Oil
Melasma Remedy Treatment (Rosehip Seed Oil and Squalene Oil)
I've tried just about everything for pregnancy induced melasma. It was embarassing and was getting to the point that even makeup couldn't cover it. I was reserved to just use sunblock and dermablend concealer for the rest of my life, but then I happen chanced on something that worked.
I had previously tried EVERYTHING, even that nasty skin bleaching cream, but nothing worked. I started making my own beauty products and purchased a couple of oils to make a natural anti-aging cream for my eyes. However, I was lazy and just mixed the two oil 50/50 and put it around my eyes, accidentally getting some on my temples (where the worst of my melasma is)... A few hours later I looked in the mirror and was FLOORED at what I saw. The melasma was significantly lighter. I begin putting it on my entire face and in just two days it is 75% gone. I am NOT exaggerating. I didn't need concealer today and just used a light BB cream and it blended in nicely. I imagine after a few more weeks, it should be all but gone. I am going to add a few more EO's and carrier oils to a serum too and test those out. If you want it to fade, while smoothing your complexion out, use RoseHIP seed oil (not rose oil) and squalene oil (derived from olive oil). Mix the two 50/50 in a bottle and apply liberally on your skin. It is also helping with the thin and dry skin on my hands and I'm testing it on scars and stretchmarks too.
I have been trying the suggested treatment of an equal mix of lemon juice and cider vinegar every night and morning and I want to say thank you very much for posting that cure! I have had melasma for a long time now, and living in NZ it is almost impossible to avoid UV rays as we have such extreme levels. After 2 weeks, I looked in the mirror and I can hardly believe the difference. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
I have tried almost every remedy on this site for the last two years to help my melasma: hydrogen peroxide, grapefruit seed extract (GSE), MSM supplementation and horseradish. In addition, I have tried Tri-Luma cream from my dermatologist. I also have worn 50 sunscreen every day from La Roche Posay. Though I appreciated everyone's posts, unfortunately, nothing seemed to work.
Until now. I wanted to share this with everyone on the message board because I found the suggestions here so helpful. Basically, I started taking 200mcg of selenium, a mineral that's supposed to help with Hashimoto's thyroiditis. Within three weeks of taking it, my fatigue had improved AND...my melasma was completely gone. I was shocked and did some research. Turns out that in the same way that yeast overgrowth can affect some people with melasma, there are other people with thyroid problems who are more affected by melasma as well.
(In case the link doesn't work, here the info:Association of Melasma with Thyroid Autoimmunity and Other Thyroidal Abnormalities and Their Relationship to the Origin of the Melasma*
RUB?N J. LUTFI, MIGUEL FRIDMANIS, ALEJANDRO L. MISIUNAS, OSCAR PAFUME, ENRIQUE A. GONZALEZ, JORGE A. VILLEMUR, MIGUEL A. MAZZINI and HUGO NIEPOMNISZCZE)
I should add that I also take fish oil, evening primrose oil and a B vitamin, but the melasma didn't go away until I started with the selenium. HOWEVER, selenium can be toxic at high doses (400mcg)--PLEASE consult with your doctor to find if you are deficient or have other thyroid problems. This probably won't help everyone unfortunately, but those few of you with undiagnosed thyroid issues it may help. And since selenium is quite inexpensive, that's nice too. :)
Just a little update for you. I am still taking Grapeseed extract, aloe vera juice along with my vitamins. Yes it did make a BIG differnce. The melasma that I did have, broke up and slowly faded, the melasma that I do have is now so faint no one notices! I have even gotten complements on how my skin looks!!
Apple Cider Vinegar
I had some melasma on my nose for a very long time so for awhile now I have been soaking the ACV or peroxide on cotton and leaving it on as long as I can............well I am so happy to report that the dead skin keeps peeling off and off .. It looks like it really had deep layers of skin to get off. (hard to explain) but the skin is getting lighter and lighter. It actually reminded me of a chemical peel.. Still have a way to go so will continue..
Thank you EC and everyone.........
