The melasma upper lip “moustache.”
That dark line above the upper lip is fairly common for melasma and soooooooo annoying! If you read the section on hydroquinones, you’ll know that it’s not uncommon for about 10% of people to be irritated by hydroquinones, which makes the melasma worse, at least temporarily. One of the reasons that the prescription (in the US) “triple” cream Triluma is often the best tolerated is that it has the hydroquinone, the tretinoin (Retin A), and a mild steriod to reduce irritation ……all in the same cream and in the right balance. In my and many other dermatologists’ opinion, it causes less irritation for those reasons.
Generally, here are some things to try:
- Stop the irritating product (like you did);
- To calm the irritation down, use non prescription hydrocortisone cream 1% twice a day for 4 days, once a day for 4 days and then every other for 4 days. In other words, a taper! Don’t stay on it longer than that and, if you get worse at any point, call your doctor;
- Double sunscreen this area – Use a good zinc based sunscreen like this Elta sunscreen and layer this product over it (ignore that says eye cream on the label)
- Good cover up that doesn’t look cakey!
Hope this helps, Dr. I