There are so many articles written about how to care for the skin on your face, but most don’t mention your neck. The neck and décolletage area gets exposed to the sun as much as the face does, so it makes sense to treat these sensitive skin areas with care. The gentle cleansers and moisturizers used on your face are also beneficial for the neck. Melanin is the substance that adds pigment, or color to the skin. The pigment can settle in the creases of the neck, leading to an uneven skin tone. The medical term for patches of dark thickened skin on the neck is acanthosis nigricans and the common term is ‘dark neck.’
While sun exposure and aging can cause darkened skin on the neck, the dark neck is more often caused by other factors. It can be the result of diabetes or obesity and is also linked to sunburn and hormonal fluctuations. There are a lot of opinions about what products to use to lighten affected skin, but two of the best choices are lemon juice and vitamin C serum.
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Lemon Juice as a Skin Lightener
Lemon juice is an acid, so it will help with the natural exfoliation of the skin on your neck. Exfoliation is the regular shedding of the top layer of skin cells. Lemon juice also has a natural bleaching effect on the skin.
Simply apply lemon juice to your neck and leave it on for twenty minutes, then rinse it off. If you have sensitive skin, dilute the lemon juice with water. Stay out of the sun after a lemon juice treatment because the combination of lemon juice and sunlight is drying and damaging to the skin.
Orange Peel as a Skin Lightener
Orange peel is rich in vitamins and antioxidants for your skin. It is also anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic and anti-microbial. Like lemon juice, orange peel contains fruit acids that assist with sloughing off dead skin cells. The peels are also full of vitamin C, which eliminates some of the free radicals that cause skin to age.
To make an orange peel mask, start with dehydrated orange peel. Grind it to a powder and mix it with whole milk to form a light paste. Spread the mixture all over the neck in a thin layer and leave it on for twenty minutes. Rinse the paste off with warm water and pat your face dry. Don’t forget to moisturize!
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The Big Picture
Regardless of the cause, lemon juice and vitamin C serum are effective skin lighteners for dark places on your neck. They work in conjunction with a skin care regimen that includes a gentle cleanser and moisturizer. If you have dark patches on your neck, it may due to any the reasons listed above. However, there are sometimes serious underlying conditions, so be sure and check with your doctor as well.