What Is Tranexamic Acid


Tranexamic acid is an exciting topical ingredient to fade the look of several types of skin discolorations. Research shows tranexamic acid has the ability to prevent the growth of new blood vessels and the formation of melanin (aka skin pigment). This might be why topical tranexamic acid appears to help lighten dark spots from hyperpigmentation, melasma, or sun damage.

How It Works

Tranexamic acid seems to have a special ability to interact with an enzyme in skin known as plasmin and its precursor, plasminogen. Skin’s surface cells develop excess plasmin in response to radiation exposure like ultraviolet light from the sun and tanning salons. The excess plasmin triggers other substances in skin’s surface that in turn stimulate excess melanin production in skin’s lower layers, which eventually shows on the surface. Tranexamic acid works so well because it is able to interrupt multiple pathways related to surface discolorations.

Benefits Of Tranexamic Acid

The skin barrier, or outermost layer of your skin, serves as a shield that helps keep moisture in and toxins and irritants out. For people living with rosacea research suggests this barrier is often damaged to the point where it doesn’t work properly. Tranexamic acid’s ability of strengthening the skin barrier helps significantly reduce rosacea symptoms.

Tranexamic acid for the skin can act as a brightening agent to reduce dark spots and improve hyperpigmentation. It prevents the appearance of dark spots by removing the excess melanin formed. Tranexamic acid does this by blocking the hormones that cause pigment in the skin.

When used regularly, tranexamic acid helps minimise freckling due to spending too much time in the sun, which develops as part of the natural ageing process of the skin. Sometimes, acne breakouts can cause post-inflammatory erythema. These are stubborn red, pink, or purple patches of discoloration. Tranexamic acid appears helpful for lessening the appearance of these lesions, with little risk of serious side effects.

Tranexamic acid has shown to effectively soothe swelling from hereditary anjiodema a condition characterized by swelling round the eyes, lips, hands, and feet. However, more research is needed to know if it could dial down general redness or puffiness.

Fun Fact

Tranexamic acid plays well with pretty much any ingredient and it’s pregnancy-safe. Many dermatologists even recommend it as a treatment for pregnancy-induced melasma (also referred to as the “mask of pregnancy”).

Food Sources

Tranexamic acid comes from the amino acid lysine. Good sources of lysine include foods that are rich in protein, such as:

  • Meat, specifically red meat, pork, and poultry.
  • Cheese, particularly parmesan.
  • Certain fish, such as cod and sardines.
  • Eggs.
  • Soybeans, particularly tofu, isolated soy protein, and defatted soybean flour.
  • Spirulina.
  • Fenugreek seed.

Our Skincare Top Picks

Melan tran3x concentrate

Pigment control agent for daily use that acts on excess epidermal pigmentation by reducing the formed melanin and visibly reducing dark spots. Its ultra-light texture allows you to apply it before your usual cream.

Indicated for reducing pigmentation imperfections of any origin. This solution is safe for all skin types and is suitable after professional pigment control treatments (cosmelan/ dermamelan, IPL, laser, chemical peels, etc.), to boost and maintain results, and prevent pigmentation from rebounding.

Active ingredients: tranexamic acid, enzymacid complex, niacinamide, tyr control complex

Best for: hyperpigmentation 

Melan tran3x gel cream

Pigment control cream for daily use that acts gradually on epidermal dark spots to give a more uniform skin tone. It inhibits the mechanisms responsible for pigmentation to prevent the appearance of dark spots and stop them from reappearing. Quickly absorbed light gel cream texture.

Indicated for reducing pigmentation imperfections of any origin. It is safe for all skin types and suitable to use after professional pigment control treatments (cosmelan/dermamelan, IPL, laser, chemical peels, etc.), to boost and maintain the results and prevent pigmentation in the future.

Active ingredients: tranexamic acid, tyr control complex, niacinamide, marine glycogen, hydroxiacid complex

Best for: hyperpigmentation, uneven skin tone


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