Get rid of melasma for good with Hydroquinone 4 Creams
MELASMA! Do these 7 lettered words give you the chills? Skin issues are very common and can be quite problematic. Especially one like melasma that leaves brown to grey-brown patches commonly on the face. A lot of people get these dark patches on their cheeks, chin, forehead, nose, and above their upper lips. Following a strict skincare routine does not completely protect you from this skin condition as it can be caused by hereditary, hormones and even exposure to sunlight.
Melasma affects the psychology of sufferers, a study shows that people suffering from melasma have low self-esteem and increased self-consciousness because of the noticeability of melasma. Several patients are also faced with decreased freedom and frustration from using several expensive but ineffective treatments.
Have you found yourself saying “Why could it not be on my back or somewhere else less noticeable?” or feeling sad as you look into the mirror and see this hyperpigmentation stare right back at you. It can be tiring piling on makeup on your face daily to cover these dark pigments when all you want is to have an even-toned skin you can flaunt without makeup.
Treatment and management of melasma are quite challenging and involves treatment with topical agents for a long duration. Hydroquinone is the topical gold standard in dermatology to get rid of melasma by reducing hyperpigmentation. Melalite Forte® (Hydroquinone 4%) Cream is the solution to the nightmare called melasma. This quality formulation with high potency and 4% hydroquinone would be your last stop to find a lasting solution to those dark patches as it would fade melasma in no time.
Hydroquinone four percent cream four is the standard and approved medication intended for the treatment of melasma by decreasing the dark pigmentation on the affected area of your skin.
How it works
4% hydroquinone is a topical skin bleaching agent that helps to treat hyperpigmented skin by interfering with melanin synthesis. Melanin is a type of complex pigment that produces pigmentation or darkening in the skin, hair, and eyes. Hydroquinone inhibits melanin production in two ways. It inhibits tyrosinase (the enzyme involved in converting tyrosine to melanin) reversibly and then selectively damages melanosomes and melanocytes. These two actions of topical hydroquinone prevent the production of new melanin on an applied portion of the skin. Hence, decreased melanin leads to the skin lightens over time.
4% hydroquinone is a topical agent should be applied to affected areas and rubbed in well twice daily; morning and before bedtime, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner. According to the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology (AOCD), there is noticeable improvement after using the product for about four weeks. If there is no improvement noticed after 8 weeks of treatment, discontinue the product.
Method of application
Before treatment with Hydroquinone 4% cream is commenced, test for skin sensitivity by applying the cream to a small portion of unbroken skin affected with melasma. Observe for redness, itching, blisters, and inflammation if none of these occurs after 24 hours, treatment can begin.
- Wash your face with lukewarm water and soap and dry thoroughly. Apply a thin film of the cream on your face and rub it into the skin properly.
- Apply only to the affected areas and avoid applying to the normal skin. Make sure not to apply near the eyes, mouth, or mucous membranes.
- Wash your hands properly after application to avoid lightening the skin of the fingers.
- Ensure to apply hydroquinone first if you are applying non-medicated cosmetics, lotions, and sunscreen, and wait for several minutes before application.
Possible side effects
Hydroquinone 4% cream is well tolerated but as with all medications, some patients using hydroquinone 4% cream may experience side effects. Some of the common side effects include dryness of the skin, skin irritation, skin itching, skin redness, skin inflammation, skin peeling, mild contact dermatitis, or allergic reactions. Rarely Ochronosis, a blue-black or grey-black discoloration seen in patients that use a high concentration for a prolonged period on large areas of the body.
Ensure you speak to your doctor if:
- You develop an allergic reaction or an infection during your course of applying this medication
- You have a type of infection on your skin
- You are taking any other medicines or treating other health conditions
- Pure hydroquinone can falsely increase capillary glucose when measured with a glucometer
- For external use only
- Do not expose yourself to direct sunlight when using this medication
- Ensure to use sunscreen daily and reapply regularly when outdoors
- Do not use this medication with benzoyl peroxide, hydrogen peroxide, or other peroxide products as it can cause temporary dark staining of the skin. If used together accidentally, wash the affected area with soap and water immediately to remove the stain
- Do not use along with medications that cause photosensitivity
- Do not use it if you have a history of hypersensitivity to any of the components of this cream
Melasma occurs in pregnancy and is called chloasma or the “mask of pregnancy”. During pregnancy, there is a constant hormonal trigger for the development of melasma. Treatment during pregnancy is delayed till after delivery. This is also necessary because treatment may not be needed as some melasma resolve after pregnancy. This medication is classified as Pregnancy Category C. Animal studies show risk and human studies are not available. Topical hydroquinone 4% should not be used in a pregnant woman unless benefits outweigh the risks.
