Top 16 Science-Backed Home Remedies For Melasma On Face & During Pregnancy

If you start to see big gray-brown or brown patches on the skin, particularly on the face, it is likely that you are suffering from melasma. This is a type of skin condition resulted from hyperpigmentation. It’s also known as chloasma faciei or the mask of pregnancy because this skin condition often occurs in pregnant women. Nevertheless, melasma is not an infectious disease and does not lead to serious illnesses like skin cancer. It is just the problem of beauty. Therefore, in this article, Effective Remedies will show you 20 science-backed home remedies for melasma on the face and during pregnancy to help you improve the appearance.

There is no science-based evidence for the following homemade recipes. The recipes we've focused on are traditional home remedies, so always consult your doctor and check out your health condition regularly to know if a remedy is working for you.

Top 16 Science-Backed Home Remedies For Melasma On Face And During Pregnancy

I. The Causes Of Melasma

Melasma appears when skin cells produce too much melanin (pigment). While it is common in women than in men, below are causes that result in this condition:

  • Sun exposure: Ultraviolet sun rays make melanocytes (color-producing skin cells) increase the production of melanin. This condition can get worse or recurrent even after the brown spots have disappeared if you expose to the sun[1].
  • Hormonal changes: These changes during pregnancy regularly lead to melasma. In this case, the patches will fade away after the pregnancy is over.
  • Ancestry: The risk of developing melasma is higher if you are of Indian, Asian, African, Hispanic, Latin, Middle Eastern or Mediterranean descent. 
  • Gender: Melasma occurs mainly in women, particularly pregnant women and people who are taking hormone replacement therapy medications or oral or patch contraceptives. Men just occupy 10 percent of melasma sufferers.
  • Family history: If your blood relatives have anyone suffering melasma, you are likely to have it at some point in life[2].

II. The Symptoms Of Melasma

The patches of melasma mainly appear on the face, especially the areas that are most often seen such as the forehead, bridge of the nose, cheekbones, just above the upper lip or chin. These spots can also appear on your neck or forearms. 

III. Home Remedies For Melasma On Face And During Pregnancy

Maybe, you will feel uncomfortable with this skin change or just want to lighten the skin during your pregnancy. However, any chemical treatment is impossible because you are pregnant and you are also not willing to spend much time and money on treatments, you always can try effective home remedies given below for melasma during pregnancy and they are also wonderful solutions for melasma sufferers in general.

1. Aloe Vera 

Researchers have shown that the enzymes in aloe vera may reduce dark spots and make the skin lighten[3]. However, the excellent thing is, it is very easy to apply aloe vera for treating melasma.  After applying topical, liposome-encapsulated aloe vera preparation, pregnant women with melasma was found to improve their situation[4]. You just need to peel its leaf, then rub over affected areas. Firstly, let’s see its benefits for your skin:

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  • Studies state that the application of aloe gel can help the skin against harmful UV rays.
  • The sticky substance of aloe vera can eliminate dead cells and impurities piled over your skin.
  • Aloe gel also has antibacterial and healing properties that contribute to fading the appearance of scars due to eczema or acne. 
  • In aloe vera, there are astringent agents that have the ability to cleanse the skin and shrink skin pores.
  • Gibberellins and glucomannan housed in aloe vera are effective antibacterial and anti-inflammatory substances. Plus, they stimulate the production of collagen.
  • This natural product is a useful solution to reducing wrinkles.
  • It further helps boost blood circulation and promote cell regeneration.
  • And numerous other benefits.

Besides applying directly fresh aloe vera to your face, you can choose one of the different remedies mentioned below to get better results for your skin.

Remedy 1: 

  • Wash your face 
  • Make a mixture of 2 tablespoons of blended aloe gel and 2 tablespoons of honey and apply it to the face or just affected areas
  • You should do it at night and rinse it off in the morning
  • Repeat this process daily

Remedy 2:

  • Wash the face and pat dry by a soft cloth
  • Dilute 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar (ACV) with water
  • After that, combine it with 1 tablespoon of aloe gel and apply the mask to your skin 
  • Wash it off after 20 minutes

Remedy 3:

  • Make the combination of a half of a teaspoon of turmeric powder, 2 teaspoons of aloe vera gel, and 1 teaspoon of gram flour.
  • Mix thoroughly and apply it to your face
  • Wash it off after 20 minutes

