Uneven skin tone, dark spots, acne scarring, freckles, and age spots – they all sum up to one form or the other of hyperpigmentation. There are a number of causes of any of these signs of hyperpigmentation – including but not limiting to sun damage, inflammation and excess melanin production – and unless, it’s an internal health issue or a long-term condition like melasma, it is treatable using over the counter beauty products. Granted, it takes time and is a slow process, but it definitely is curable.

Here are our top picks for you to treat hyperpigmentation and get that ever so coveted clear, even complexion:

Supergoop! – Everyday Sunscreen with Cellular Response Technology SPF 50

Like any other problem, the first and foremost step towards treatment is prevention. Products that help prevent hyperpigmentation in the first place will not only stop the issue from worsening but will also, prevent new spots from appearing while you treat the old ones.

Using a Sunscreen, with an at least SPF 30, will help encourage fading of dark spots by blocking UV radiation, which is responsible for keeping and producing more pigment in skin.

We have a tonne of favorite SPFs to protect our skin from the harmful UV rays but our current favorite is the Supergoop! – Everyday Sunscreen with Cellular Response Technology SPF 50.

The formula is Non-comedogenic, avobenzone based formula easily absorbs into the skin allowing skin to breathe and sweat. The presence of Avobenzone also means that its perfect for darker skin toned people since it doesn’t leave a white cast behind.

The SPF 50 provides super broad spectrum sun protection along with preserving and protecting skin’s youthful glow by replenishing moisture through a unique beta-glucan blend.

Dermalogica – AGE Smart Daily Superfoliant

The next step is to exfoliate regularly to help resurface new skin cells and get rid of old, darker, dull ones.

A product like Dermalogica – AGE Smart Daily Superfoliant will provide both the physical and chemical exfoliation to resurface and deep cleanse your skin.

The product activates on contact with water, releasing powerful enzymes, skin-smoothing alpha hydroxy acids and anti-pollution technology. Activated Binchotan Charcoal purifies the skin, helping to adsorb environmental toxins from deep within the pores, while Niacinamide, Red Algae and Tara Fruit Extract help guard against the damaging effects of pollution.

PETER THOMAS ROTH – Un-Wrinkle Peel Pads

While the Age Smart Superfoliant is a good exfoliant, a stronger peel like PETER THOMAS ROTH – Un-Wrinkle Peel Pads will work even better to treat uneven skin tone.

The product has a number of acids including glycolic, salicylic, lactic, linolenic acids and a blend of amino acids and vitamins A, C, D, E and F to exfoliate, resurface, clarify, firm, visibly minimize pores, fine lines and uneven skin tone.

These peel pads work to provide a glow superior to a professional peel which not only helps resurface newer layers of skin but also, help absorb your next step products like serums and moisturizers better into your skin.

PETER THOMAS ROTH – Camu Camu Power C X 30 Vitamin C Brightening Serum

The next step is to incorporate a vitamin C product into your skin care routine. Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) is the ultimate brightening ingredient. It’s an antioxidant which encourages the turnover of old, damaged skin cells.

Our go to vitamin C product is PETER THOMAS ROTH – Camu Camu Power C X 30 Vitamin C Brightening Serum which contains the amazonian camu camu berry has 30 times the vitamin C of an orange and helps improve collagen, brighten, smooth, firm, revitalize and improve the appearance of uneven skin tone, fine lines & wrinkles.

The added vitamins combined with the power of this camu camu berry also protect skin from damaging free radicals like pollution and UV rays, thereby, inhibiting the enzyme that triggers melanin production.

Dermalogica – AGE Smart Overnight Retinol Repair

To really target the hyperpigmentation hard, the one thing that you will absolutely need in your skincare routine is the multitasking superstar ingredient, retinol. Retinol is known to accelerate turnover to reveal a newer skin layer, below all the damage and discoloration along with hydrating skin and stimulating collagen production.

While there are a tonne of good retinol OTC options in the market now, we trust Dermalogica for the most effective results. Dermalogica – AGE Smart Overnight Retinol Repair is formulated with active microencapsulated pure Retinol, powerful peptides and antioxidant Vitamin C and bioenergized Copper amino acid complex, which all help to accelerate skin renewal and repair, diminish the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and uneven skin tone and improves skin firmness.

The product also includes a moisturizing Buffer Cream to help skin get used to the highly-active form of Retinol. And ofcourse, as with all Dermalogica products, this one too is formulated without artificial fragrances, dyes or parabens.

PCA Skin – Pigment Gel (pHaze 13)

Japanese folks are known for their brightening products and one such ingredient introduced by them in the beauty industry is the Kojic acid. It is a natural alternative to the much controversial, hydroquinone, which is widely used for skin bleaching purposes.

PCA Skin – Pigment Gel (pHaze 13) formulated with a blend of azelaic acid, kojic acid, lactic and citric acids is perfect for exfoliating, lightening and inhibiting hyperpigmentation. The product delivers what it promises – beautifully clear and fresh complexion – and also works for those suffering from acne scarring and prone to breakouts often.

A thorough skincare routine with all of these products and proper sun safety will not only help you target and reduce the existing hyperpigmentation but also will help prevent it from happening in the future.