Hi guys, how are you all going? I had tried alot of topical products including Obagi NU DERM to lighten my very dark melasma/sunspots and acne scarring and received good results only to have my melasma return even twice as bad.
I do not recommend anyone of colour using the Obagi system as it will offer only temporary results and increase melanocyte sensitivity..AVOID hydroquinone like the plague if are seeking long term results and health of your overalll skin as it is not natural to totally avoid the sun, and long term avoidance of the sun is not natural or healthy and is just insane if you even try to avoid the sun for your rest of your life!!!
After many topical creams and potions lol..i then turned towards healthy food-derived alternatives, and found giga-white or 'biowhite' a good option for stabilising my sensitivity to the sun. It did not visibly change my melasma but it did reverse the senstivity my skin had to sunlight, meaning my melasma did not worsen and my skin became a lot stronger. MSM and licorice should show results the very next day, as you commence usage as it will indicate you have either a sulphur deficiency or hormonal imbalance..
I noticed the very next day of treatment with MSM and licorice that my melasma was breaking up..and underneath was my original complexion.. I then added ONION JUICE and a greek yoghurt face mask every second day to normalise the skin and have recieved great results. Adding more natural sulphur into my diet has sped up the process of healing my skin.
It is SO IMPORTANT to address the possible causes of your melasma, they can be a long going internal issue..a dietary problem, hormonal or even food allergy reaction. Hydroquionone is a 'quick-fix' that can actually age skin down the track..and it is only masking your internal issues which are the real cause of your illness.
One more thing..I have added in a wild yam supplement and gone on a bio-identical wild yam derived Progesterone cream..adding reishi and licorice and also spearmint supplements to balance my hormones, and not only have I seen an improvement in my skin but even weight loss.
Definitely try MSM as it has been the only thing that has actually faded and broken up my melasma, and I had very black melasma and the typical 'butterfly' discolourations. If you don't see results early on, or experience side effects..discontinue use as it is highly unlikely you have a sulphur problem.
I first started to develop melasma after very short exposure to birth control pills. I had a few patches on my forehead and some on my upper lip (so awful.) But amazingly, I got rid of it 100%. When I went on the contraceptive injection for 6 months shortly before getting married, it started again, and it is now on most of my face, a huge patch in the middle of my forehead, on the sides of my temples, above my eyebrows, on my cheeks and upper lip. Many people comment on it, I hate it. So I'm saving up the money to do what I did before.
This is what cured it the first time: I used a product range made in South Africa called RegimA. These are powerful plant based products with no colourants, perfumes, mica, titanium, animal extracts or mineral oils, and they are not tested on animals. They do contain the lowest possible dose of paraben preservatives though, to protect users from harmful bacteria which love to grow in all that yummy plant-goodness.
I got their AHA peel done at a salon. I think I did it 3 times over the course of 3 weeks. It's not like a chemical peel that literally pulls off a layer of skin, it is quite a gentle, gradual peel that just encourages the dermis to let go of old epidermal cells faster than usual. In addition I used their home care products to repair my skin: a night cream which also contains the AHA acids, the wash which neutralises the night cream in the morning before going out in sunny South Africa (very important), a repairing day cream with natural spf 15, and twice a day I used their vitamin C serum underneath the moisturizers, which lightens pigmentation. I also used their natural sunscreen which has NO titanium or other physical blockers, it contains laminaria algae from the South Sea Islands which helps the coral there to stay alive and colourful even in shallow sunny water. It also has LOADS of skin repairing and protecting plant extracts. Very light, no pore-blocking effect, very effective, non-carcinogenic.
It worked like a charm. My melasma was literally GONE for years. My skin was perfectly clear and smooth.
So now that it's back with a vengeance, after the stupid contraceptive injections (which I have since learned are formulated for dogs, not humans, eek! ) I think I will try it again.
To be honest I am a bit strapped for cash at the moment, so I might first try making my own serums instead. I'm going to try a combination of 3 things: Topical vitamin C serum, Hyaluronic acid serum and MSM serum, and see what happens. If anyone wants to try this with me, here are the recipes.