Remedy 4:

  • Mix several drops of tea tree oil and 1 tablespoon of aloe gel
  • Apply it to the face
  • Then rinse it off after 20 minutes
2. Tomato

Tomato has the high content of antioxidants and vitamins that can bring positive effects on the treatment of melasma. According to a study, tomato paste is rich in lycopene, which may help protect your skin from long-term and short-term aspects of photo damage[5]. Tomatoes are also rich in vitamins such as C, E, iron, potassium, etc. that are good for the skin. Antioxidants in them help maintain your youth. Just consuming tomato juice can also improve significantly your skin. When the tomatoes are cooked, they will lose the nutrients. Using tomato to protect your skin will bring terrific results that you cannot imagine.

Remedy 1:

  • Prepare 2 tomatoes removed shells and seeds
  • Grind them finely, then mix with a teaspoon of honey
  • Keep it in 20 minutes
  • Repeat it twice a week 

Remedy 2:

  • Grill 1 tomato and mix it with fresh milk 
  • Use cotton to apply this solution to your face
  • Maintain it in about 30 minutes before rinsing it off with warm water
  • Do it 2-3 times a week

Although tomato has many benefits, it is essential to remember some notes before using it.

  • Do not consume the unripe tomatoes because they can cause poisoning
  • In tomatoes, there are many pectin and phenolic resins. Therefore, you should not eat tomatoes at hungry since it will upset your stomach.
  • Should not consume tomato juice after using cucumbers because this will reduce nutrients in tomatoes.
3. Almonds 

Almond is the common treatment for improving the health and beauty[6]. The combination of almond and honey is a powerful substance to nourish and exfoliate your skin. Therefore, it becomes one of the best home remedies for melasma. Almonds contain a high protein content that can lighten skin complexion. Plus, vitamin E in almonds also has the capacity to correct skin discoloration and nourish the skin[7].


  • Grind about 8 almonds and add a moderate amount of honey to make a thick mask
  • Start applying it to your affected skin and leave within 20 minutes
  • Rinse it off with lukewarm water
  • Follow this process 3 to 4 times a week until the melasma disappear completely
4. Ripe Papaya 

This tropical fruit is famous for the treatment of dark spots in the skin, whether it is from freckles, sun damage or liver damage. Papaya not only helps against melasma but also improves skin tone and brings to you a more youthful appearance[8] [9].

Remedy 1:

  • Mash up one ripe papaya
  • Apply it to the damaged areas 
  • After 20 minutes, rinse it off with lukewarm water

Remedy 2:

  • Prepare one mashed ripe papaya
  • Mix it with 2 tablespoons of honey
  • Rub it on the face and leave it for 20 minutes
  • Finally, wash it off with cold water
  • You should do it twice a week to get the best result

Note: As soon as you feel irritation, please rinse the papaya off immediately. Besides, using a moisturizer will help combat any dryness that results from this treatment.

5. Avocado

Avocados are rich in vitamin C, fatty acids, and oleic acids[10]. So, it is considered as one of the best natural home remedies for melasma and skin lightening. Similar to papaya, you can apply directly mashed avocado to the affected areas. To maximize the benefits, make a mixture of half of an avocado and 2 teaspoons of honey and then apply it to your face.

6. Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is also an effective solution that helps reduce the dark patches around the forehead, apples of the cheeks, mouth, and other areas affected by melasma[11]. Lemon has the high acid content and the ability to exfoliate the outer layer of your skin, so it can eliminate the signs of melasma. However, you should clean the face before applying this treatment.


  • Prepare a small container of lemon juice
  • Apply apply this juice to the darkened areas with a cotton ball
  • Do it twice per day, in the morning and evening
  • The result is usually visible after two weeks of using this method

Note: Use of lemon juice makes the skin sensitive to sunlight. Therefore, you should apply sunscreen when going out.

