Having dark elbows can be embarrassing.

It can make you lose confidence, and make you want to wear clothes that cover up your elbows.

This article will cover:

  • Causes of dark elbows
  • How to get rid of dark elbows using easy home remedies

Causes of Dark Elbows

Dark elbows are commonly caused by pressure or friction, dry skin, sun exposure, hormonal imbalance and poor hygiene, according to Skincare.org.

Obesity, accumulation of dead skin cells, and hyperactive melanin pigmentation are other factors that contribute to dark elbows.

Since the skin on the elbows is typically thicker than the rest of the body, and there are no oil glands in these parts, it is more prone to drying and pigmentation.

Use the following home remedies for dark elbows, so you can flaunt your smooth and beautiful skin in no time.

10 Natural Remedies to Get Rid of Dark Elbows

1. Lemon Juice

There are so many things to love about lemons.

These citrus fruits are an excellent source of vitamin C, which is one of the essential nutrients needed by the body to maintain optimal health.

A glass of lemon juice is not just a refreshing drink to quench your thirst, it also provides a whopping 187 percent of your daily recommended allowance for vitamin C, much higher than what you get from oranges.

That’s not all. A lemon is also packed with potassium, copper, magnesium, vitamin A, B vitamins, and vitamin E, among many others.

As you can imagine, this fruit can do a lot of good things for your health.

Would you believe that it can also be beneficial for your skin?

Fact is, lemon juice is one of the most popular natural bleaching agents.

The high concentration of vitamin C, according to one study, can successfully suppress the over production of melanin, the skin’s pigmentation [1].

Not only that, lemon is also a natural exfoliant, which means that it can get rid of dead skin cells on the surface.

All these properties make it a viable solution for dark skin on your elbows.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon of honey

Recommended Directions:

  • Mix honey and lemon juice.
  • Apply solution on elbows.
  • Leave it on for 20 minutes.
  • Rinse with warm water.
  • Avoid sun exposure for the rest of the day.
  • Repeat everyday for two to four weeks.

RELATED: 18 Surprising Benefits of vitamin C

2. Yogurt

The benefits of yogurt are seemingly endless.

Yogurt can help you lose weight, promote digestion, maintain balance of good and bad bacteria in the gut, prevent high blood pressure, and maintain top health with its vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

An added bonus: it’s also good for the skin.

What makes yogurt an efficient remedy for dark elbows is its high concentration of lactic acid.

According to a study featured in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science, lactic acid when combined with vitamin C can produce significant whitening effects on medium to dark skin [2].

Topical application of the combination of lactic acid and ascorbic acid whitened the skin after three months of use [2].

At the same time, yogurt can also help smoothen rough skin, and keep it soft and supple.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of plain yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

Recommended Directions:

  • Mix the two ingredients.
  • Scrub elbows with this mixture.
  • Do this everyday for two to three months.

3. Licorice

If people only knew about the vast array of health benefits offered by licorice, they’d probably see it more than just a candy flavoring.

Allergic rhinitis, athlete’s foot, hair loss, bronchitis, mouth ulcers, upper respiratory tract infections, chronic fatigue, colitis, constipation, cough, depression and emphysema are just few of the many ailments that can be treated naturally with this herb.

Its active compound called glycyrrhizin is pointed out as responsible for most of its pharmacological effects.

Not surprisingly, licorice also does wonderful things for the skin.

It is a sure way to lighten dark elbows.

Researchers have discovered that licorice is an excellent skin bleaching agent as it inhibits the activity of tyrosinase, which cause hyperpigmentation of the skin [3].

Licorice root contains two active compounds namely, Isoliquiritigenin and Glabrene which are strong inhibitory agents for tyrosinase [4].

This herb is indeed a quick and effective solution for unsightly dark elbows.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of licorice root powder
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil

Recommended Directions:

  • Dissolve licorice root powder in olive oil to form a paste.
  • Slather paste on elbows.
  • Leave it on for three to four hours each day for a month.

4. Soybean Extract

Don’t you just love the taste and texture of tofu?

Tofu is made from soya milk, which in turn comes from soybeans.

As you probably know, soybean is one of the best non-meat sources of protein and iron.

It has been described many times as the “most protective bean”, being the highest protein source among plant products.

With its other nutrients like omega 3 fatty acids, B vitamins, vitamin K, potassium and magnesium, soybeans are also a great way to protect the heart, boost the metabolism and keep ailments at bay.

Amazingly, soybean is also good for the skin.

Linoleic acid is an omega 6 fatty acid in soybean that has been found to have significant whitening effects on the skin [5].

Soybean extract is therefore a great remedy for hyperpigmented skin on your elbows.

It can whiten the skin naturally without causing any harmful side effects, unlike commercial whitening products that are loaded with toxic chemicals.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of soybean extract
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda

Recommended Directions:

  • Combine two ingredients.
  • Gently massage elbows with this combination.
  • Repeat three times a week for two to three months.

5. Mulberry Leaf Extract

People love mulberry fruits primarily for their sweet taste.

They’re also noted for their fleshy texture that makes them even more palatable.

It’s about time everyone learns that mulberries are more than just an enjoyable snack.

Mulberry leaf extract, for example, is rich in antioxidants that can neutralize the damage caused by free radicals in the system.

It also has alkaloids that activate the immune system to make it stronger and more defensive against infections.

As if all these are not enough, it’s also good to know that mulberry leaf extract can be used to resolve the problem of dark elbows.

A 2002 study looked at mulberry’s efficacy as a skin whitening agent [6].

Findings show that its organic compound Mulberroside F inhibited the synthesis of melanin, which in turn cause skin to darken more than normal [6].

Another way it helps is by suppressing the tyrosinase activities and the process of photo oxidation [6].