DIY vitamin C serum:
2 teaspoons of distilled water
1 teaspoon of vegetable glycerin
half a teaspoon of L-ascorbic acid crystals
Shake vigorously and store in a dark glass bottle in the fridge for up to 10 days. Apply morning and night (a little bit of redness or flaking is normal, if this happens, reduce to once daily, or stop for a few days, and moisturise your skin well to prevent any scabbing, those will become dark as well and that is working backwards!) PLEASE DON'T USE ASCORBIC ACID POWDER, MUST BE L-ASCORBIC ACID CRYSTALS.
DIY Hyaluronic acid serum:
100ml of very cold distilled water
1 gram of Hyaluronic acid powder
Put into a dark glass bottle and shake vigorously, put in the fridge for 12 hours (it will be a goopy gel when it is disolved.)
Apply morning and night, or add it to your favorite moisturiser.
DIY MSM lotion:
3 heaped teaspoons of pure MSM crystals
half a cup of pure aloe gel
Mix it up and store in dark glass in the fridge. Apply any time.
NOTE: these serums are best made up in small quantities and kept in the fridge. Throw the unused portion out after 7-10 days and make it up new, especially the vitC serum! If it starts to get a little orange it has oxidised and is useless, toss it out. Store bought serums have a TON of preservatives in them, which is better than putting harmful rotten bacteria-infested products on your face, but the best is making it up fresh in small batches.
About the peeling thing: I absolutely do not recommend chemical peels or glycolic peels. They are synthetic and so strong that they need to be buffered with other chemicals to prevent injury, and they peel A LOT of skin off at once, which often causes more pigmentation. Alpha Hydroxy Acids from fruit, milk or other plants are better, but be very careful with this, NEVER use a product with AHA's while you are in the sun, I can't BELIEVE there are day creams with AHA's in them!!! Only use at night, and they must be NEUTRALISED off in the morning, not just rinsed off with water. Get a good quality product which respects these logical principles.
Also avoid mineral based make-up which contains sulphur dioxide as this causes a whole other kind of pigmentation as well.
I really hope this post helps someone, good luck and please let me know if you try any of these remedies and what happens. I will post again when I have tried this for a little while. And remember, beauty is not a mark in the face, it is a light in the heart. Much love to you all.
Hello, for nearly 10 years I suffered melasma and in addition to my freckles, my skin was horrible looking. People have asked if I was a man. Others have asked if I had sharpie marks on my face. Some called me black sesame face. Anyway, that was the past. About 5 years ago I did the whole body detox and changed my diet, eating mainly fish, chicken, raw greens, fruits and lots of water and staying away from beef, tofu, sugar and salt.
Besides my diet, my daily oral supplements include MSM, GSE, ACV, Matcha-green tea. MSM and GSE are very bitter if not taken correctly. The trick to taking those two with the bitter taste is to have the MSM powder in a spoon, squeeze some GSE drops on top of the powder and place the whole thing in your mouth then immediately wash it down with OJ or Grapefruit juice. OJ or grapefruit juice is packed with Vitamin C and vitamin C helps absorb MSM better.
Topically, I cleanse and exfoliate my face twice a day with regular facewash and a toothbrush. I am using O--y regenerist and an old, soft bristle toothbrush. First, I wet my face with warm water to open up pores and then apply face was to the toobrush and work in circular motion on my face for a good 5 minutes and rinse, pat dry and apply vitamin E oil. I don't put alot of vitamin E oil since it is heavy and oily. I am only using 1-2 drops, rub it in my hands and apply to both my face and neck.
For daytime, I am also using physical suncreen after vitamin e oil. There are 2 types of suncreen, chemical and physical. Make sure it is physical, which contains Zinc Oxide and/or Titanium. These are the ingredients that can prevent melasma from getting darker when exposed to sun.
