Melasma and Asian skin

Dr. Irwin, I'm Asian with skin type 4 and also suffering from melasma. What cream/moisturizer that you can recommend for my skin that can help with my melasma? My skin is also sensitive. I've been using the sunscreen you recommended and love it. Thanks!!

Melasma is one of the most difficult problems that Dermatologists face today because, at this point in time, as you all know, there is no true cure for it.  There is just good control.   As our information and technology progress we may have a solution (I hope so!), but no one can cure it yet in all cases.

The first issue is your suncreening –  good work!  You may even want to double or triple layer your sunscreen when it’s really sunny.   For example, you could use a light sunscreen with 3% Mexoryl in it as a base, then a light lotion suncreen with 10-20% zinc/titanium (this could be a light tint like the new SkinCeuticals Physical Fusion, SPF 50) and then put a mineral powder makeup lightly over that.

As your Dermatologist I’m sure told you, the Hydroquinone 4% creams can be helpful if used sparingly.  But, many people get irritated by them and that can make the melasma worse!!

Just keeping the light/sun off your skin where the melasma,  also helps so hats and parasols are great!   Be very wary of any laser treatments, unless you know the doctor you go to is an expert.  Dr. Henry Chan (Dr. Chan has published many papers) in Hong Kong is an expert.  Dr. I

Dr. Brandith Irwin, MD

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