If you’d like to even out the complexion of your elbows, you would want to make use of this practical herbal remedy.

What You’ll Need:

  • 3 drops of mulberry leaf extract
  • 1/4 cup of cold cream

Recommended Directions:

  • Stir in mulberry leaf extract into the cold cream.
  • Apply generously on your elbows.
  • Repeat everyday for one to two months.


6. Oolong Tea

Oolong tea is a traditional Chinese beverage made from a plant called Camellia sinensis [7].

Both green tea and black tea are also made from this plant, but the only difference is that oolong is only partially fermented whereas green tea is not fermented and black tea undergoes full fermentation [7].

Many health benefits have been associated with the regular intake of this tea.

According to experts, this beverage can be used to boost mental performance, prevent heart disease, reduce cancer risk, treat diabetes, strengthen immune resistance, lower cholesterol levels, and alleviate skin allergies, among many others [7].

In a 2007 study conducted by researchers from Tokyo, Japan, it was found that oral intake of this tea inhibited the overproduction of melanin triggered by sun exposure [8].

Researchers confirm that this tea has a potential as a skin whitening agent due to its inhibitory effects on melanogenosis [8].

So if you’d like to have even skin tone on your elbows and other parts of your body, it would help to drink oolong tea on a regular basis for at least two to three months.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 bag of oolong tea
  • 1 cup of water

Recommended Directions:

  • Boil water in a pot.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Transfer water to a cup.
  • Soak teabag in the water.
  • Let it steep for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Drink three times a week for two to three months.

RELATED: Drinking Oolong Tea for Weight Loss: Good or Bad?

7. Cucumber

If you have puffy eyes, you’d immediately think about using cucumber.

Time and again, it has been proven the cucumber works in reviving tired, puffy and dark eyes.

For your dark elbows, cucumber can also work its magic.

Cucumber is listed as one of the most commonly used skin whitening ingredients [9].

It works by blocking or reducing the production of melanin by inhibiting the tyrosinase enzyme [9].

Not only that, cucumber also has soothing effects on the skin that will make your elbows fairer and smoother.

What You’ll Need:

  • 2 slices of cucumber
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 1 cup of brown sugar

Recommended Directions:

  • Rub two slices of cucumber on your elbows for 15 minutes.
  • Wait for five minutes before rinsing off with cool water.
  • Do this everyday for one to two months.
  • Peel one whole cucumber.
  • Slice, and put into a blender.
  • Blend until consistency is smooth.
  • Transfer to a jar with a lid.
  • Add honey and brown sugar.
  • Mix well.
  • Scrub mixture on the dark elbows.
  • Leave it on for 30 minutes to an hour.
  • Wash off with cool water.
  • Repeat everyday for three months.

8. Aloe Vera

Another natural and effective approach to the problem of dark elbows is the use of aloe vera.

For years, aloe vera has been used for its multitude of benefits for the skin.

Mostly, it is applied on wounds and burns to speed up healing and prevent infection.

Did you know that it can also be a potent skin whitener for dark areas like elbows?

Aloe vera’s phenolic compounds such as aloesin are known to have whitening effects on the skin [10].

As with the previous remedies, this one also works by inhibiting tyrosinase, the enzyme responsible for melanin synthesis [10].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 aloe vera leaf
  • 1 cup of aloe vera juice
  • 1 cup of lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon of honey

Recommended Directions:

  • Break the leaf to extract the gel.
  • Gently massage gel on the elbows.
  • Leave it on for 20 minutes.
  • Rinse off with warm water.
  • Do this twice a day for six weeks.
  • Combine aloe vera juice, lemon juice and honey in a mixing bowl.
  • Blend well.
  • Transfer to a jar with a lid.
  • Get a spoonful of the mixture and apply on your elbows.
  • Massage for five to ten minutes.
  • Rinse with cool water.
  • Repeat technique once or twice a day for two months.

RELATED: Aloe Vera For Heat Rash : 5 Reasons to Try Now!

9. Sugar

Sugar isn’t good for the health, we all know that.

Fitness experts always try to make us stay away from this villain sweetener.

However, beauty gurus do not oppose the use of sugar.

After all, it has many benefits for the skin, such as for lightening dark skin on the elbows and other areas.

Take note thought that sugar has a different way of resolving the problem of your dark elbows.

Instead of inhibiting pigmentation, it works by exfoliating the skin.

To put it simply, sugar removes dead skin cells to reveal whiter and younger looking skin underneath, as explained in the Huffington Post.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 tablespoon of sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil

Recommended Directions:

  • Blend sugar and olive oil.
  • Scrub mixture on the elbows and massage gently.
  • Let it sit for five minutes before rinsing with warm water.
  • Repeat the treatment regularly.

10. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil has earned its place in the world of traditional medicine due to its high amount of saturated fatty acids and other essential nutrients.

For years, this oil has also been used in dermatology to resolve various skin issues [11, 12].

It has been recommended for eczema, psoriasis, skin inflammation, sunburn, and many others.

Also a good remedy for dark elbows, coconut oil is replete with nourishing vitamins and minerals that can help repair uneven skin tone.

Since it’s a natural emollient, coconut oil can help prevent the elbows from drying out [12].

Like most of the remedies posted here, coconut oil is not only highly effective but also safe to use even for a long time.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of coconut oil

Recommended Directions:

  • Apply coconut oil on elbows.
  • Massage for two minutes.
  • Repeat several times a day for three to four weeks.

Bottom Line

It’s about time that you finally say goodbye to dark elbows.

All these remedies are simple and easy but definitely effective in helping you treat dark elbows once and for all.

Share your feedback and experience in the comment section.

READ NEXT: 12 Ways to Get Rid of Dark Skin On Neck Naturally