Prescription strength hydroquinone is 4% concentration, the highest amount of the active ingredient permitted in the US in Rx products.
Hydroquinone gradually depletes hyperpigmentation on the skin’s outer layer through exfoliation and skin cell renewal. Then hydroquinone slows the production of melanin, the source of skin color. In pharmacological terms, hydroquinone inhibits the production of tyrosinase and suppression of other melanocyte metabolic processes. That’s a mouthful!
A common recommendation is to apply Vitamin C serum in the morning with hydroquinone, followed by moisturizer, then strong sun protection. If you experience redness or irritation, you may try applying the Vitamin C serum in the morning and hydroquinone at midday. Apply the tretinoin at night. Obagi Nu-Derm Sunfader combines Vitamin C and hydroquinone with sunscreen for a one-step morning routine. Just apply the tretinoin at night. Another option is to purchase the complete Obagi-C Rx System for normal to dy skin or normal to oily skin with a Vitamin C cleanser, Vitamin C am and pm toner, a hydroquinone + Vitamin C serum, a broad spectrum sun block and a Vitamin C night cream! The five step system provides a guide so you can stay on top of your skin regime for your best bright, clear complexion.
- Acne scars
- Post-traumatic inflammatory response (marks left after skin trauma heals)
- Melasma (AKA pregnancy mask and chloasma)
- Sun damage
- Dark spots
- Discoloration and uneven skin tone
- Liver spots, AKA age spots
- Redness caused by psoriasis and eczema
Melasma, also called chloasma and pregnancy mask, is a skin condition stemming from hormonal imbalances. Although melasma is greatly exacerbated by sun damage, in order for the condition to be diagnosed as melasma, hormonal influences must be present. trigger. Melasma is most commonly associated with darkening of skin above the lip and on cheekbones. It can also show as asymmetrical gray and brown spots on high areas of the face, such as cheeks, forehead, nose and other body areas prone to frequent sun exposure. Since hormonal imbalance is the melasma trigger, the skin condition mostly affects women. Men can develop melasma on their arms and shoulders also resulting from a combination of hormones and sun exposure.
An overproduction of pigmentation appearing as dark patches or extra large freckles on hands is commonly known as liver spots. Liver spots are mostly attributed to age (that’s why they’re also called age spots) and years of sun exposure.