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What are the health risks of using a skin lightening product?

There can be several health risks associated with using skin lightening products, including:
  • adrenal gland insufficiency
  • mercury toxicity
  • skin irritation
  • rashes
  • thinning of the skin
  • blemishes
Additionally, there are unregulated over-the-counter skin lightening agents with ingredients not intended for use on skin.
Jeanine B. Downie, MD
Dermatology
If prescribed by your doctor and used as directed, skin lightening products are generally safe; but there are many unregulated products that can have very serious health consequences. Watch dermatologist Jeanine Downie, MD, explain these dangers. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.