Skin Brightener Buyer's Guide For 2014

A Guide to finding the best products to lighten and brighten your skin for a glowing, youthful complexion

Karen Weathers is the Senior Editor for Beauty Advice on Consumers Guides. Being a skin care & cosmetics fanatic, she has been an expert beauty writer for the past 8 years. Karen has dedicated herself to find the "Holy Grail" of skin brighteners.

With a good skin brightener, many types of skin problems can become a distant memory.

A top skin brightener can do more than banish blemishes, it can also provide you with an overall even skin tone and a vibrant, youthful glow. But choosing the right skin brightener is of the utmost importance. We know that all cosmetic products have potential side effects, pending on how the ingredients react with our skin. When it comes to brighteners, this risk can increase if we aren’t careful.

A good skin brightener can give you an even skin tone, promote a healthy glow, and even fade problem areas and spots.

But which product should you use?

Every skin lightening product claims to offer the best results for the money, but as we both know, product claims can be far from the truth - and on top of that, some of them can be downright dangerous.

So how do you pick one out from a seemingly unending selection of products out there? This is where we come in! We looked at all the best skin lighteners on the market and analyzed each of them to find out which ones use the most effective ingredients (with no dangerous ingredients) and which ones work best.

Blotchy skin is a form of hyper-pigmentation. It's a discoloration of the skin due to overproduction of melanin, the substance which causes our skin to tan after sun exposure. As we age, melanocytes, which deposit melanin in our skin cells work less effectively. Melanin builds up in certain areas and causes blemishes.

What To Look For In A Skin Brightener:

For a skin lightener to be effective, it not only has to include the most effective ingredients, but it should also be formulated using the right combination of safe ingredients to naturally brighten your skin. Many skin brighteners claim to use the best of everything... but, be careful! Many do not contain the right levels of ingredients to truly achieve results or contain too much of their active ingredient, which may cause irritation, or more serious side effects. Here are the ingredients that have been clinically proven to work:

  • Alpha Arbutin: A compound derived from organic materials, Alpha Arbutin blocks the effects of melanin on the skin by evening out and brightening up skin tone.

  • SculptessenceTM: A natural skin remodeler, this ingredient provides a “Hyaluronic acid-like” effect for a plumping action. It also limits the breakdown of collagen, keeping your skin firm and lifted.
  • LumisphereTM: An instant and gradual skin brightener that provides the skin with an even, luminous, and matte complexion in just minutes.

    Based on individual results, which may vary upon the person.

Dangerous Ingredients to Watch Out for:

Unfortunately, many skin lighteners still use ingredients that are proven to be a hazard for skin care. Using a skin brightener with these ingredients can cause adverse effects than the results you wanted to see! The following ingredients can cause serious damage to your health:

  • Hydroquinone: This carcinogenic chemical is actually banned in most countries except the US! Besides increasing skin sensitivity, it has been linked to tumor growth. This is definitely not something you want to be applying on to your skin.

  • Mercury: Believe it or not, mercury is still used in some skin brighteners. The reason is because it is inexpensive. Be very careful of this as it is one of the most harmful things you can put on or near your body. Mercury can destroy your kidneys as well as your nervous system. Mercury is used more often than you think, so always, ALWAYS read the label carefully.

Which Products Work Best?

Which products are shown to be the most effective and still contain safe ingredients?

Out of everything we looked at, only a few fit the bill. The majority of products simply don't achieve the results they claim and many of them still use ingredients that are detrimental to your health.

A couple of the brands we reviewed did everything right with their formulas. By utilizing the most effective ingredients, these skin brighteners evened out skin tone and reduced the appearance of all skin blemishes. They are safe to use-- and received glowing reviews.

Below are our top products in the skin brightener category. If you are looking for a product to give you a balanced, clear complexion, THESE are the products to use.

What You're Going To Learn:
The Best Product To Balance Skin Tone, Promote Glowing Skin, and Fade Problem Areas.
How To Choose A Safe Skin Lightener
Potentially Dangerous Ingredients That You Should NEVER Use

6 Rating Factors In Evaluating Skin Brighteners:
Safe Ingredients
Clinically Proven Ingredients
Hydroquinone- and mercury-free
Opaque Packaging
Proven Reputation
Real User Reviews & Results

city lights

Safe Ingredients
Real Clinical Trials1 2 3
Positive User Reviews
Company Reputation
Never Tested On Animals




Our #1 Top Choice: CITY Lights Radiance Perfecting Cream

Of all the skin lighteners we have reviewed, this is the most superior of them all.

A truly top-of-the-line skin brightener, City Lights does everything right with its formula. It's completely safe with no questionable ingredients, and received no reports of skin irritation from any of the women who used it. Best of all... it works -- fast!

Those that tested City Lights experienced a brighter, more even complexion after minutes of application. Many reviewers rave about its ability to reduce the appearance of all types of skin blemishes, in just 10 minutes! Aside from a smoother and brighter complexion, we also noticed that City Lights kept our skin hydrated and added volume to dull, sagging skin.

After using City Lights, we noticed a dramatic reduction in the appearance of blotchy skin and acne blemishes. Most users experienced a more even and balanced complexion. After weeks of using the product, skin became firmer and more lifted.

If you're looking for a skin brightener that will even out your complexion, reduce the appearance of skin blemishes, and leave you with younger-looking skin, you may have found the one!

You can find out more about City Lights using the link below. Give it a try and let us know how it works for you. We know you won't be disappointed.

Read Full Review And Learn More About City Lights>>

Where To Order City Lights>>




Our #2 Second Choice: Obagi Nu-Derm Clear Fx

The consensus second place pick was Obagi Nu-Derm Clear Fx, which came closest to replicating the results of City Lights.

However, this product uses a potentially dangerous ingredient. Plus, it can only be purchased from a doctor's office rather than having it directly shipped to your door, which is keeping this product from ranking as top tier of skin brighteners.

Read Full Review >>




Our #3 Third Choice: Shiseido White Lucent Intensive Spot Targeting Serum

Rounding out the top three was Shiseido White Lucent Intensive Spot Targeting Serum. This was an excellent product in many respects, but just didn't make a strong enough impact on skin tone and luminance to challenge City Lights.

Additionally, it was very pricey, which is surprising given that it didn't have any of the compounds that traditionally drive up the price of skin brighteners.

Read Full Review >>

P.S.While City Lights is the best skin brightening formula we've found, we would still love to hear about any other brighteners you've tried. If you have you had a great experience with a brightener of your own, please send me an email at with the details. We'll check it out and if it looks good, we'll post it here.


Karen Weathers


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* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Copyright © All Rights Reserved. This page is a demonstration of what an individual who uses the advertised products could potentially experience. Results from using these services will vary. Your results can be better or worse depending on the effort you put forth within them. These recommendations are soley based upon opinion. "As Seen On" logos and tradmarks are owned by their respective companies. All claims made by us are made up for advertising purposes only. One of more of the services we review has been previously written about or featured by those companies. We have no affiliation with those companies. We make no representation or guarantee of the quality of these companies. The rates, fees and information on this page, while accurate at the time of writing, is subject to change and may have changed since originally published. That content, advertising space or post may not always be identified as paid or sponsored content.