For nightime, I exfoliate then apply a cream for melasma and vitamin E oil. One thing I forgot to mention. I also drink 1 teaspoon of extra virgin coconut oil a day. This is excellent for hair and skin. I hope someone can benefit from my remedies and good luck! :)
Apple Cider Vinegar
I am happy to announce that after more than five years of suffering with melasma I am watching it quickly fade away. I came across this site, and tried ACV that same night. It burned a bit because I didn't realize I needed to mix half water and half apple cider vinegar. The next night I made the correct mixture. I have been putting it on my face every night before I go to sleep for six nights now.
My melasma is fading fast. I make sure to put sunscreen on every morning before going outside so I do not lose any of my progress. I am also planning on buying vitamins to fix it from the inside out. I will report back if it completely disappears. I want to add that I truly hope anyone who suffers with melasma tries apple cider vinegar and water. The Apple Cider Vinegar costs less than three dollars at your local grocery store, and is well worth it. Compared to the prescription creams and doctors visits it pales in comparison. Also, if it doesn't work on your melasma it can be used for other cures or you can eat it with salads etc. So it would not be a waste of money. :) Good luck to all.
Copper Connection to Melasma
OK. You need to do a lot of detective work very thoroughly to figure it out, but melasma and copper overload are connected. Search around to find the scientific jargon for it, but copper plays a major role in pigmentation and melanin. Moreover, the copper levels in pregnant women, women on the pill, and when you are premenstrual are higher. Also, it rises with the estrogen. Hello, I've heard many women note what I myself noted. The melasma darkens before your period and lightens after. Copper levels are elevated so makes sense. Now, many people noted MSM, zinc and vit C help when nothing else did. Well, MSM helps purge the body of heavy metals by making cell walls more permeable and releasing toxins. Zinc and vit C are "antagonists" to copper. But that stuff works slowly. I have had mild melasma, darker in summer very light in winter, on upper lip, nose and forehead for past 4 years. Taking MSM recently (10 grams per day) I did notice two things, it didn't darken much in the sun anymore and a 3mm wide x 5 mm long splotch of it vanished from my nose, replaced by normal colored skin.
But this really isn't good enough for me.
So I read up on the copper link and you know, while for the most part I'm extremely strong and healthy, I have had some acne (under control now mostly) some hormonal imbalance, yeast infections, and a few other of the milder symptoms of copper toxicity. OK, well, now let's talk about getting rid of said copper excess.
I read a few people did this and their melasma's gone.
Cilantro - google it - rids the body of heavy metals, including lead, mercury, and copper.
I for one, took the pill at two points in my life for 3 years each time (threw my whole body out of whack for a few years after). I used a copper pan for a few years - RIGHT at the time this problem appeared. I drank tap water at the time too, who knows what's in the pipes, and I also smoked cigarettes and drank too much white wine. (Copper is used in process of making white wine). Anyway, I don't intend to never have a glass of wine, nor watch every morsal of food that has copper content, hello I like mushrooms and avocados. Besides, some copper is needed in the body. So thankfully there is a natural way to leech those heavy metals from your brain, blood and tissue.
Buy fresh cilantro, take one quarter cup of it - I put in blender and add cold water and drink it as a juice. Apparently you must take "chlorella" an algae supplement (I take 10 capsules with my cilantro juice) because otherwise you will remove the heavy metals from where they are being "safely" stored and on the way through small intestine etc the metals will be re-absorbed into the body, and will be all over the place. So cilantro brings out the heavy metals but chlorella helps to flush it right on out.
You do this for 3 weeks, no more. It works very quickly. A doctor discovered this cilantro link, apparently something in the cilantro binds to the metal molecules and removes it, causing it to be excreted and flushed out in the urine.
So, I started this a few days ago and my marks are fading fast but I will post back later to let you know my progress because I know how it feels to have this condition, it SUCKS. I'm a beautiful woman, and thank god this year I refused to feel down on myself for this melasma, I now know I still am beautiful. But there's no doubt it sucks to have to wear makeup to cover it, and in flourescent light it still shows up.
I know many people have it much worse than me too.
By the way most copper testing is ineffective because it is often stored deep in tissues so may not show up in the test.
