Bleaching creams have gotten safer and easier to use over the years, but they can be expensive. With a few common ingredients, you can make your own bleaching cream at home. Remember to take caution when applying any bleaching product. Wear rubber or latex gloves, keep the cream away from your eyes and clothing, and wash off thoroughly after applying.
The most common home bleaching product is hydrogen peroxide. You probably have a brown plastic bottle of it in your medicine cabinet. Mix 1 tbsp. into a cup of regular body lotion and use the mixture to lighten body hair. Or, make a paste with the peroxide, water and powdered milk.
If you're trying to lessen the appearance of a bad self-tanner job or remove other surface dyes from the skin, exfoliating should do the trick. Oatmeal, sugar, salt and baking soda are all natural ingredients that can be mixed with olive oil or body lotion to create an exfoliating paste. Scrub the skin and rinse thoroughly to remove the dyed skin cells.
If you want to lighten your hair, try lemon juice. Put a few tablespoons into a spray bottle, fill with water, mist your hair and let it dry. Other natural but potentially less-potent bleaching agents include ground almonds and cucumber juice. Mix one or both with honey for a moisturizing toner.
Sarah Barnes has been a professional writer and editor since 2004. She has been published in newspapers and regional magazines in the Wichita, Kansas area. Barnes holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from a Midwestern university.