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Upper Lip Discoloration As a Result of Laser Hair Removal?

In 2011, I did my first and last session of laser hair removal on my upper lip. After, I noticed a discoloration. The skin is now a darker pigment and the discoloration is uneven. I was told that this could be related to an topical acne cream I was trying at the time. I stopped using the acne cream in advance of the session though. However, I'm still dealing with it 2 years later. It gets darker when I'm out in the sun regardless of using sunblock. How can I get rid of this? Please help!

Doctor Answers (4)

Your upper lip discoloration after laser hair removal may be improved.

+3

Upper lip brownish discoloration may occur after any laser procedure, especially if your skin is olive or darker. It's referred to as post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.

If you want to improve this, you must use SPF30 or higher every day. You may also consult a dermatologist for evaluation for a bleaching cream like hydroquinone. Sometimes hydroquinone is used in conjunction with topical retinoic acid.

Hope this is helpful for you.

Dr. Joseph

Web reference: http://ericmjoseph.com/index.cfm/PageID/4904

West Orange Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 256 reviews

Upper lip is darker after laser hair removal - post inflammatory hyperpigmentation after laser hair removal

+2

Sometimes laser treatments can result in darkening of pigment, which is called post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. You can definitely help it with the treatments suggested here - retinoids, hydroquinone, and sunscreen. All of this will definitely help. You can also visit a VERY experienced office with lasers. Even though it seems counter-intuitive, retreating that area very carefully with the right laser, can also help break up that pigment and get it to sluff out of the skin. We do a lot of laser repair work in my office like this for post inflammatory hyperpigmentation.

Las Vegas Dermatologist
4.5 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Discoloration of lip after laser hair removal

+2

One of the most effective (and least expensive) ways to reverse facial hyperpigmentation such as yours is by using a combination of two prescription strength medications: 4% hydroquinone and tretinoin cream. Prescription strength 4% hydroquinone is better than any OTC product for lightening dark spots in the skin. Combining prescription-only tretinoin cream with hydroquinone will make it even more effective. These dark spots are made worse by sun damage so daily use of sunscreens is essential in your treatment. I recommend the Obagi Nu-Derm System which uses both tretinoin cream and hydroquinone to treat hyperpigmentation as well as the fine lines and wrinkles that are due to chronic sun exposure.

Web reference: http://www.dorsetstreetdermatology.com/cosmetic-dermatology/obagi-medical-systems/

South Burlington Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Upper lip hyperpigmentation

+1

It may be possible to improve this discoloration with a prescription skin lightening treatment regimen. If that does not work, it may require a more aggressive fractionated laser treatment or chemical peels. Good luck in your area.

Jacksonville Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.

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