- Store in a clean, cool, and dry area at a temperature not exceeding 25°C. Protect the medication from moisture, sunlight, and heat
- Keep the medicine away from children and pets
- Do not use the medicine after the expiry date which is stated on the tube and box
How Hydroquinone 4 Cream over the counter works
Hydroquinone 4 USP cream also known as quinol or short-name HQ 4% – a skin lightening cream. The creams are for normal to oily/combination and dry skin help limit skin from creating an excessive amount of melanin, which is what gives skin its color. Too much melanin clustered together leads to brown spots and freckles. Hydroquinone steps in to interrupt this process, causing brown spots to gradually fade. Hydroquinone 4 creams can be helpful for old, stubborn, and advanced brown/dark spots. In not as severe cases it is recommended to use not so strong cream, for example, Azelaic Acid 20% or hydroquinone 2% or 3%. For mild hypopigmentation issues better suitable hydroquinone HQ 2%, azelaic, kojic, and glycolic acids, combined with vitamin C serums. Patients can see impressive results fast with the HQ 4 USP cream.
Hydroquinone 4.0 cream OTC releases certain enzymes that block the production of melanin to make the skin a lot lighter and brighter in tone, decreasing skin pigmentation and dark patches. Since the amount of melanin is decreased by active ingredient quinol and enzymes, the darker skin gradually lightens to match the overall lighter skin tone color. Hydroquinone 4 cream is also effectively used in combination with retinoids to maximize skin lightening and exfoliating effects. Buy safely only original hydroquinone 4 creams online on OKDERMO Skin Store and always be assured of the quality and authenticity of the products you’d get.
All these creams contain 4 percent Hydroquinone is a skin lightening medication. It works by reducing the amount of pigment (melanin) that causes the darkening of the skin. It does so by suppressing the activity of tyrosinase, the enzyme required to make melanin. HQ 4% cream is medicine for external use only. Use it in the dose and duration as advised by your dermatologist, but not longer than 3-5 months in a row. Check the label for directions before use. 4 percent Hydroquinone is used to lighten the dark patches of skin (also called hyperpigmentation, melasma, “liver spots,” “age spots,” freckles”) caused by pregnancy, birth control pills, hormone medicine, or injury to the skin. This medicine works by blocking the process in the skin that leads to discoloration.
Anti-pigmentation skin lightening agent creams with purest 4 Hydroquinone component – is a skin lightener designed to help reduce skin pigmentation due to the overproduction of the so-called pigment melanin, but it is also effective in a variety of other skin disorders or conditions. Whether you experience severe symptoms of liver or age spots, freckles, dark underarm and bikini spots, or even dark acne scars, you may rest assured that 4 Hydroquinone strong depigmenting and skin lightening cream will remove easily any forms of skin color disorder. The cream may also be used to treat discoloration on darker skin surfaces that may very well be caused by either prolonged exposure to the sun, contraceptive hormones, or pregnancy, melasma/chloasma.
Getting the most benefit from Hydroquinone 4% cream
With daily usage, hydroquinone 4 cream produces visible results within 1-2 months (4-8 weeks) of consistent use. Always use HQ 4 USP skin lightening cream with caution, in small amounts and under strict dermatologist supervision, also with strong SPF sun blockers (important to reapply regularly), moisturizers, wearing big sunglasses within total sun avoidance program, it is an essential part to achieving great results with these creams. If used as directed by the dermatologist with strict sun protection measures, this decreases the risk of skin cancer and early skin aging caused by the sun.
It’s essential for quinol products to be packaged in an opaque metallic/plastic container that minimizes air exposure. Quinol degrades in the presence of air, that’s why our Hydroquinone 4 creams packaged/sealed in special tubes, not in a jar. Once the jar is opened it lets air in, and the hydroquinone loses its potency.