7. Turmeric

Turmeric contains many essential nutrients that the skin needs. Turmeric powder can prevent different skin disorders, including melasma. Curcumin in turmeric is the powerful anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antioxidant substance[12]. It may regulate the production of melanin and reduce hyperpigmentation problem[13]

Remedy 1:

  • Wash your face and then pat dry with a cloth
  • Make a mixture of 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and apply it to the face
  • Rinse it off after fifteen minutes

Remedy 2:

  • Combine a pinch of turmeric powder with 2 tablespoons of buttermilk
  • Then, apply it to your face 
  • Leave it to dry on its own and wash it off after 15-20 minutes
8. Potato

In potatoes, there are a variety of nutrients, including B-Complex, phosphorus, zinc, magnesium, potassium, and vitamins. Vitamin B in potatoes may help renew cells, especially niacinamide[14]. It is also a crucial skin lightening agent.


  • Cut potatoes into slices
  • Then, apply them to your face for 10 minutes
9. Onion Juice

Onion juice is another effective remedy to prevent melasma condition. This juice contains a diversity of sulfur-containing compounds that may reduce dark patches and discoloration on your skin[15]. Plus, onion provides nourishment to the cells of the skin.


  • Chop about 2 onions and extract the juice from it
  • Add the same amount of apple cider vinegar to this juice
  • Apply  it to the face with a cotton ball
  • Keep it for 20 minutes and rinse it off with warm water
  • You should repeat this process twice a day for a few weeks

Besides the safe treatments pregnant women can try listed above, below are the solutions other sufferers of melasma can apply.

10. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has the acetic acid substance[16]. It is a prominent bleaching agent that helps eliminate spots and make your skin smoother and more radiant.


  • Mix apple cider vinegar with water according to the ratio 1:1
  • Apply it to the face and allow it to air dry
  • Wash it off with lukewarm water
  • Follow this treatment once daily
11. Oatmeal

Oatmeal is an excellent natural exfoliating agent that may wipe out brown spots on your face and remove dead skin cells[17]. As a result, your skin will get brighter. 


  • Make a mixture of two tablespoons of oatmeal powder, one tablespoon of honey, and two tablespoons of milk
  • Apply it to the affected area
  • Rinse it off after 20 minutes with water
  • Do it about 3 times a week within a month
12. Sun Protection

By applying the methods to protect your skin from the sun, you can improve the appearance of melasma and prevent brown spots from returning when they disappeared. The methods you can do include:

  • Wearing sunglasses
  • Wearing clothing that covers the face, neck, and ears
  • Wearing sunscreen containing SPF 30 or more
  • Usually reapply sunscreen during the day
13. Green Tea

In green tea, there are catechins, which may help to fight against the effects of UV radiation[18]. You can buy green tea supplements at the health food store or local pharmacy and consume them a couple of times a day to get enough the catechins the skin needs.

14. Vitamin C

Ascorbic acid or vitamin C is the kind of water-soluble vitamin that may remove pigment spots resulted from melasma[19]. It treats this condition by inhibiting the melanin production and reducing oxidized melanin. If you use vitamin C powder, you just need to mix it with a little water and apply it to the affected areas. To get better results, you can use lemon juice instead of water. Another way is using vitamin C liquid gel capsules. You crack them to get the gel inside and apply it to the melasma. Whether you choose vitamin C serum, powder, or cream to remove melasma, make sure you wash it off after 20 minutes.

15. Castor Oil

Castor oil is one of the best home remedies for melasma since it helps eliminate the pigmentation of the skin naturally when applied on the skin overnight. Using this oil for the damaged areas on your facial will stop the development of melasma and get rid of the dark spots by protecting the skin from sun rays[20]. The oil is also enriched with fatty acids, omega oils, minerals, and vitamins.


  • Use a cotton ball to apply castor oil to the affected areas on the face
  • For the best result, leave it overnight 
16. Vitamin E

Vitamin E is also an effective remedy since it may prevent the production of melanin and help the skin recover more quickly[21].


  • Apply vitamin E lotions or creams directly to the damaged areas
  • Consuming more vitamin E rich foods such as green leafy vegetables, seeds, and nuts

Try following the above home remedies for melasma on the face and during pregnancy regularly to attain the optimum results. Do not forget to share your experience in the box below. All content provided are for informational and educational purposes. We recommend you consult a healthcare professional to determine which method is appropriate for you.

Read more: Top 33 Effective Ways To Eliminate Stretch Marks Fast. This article was medically reviewed/fact checked by Janine Kelbach – BSN, RNC-OB.

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