We sometimes spend so much money on products that could be harming our skin (Photo: Courtesy)

Every year we spend a lot of cash looking for the products that can make us look and feel prettier and part of the journey is trying new things.

You can come across different products that are supposed to clear your skin but some of them can end up lightening when that is not what you were going for.

When your skin is in the process of bleaching, it gives a lighter tone that isn’t anywhere close to your original colour.

It’s disappointing when you end up bleaching your skin unknowingly and here is what you need to look out for when buying products to avoid this nightmare:

The packaging looks suspicious

Bleaching products usually include common names that tell you what to expect. These include white or whitening, light or lightening, bright or brightening and some of them will even directly tell you that this is a bleaching cream.

Other times you can’t tell especially when it’s a foreign brand. In this case, you can kind of gauge what it is by the picture on the packaging. If it shows a model’s skin tone progressing from dark to light, it might be a bleaching cream.

 Always look at the ingredients and check for bleaching components (Photo: HealthyWomen)
It contains known bleaching ingredients

Besides looking at the packaging itself, you should read what’s included in the list of ingredients. You don’t need to know what every ingredient is but if you spot those that are commonly known to bleach, it’s a red flag.

The top ingredient to look out for is hydroquinone. This is the most common active ingredient that can be snuck into the products you use.

You have seen the reviews

Before you start using any product on your face, specifically, you should do your research. Some products don’t announce that they’re bleaching creams by hiding those dangerous ingredients from the ingredient list so you might not be able to tell.

To be on the safe side, you need to research properly. If you see that people are calling out the product you intend to use, you should probably think twice.

 If the product is too harsh on your skin, that's a red flag (Photo: Healthline)
Your skin is reacting

Your skin can show you signs that something isn’t right with the new product you’re using. Some have seen red patches on their skin and developed rashes, while others have suffered from sensitivity when you step out in the sun.

These products also tend to dry out the skin so check whether this has been happening.

People are noticing a big difference

Since we see ourselves in the mirror every day, it’s not easy to see the change.

But if others around you are pointing out that you look much lighter and this started happening since you started using a specific product, there goes your answer.

If you keep getting lighter and lighter, it’s probably a bleaching product.