How does Hydroquinone 4% Cream work
Creams contain the chemical element hydroquinone 4 also known as HQ 4% or tyrosinase, which is an enzyme responsible for producing melanin, the pigment that determines the overall color of our skin. The hydroquinone works in two separate and opposing ways:
- First, it decreases melanin production in the respective cells of the skin;
- Second, it increases melanosome breakdown (melanosome contains the melanin).
The less melanin is present, the more the darker skin begins to match the normal skin color of the patient.
Advice when using 4% Hydroquinone USP Cream (Generic Eldoquin)
- HQ 4 cream helps in the lightening of hyperpigmented skin. Please consult your doctor prior to starting using these creams
- It should always be used along with sun-avoidance measures, like using sunscreens (UV-A and UV-B protective) and wearing protective clothing
- Apply a thin film to and around the affected area/lesion. Avoid getting it in your eyes or mouth. If this happens, rinse with water immediately
- Apply it as per the dose and duration advised by your doctor/dermatologist with regular follow-up and under medical supervision
- Apply a very small amount of cream to check an allergic reaction. Continue with the treatment if no allergic reaction occurs in 24 hours
- Do not apply to broken or infected areas of skin. Discontinue use if you experience irritation or allergy and consult your doctor
- HQ 4% cream is unsafe to use during pregnancy or lactation. Animal studies have shown adverse effects on the fetus, however, there are limited human studies
How to use Hydroquinone 4% skin lightening cream
- First, always test skin for sensitivity before each use. Do that by applying a patch of the cream to a small area on the hyper-pigmented skin.
- If no itching or redness occurs within 24 hours, you may begin the application.
- Clean and dry the skin before use. Apply a thin film of cream twice a day to the areas in need of treatment. Rub into the skin.
- Apply just enough to cover the affected areas and avoid applying to the unaffected skin, as hydroquinone will lighten those areas as well. Wash your hands after use.
- Do not apply near the eyes, mouth, and other mucous membranes. Avoid using other topical and peroxide products in the same area at the same time unless directed by your dermatologist.
- When using cosmetics, sunscreens, and moisturizing lotions, apply hydroquinone first, then wait several minutes before applying other products on top of it.
Follow all directions on the product package, or use as directed by your doctor. Before using, apply a small amount of this medicine to an area of unbroken skin, and check the area within 24 hours for any serious side effects. If the test area is itching, red, puffy, or blistering, do not use this product and contact your doctor. If there is just mild redness, then treatment with this product may begin.
Apply this medication to the affected areas of skin, usually twice daily or as directed by your doctor. This medication is for use on the skin only. If it is used incorrectly, unwanted skin lightening may occur. Avoid getting this product in your eyes or on the inside of your nose or mouth. If you do get this medication in those areas, flush with plenty of water.
This medication may make the treated areas of skin more sensitive to the sun. Avoid prolonged sun exposure, tanning booths, and sunlamps. Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing on the treated areas of skin when outdoors. Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, use it at the same time each day, better during bedtime. Inform your doctor if your condition persists or worsens after 2 months.
Hydroquinone 4 skin lightening cream side effects
HQ 4 is very well tolerated, some users may experience minor and temporary skin irritations including mild itching or stinging and reddening of the skin (irritant contact dermatitis). If these do not subside stop using the cream. Also, very rare side effects appear – dryness, fissuring of paranasal and infraorbital areas, erythema, mild stinging, or occasional hypersensitivity. Strictly advised not to use hydroquinone 4 creams during a prolonged period of time, max 3-5 months in a row. To avoid side effects, and undesirable conditions and just to restore your skin, strongly recommended to interchange quinol cream with skin-lightening azelaic acid 20% cream.
Frequently Asked Questions about 4% Hydroquinone USP
Q. Is HQ 4% is safe to use on the face?
Hydroquinone 4% cream should be used exactly as directed by your doctor. You should apply it away from the eyes, nose, corners of the mouth, or open wounds because these areas are more prone to irritation. If local irritation persists or becomes severe, discontinue cream and consult your doctor. Excessive use of the medication may cause redness, peeling, or discomfort.
Q. Does Hydroquinone 4 permanently lighten skin?
No, it does not lighten the skin permanently, when exposed to the sun skin again may obtain melasma. If melasma occurs on discontinuing HQ 4 percent cream, talk to your doctor regarding the maintenance treatment of melasma or use more natural skin lightener like Azelaic acid 20% to maintain results.