But please, be your OWN judge, go do your research on the following: Copper and pigmentation. Copper melasma. Copper cilantro and chlorella. Copper and estrogen. Copper and pregnancy. Copper and MSM, or heavy metals and MSM.
I hope that this will help people, no-one should feel bad about themselves. Prior to 4 years ago, my complexion was even-toned. I trust it soon will be again. Will let you know how it goes. And hey, whatever happens, I'm sure over the course of my 35 years of life I've stored up some excess of metals, so at least I'll purge 'em out.
PS - make sure whatever chlorella you order is pure and read up on it to find the best brand for you, you can order it online, and as with any supplement it should be processed properly in some way that doesn't mess up the properties (as with everything, I mean, even for example olive oil should be cold-pressed!) but do your research on that OK, I'm not a chlorella expert, I just googled and read up on it and picked what looked like a good product to me. The stuff isn't too expensive. Whatever works. Cilantro is, thank god, cheap! A buck or two for a nice bunch of it at the grocery store. Also, I thought eating that much cilantro would taste bad but surprisingly it doesn't taste like much. Not bitter, not strong, it smells strong but tastes mild. I like it in salsa but never dreamed of drinking a glass of it!!!
God bless (:
Hello! Ok, i promised myself that if i found something that worked at curing my melasma that i would tell as many people as possible so that they can benefit too. Well, I HAVE!!! I honestly cannot believe it!! and it is largely due to the many people who have posted their solutions on this site. I'll give you a bit of background to my personal problem. In Sept 2008 i began the birth control pill for the first time in almost 10 years. It was to clear up an acne problem that i had developed in my 30's (I'm now 34). Come January 2009 (peek of Australian summer) i started to see brown dots on my cheeks. By the end of March they turned to dark brown pathches across my cheeks and a slight moustache looking shadow above my lip. Nothing would cover it. Not even the amazing Jane Iredale makeup. I did endless research about laser treatments but because i have dark skin naturally i was scared of the possible side effects. Last week (literally 1 week ago) I came across this site and a couple of others which related the pill to high levels of copper in the system which can lead to the melasma (high levels of copper is also found in pregnant women). This is what i chnaged from that moment onwards and the results have been AMAZING! Truly! The melasma has lightened and shrunk by abut 50% so far.
- Went OFF the pill!
- Took 1000 mg of vitamin C daily
- Took 1000mg of ZINC daily
- Used bleeching serum nighly on face (as perscribed by Dermatologist).
- Spread HORSERADISH (yes, that's right!!) from my local grocer as you would find in a jar. I've been rubbing a small amount on my melasma and leaving it to dry for around 20 mins. I've done this 3 times so far and I honestly believe this has been the key ingredient to the fading of my melasma.
- USED 30+ SUNSCREEN DAILY!!!! ever since beginning this process. I was not doing this before. I will now be using sunscreen on my face every day. This is also a crucial step in the process. Don't use bleech etc.. and then go out in the sun as it will only get worse.
I was in tears a week ago. I felt like I had these permanent tattoos on my face. I've woken up this morning actually 'looking' for the melasma because i can't see it the moment i look in the mirror. Before it was all i could see when i looked in the mirror.
I hope this worked for you too! AND THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO HAS POSTED THEIR ADVICE!! A combination of a few solutions has truly been a miracle for me.
FIRST I WANT TO THANK THE GAL THAT FIRST POSTED THIS INFO...U ARE A GODSEND ! I HAVE SUFFERED WITH ACNE AND MELASMA FOR OVER TEN YEARS. I HAVE TRIED EVERYTHING OUT THERE, SPENT THOUSANDS ON USELESS TREATMENTS, AND HAVE FOUND THAT SOMETHING SO SIMPLE AS HORSERADISH HAS ENDED THIS AWFUL CHAPTER IN MY LIFE ! THIS STUFF BURNS A BIT, BUT IS INCREDIBLY EFFECTIVE AT ELIMINATING ALL BROWN PATCHES INCLUDING ONE THAT LOOKED PRECANCEROUS...IT JUST FELL OFF ! I AM TRUELY AMAZED AT HOW FAST THIS STUFF WORKS.
