Welcome, we OEM manufacturer wholesale price

The research journey of glutathione as a whitening ingredient

Author: GSHWORLD Release time: 2024-07-05 Column: Product News


As summer approaches, skin whitening is a hot topic in the beauty and personal care world.

Glutathione (GSH), as a tripeptide naturally found in the human body, has received widespread attention due to its powerful antioxidant properties and potential whitening effect.

Skin color is primarily determined by melanin, a natural pigment produced by melanocytes. The production of melanin is regulated by many factors, including ultraviolet exposure, hormone levels, genetic factors, etc.

In recent years, multiple clinical studies have investigated the whitening effects of glutathione.

Glutathione powder is a cosmetic raw material

1. Slightly change skin tone

Study: Effect of oral glutathione 500mg/day for 4 weeks on skin melanin index.

Results: 60 participants completed the study, and the glutathione group was found to have consistent decreases in melanin index in all six sites, with statistically significant greater reductions on the right side of the face and the sun-exposed left forearm than the placebo group.

Conclusion: Oral glutathione can slightly alter skin color in a small number of people, but long-term safety has not been established and more extensive clinical trials are needed.

2. Affect skin properties

Study: Healthy female subjects took 250 mg of GSH or oxidized glutathione (GSSG) or placebo orally daily for 12 weeks.

Results: The GSH and GSSG groups tended to have lower melanin index and UV spot number than the placebo group. The GSH group showed significant reduction in wrinkles in some areas compared to the placebo group.

Conclusion: Oral administration of 250 mg of glutathione per day, in both reduced and oxidized forms, effectively affects skin properties, and overall glutathione is well tolerated in both forms.

3. Facial whitening is effective

Study: 74 healthy Indonesian women were divided into three groups and used facial cleansers, day creams and night creams containing 0.1% GSH, 0.5% GSH or no GSH.

Results: Compared with baseline, the GSH 0.1% group showed a significant increase in L* value at the 2nd week, while the 0.5% GSH group was better than the other groups in improving pigmented lesions at the 8th week.

Conclusion: Skin care products containing 0.1% and 0.5% GSH are effective in facial skin whitening.

4. Combination use is better than single use

Study: 46 participants were randomly divided into two groups, one receiving oral placebo and topical glutathione, and the other receiving oral glutathione and topical placebo. Use a colorimeter to test every two weeks for 8 weeks.

Results: The combination group was significantly lower than the placebo group in melanin index (MI) and L* score, and performed best among all groups.

Conclusions: Both topical and oral glutathione are effective skin lightening agents, and the combination may be superior to monotherapy.

Based on existing research, glutathione, as a natural and safe whitening ingredient, has significant whitening potential.


[1] Watanabe F, Hashizume E, Chan G P, et al. Skin-whitening and skin-condition-improving effects of topical oxidized glutathione: a double-blind and placebo-controlled clinical trial in healthy women[J]. Clinical, cosmetic and investigational dermatology, 2014: 267-274.

[2] Arjinpathana N, Asawanonda P. Glutathione as an oral whitening agent: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study[J]. Journal of dermatological treatment, 2012, 23(2): 97-102.

[3] Weschawalit S, Thongthip S, Phutrakool P, et al. Glutathione and its antiaging and antimelanogenic effects[J]. Clinical, cosmetic and investigational dermatology, 2017: 147-153.

[4] Etnawati K, Adiwinarni D R, Susetiati D A, et al. The efficacy of skin care products containing glutathione in delivering skin lightening in Indonesian women[J]. Dermatology Reports, 2019, 11(s1).

[5] Wahab S, Anwar A I, Zainuddin A N, et al. Combination of topical and oral glutathione as a skin-whitening agent: a double-blind randomized controlled clinical trial[J]. International Journal of Dermatology, 2021, 60(8 ): 1013-1018.

*Special note - This article is for informational purposes only and cannot replace a doctor's treatment diagnosis and advice. It should not be regarded as a recommendation or proof of efficacy of the medical products involved. If it involves disease diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation, please be sure to go to a professional medical institution to seek professional advice.


Tag: Glutathione , GSH

GSH BIO-TECH API Pharmaceutical Intermediates Cosmetic Raw Materials, GSH World