Brightening skincare has gotten a bit of a bad reputation as of late. After all, what does it say to the rest of us — this writer included — when we're told we're simply not fair enough. Whatever happened to embracing diversity — including different skin tones and the choice to be tanned? Having been in the beauty industry for over eight years, I have a better understanding of brightening skincare and can safely say, it's not about getting a lily white complexion, but about getting the best possible skin no matter what your natural tone. We all want uniform and even skin — sans unsightly marks, post-acne scars, blotches and freckles that bleed into larger spots, so that we head out barefaced and still feel comfortable.

The first step towards maintaining your current complexion is to use sunscreen — UV rays can worsen pigmentation. But if you've already got tiny marks and spots on your skin, it's not going to go away without some serious treatment skincare or in-office procedures. To the rescue, Shiseido White Lucent (SWL) that has been setting the gold standard for brightening skincare since its inception. The latest reformulation of SWL is designed to mimic the effects of cosmetic procedures. Best of all, the products can be used on post-treatment skin to help prolong the effects of your laser treatments, intense pulsed light (IPL) and the like.

According to Yasuko Miono, from the skincare group of Shiseido, although SWL is targetted mainly at melanin, the range also works on post-acne hyperpigmentation — a godsend for those who have slow-healing skin.  As to whether you should use just one or all of the products, Miono says, "It will be best to use them together, but you can also use a combination of treatments, just like a doctor would prescribe a mix and match of options for your skin concerns". Find out about the four stars in the range and what problems they target.

1. White Lucent MicroTargeting Spot Corrector
Mimics: Laser therapy
What it does: Reduces the appearance of tiny, scattered spots around the face with a laser-like precision.

SWL Spot Corrector

2. White Lucent MultiBright Night Cream
Mimics:
IPL
What it does:  Targets multiple skin problems including spots, uneveness, scars and pores.

SWL Night Cream

3. White Lucent Lumizing Surge
Mimics: Post-laser, second skin treatment 
What it does: Protects skin with an ion veil and improves its barrier function.

SWL Luminizing Surge

4.White Lucent Lumizing Infuser
Mimics: Skin brightening, multi-vitamin IV drip
What it does: Softens the skin to generate radiant and brighter skin.

SWL Luminizing InfuserAvailable from January 2016 at Shiseido counters