I HAVE BEEN PUTTING IT ON AT NIGHT AND LET IT DRY WHILE I READ OR WATCH TV. I WOULD LIKE TO LEAVE IT ON ALL NIGHT BUT AFTER IT DRIES IT WILL FLAKE OFF AND GET ALL OVER YOUR PILLOW/BED. SO WHAT I DO IS KINDA GROSS, BUT IT WORKS...I STAND OVER MY SINK AND GENTLY WIPE IT OFF WITH A DRY WASHCLOTH. I DO NOT WASH MY FACE ...I WANT TO LEAVE WHATS LEFT ON MY FACE ON ALL NITE LONG, ONLY WIPING AWAY THE EXCESS DRIED HORSERADISH. DO NOT RUB, ONLY WIPE GENTLY. I TRIED DOING THIS TWICE A DAY BUT IT WAS TOO MUCH...AND I BURNED MY SKIN A LITTLE....SO ONCE A DAY IS SUFFICENT.
I STARTED USING THIS ABOUT THREE WEEKS AGO AND ITS ALMOST GONE...AND I HAD IT ALL OVER MY FACE.IT WAS REALLY REALLY DARK TOO. I HAVE ALSO HAD ACNE MY WHOLE LIFE IT SEEMS, AND HAVE NEVER FOUND ANYTHING THAT HELPS. I HAVE CYSTIC, AND REGULAR ACNE.I WAS SO SURPRISED TO NOT HAVE A BREAK OUT WHEN I GOT MY PERIOD. SO I HAVE BEEN EXPERIMENTING WITH IT ON PIMPLES AND CAN BELIEVE WHAT IT DOES. THIS STUFF DRIES IT UP IMMEDIATELY !
I AM SO IMPRESSED WITH MY RESULTS I AM NOW PUTTING IT ON MY ARMS WHERE I HAVE LOTS OF SUN DAMAGE AND A FEW SPOTS THAT I AM WORRIED MAY BECOME CANCEROUS. WILL LET EVERYONE KNOW HOW THAT GOES. I HAD A SIMILAR AGE SPOT THAT LOOKED CANCEROUS ABOVE MY EYEBROW. I HAD ONLY BEEN USING IT FOR ABOUT TEN DAYS WHEN THE WHOLE THING JUST CAME OFF, LIKE A SCAB ON A WOUND. WOW !!! THIS STUFF BURNS AND STINKS BUT IS SOOOO WORTH IT ! A MIRACLE PRODUCT SITTING ON YOUR GROCERS SHELF FOR ONLY A FEW BUCKS. TRY IT U WILL BE AMAZED TOO. BE DILIGENT AND DO IT EVERY NITE UNLESS U HAVE BROKEN SKIN...THEN U SHOULD WAIT TILL IT HEALS. I USE REGULAR CREAMY STYLE...NOT THE EXTRA HOT.
I have started to use H202 on the brown sun spots on my left cheek after reading on Earth Clinic that it would fade them. Last night was the 2nd night. I took a cotton ball and soaked it in h202 and then held it to the area for about 15 minutes. Can report that after 2 nights they look like they are fading. Will report back.
I think the fungal theory might very well be true. My doctor made a big mistake called in the wrong prescription for my plant based hormones, It had a really high dose of estrogen ( high estrogen causes skin darkening and progesterone causes skin lightening) which caused a pH change in my uterus, which caused repeated yeast infections, and then BV. Then I noticed I had facial darkening I looked like I had 5 O'clock shadow! Several visits to several doctors with no answers. I began to look at what could of happen to trigger all of this I called the pharmacy and asked them to tell me what hormones I was on a year earlier and I figured out the mistake pretty fast. I immediately stopped my plant based hormones got a new doctor and I was put back on my original plant based hormones from a year earlier the doctor increased progesterone slightly since it would lighten and brighten my skin my skin began to lighten pretty fast. I also did the stopped staying up late, stopped eating almonds which I ate daily.
