African-American skin is beautiful. It can go from a rich, chocolatey brown to a tan mocha color. Many people wear their skin tone with pride (as they should) because it reflects their community and heritage.
But while there is a profound appreciation for dark skin, there are many issues that come with it. Some black women have to deal with hyperpigmentation and scarring, which they can be more susceptible to. Others struggle with skin that goes dull, even with a good skincare routine.
The answer lies in finding the best skin bleaching creams for African Americans. It’s a godsend when you’re dealing with scarring thanks to sun exposure, free radical damage that makes your skin look dull and sullen, or just want brighter skin from head to toe.
If you’re on the hunt for the best lightening cream for black skin, stick around. We’ve got the crème de la crème of bleaching creams in this product guide.
List of 12 Best Skin Bleaching Cream for African Americans Reviews
1. Protégé Premium Skin Lightening Cream
This lightening cream is packed with many powerhouse ingredients that help brighten and lighten the skin safely. Arbutin, kojic acid, and niacinamide all work hand in hand to inhibit the skin from forming dark pigments. They’re also rich in antioxidants that protect your skin.
These key ingredients are known to brighten the skin, giving you a more even complexion. You’ll notice that your skin becomes pearlescent and a bit whiter after using this cream, but still plump and healthy-looking.
This cream reduces the appearance of dark spots from acne scarring, skin aging, and even exposure to the harsh sun. It’s effective for all skin tones and ethnicities, so it doesn’t matter what your roots are—this cream can be your dream solution if you suffer from any of those issues.
It’s a safe bleaching cream for black skin because it doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals, including bleach, hydroquinone, mercury, or anything else that can sting or burn the skin. So if your skin is more on the sensitive side, you’ll love this.
- Arbutin, kojic acid, and niacinamide work to brighten and lighten the skin.
- Leaves the skin pearlescent and whiter but still looking healthy
- Reduces dark spots due to scarring, aging, or sun exposure
- Effective for all races and ethnicities
- Doesn’t contain harsh ingredients like bleach, hydroquinone, or mercury
- It takes a while before the results become noticeable.
This Protégé cream proves that skin lightening for black skin doesn’t have to be harsh. With this, you can get amazing results from antioxidant-rich ingredients without subjecting your skin to harsh chemicals.
2. Active Bamboo Skin Brightening Cream
Hyperpigmentation is one of the biggest issues of having a deep, dark color. Any good bleaching cream for African American skin should be able to eliminate or at least reduce dark spots and scars on the skin. And that’s exactly what this Active Bamboo cream claims to do.
This cream corrects those pesky dark scars on your skin, giving you a more even skin tone that looks naturally brighter and more glowy.
It’s made with vitamin B5 and E to help strengthen and add natural moisture to the skin, keeping it plump and bouncy. It also has organic ingredients to boost skin health, from shea butter to ginseng.
Bamboo extracts are among the star ingredients of this cream. It brightens the skin gradually and makes it more luminous in appearance. Organic aloe and hyaluronic acid, on the other hand, deeply hydrates the skin to keep it healthy and more elastic.
This cream doesn’t have any harsh chemicals that can burn your skin since it’s formulated gently. Thus, it can be used on intimate body parts, like your underarms and inner thighs.
While this cream is excellent at getting rid of dark spots that make your skin tone and texture look uneven and unkempt, it doesn’t leave the same impression on skin whitening. While it adds brightness and a healthy glow, the cream doesn’t change your skin’s actual color to something fairer.
- Corrects dark spots and hyperpigmentation for a more even skin tone
- Vitamins and organic ingredients help moisturize & improve skin health.
- Bamboo extracts brighten the skin and make it look more luminous.
- Contains aloe and hyaluronic acid for deep hydration of the skin
- Doesn’t contain irritating ingredients, suitable for intimate body parts
- Doesn’t have a huge effect on lightening your actual skin color
If you want a natural skin lightening cream for black skin that can also serve as a moisturizer, this Active Bamboo cream might be just what you’re looking for. It nourishes and hydrates your skin, all while zapping away discoloration and dark spots.
3. LilyAna Naturals Retinol Cream
If you’ve been on the hunt for a fantastic African skin lightening cream for the face, look no further. This retinol moisturizer is packed with all the ingredients your deep tone needs to look brighter, healthier, and younger.
