Certain areas of the skin can be prone to darkening, for example, around the neck, the elbows, the armpits or the knees. Of course, this is not a medical problem of any sort. This phenomenon can be explained in many ways. It can occur as a result of a build-up of dead skin and impurities, or it often occurs around joints where there are only very few glands that release sebum, meaning the areas dry out. To remedy this unsightly problem (which can also give the skin an unpleasant texture) here are a few tips.
For the armpits
Mix a dessertspoon of milk with a dessertspoon of buttermilk and two dessertspoons of flour to make a paste. Apply to the armpits and leave to work for 15 minutes. Rinse with clear water.
2) Cucumber and lemon
Every day, juice a lemon and a cucumber, adding a pinch of turmeric to the mix. Start by rubbing slices of cucumber to your armpits and then apply the juice. Rinse with water.
3) Gram flour mask
Mix a dessertspoon of natural yoghurt with a spoon of lemon juice. Add two spoons of gram flour (chickpea flour) and 2 pinches of turmeric. The mix should form a watery paste, which you can apply to your armpits. Leave to work for one hour before rinsing with water. During the first few weeks of treatment, apply the mask every day, and twice a week thereafter.
For the knees and elbows
1) Sugar and olive oil
Prepare a mix of equal parts sugar and olive oil and massage the mixture into your elbows or knees for five minutes. Rinse afterwards with gentle soap and hot water. Repeat every day until you achieve the desired results and use as a scrub once a week thereafter.
2) Lemon juice
You can simply use lemon juice or mix it with a spoon of honey. Apply directly to the skin and rub in for a few minutes before leaving it to work for around 20 minutes. Wash afterwards with soapy water and moisturise.
Every night, apply a little warm almond oil to the affected areas. Alternatively, mix 2 dessertspoons of ground almonds with natural yoghurt and apply this thick paste. Leave it to dry and afterwards, moisten your fingers and massage the area in circular movements, making it into a paste again. Rinse with iced water. Repeat once or twice a day.
1) Bicarbonate of soda
Prepare a mixture with 3 spoons of bicarbonate of soda and one spoon of water. Apply this thick paste to the skin of the neck and leave to dry, rinsing afterwards with clear water. Repeat twice a week.
Blend or finely grate an apple and apply the whole lot (the juice included) to the skin. Leave to work for 10 to 15 minutes, before rinsing with iced water. Repeat every day.
3) Aloe vera
Every day, apply the gel from an aloe vera plant to the skin and leave to work for 20 minutes. Rinse with water.