How to Fade Unwanted Freckles

by Mimi Bullock
Freckles can fade from light to dark brown, depending on your skin tones.

Freckles can fade from light to dark brown, depending on your skin tones.

Freckling occurs when melanin in the skin reacts to sunlight. Although many people find freckles to be youthful and attractive, these dark dots can make you feel self conscious about your skin. If you want to fade these unwelcome splotches, try a few topical products and skin-care tips. In addition to home remedies, you can also enlist the help of a dermatologist.

Apply a cream containing a retinoid to your skin daily. Your doctor can prescribe a cream that will slowly diminish the appearance of freckles. Retinoids can reverse skin pigmentation, build collagen and improve elasticity if used regularly. It may take up to six months to get results from a retinoid skin cream.

Dip a clean cloth in lemon juice. Rub the freckled area with the juice each day before you shower. Leave the juice on the skin for one minute, then rinse it away. This home remedy takes multiple applications before you will see results. Do not dab lemon juice in your eyes or open cuts.

Try an over-the-counter bleaching cream to lighten freckles. Squirt a tiny amount of lightening cream on to the tip of a cotton swab. Rub the product over the freckles only. Do not rub the product all over your skin. Although this product is widely available, some health professionals advise against using it. Check with your physician before using a bleaching cream.

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Items you will need

  • Skin cream containing retinoids
  • Cloth
  • Lemon juice
  • Lightening cream
  • Cotton swab


  • Talk to your dermatologist about cosmetic procedures like cryosurgery, a chemical peel or treatments with a skin resurfacing laser.
  • Eat foods that contain vitamin C. Consuming this vitamin will make your skin less sensitive to the sun.


  • Freckles may fade over time but you should use regular sun protection to keep skin damage to a minimum.

About the Author

Mimi Bullock's writing reflects her love of traveling the back roads of small towns and sampling the local cuisine. As a regular feature writer for "Southern Hospitality Traveler" and journalist for "Beachin' Magazine," she gets to experience the rich heritage of the southern culture. She is also a licensed cosmetologist who has her own skin care line.

Photo Credits

  • Ciaran Griffin/Stockbyte/Getty Images