Retinol is a derivative of vitamin A, which offers amazing benefits to the skin, such as brightening the skin tone and firming up and lifting your skin.
Because it’s infused with moisturizing ingredients like aloe, jojoba oil, hyaluronic acid, and shea butter, you can count on this moisturizer to be super nourishing.
That said, it doesn’t leave an icky, greasy residue after application. The cream is so lightweight and is easily absorbed by the skin.
This potent formula has great anti-aging and wrinkle-fighting properties, so it’s perfect for mature black women dealing with discoloration and fine lines. It helps smoothen rough skin textures as well, which is common when you’re aging.
One thing to consider is that, like all retinol products, this moisturizing cream can result in a few breakouts the first time you use it. This is called the purging stage, which happens when you use retinol for the first time. Just be patient; it will go away after some time, then you’ll have smooth, radiant skin.
- Great vitamin E moisturizer to keep the face bright, firm, and lifted.
- Moisturizing with aloe, jojoba oil, and hyaluronic acid
- Lightweight and is absorbed easily by the skin
- Potent formula with active anti-aging and wrinkle-fighting properties
- Smoothens skin with rough textures due to scarring and aging
- May cause breakouts for a few weeks if you’re new to retinol
Because this LilyAna Naturals cream is packed with amazing, skin-loving ingredients, it may be the best skin lightening cream for dark skin on the face. It has everything all in one—brightening properties, deep moisture, and anti-aging benefits!
4. Ambi Skincare Fade Cream
Ambi is a brand that caters explicitly to women of color, so it only makes sense that their fade cream is the perfect lightening lotion for African-American skin that battles with dark spots.
It’s formulated with hydroquinone, a potent, dermatologically-tested ingredient that can quickly and effectively fade dark spots. It also has alpha hydroxy acids that help exfoliate the skin, which leads to faster cell turnover to reveal brighter, clearer, fairer skin.
It’s also packed with vitamin E, a natural moisturizer for the skin. This vitamin also improves skin elasticity and the ability of the skin barrier to retain moisture.
The cream doesn’t feel greasy or heavy, so it’s perfect for oily skin that needs a leg up in evening out the skin tone.
It’s also formulated with 2% octinoxate, which serves as sunscreen. Because the cream provides sun protection, you don’t have to worry about UV rays aggravating your discolorations and making them even darker.
Since hydroquinone, the cream’s hero ingredient, is quite potent and powerful, it may be a bit irritating to those with sensitive skin. I recommend this cream for skin bleaching for African American skin that is resilient and not that prone to acne.
- Made by a brand that caters specifically to women of color
- Fades dark spots and scars with hydroquinone and alpha hydroxy acid
- Vitamin E improves skin elasticity and moisture retention.
- Not greasy and heavy, so it’s perfect for oily skin
- Formulated with sunscreen to make sure dark spots don’t come back
- Hydroquinone can trigger a skin reaction in those with sensitive skin
If your skin is oily but quite tough and resilient, this will make the perfect spot-fading moisturizer for you. It’s especially awesome in the morning since it has sun-protecting properties that make sure your spots don’t stay for longer.
5. Divine Derriere Skin Brightening Corrector Serum
Many of the creams we’ve talked about brighten up the skin gradually. But if you’re more into bleaching creams that work fast, this one by Divine Derriere might blow you away.
This skin-brightening serum is made with the highest concentration of hydroquinone you can get without a prescription. Hydroquinone stops the skin from creating darker pigments, which can then lead to discoloration.
AHAs and BHAs, including lactic acid and salicylic acid, help exfoliate the skin. These buff away dead skin cells to get rid of dark spots quickly and reveal new, glowing skin that is clearer and fairer in tone.
It’s also packed with other superstar ingredients for whitening, such as kojic acid, azelaic acid, and witch hazel. These allow fast results while still being safe.
This powerhouse serum diminishes blemishes on your beautiful, deep skin, like dark spots from acne scarring. It also minimizes the appearance of large pores, making your complexion look even smoother and more flawless.
The best part is that it comes in a light gel formula, so it glides easily onto the skin without feeling heavy and sticky.
