Dermocosmetic management of hyperpigmentations

Ann Dermatol Venereol. 2012 Dec:139 Suppl 4:S166-9. doi: 10.1016/S0151-9638(12)70130-8.


Hyperpigmentations are very frequent situations that can have considerable impact on the quality of life of affected individuals. However, even if the esthetic prejudice they generate is undeniable, lentigo and melasma are benign conditions that require above all a risk-free management. In addition to the dermatological procedures (peeling, laser, etc.) and the topical drugs available to the dermatologist, there remains significant room for depigmenting dermocosmetic products. These products succeeded to transpose features of the classic pharmaceutical formula invented by Kligman from which they were inspired to the field of dermocosmetics. They comprise activators of epidermal turn-over, skin exfoliants, and active ingredients that interfere with the different stages of melanogenesis, without having the side effects of hydro quinone whose usage remains limited to the field of prescription drugs. Antioxidants are a particularly interesting addition because they participate in reducing cutaneous inflammation and efficiently complete the action of the other components of a depigmenting formula. It is important to remind the aggravating role that sun exposure has on hyperpigmentations. Therefore, measures of rigorous photoprotection are mandatory. Medical makeup, transitory or definite, is an interesting option for the management of hyperpigmentations. Consequently, depigmenting dermocosmetics, used in monotherapy but-most frequently- in combination with dermatological procedures, can be used in literally all types of hyperpigmentations with an efficacy that is dependent on the specific etiology. They are suited to be part of a treatment program that has to be adapted on a case-by-case basis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use
  • Cosmetics / therapeutic use
  • Dermatologic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Free Radical Scavengers / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Hyperpigmentation / drug therapy*
  • Keratolytic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Lentigo / drug therapy
  • Melanosis / drug therapy
  • Phytotherapy
  • Plant Preparations / therapeutic use
  • Skin Lightening Preparations / therapeutic use
  • Sunscreening Agents / therapeutic use


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Antioxidants
  • Cosmetics
  • Dermatologic Agents
  • Free Radical Scavengers
  • Keratolytic Agents
  • Plant Preparations
  • Skin Lightening Preparations
  • Sunscreening Agents