How to heal your skin from deep, chemical damage due to harmful creams

Skin damage from the long-term use of steroid-based or other toxic creams (e.g. hydroquinone, monobenzone, mercury) can be distressing. They can include thin/fragile skin, hyperpigmentation, dark marks, nerve damage and changes in texture.

However, with time and patience, there are ways to reverse the damage and restore your skin to its original health.

Our organs (including the skin) are resilient, and if we give it what it needs, it can slowly heal itself.

To support skin healing from the bottom-up, the first thing you can do is clean up your diet and lifestyle as much as possible.

Change your diet to include more fruits and vegetables. Read up on the healing benefits of an alkaline diet as well as raw fruits/vegetable juices.

An alkaline diet will help to heal skin from the bottom up.

The second thing you can do is to apply healing, penetrative oils on your skin every day (such as cold-pressed castor oil, extra virgin coconut oil or olive oil).

Use deeply penetrative healing oils like castor oil or extra virgin coconut oil daily to restore skin,

Castor oil is one of the most healing oils there is. In fact, castor oil can be especially helpful in treating chemically-damaged skin as it has the ability to draw out toxins and penetrate deeply into the skin.

Read more about castor oil

Other beneficial healing oils include shea butter, Vitamin E oil, cold-pressed coconut oil (EVCO), and extra virgin olive oil (EVOO).

Any oil you use should ideally be cold-pressed as it would retain more nutrients and not contain any chemical preservatives.

However, for this to work, patience really is key. It could take several months to a year of daily applications of oil to get results. 

As appealing as they are (and I definitely understand this feeling), quick fixes are unlikely to restore your skin. And any results you get from a ‘quick fix’ will likely prove disappointing or be temporary at best.

In the case of deeply damaged skin, I believe slow and steady really does win the race. It might help to know that the damage was done over a long period of time, so healing will also take time.

143 Replies to “How to heal your skin from deep, chemical damage due to harmful creams”

  1. Hi
    I had used a steriod skin lightening cream given by a skincentre for about two years .skin had become very thin ,red patchy . Its been a year. Since i stopped it . Now my skin texture is highly damaged but skin is slowly healing i feel . Will take time though . Anything natural to hasten healing . Did anyone experience inflated skin . Earlier i had full cheeks now skin feels flat . Wish it gets back its youthful plumpness .its horrific what a simple cream could do to my face .

  2. I used a steroid for couple of month and I had huge results in skin whitening but I was also facing acne problem which I never had before. so I stop using that steroid but I’m still facing acne problems. what can I do to get rid of this acne’s???

    1. Hi am Rika Hilda from Cameroon you consume lots fruits and vegetables, oil your skine with baby lotions, castor oil, virgin coconut oil and olive oil it will help u a lot

    2. Use aloe vera gel to heal it first for a period of time .2nd step apply moringa powder mixed with sandalwood and mix with any essential oil that sooth your skin.I recommend argan oil or olive oil.
      Oil try argan and carrot seed oil. Go to beauty mumsta website for the right measurement. Or u can use moringa oil

  3. I had been using skin lightening cream for a while , it made good result in skin whitening but… when i stopped it my skin turns too dark than my earlier colour when i wasnt using it.. what do i do now i cant go out to the sun.. my skin feels like burning.. .. it just become.. so thin.. what do i do.. 😕😔😔😔

  4. I’ve been using betasol for abt 4 years now but I stoped 3mnths Back but my skin doesn’t seem to go back to normal help me what can I use?

  5. I want to stop the steroid cream I am using, pls what cream can I use to make my skin go back to the former colour it was,as soon as possible. Thanks

  6. Guys i have been using hydroquinone 2% for years everynight now my skin is damaged its been two years i stopped using it my skin healed a bit i’m crying everyday for my mistake please help how to get back my skin back

  7. I used lemon and turmeric on my pigmented area on face. Day before this i used goree cream which i used for the 1st time for pigmentation on night. my pigmented area become darker n my skin is luking like burnt . Its luking so weird i am so depressed by this please suggest me What should i do to recover . 🙏

    1. Hi puja, I’m sorry to hear about this. You probably didn’t realise it, but Goree contains mercury. The best thing to do is throw it away.

      You could try a deep healing oil on your skin for a few months and see if that can help fade the hyperpigmentation. This is not a quick fix so patience is needed.

      Good luck.

      Hessa

    2. Your skin is damaged, using lemon is great for discoloration on healthy skin, but it will only irritate damaged skin. Use oils as stated in the article, your skin needs to heal. Only use natural products, not creams etc.