Be sure to only use a little bit of this serum at a time. If you use too much of it, you could face irritation since the product is packed with potent skin-brightening ingredients.
- Formulated with the highest concentration of hydroquinone
- AHAs and BHAs exfoliate the skin to remove dead skin cells.
- Kojic acid, azelaic acid, and witch hazel lighten the skin fast & safe
- Diminishes dark spots, acne scars, and large pores to reveal clear skin
- The gel formula glides onto the skin easily without leaving a sticky residue.
- If you use too much of the serum, it could irritate your skin.
You can consider this Divine Derriere serum a strong bleaching cream for black skin because of its powerhouse ingredient list. If your skin isn’t overly sensitive, you might love how potent the formula is and what astounding results it can provide after a few weeks.
6. Northern Crown Cosmetics Intimate Whitening Gel
Many people think bleach is harsh and irritating, but if you balance it with the right, skin-friendly, gentle ingredients, it won’t deal that dreaded damage to the skin. That’s exactly what Northern Crown Cosmetics tried to achieve when they formulated this whitening gel.
The gel is made with 25% active bleaching concentrate. It sounds scary and intimidating at first, but this is the ingredient that provides powerful, quick whitening. The gel is also infused with natural brightening ingredients, such as licorice and mulberry extracts, for extra oomph.
This gel eliminates dark spots and discolored blemishes from head to toe, so it’s a great solution to try out if you’re dealing with an uneven skin tone.
That said, it’s also infused with rich jojoba and olive oils as well as hyaluronic acid. These nourishing ingredients replenish the skin of moisture that could be lost to the bleaching process.
Because of these skin-loving ingredients, it’s a terrific gel to use for the more intimate parts of the body, like your underarms, bikini area, and backside.
But if you have sensitive skin, it might be a good idea to use this cream on your face, where your skin is thinner and more easily irritated. Using this rich, potent cream on your face may lead to a burning sensation.
- Made with 25% active bleaching concentrate for powerful whitening
- Infused with licorice and mulberry extracts
- Gets rid of dark spots and discoloration from head to toe
- Has olive and jojoba oils to replenish moisture in the skin
- Can be used on intimate areas of the body without stinging
- May give a burning sensation when used on the sensitive skin
If you need an effective skin lightening lotion for black skin to boost your confidence in your intimate areas, this whitening gel is the product you’ve been waiting for. It’s filled only with the most efficacious whitening ingredients while still caring for your skin with a boost of moisture.
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7. Ebanel Dr. Lightening Ultra-Potent Facial Cream
This cream by Ebanel is another one packed with amazing lightening ingredients. It’s formulated with 2% hydroquinone to serve as a vigorous dark spot corrector and a melasma treatment all in one.
It’s also enriched with other popular brightening ingredients, such as alpha arbutin, kojic acid, niacinamide, salicylic acid, and azelaic acid. These superstar ingredients increase the cream’s whitening power without being harsh on the skin.
The cream speeds up the fading process of dark, discolored spots, whether they’re from acne scarring or age spots. They give you a more even and flawless skin tone in the long run.
It’s also infused with tea tree oil and L-arginine, which help soothe the skin when red and inflamed. It’s perfect for sensitive skin.
This cream can even out your overall skin tone in as fast as four weeks, so long as it’s used regularly and religiously.
But if you’re on a hunt for a thick cream that can double as a whitening body lotion for black skin, this may not be what you’re looking for. It has a runnier consistency compared to the usual thick creams out there and feels more like a thin serum.
- 2% hydroquinone to make dark spots and melasma disappear
- Alpha arbutin, kojic acid, and more for brightening power
- Speeds up the process of fading discolored areas
- Tea tree oil and L-arginine soothes red, irritated skin.
- Can even out your skin tone in as fast as four weeks
- Has a runny consistency that feels more like a serum than a cream
This cream eliminates dark areas while soothing and caring for your skin. So if you want all the best whitening ingredients in your full body skin bleaching cream while ensuring your skin can be calmed down from irritation, this is the cream for you.
8. Larriola Dark Spot Correcting Cream
This Larriola cream is perfect for anyone who wants an effective yet natural formula for their skin lightening cream for African American skin—especially one for the whole body.