I began taking MSM, Vitamin C, glutathione, Niacinamide is B-3, zinc, folic acid, and licorice extract and used a niacinamide based cream on my face which is deadly to fungus! I went on the anti-candida diet and took a natural anti-fungal, used a yeast arrest suppository that had probiotics in it for one month. I think for me it was both hormones and fungal. Happy to say I'm cured of Melasma.
Melasma Creams That Don't Work
After briefly reviewing this condition/thread/post, it seems appropriate to consider trying the natural remedy of Black Cumin Seed Oil both topically & internally for this Melasma condition.
BCSO contains the fallowing profile of natural antibiotics:
thymoquinone (TQ) 2-Isopropyl-5-methylbenzo-1,4-quinone, thymohydroquinone (THQ) and thymol. A teaspoon of BCSO plus a spoon of Milled Flax Seed would be major beneficial to clearing bad bugs and debris from both small & large intestines.
She likely means topically...as I did this and I saw a noticeable lightening after putting licorice extract on my dark areas after one night. First time I diluted it w coconut oil but 2nd night I just put it on straight and slept w it. It's sticky though and some got on my pillow case. I exfoliate first well to allow it to penetrate more. I also started taking it internally after a few days as it heals acne, stomach issues, and hormone imbalance including the afternoon slump (cortisol drop). It has really helped with all those areas. I'm so pleased with this unassuming bark.
Rosehip Seed Oil, Squalene Oil
Hi. Thank you so much for sharing your mix if rosehip seed oil and squalene oil. I feel the need to reply to pay it forward. It did wonders to my melasma in as little as one week. It's been a month and my melasma is much lighter. I'm afraid it has peaked and it has stopped getting lighter. I wonder if you discovered any other oil to include in the mix to continue its effect on erasing the melasma? I got depressed with my spreading dark spots on my face and your mix of rosehip seed oil and squalene really helped me. Thank you so so much!!
In darker skin tones in some people, glycolic acid can sometimes worsen the pigmentation issue because it can create an inflammatory response which can result in post inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
First of all, blessings to you all for sharing your pains and solutions. If it wasn't for your generous thoughts, I would not be posting today.
My melasma began about 10 years ago. After reading the many posts on this site, most helpful was by Maria of Dallas in regards to an inside/outside approach. My melasma is 50-60% lighter today. The only diet change I made was to STOP drinking black tea (advised in reducing melasma). I switched to non-caffeniated to help get the grapefruit seed extract down.
Here's the treatment I designed for myself with YOUR help, and today has been exactly one week.
-1 ____ Multi Vitamin
-1000 mg of Vitamin C
-3x per day of 15 drops: Grapefruit Seed Extract (liquid). I use mint or chamomile tea to get this down as it's very bitter and I'm unable to take with water.
-Before shower, on a cotton pad, mix apple cider vinegar (50/50, diluted with water) with liquid grapefruit seed extract and rub on off - DO NOT scrub or you'll burn your face causing extra stress which darkens the skin. Just rub on very generously and let it dry - like a toner of sorts. Your melasma turns darker at first when you apply the apple cider vinegar, and then lightens upon drying. I leave on until I feel a slight stinging feeling, and then immediately rinse off in shower. After shower, I reapply ONLY the apple cider vinegar and let dry. Then I use Castor Mineral Oil an massage into face. Afterwards, apply your daily lotions, make-up (Bare Minerals make-up is great as it includes sunblock in all products: concealer, foundation, veil so you get multi-layer sun protection) etc as usual. I also apply extra sunblock throughout day and use a hat when outdoors.
-Before bed, wash face to remove make-up. I use cleanser. Then apply apple cider vinegar (50/50 diluted with water), again followed by Castor Mineral Oil massaged into my face.
This has been my daily routine for 7 days now, and I've seen 50% improvement.
Ingredients you will need: Grapefruit Seed Extract in liquid form, Multi-vitamin, Vitamin C, Apple Cider Vinegar, Castor Mineral Oil, cotton pads, sunblock, hat,
I really hope this is helpful to someone as you all were extremely helpful to me.