  8. please help me,I started using carotone spot corrector and skineal for 1year now,
    but my skin keeps getting worst though it lighten my skin o ,but d spot on my face n pimples start increasing for over two month now am so ashamed of my face right now,am looking so rough n my face look so so spoiled with pimples and spot ,big n mighty ones please help me

    1. Hello, those complaining about acne and pimples can try mixing 1 tsp of cinnamon powder, a drop of castor oil and 2 tsps of honey. Mix thoroughly and apply on your face for about 30 mins then wash off with cold water. Do this about 2-3 times in a week. Do make sure to apply any of the oils mentioned in the article above after washing your face to moisturize.

  9. Hi I have been using some lightening cream on my body for like three to six months now. Redness on my nose appears mostly in the evening whichseems not to be seen in the morning. And far darkness which is not easily noticeable on my chicks just below the eyes… I stoped using the creme like a month a go… What do I do for faster healing please help

  10. please help me I have been using funbat A on my face for years now and I stopped using it for about two weeks now since then I have been having itching and rashes on my face. please help me. what can I use to stop the itching and rashes.
    my email address is lindauzoamaka2000@gmail.com

  11. Please mi good friends, I ve been bleaching mi skin for almost one year bt now i tried to quit bt now mi skin has got black spots nd am realy feeling bad. What should i use to retain back mi normal skin in a short period. Thanx

    1. buy ponds normal to oily skin apply in da morning and buy tissue oil from pep apply it at night I promise u results are amazing I also had da same problem after using lighting cream

  12. I also used GOREE CREAM sometime in April this year, and after a month of using it my face complexion lightened and it was really smooth. Others started to noticed the great difference.

    But as I started to experience a burning like sensation I stopped using it. That’s the time my nightmare begins. Pimples (huge and dark seems like burned), black heads and white heads started to surfaced on my skin which really depressing.

  13. I am just finding this site and realised the real reason for the bad breakouts I have been having. I wish I knew all these would have rejected the tube cream my friend made me to use now I have bad rashes, itching and pimples. Will just use shea butter at night till I get my real skin back no matter how long it takes.

  14. Hi I Am A Black 16 Year Old Teenager and I Was Introduced To A Bleaching Cream Called Extra Claire By A Friend When I Was 15. I Used It For Quite A While And I Became Lighter From A Darker Complexion. So I Stopped Now And I Am Starting To Get Very Dark And Its Not Good, What Do I Do Pls Help Me.

    1. Travis i also used Extra clair cream on my face for three years from the age of 12 years to 15 yeas. I got tired of it and used bio oil but castor oil can also help. It will take time to heal but patients is what u need to heal. Good luck!

  15. Hi I used a cream and the end result on my leg is very bad I hv used Vaseline for almost three years now, I do see some changes as in it repairing it back but am running out of time for I have being called for military camp training in a month time am really scared can I get something quicker

  16. I used a cream and it bleached my face making it black n white I have to drop out from school for some times is there anyway I can hasten it in a week

  17. Hi got a microdermabrasion in october and since then my face has gone crazy. I have enlarged pores all over my face, dryness, sensitivity, and redness. My skin looks old and crepey. Im only 21.

    My pores are starting to connect and look like lines. What do I do?!

    1. Hi Sara, I’m sorry you’re going through this. It sounds like too many layers of your skin were removed. You now have to give it time to heal slowly. There is no quick fix. Do not go for further microdermabrasion/peels/laser treatments etc. Those things will just take away more. It is time for rebuilding, not breaking things down.

      Start using a healing oil every day and keep it up for a few months at least. I would suggest applying it before bed at night. After a few months, if you see some positive changes, keep using it for several months to a year. If you have scarring, healing may take more time.

      In the meantime, support your internal health by taking probiotics (e.g. homemade kombucha, homemade yogurt) and Vitamin C regularly. Eat more fruits and veggies. Don’t smoke or drink. Sleep and rest when you’re tired. The healthier you are, the better and faster your skin will heal.

      Hope that helps.

      Hessa

    2. I used a whitening cream, and I started having dark pores and pimples and now it has spread all over, my face has some red patches. I have stopped but the patches are still there and it hurts too. Please what cream can I use to heal he places and clear the dark spot. Pls, it’s becoming embarrassing!