This broad-spectrum whitening cream can be used on any area of the body, from elbows and legs to more sensitive parts, like your bikini line and underarms. It’s made primarily with botanical extracts like licorice, mulberry, and bearberry, so you don’t have to worry about it being harsh on your intimate parts.
The cream targets dark spots, acne scars, and other blotchy areas in your body. The natural brightening extracts lighten and whiten these spots to ensure a smooth and even complexion.
It even has aloe and hyaluronic acid to hydrate your skin, keeping it soft, plump, and supple.
It’s perfect for those with sensitive skin because it doesn’t contain harsh and irritating ingredients, like parabens and synthetic detergents.
Using this cream requires a high level of commitment. Inconsistent use can lead to no noticeable results. Be sure to incorporate it into your routine so you can have the chance to reap its full benefits.
- A broad-spectrum whitening formula that can be used from head to toe
- Made with botanical ingredients so as not to be harsh on intimate areas
- Targets dark spots, scars, and blotchiness with natural extracts
- Aloe and hyaluronic acid hydrate the skin to make it more supple and soft.
- Doesn’t contain harsh chemicals, like parabens or synthetic detergents
- Won’t work if you’re not consistent with usage
If you love vegan and organic skincare products, this Larriola cream might be the best bleaching cream for dark skin. It’s super effective (especially in your private areas!), all thanks to its botanical extracts and hydrating ingredients.
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9. WhiteningLabs Dark Spot Corrector Cream
Here’s another cream formulated with natural and gentle yet powerful ingredients for whitening. WhiteningLabs doesn’t have any of those irritating bleaching ingredients—just good old vitamins and botanical extracts to properly brighten and care for your deep skin.
It’s packed with willow bark and licorice extracts, known for brightening the skin naturally. They also bring out the radiance in your skin, making it glowy and more even in tone.
The formula also works to diminish any dark spots and scarring to ensure that your skin looks clear and smooth with each use.
It’s enriched with hyaluronic acid and vitamin E to moisturize the skin and keep it soft and plump. Vitamin E also has anti-aging and elasticity-building properties that can help delay signs of aging, like fine lines and wrinkles.
If you’re looking for a toning cream for black skin without hydroquinone, this is the one for you. It’s free of any harsh chemicals and detergents that can irritate sensitive skin, including parabens and silicones.
Now, this skin bleaching cream for dark spots might not be the most potent nor the one to give the fastest results. It will probably take a long time to see the results you want. But if you’re patient and stick it out, you’ll be rewarded with soft, moisturized, clear, and bright skin.
- Willow bark and licorice extracts brighten the skin.
- Diminishes dark spots and scars to make your skin clearer
- Hyaluronic acid and vitamin E moisturize the skin to keep it plump.
- Has anti-aging properties that leave the skin free of wrinkles
- Doesn’t contain hydroquinone, parabens, and silicones
- Results can take times to show, but stick it out, and you’ll be rewarded
Try this WhiteningLabs cream out if you want a gentle skin-lightening formula packed with anti-aging and moisturizing benefits. It’s a contender for best whitening cream for black skin that is dry and mature, for sure.
10. Advanced Clinicals Advanced Brightening Cream
This cream is made with pure vitamin C, one of the skincare world’s holy grail ingredients when it comes to brightening the skin. It fades dark spots to give you a clear and smooth complexion over time.
It’s also formulated with ferulic acid and vitamin E, which are known to boost vitamin C’s benefits and brightening power. Meanwhile, aloe leaf juice and coconut oil add deep hydration and moisture to the skin, making it softer.
The cream has a quick-absorbing formula that glides smoothly on the skin and penetrates the skin barrier fast. It doesn’t feel sticky and never leaves a greasy, shiny residue behind.
The best part about this cream is its value for money. It comes in a huge 16oz bottle with a pump, so it’s sure to last you a long time.
The only con with this cream has nothing to do with the product itself, but its lousy packaging. Some women who love this product complain that the pump is fragile and tends to break and stop working even before they finish up the cream.
