what are freckles

What are freckles and can you get rid of them?

posted in: Skin Care | 8

Freckles are a bit like marmite, you either love them or hate them. And the haters are usually the ones who have the freckles. At least it was like that in my case. Let’s delve deeper and find out what are freckles and can you get rid of them, but first, let me tell my personal freckle story!

My Freckles

For as long as I can remember I have been covered in freckles, with so many that at times they have even merged. To say that I didn’t like them is an understatement. I couldn’t stand them and I was desperate to get rid of them! So much so that when I was about 11 or 12 I read a book, I think it was called Freckle Juice, it was about a kid who hated his freckles and tried to get rid of them with some recipe he found. The recipe is written in the book and the minute I read that I went to find my Mum, obviously requesting to make the freckle remover. Well, the joke was on me because my Mum said she tried making that recipe and she had a bad reaction. She told me anyone with freckles will have that reaction! I believed her at the time, but now I’m wondering if she ever tried it at all! Hmmm… I’ll have to ask her about that again;) Mum if you’re reading this expect some grilling soon!

To make a long story short, I never did manage to get rid of my freckles, I don’t think we had internet at home in the 90s to look it up. However, what did happen is that over time they faded, they are still there but not as noticeable. Around the same time, I started liking them more and appreciating what they added. Freckles add personality and colour to my face, if not for them I think I would look like a chalkboard;) I also learnt that being beautiful and having freckles are not contradictions. Many beautiful and famous people have freckles.
If you are reading this determined to get rid of your freckles, I hope you have changed your mind a little.

What are Freckles?

Freckles are made up of a cluster of skin cells called pigment melanin, in easy English that means that the skin in that area darkens when exposed to the sun. Usually, they are also hereditary. They are most commonly found on people with pale skin.

Can you get rid of freckles?

There are a number of ways to get rid of freckles for good. There are also many natural ways, but none of them has any scientific proof that they actually work, so I am not going to talk about those.

Laser treatment
Laser treatment is the most obvious way to get rid of freckles. It is pretty safe with most people not having side effects. However, each treatment is very expensive and you’ll need a few to get rid of them permanently.

Cryosurgery
Cryosurgery uses freezing cold liquid nitrogen to freeze and destroy the freckles cells. There are very few side effects, however, it is said that cryosurgery doesn’t guarantee the removal of all freckles.

Fading/Bleaching Cream
You can buy these over the counter, though if you want a higher dosage, a prescription is needed. Fading creams usually contain hydroquinone which helps lighten darker areas of the skin. It is still unclear if fading and bleaching creams have a negative effect on your health- some studies show they can cause cancer. So I do not recommend using these creams. Your health should always come first.

Retinoids
Retinoids contain vitamin A which is known to help sun damaged skin. It might also help to lighten freckles over a long period of time, but there is no solid proof that it can get rid of freckles for good.

Chemical peels
A chemical peel removes any damaged skin. This is quite a rough treatment on the skin and it takes a couple of weeks for your skin to recover. Again, I don’t recommend any invasive treatments like this one. You will be in pain and your skin will be very sensitive.

So what do I recommend if you hate your freckles?

I don’t recommend any of the methods I mentioned. Firstly, give yourself a chance not to hate them so much. Learn to even like them a little. You may surprise yourself. And if you still hate them I think the easiest way to make your freckles lighter is to wear foundation, it will lighten them drastically. A full coverage foundation will even cover them completely.
Also if you go out and its sunny make sure to wear good suncream and avoid the peak sun hours. It’s the sun that causes freckles so by staying out of the sun you will not get any more and older freckles do fade.

My Thoughts

Do I recommend getting rid of your freckles? No, not unless you are really desperate, like really desperate. None of the methods can ensure a 100% effect and exposure to the sun can bring out new freckles. Freckles are beautiful and they add so much character to a person. In fact, models often have freckles drawn on their faces!
I believe if you build your confidence from the inside to the outside, you will learn to love yourself and your freckles! So before you go and get rid of them, give yourself a chance to love yourself! Let me know how it goes in the comments below!

Have a lovely weekend full of confidence and self-love!

Hollie xx

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8 Responses

  1. Louis

    Freckles are unique to different persons. You’ve said it all, I believe we should love ourselves the way we are. I have freckles on my face too but I noticed ladies are more uncomfortable about theirs. I always encourage such people to be confident and their own skin and the world will love them for who they are.

    Warm regards

  2. abioye olalekan

    I must commend you for putting this lovely post together and i must say your article has changed my mind from what i intend to do before now

    freckles are not so bad but i have concluded i will get rid of mine anytime soon but your article has opened my eyes to the pros and cons. 

    Thanks for this insightful post.

  3. Dave Sweney

    My wife has freckles and I would not want her to use any of the remedies that are out there, I agree with you. God made her as she is, and the freckles actually add to her looks and personality for me (and others I guess too). I know that many people may be sensitive about them, however…

    if it really is such a psychological issue, maybe after some therapy to see what is really going on is a better route. I know of people that have had breast enlargement and reduction surgery done, and neither was happy at the end with the results. On the other hand, we had one friend who had jaw surgery and she was quite happy afterward…

    I think it is a personal decision, but not necessary. You are who you are and people can accept you as you are or not. It is their issue, so no need to make it yours. If you base your peace of mind on what others may be thinking, you are much less likely to ever find peace, in my opinion.

    Freckles are not dangerous, they can add personality and beauty, and who really cares. That is just how I feel, I know others may think differently. The nice thing about us is that we are not all the same (wouldn’t that be boring!)…

    This post was nice to get the old brain moving a bit, and thinking about the things people do that really are not necessary with their bodies. Me? I accept everyone as they are, no reason for me to judge anyone (but my wide maybe,, and you know how that comes out!)…Thanks!

    • Hollie

      Wow, good on you not to judge anyone. It’s somehow easier said than done. Like you say, it’s a personal decision. However, I think that a person has to first be confident in who they are before they make these decisions. Otherwise, they will always want to change things!

  4. Muhiyb

    I’d rather allow the freckle to stay than go on some medications or attempt treatment that will later cause side effects which may be worse that the non-harmful freckles. I’ve heard a case of someone who was hell-bent on removing her freckles, but couldn’t afford the laser treatment, resort to bleaching, the outcome of the bleaching made her regret her actions. 

  5. dahay

    Hi Hollie,

    This a beautiful blogpost. It’s something between motivation, inspiration and a love message.

    I think when u are older u start to love yourself more and appreciate the little things more bit when u are younger u want something right now! Not tomorow not in a minute but right now. And the last thing u want is to listen to somebody telling u to love yourself. U just want a quick fix.

    I am almost sure that your mother was lying to u. And at that time u had no internet or,google standby so u had no place to go to for support. That time is over!

    Now u have everything at the palm of your hands. Thank God it is!!

    I hope u can help others with freckles to love themselves. Like u said: Love from within is the most important part.

    I am going to share this article on facebook.

    Much Love,

    Dahay

    • Hollie

      Thanks for stopping by Dahay.

      Like you say now there is internet and google which gives a lot more options for support. However, it also the cause of a lot of online bullying. I hope young girls and boys find my post and not the writing of bullies.

      Have a lovely day

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