    3. I had microdermabrasion about 20 years ago. It should never be done on the faces of people with thin radiant skin. I’ll give your the good and bad news. I realized immediately that my skin had been badly damaged and that is should no longer be exposed to the constant sunlight on the beach in Southern California where I live. At first I wore a cloth old fashioned prairie bonnet that I could fold into a purse. Of course, that is completely out of style — but as a 21 year old, maybe it would look pretty and trendy on you. They are easy to make out of flowered fabric, or probably bought cheaply on eBay. Then, after 3 years, I realized I could wear a classic simple tan Safari hat. This looked less strange. I kept a second hat in the car and wear it always when I go out. The good news is that wearing this hat eventually meant I never got any more skin damage. My skin healed somewhat. Now I look about twenty years younger than other females in the area who are my age. They have sun spots/age spots. The sun will create this sun spot damage underneath your upper skin and in a few years it will be permanent. (I also used an excellent laser doctor on spots on my face many years ago — but this is not so good in the long run — if you’re under 40, you can try removing just a tiny bad spot here and there on your face, otherwise you’re doing too much damage and the spot will come back.) Avoiding all sun spots is amazing. Women in the 19th century realized this, so they wore gloves and bonnets (even in England which wasn’t too sunny then). About five year ago I also began wearing really long sleeves that cover my hands down to the fingers. This means no spots on my hands. I also use extra virgin olive oil on my hands (most olive oil in the super market is fake). As a result, no aging hands. I can still wear beautiful rings. It’s important that you protect your hands so they remain youthful and delicate, or even if you protect your face, your hands will give you away. It’s also important to protect your throat and cleavage area from sunlight (otherwise you get ugly spots and crepe skin). I wore a bikini at the beach until age 60. At age 35, however, I began wearing a shirt most of the time that had the top button closed to protect my upper throat and breasts. I could reveal them a little for a few moments before reclosing the top of the shirt. It used to drive young guys nuts to see a woman taking off a man’s shirt while in the water, or the wet shirt clinging to my bikini. Men like the “reveal.” Two years ago, much to my shock, a young handsome blonde blue eyed lifeguard tried to pick me up. Consider yourself lucky to learn about skin damage and the tricks to protect it early enough in life.

  18. does cold pressed olive oil have same healing abilities as castor oil and what can be used to dilute cold pressed oil to make it lighter

  19. How can i get rid of green veins and white patches on my skin caused by bleching creams and how do i maintain my bleached skin without using more bleaching cream

  20. Hey any body who can help me plz help,i have a huge damage on my face due to the skin lightening Cream,my neighbour gave me to fight with acne…..but once I stopped using my skin becomes red nd I can’t go out on sun…..if I go out my face nd nose becomes red nd acne comes on my face……I am really tired…….how can I get back my skin plz tell

  21. Hy I HV been using bleaching creams for 2 years becs I was having black spot,, den its helo e after I stopped using it my skin I burnt I got blemishes, more dark spot, black head n pimples what must I use on the 25 of may I’m getting married plz help

  22. I have damaged the top part of my cheeks through lightebing creams, i read on your page to use castor oil and it seems its getting darker. Can you please advice me on a more beneficial face regimen… please help

  23. Have being using Cairo white before, since 4year again but have stop us it going to three months now, I just notice some veins in my hand and leg. But now am using honey and herbolene Vaseline for my body now. I didn’t want my body spoil before I will stop using it. Please I want your help, I want natural things that we bright me. Just a little. Thanks

  24. Hello,
    I have hyper-pigmentation on my forehead I went to the cosmetologist I was recommended the Cosmelan peel. Few days after the peel my mouth area turned red and the patch’s on my forehead still remain the same one side of my face is brighter than the other my lips are burnt black and my pupil yellowish. Please what do I do to revert back. I have used it for only 3 weeks please help.
    Can I user castor oil to revert back please advise me this is my first time of using chemical on my skin in 41 years.

    1. Hi Presh,

      I’m sorry to hear about this. From what you describe, it sounds like a serious burn so please see a doctor ASAP. I’m not sure why your pupil will be yellowish, but you should inform the doctor of this also.

      I can understand your distress, but the most immediate concern is your health, safety and protecting your eyes, so please take care of that first. Also I don’t know if this comforts you or not, but you are definitely not alone in having a bad outcome from a skin peel. Many people have had the same or a similar outcome.

      Should there be scarring after the area has healed over, you can take steps (such as by using castor oil or other oils) to heal them over time. Healing oils are not a quick fix, but with time and patience, they can be effective.

      Please take care of yourself.

      Hessa

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