- Made with pure vitamin C to brighten dark spots for a clearer complexion
- Infused with ferulic acid and vitamin E to boosts the efficacy of vitamin C
- Aloe leaf juice and coconut oil add moisture
- A quick-absorbing formula that doesn’t feel greasy on the skin
- Provides awesome value for money because it comes in a huge 16oz. bottle
- The pump is a bit fragile
This vitamin C formula is an amazing skin lightening cream for hyperpigmentation for black skin. It’s especially awesome because it provides bang for your buck. So you can achieve bright, blemish-free skin without breaking the bank!
11. Palmer’s Skin Success Fade Cream
This Palmer’s cream works to make dark spots and age spots fade faster, to reveal clear, smooth skin with an even tone. It’s infused with niacinamide and vitamin C to brighten discolored skin. Meanwhile, vitamins E and A provide anti-aging properties that lead to plump, bouncy, wrinkle-free skin.
This cream is super lightweight on the skin and doesn’t feel heavy or greasy throughout the day. Because of this, it’s easy to use as a primer underneath makeup.
When used regularly, you could see a noticeable difference in your skin tone in as little as two weeks. It’s a great, trustworthy option from a renowned brand if you’re looking for skin whitening creams that work fast but are still of top quality.
If you have sensitive skin, don’t sweat it. This formula doesn’t contain harsh detergents or chemicals, and has no trace of hydroquinone, phthalates, or parabens.
If you have a sensitive sense of smell, watch out. This cream has a scent that can be quite strong, so it may be overwhelming if you’re not a fan of fragranced products.
- Combats and fades dark spots and age spots for a smoother skin tone
- Niacinamide and vitamins C, E, and A for a fairer complexion
- Can be worn under makeup because it’s so lightweight
- Noticeable difference in the skin tone in as fast as two weeks
- No harsh chemicals like hydroquinone, phthalates, and parabens
- The smell is quite strong and could be overwhelming for some people.
This Palmer’s cream is made with cult-favorite brightening ingredients that can zap away dark spots and age spots for a fairer, brighter, more glowy complexion. The best part is that two weeks is all you need to see a difference!
12. SkinPro Ultra Brightening Skin Lightener
This skin lightener from SkinPro is a potent, medical-grade serum made with 2% hydroquinone. It provides maximum strength brightening for those difficult discolored areas that just don’t want to budge.
This lightening serum eliminates dark spots and all kinds of frustrating discolorations like stubborn melasma, liver spots, age spots, freckles, sun spots, scarring, and more. You can use it on the face, body, and even in your intimate areas where the skin is more delicate.
The formula prevents any future breakouts, so it’s a good serum for your facial skincare routine if you have particularly acne-prone skin.
Although the formula is a bit strong, it doesn’t cause any burning or peeling. So it’s perfect for any skin type—even those that are sensitive to medical-grade active ingredients.
If you tend to use a lot of product in many discolored areas, you may become frustrated with this bottle’s size. It comes in a 30ml pump bottle only, which means you may have to repurchase it frequently because you’ll run out sooner.
- A medical-grade formula with 2% hydroquinone for brightening
- Rid of dark spots and all kinds of discolorations on the face and body
- Effective against stubborn melasma, freckles, sun spots, age spots
- Prevents future breakouts, so it’s great for acne-prone skin
- Doesn’t burn or cause peeling even if the formula is strong
- The size of the bottle may be too small at 30ml only.
If you’re ready for a stronger, more powerful formula than the usual lightening creams in the market, this SkinPro lab-formulated serum is the one for you. It’s potent and extremely efficacious without the burning sensations and peeling.
13. Meraz Pureauty Naturals Natural Skin Lightening Serum
This Meraz Pureauty Naturals serum’s star ingredient is kojic acid, which is known to exfoliate the skin to reveal fairer, brighter, and whiter skin underneath your dull color.
This serum lightens dark spots and hyperpigmentation, giving you a more uniform and even skin tone as well as a clear complexion to boost your confidence.
It’s also enriched with green tea extracts that soothe inflamed and stressed-out skin and jojoba oil, which is light yet moisturizing to make your skin soft, hydrated, and plump.
These ingredients all work together to rejuvenate and refresh tired skin, helping it glow from the inside out. The result is a complexion that looks lighter and more luminous, healthy, and happy.
This serum is more fast-acting than others. You can see noticeable and significant results in a matter of days, just as you start to use it in your daily skincare regimen.
