Nigeria has been regarded as the world's highest user of skin lightening products according a WHO (World Health Organization) report which places the percentage of Nigerian women who use skin lightening producers at a whopping 77% and a major consumer of products of this $10 billion dollar industry.
It is without a shade of doubt that the usage of skin lightening products have become a popular trend with women in Nigeria, with Supermarkets and even neighbourhood stores filled with various skin lightening products such as Civoclair, Neutrogena, Opal, Fair and White and a host of other products. Skin lightening or bleaching among the women folk is seen as a way to attract attention from the male folk, look clean or sometimes even imbibed from the Hip Hop culture as the aspiration to have the skin tone of the Beyoncés, Nicki Minaj. As light skinned women in many parts of Nigeria are deemed to be more beautiful, and tend to get the attention and favour from the male folk, which could translate to better jobs, favors, gifts or marriage.
Reporters from the popular news channel Al Jazeera had recently investigated this growing trend in its exposé
And it's also not uncommon to see people whose faces tend to be shades lighter than their bodies leading to a popular Nigerian term "Fanta Face, Coca-cola body", mainly due to improper applic The use of skin lightening products is not without its dangers as certain ingredients such as hydroquinone and mercury have been connected with kidney damage, skin discolouration, skin rashes, e.t.c.
In india skin lightening products account for over 60% of all dermatology products, with products specifically made for intimate parts of women available in the market
Besides, Nigeria and India, women in Togo (57%) and Senegal (27%) are also big users of skin lightening product.

Fun Fact: Queen Elizabeth I was known to use lead to lighten her skin

Source: The Economist