Lighten Up!

Blotches, unwanted freckles and dark spots are like speed bumps along the smoothness of your countenance. No matter how firm and unwrinkled the complexion is, uneven skin tone and discolorations can be distracting. Be a cougar, maybe, but a leopard never! These basic balms answer the call and spare you from going under the knife, or the laser for that matter.

Luminaze Catalytic Skin Tone Illuminator promises visible results in one month. Packaged in one bottle with two parts, the Enzyme Complex from pump one is applied first, followed by an equal amount of the Bio-Activator from pump two. It can be used on the entire face and neck, since the catalytic enzyme from mushrooms “works harder” on the darker spots, but provides overall evening out of skin tone. Instead of interfering with the natural production of melanin, Luminaze actually breaks up excess pigmentation. It works well on all ethnic skin types, is hydroquinone-free, hypoallergenic and fragrance-free. $120 for 1oz.

Lumixyl Topical Brightening Creme uses a proprietary peptide technology to diminish age and sunspots, uneven skin tone and sun damage. It is safe for all skin types and has the added benefit of hydrating ingredients. One step in a four-part system, this cream is unique among lighteners/brighteners because it doesn’t increase sun sensitivity. Light to moderate discoloration has been shown to improve in about two months. $120 for 1oz.

elure offers both a morning and nighttime system with Advanced Skin Lightening Lotion (1oz) and Advanced Skin Lightening Night Cream (1.7oz). Derived from a fungus, an enzyme known as lignin peroxidase is the key ingredient here. Both the day lotion and the night cream are also packaged in two parts: The enzyme is applied first and, after waiting one minute, the elure Activator is applied. Used twice daily, the appearance of discoloration and spots can be reduced in about a month. $150 for each and a little goes a long way.

Shiseido White Lucent Intensive Spot Targeting Serum hones in on dark spots, freckles, acne scars and uneven skin tone with their ME Complex (yomogi and angelica root extracts). Along with vitamin C, this complex enhances the acceleration of cell production and reduces melanin. Visible results could be seen in about two weeks when used as part of Shiseido’s brightening system. $125 for 1oz.

toni munna

Toni Munna is a native Long Islander who is always on the lookout for products that fulfill their promise to firm, hydrate, slim, soothe, de-wrinkle, plump, relax, de-stress, and just generally make you look and feel better. She a firm believer that wellness enhances beauty and has been testing beauty products and reviewing spas for you since the fall of 2006. You can reach her with questions at