If you have sensitive skin, expect some redness and tingliness when you use this serum for the first time. It may feel scary at first, but it should be soothed and calmed down after a while.
- Kojic acid exfoliates the skin to reveal brighter skin
- Lightens dark spots and hyperpigmentation for a clear complexion
- Green tea extracts and jojoba oil hydrate and soothe the skin.
- Rejuvenates the skin and makes it look healthier and more luminous
- Gives you significant, noticeable results in a matter of days
- Sensitive skin may turn red and tingly during the first couple of uses.
Kojic acid, jojoba oil, and green tea are the perfect combo to brighten the skin and rejuvenate it all at once. If you’re looking for both skin lightening and rejuvenating, this Pureauty Naturals serum might be the answer to your prayers.
What to Look for When Buying a Bleaching Cream for Your African American Skin
- Brightens and lightens the skin to give you a radiant glow
The main point of looking for bleaching creams is to brighten and lighten the skin. This doesn’t necessarily mean these creams should change your skin color permanently. After all, dark brown skin is beautiful and should be embraced.
But these lightening creams should be able to eliminate dullness in your skin and make it more luminous and radiant. It’s not that we want to strip you of your color—it’s that you should glow as much as you can while showcasing it.
- Eliminates dark spots, acne scars, and hyperpigmentation
Dark spots and stubborn scarring are some of the biggest hurdles of having African-American skin. So when looking for a bleaching cream, make sure to find one that eliminates or at least reduces the appearance of dark spots and hyperpigmentation.
Diminishing these spots will lead to an even skin tone, which is one of your primary goals when using a bleaching cream in the first place. Try to nab one that can get rid of freckles, sun spots, liver spots, and age spots as well.
- Whitens tricky areas, like the underarms or between your thighs
Areas like your underarms and inner thighs are tricky to whiten because they’re more sensitive than the rest of your body. Try looking for gentler formulas that can whiten these areas, too, so you can be more confident when getting intimate.
- Formulated safely, so there’s less irritation on sensitive skin
If you have sensitive skin, make sure your whitening cream doesn’t contain any overly strong chemicals and detergents, such as activated bleach or mercury. While hydroquinone is very effective, it may also be too potent for sensitive skin, so check out other options before deciding on that one.
- Infused with other brightening ingredients so your skin can reach its full potential
Look for bleaching creams enriched with other brightening ingredients so that you can get the maximum results possible. For example, many of the creams we just talked about include arbutin, kojic acid, niacinamide, and vitamin C—all known for their whitening effect.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Bleaching Creams Safe?
Yes, most bleaching creams are totally safe to use. Many modern bleaching creams no longer contain harsh detergents that are bad for your health. Instead, they rely on dermatologically-approved brightening ingredients to help whiten your skin and make it more radiant.
How Can African Americans Lighten Their Skin?
Using a high-quality lightening lotion of cream is one of the best ways to make African-American skin fairer. It’s also arguably the most affordable and convenient way.
Most lightening or brightening creams are designed to create a more even skin tone by eliminating discolorations and blemishes from your skin. While they don’t necessarily change your deep brown skin color, they can make you look more glowy and radiant.
How Do You Use a Skin Bleaching Cream?
Each bleaching cream has specific directions for use, so make sure to read your cream’s packaging.
Most creams should be applied directly on the discolored areas and only a little bit at a time to prevent irritating the skin. You must apply the cream to clean skin so it can absorb all the brightening and moisturizing goodness your cream has to offer.
Can I Go Outside After Applying a Lightening Cream?
It’s best practice to wear sunscreen over your skin if you use a lightening cream on it. Many brightening ingredients, like vitamin C and kojic acid, can make you more sensitive to UV rays and damage from sun exposure, so make sure to slather on a generous layer of SPF before heading out.
Remember: you can be proud of your gorgeous black skin while still looking for ways to improve its radiance and glow. Hopefully, these best bleaching cream for black skin reviews help you out on your journey to find the perfect one for your needs and skin goals.
While the best skin bleaching creams for African Americans are right at your very fingertips, you must discern and pick out the best one for your skin type and condition.
Listen to your skin and what it responds to before purchasing one so that you can glow with healthy, even-toned, irritation-free skin that’s brighter than before.