As a ‘Westerner’, I was brought up in Europe mainly the United Kingdom and Spain and I can always remember ‘Westerners’ flooding to the beeches of Spain whilst on holiday from the United Kingdom. As a child, another observation I made was the elderly ladies walking along the roads in the hot Sun cloaked in a black cloth. The ladies were shading themselves from the harmful Sun’s rays. It is nothing to do with religion, it is a traditional dress in Spain for elderly women and they probably know more about the damaging effects of the Sun than most people.
The white skinned holiday makers flocking to the beeches to desperately get the golden tanned body they are so desperately hoping for are either totally oblivious to the risks and dangers of being exposed to the Sun or simply choose to ignore the risks. There are obvious concerns with the possible development of skin cancer and another problem is dehydration of the skin’s natural moisture that in turn can cause premature ageing of the skin. Hence the reason those elderly ladies were shielding themselves from the hot damaging power of the Sun.
I no longer live in Europe and I had the opportunity to live in South East Asia where lighter skin is desirable just as tanned skin is desirable to Westerners. It seems that we always want what we haven’t got!
After observing cultures where opposites are desired, and even when it comes down to the tone of the skin I have ultimately decided that to stay out of the sun is probably the best idea and to desire a tan from the Sun seems ridiculous when we consider that tanning the skin is actually burning the top layers of the dermis. Very strange why one would want to darken the skin in such a way.
In any case, discussing skin lightening can sometimes be somewhat of a taboo. I think mainly due to the possibility of interpreting the discussion towards racial discrimination. However I feel that if you do decide the subject is taboo, then maybe you would benefit from a little cultural exploration. Skin lightening is something that most of the world population has thought about at one time or other and to simply ignore discussing it would be a foolish thing.
And it makes sense. staying out of the sun and reducing over pigmentation that could possibly cause cancer is a totally rational desire and to lighten the skin safely is something to consider as a sensible option for healthier skin.