Tranexamic Acid is a water-soluble synthetic derivative derived from the amino acid Lysine. In medical specialties, this is a substance that helps blood clot with the effect of inhibiting the activation of plasminogen to plasmin. A molecule that plays an important role in breaking down fibrin, the basic component of blood clots during the hemostasis process.
Tranexamic acid was discovered and published by scientists in 1962, they are on the list of the most effective and safe drugs today. In particular, Tranexamic acid is considered a drug on the list of essential drugs of the World Health Organization WHO.
In 1979, doctors noted that patients treated with Tranexamic Acid to stop bleeding had a marked improvement in skin color. Since then, Tranexamic Acid has also been widely used in cosmetics to nourish the skin and treat melasma in many different forms of extracts such as Tranexamic Acid or M-Tranexamic Acid.
Basically, Tranexamic acid can help solve the three most stubborn skin care problems namely pigmentation, melasma, and age spots:
- Treatment of melasma, tanning, freckles, sunburn, melasma occurs due to hormonal disturbances during pregnancy of pregnant women.
- Visibly supports the blurring of post-acne scars, reducing the formation of acne scars
- Prevent accumulation of melanin pigment, brighten skin
- Anti-allergic, skin irritation, reduce redness
- Anti-inflammatory, anti-inflammatory.
- Reduces capillary proliferation arising during pigmentation treatment.
- Soothe the skin, limit skin irritation, and better support the treatment of melasma.
- Restores pigmentation and skin layers damaged by ultraviolet rays.
In a trial conducted with 28 patients with melasma and 5 patients with freckles, Tranexamic Acid for 5-18 weeks helped 80% of women with melasma and 75% of women with freckles, brown spots are visibly improved, and the skin is brighter and more even.
When compared with other skincare ingredients such as Azelaic Acid, L-Ascorbic Acid, Arbutin… Tranexamic acid shows superior effectiveness in multi-function such as anti-inflammatory, reducing dark spots, anti-irritation, and more stable when exposed to light, and high temperature.
The effectiveness of Tranexamic acid in treating melasma is comparable to that of hydroquinone (a substance that lightens the skin) without the side effects of hydroquinone. Nearly 96% of study participants using Tranexamic Acid noticed an improvement in melasma and discoloration problems after 12 weeks of daily use when combined with sun protection.
Side effects of Tranexamic Acid:
Although Tranexamic acid is benign for most skin types, people with super sensitive skin or eczema should test before using it.
Tranexamic acid eliminates melasma by blocking the interaction between keratinocytes (aka skin cells) and melanocytes (also called melanin-producing cells) to inhibit melanin synthesis, the leading cause of dark spots and discoloration on the skin’s surface.
At the same time, it helps to reduce the number of weak cells on the skin, thereby helping the skin reduce inflammation, fight inflammation, reduce itching and reduce irritation if any. Besides, it also has the ability to slow down melanin production by tyrosinase (as a competitive antagonist) because of its similar structure to tyrosine.
In theory, tranexamic acid could be included in almost anyone’s skincare routine. Unlike other acid ingredients, Tranexamic Acid does not provide exfoliating or collagen-stimulating benefits and should be reserved for those who want to improve their hyperpigmentation as in Asia and Vietnam, generally Melasma or pigment disorder.
Kilgore, a leading dermatologist says, “If you have a lot of dark spots, apply a product with Tranexamic Acid all over your face during the day after cleansing, toning, and using an AHA exfoliant or BHA. Follow with serum or any other treatment product, and finish with your sun protection. You can use it topically during the day, apply it to darkened areas, and finish with sun protection. You can follow the same routine for the night, followed by the other treatments at night and then the moisturizer.”
Kilgore also emphasizes that to successfully fade hyper_pigmentation, consistent use of the product is crucial. “Most people will notice results with regular use in 8-12 weeks. Research has shown that Tranexamic Acid is safe when applied to the skin daily for several months,” she explains.
With topical concentrations of 2-5% usually showing results after two to three months of once or twice daily use.” One thing to keep in mind, however, is that Tranexamic Acid is a water-soluble ingredient, which means it should be used in conjunction with oil-soluble products like oil-based moisturizers – especially if you have dry skin. The addition of emollients can prevent the skin from drying out due to the effects of acids, resulting in a healthy and more balanced skin barrier.
“Tranexamic acid shows promising results when used to reduce unwanted hyperpigmentation,” says Dr. Deborah Lee.
Hyperpigmentation is a common problem in skin care and topical use of tranexamic acid has, until recently, not been recognized as a potential treatment. Tranexamic acid has recently gained popularity due to Instagram, the impact of various influencers, and the opinions of several Consultant dermatologists. It has been described as a “hero ingredient” due to its potent skin properties. And Dr. David Lim says it’s ‘one of the biggest breakthroughs in the treatment of pigmentation, especially melasma’.
“Tranexamic Acid, a derivative of the amino acid lysine, is currently one of the best after pigment actives for improving the appearance of blemishes,” says Joanne Healy, Product Development Manager at Advanced Skin Technology.
Dark spots and uneven hyperpigmentation. It acts as necessary support for sunscreen to soothe, condition, and protect skin from future environmental damage. Tranexamic has a unique method of action that not only fades dark spots but also has a significant soothing effect. It has a double response on 2 key aspects of light effects, minimizing both redness and hyperpigmentation. “
There is an article in Beauty Magazine that also noted the anti-inflammatory effects of Tranexamic Acid. It’s also an acid that doesn’t work like the other acids we’re all familiar with in things like chemical exfoliation and peels. It doesn’t work that way. Experts have proven that “Unlike other acids such as glycolic acid and salicylic acid, tranexamic acid does not actually exfoliate the skin, instead, tranexamic acid is a potent anti-inflammatory that disrupts the skin. The overproduction of melanin is caused by an exacerbation of skin inflammation. Melanin is the natural pigment that gives your skin its color, and although melanin helps protect the skin, when overproduced it can cause dark patches, dark spots, and dullness.”
It can be said that Tranexamic acid is a versatile ingredient that helps to fade, reduce pigmentation and dark spots, reduce and prevent the formation of acne scars and brown spots caused by sun exposure.
After only 6-8 weeks of continuous use, you will see a significant improvement in properly improved skin. If combined with a professional melasma cream or serum of JN Beauty Solutions such as Diamond Bright Pigment Night Gel / Diamond Bright Night Cream, the effect is doubled, just 2-4 weeks.
Tranexamic Acid currently on the market is combined by laboratories with a number of ingredients to support effective treatment of dark spots, pigmentation, and skin lightening. The ingredients can be listed as vitamin C, vitamin C derivatives such as L-cysteine, Ascorbic Acid, L-Ascorbic… These substances will support Tranexamic Acid to penetrate deeper into the skin, helping the skin absorb better, especially the dark skin. However, when combined with Alpha Arbutin, one of the safest and most expensive skin lightening and anti-pigmentation ingredients, the effect is more pronounced.