GLYMED+ Tyrosinase Inhibitors

Tyrosinase Inhibitors for All Skin

Hyperpigmentation comes in many forms such as freckles, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, dark spots, age spots, and melasma. Sun damage, hormonal influences, aging, scarring, and some skin conditions can all lead to hyperpigmentation. While it’s a common thing for all of us to experience, hyperpigmentation, just like other skin concerns, can rob some of us of our confidence. 

Thankfully, tyrosinase inhibitors can help reduce and prevent over pigmentation of the skin from within, and they’re easy to incorporate into any skincare routine when combined with the right treatments and at-home regimen. Here’s everything you need to know about tyrosinase inhibitors and why everyone should be using them, even those with no visible hyperpigmentation. 


A Quick Lesson in Skin Anatomy 

There are five distinct layers of the epidermis, one of which is the basal layer, where our cells form and divide to create the outer layer of our skin. In the basal layer, there is a dendritic cell called a Melanocyte. A Melanocyte has branch-like legs that reach up through the layers of our skin and is responsible for transporting melanosomes that hold pigment (melanin) to give us the color of our skin, hair, and eyes. 

We all roughly have the same number of Melanocytes within our skin, but the amount of melanin produced is what gives our skin its color. For example, someone with fair skin has about the same number of melanocytes as someone with dark skin; however, their melanocytes produce less melanin than those with dark skin, resulting in a paler complexion. 


But What is Tyrosinase?  

Alongside the melanocyte in the basal layer, there is an enzyme called Tyrosinase. This enzyme converts an amino acid called Tyrosine to oxidize and essentially creates the pigment that is transported. This is a natural process and is a defense mechanism against Ultraviolet Rays (UV rays). 

When cells have been damaged, perhaps by UV exposure or free radicals, the Tyrosinase enzyme will send a “misfire” of oxidation to Tyrosine, resulting in the overproduction of pigment that is then referred to as hyperpigmentation. 

 What is a Tyrosinase Inhibitor and What Does it do? 

We can protect our cells from being damaged and from the misfire of pigment resulting in uneven skin tone with SPF (Sun Protection Factor) and skincare products that contain tyrosinase inhibiting ingredients. Tyrosinase Inhibitors will prevent the enzyme Tyrosinase from over-oxidizing Tyrosine so there is no overproduction of pigment in the skin.  

Tyrosinase Inhibitors are not only for those who have Hyperpigmentation but also for clients that have healthy, even skin. When it comes to skincare, we know that prevention is always better than treatment, and that absolutely applies here. You might have a beautiful, even skin tone now, keeping it that way will take some work.  

Using a Tyrosinase Inhibitor will protect your skin and even prevent the formation of hyperpigmentation. We may not always realize it, but hyperpigmentation is often lying underneath the skin and will surface later in life. With the frequent use of a tyrosinase inhibitor, anyone can prevent excess pigment from surfacing on the skin allowing the skin to remain even toned and youthful. 


Choosing a Tyrosinase Inhibitor 

There are different types of tyrosinase inhibitors, and they are usually listed in two categories: prescription lightening agents and natural lightening agents.  

The most common prescription ingredient is hydroquinone which offers the strongest form of prevention and correction against hyperpigmentation, but it can often result in sensitized skin, sometimes doing more harm than good. 

At GlyMed, we opt for the safer alternative of natural tyrosinase inhibitors such as bearberry, licorice root, ascorbic acid, kojic acid, 1 Methylhydon-2-imde, arbutin, magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, and others that are typically derived from a plant source. GlyMed offers three retail products that include our tyrosinase inhibiting ingredients.  

  • Living Cell Clarifier – A powerful antioxidant and natural tyrosinase inhibitor cocktail that reduces melanin production and helps to brighten the skin through prevention rather than correction. Living Cell Clarifier can be used at night and in the morning when followed with SPF.  
  • Derma Pigment Skin Brightener – Formulated to fade sunspots, pigmentation, and age spots, for the gradual fading of pigmentary disorders without the use of hydroquinone. This formula also includes glycolic acid, a chemical exfoliant for brighter, clearer skin. Recommended for nighttime use only. 
  • Diamond Bright Skin Lightener – Controls UV-induced pigmentation through advanced drone technology and only targets damaged melanocytes, evening out skin tone, and reducing dark spots for a younger and brighter-looking complexion. While it’s our strongest skin brightener, it is gentle enough to be used at night and in the morning when followed with SPF. 


A Few Things to Note  

Tyrosinase Inhibitors will correct hyperpigmentation and prevent it from forming but it does require continued use. Our skin has a memory and once it’s been damaged hyperpigmentation can and will come back, especially if the cells are left untreated and unprotected.  

It’s also essential to note that while tyrosinase inhibitors supply protection, they are not a substitute for a broad-spectrum SPF sunscreen. In fact, tyrosinase inhibitors are virtually ineffective if the skin continues to endure unprotected sun exposure. So, make sure to apply sunscreen every morning and throughout the day to ensure full protection for your skin and the efficacy of your skincare.