Q. What should I avoid when using Hydroquinone 4% cream?
You should avoid exposure to sunlight, use sunscreen, and wear protective clothing after treatment with these creams. Even a small amount of sunlight can worsen melasma. Females should avoid the use of birth control methods that contain hormones such as oral birth control pills as these methods can worsen your melasma. Talk to your doctor about other birth control options. Be careful as hot and cold weather may irritate the skin treated with HQ 4%.
Q. How should Hydroquinone cream be applied?
HQ 4.0% cream should be applied once a day, before bedtime. The area to be treated should be thoroughly washed with water. Apply a thin layer of the cream to the affected skin areas. Include about half an inch of normal skin surrounding the affected area. Gently rub the cream evenly into your skin. Do not apply it near the corners of your mouth, nose, eyes, or open wounds.
Q. Can I apply moisturizer over these creams?
HQ 4% cream is applied generally at bedtime. You may use moisturizers and cosmetics during the day when you are not using Hydroquinone 4% Cream.
Q. Is HQ 4% cream bad for the skin?
HQ 4% cream may cause blue-black darkening of the skin. If this occurs, you should immediately stop HQ 4% Cream and consult your dermatologist who prescribed it to you. In some cases, it may also cause mild to moderate irritation such as skin reddening, peeling, mild burning sensation, dryness, and itching at the site of application. But this is usually tolerable and may disappear with time.
How long does Hydroquinone 4 % skin lightening cream take to work
- Hydroquinone 4 creams should be applied strictly only to affected areas twice a day, in the morning and just before bedtime, or as directed by your dermatologist.
- If no improvement is seen after 2 months of usage, the use of HQ 4 should be discontinued immediately.
- If any skin bleaching effect is not experienced after a period of 3 months, HQ 4 cream shouldn’t be used anymore.
- Once your skin has become lighter you can continue using the cream or stop using it as recommended by your dermatologist.
- It is not recommended to use HQ 4 percent creams longer than 3-5 months in a row, would better to mix it with 3 months of Azelaic Acid 20% cream for skin restoration.
- Review Hydroquinone 4 before and after pictures to determine how effective the cream is in treating hyperpigmentation and skin discoloration issues.
When Hydroquinone 4.0% cream should not be used
- Always consult with your dermatologist prior to using HQ 4 cream
- Do not use Hydroquinone cream if allergic to any of its ingredients and hydroquinone, or pregnant/breastfeeding.
- Do not use HQ 4% cream when using hydrogen peroxide, benzoyl peroxide, or other peroxide products as combinations of these chemicals may cause temporary pigmentation of the skin.
- FAQ hydroquinone topical cream
- How to use hydroquinone HQ cream
- What is melasma and hyperpigmentation
- About hydroquinone topical
- Hydroquinone topical side effects
- Hydroquinone cream during pregnancy
- Hydroquinone with sunscreen
- American Academy of Dermatology Association. Melasma: Overview. [Accessed April 24, 2021]. https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/a-z/melasma-overview
- Harvard Health Publishing, Harvard Medical School. Unmasking the causes and treatment of melasma. [Accessed April 24, 2021]. https://www.health.harvard.edu/womens-health/unmasking-the-causes-and-treatments-of-melasma
- Debabrata Bandyopadhyay. Topical treatment of melasma. Indian J Dermatol. 2009 Oct-Dec; 54(4): 303–309.
- Mekhala Chandra, Jacob Levitt and Cara A. Pensabene. Hydroquinone Therapy for Post-inflammatory Hyperpigmentation Secondary to Acne: Not Just Prescribable by Dermatologists. Department of Dermatology, The Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, USA
- AOCD American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. Hydroquinone. [Accessed April 24, 2021]. https://www.aocd.org/page/Hydroquinone
- Chelsea Schwartz; Arif Jan; Patrick M. Zito. Hydroquinone. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing. Sept 2020
- Choukem SP, Efie DT, Djiogue S, Kaze FF, Mboue-Djieka Y, Boudjeko T, Dongo E, Gautier JF, Kengne AP. Effects of hydroquinone-containing creams on capillary glycemia before and after serial hand washings in Africans. PLoS One. 2018;13(8): e0202271.
- Healthline. Melasma. [Accessed April 21, 2021]. https://www.healthline.com/health/melasma#_noHeaderPrefixedContent