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Arbutin

goodie
Also-called-like-this: Beta-Arbutin
What-it-does: antioxidant, skin brightening

Details

A pretty well-known and often used ingredient with the magic ability to fade brown spots. It's used traditionally in Japan and can be found naturally in a couple of plants, including the leaves of pear trees, wheat and bearberry

Arbutin seems to work its magic and hinder the pigmentation process at the second step of it. An enzyme called tyrosinase is needed to create melanin (the pigment that causes the brown spots) and while several other skin lightening agents work to inhibit the synthesis of tyrosinase itself (like vitamin C or licorice), arbutin lets tyrosinase be and rather hinders the melanin-forming activity of the enzyme. (So it might be a good idea to combine arbutin with some direct tyrosinase inhibitors for more skin lightening effect.)

All in all, arbutin is one of the better-known skin brightening agents, that's probably worth a try if pigmentation is an issue for you.

Show me some proof

  • Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics February 1996, 276 (2) 765-769; Arbutin: mechanism of its depigmenting action in human melanocyte culture
  • Leslie Baumann, MD, Cosmetic Dermatology, 2nd edition, Arbutin - page 280

Products with Arbutin

Good Molecules Daily Brightening Serum Tosowoong Vita Clinic Vitamin Eye Cream Benton Snail Bee High Content Mask Hada Labo Perfect 3D Gel Purid Lab. Restoring Brightening Serum innisfree Soybean Energy Essence Botanic Farm Salmon Egg Hydrogel Eye Patch Dr. Jart+ Water Drop Hydrating Moisturiser ElsheSkin Radiant Skin Serum Hada Labo Premium Whitening Essence Hada Labo Shiro-Jyun Serum Hada Labo Shirojyun Clear Lotion It's Skin Power 10 Formula Wh Effector LadyKin Vanpir Dark Repair Youth Activator Nanowhite Intensive Brightening Serum Obagi C Fx C-Therapy Night Cream Paula's Choice Resist Brightening Essence Treatment Sidmool Bee Therapy Mineral Serum Sidmool Dr. Troub Skin Returning Niaten Serum Skin Watchers Aqua Most Whitening Water Drop TIA'M Vita B3 Source innisfree Firming Energy Essence With Fermented Soybean oneoseven Core Flex Essential Liquid BERRISOM Timetox Revitalizing Essence Hada Labo Shiro-Jyun Milk Rebalance Secret Key Starting Treatment Essence Sidmool Snail Brightening Liposome Essence Missha Misa Geum Sul Overnight Cream Nature Republic Collagen Dream 70 Essence Secret Key Syn-Ake Anti Wrinkle & Whitening Emulsion Zymogen Fermented Soybean Firming Serum innisfree Truecare Cica Intensive Balm oskia Renaissance Brightlight Serum Dermaceutic Mela Cream Goodal Green Tangerine Vita C Dark Spot Serum Missha M Perfect Cover Bb Cream Spf42 Pa+++ (No. 27) Obagi-C Rx System C-Clarifying Serum Sidmool Honey Berry Sparkle Serum TIA'M My Signature A+ Cream Troiareuke Radiance Ampoule Dr. Jart+ Multi Action Eye Balm Dark Spot Corrector Liz K First C Serum Topix Citrix Vitamin C Pro-Collagen Brightening Serum Yensa Tone Up Primer Essential Glow evagloss Lightening Serum innisfree Orchid Enriched Cream Elishacoy Ice Herb Whitening Water Drop Essence Good Molecules Niacinamide Brightening Toner IS Clincal Active Serum Missha M Perfect Cover Bb Cream