Can an Obagi Blue Peel Get Rid of Dermal Hyperpigmentation?

This hyperpigmentation is on my upper lip and is bluish-grey in colour. I believe it arose from waxing my upper lip and then going out in strong sunlight approximately 6 months ago. I have never had any pigmentation problems in the past. I have already tried one session of IPL, with no success, perhaps because the pigmentation is not very dark in comparison to the surrounding skin.

Doctor Answers 6

Obagi Blue Peel for Hyperpigmentation

I use the Blue Peel for hyperpigmentation associated with melasma.  Patients are advised to use Melarase cream as a prep prior to peeling. Raffy Karamanoukian, Los Angeles

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 94 reviews

An Obagi Blue Peel is a TCA peel mixed with a dye, or indicator, that shows the depth of the peel.

The stronger the concentration of TCA that is used during the Blue Peel, the deeper it will penetrate. Sometimes more than one coat is needed, as well as a series of peels a month or six weeks apart. Prior to proceeding with a Blue Peel, I would recommend getting involved with a good skin care regimen in order to maximize the health of the skin or “turbo charge it” so that the skin should be able to heel very quickly after a Blue Peel. At the time of your consultation with the plastic surgeon, it is important that you discuss what your goal is for the Blue Peel so they can decide the appropriate level and number of coats that would be needed.

David Deisher, MD
Cape Girardeau Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Obagi peel for hyperpigmentation

The Obagi TAC peel is an excellent choice for post inflammatory hyperpigmentation or conditions such as melasma. In preparation for the Blue peel I recommend Melarase AM and Melarase PM to prep the skin. 


Hratch Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Buffalo Phlebologist
4.8 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

Obagi Blue Peel and lip hyperpigmentation

I would not suggest an Obagi Blue Peel for your situation of lip hyperpigmentation.  The likelihood  that this treatment will improve the hyperpigmentation is low and there is a chance that it could make the situation worse.  I agree with my colleagues, topical bleaching creams including tretinoin and hydroquinone would be the safest and best option.  We also use the Obagi Nu-derm System, which incorporates the above medications, and have found that it works reasonably well for your situation. 

Vincent D. Lepore, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Best treatment for lip hyperpigmentation

An Obagi Blue Peel is not a good way of treating hyperpigmentation and has the risk of making things worse. The best way to treat hyperpigmentation is by using a combination of two topical prescription-strength medications: hydroquinone and tretinoin cream. Unlike the unsubstantiated claims made by over-the-counter skin care products, the results of using these creams are backed by real medical science. I recommend the Obagi Nu-Derm System which uses both tretinoin cream and hydroquinone to visibly lighten hyperpigmented areas as well as the fine lines and wrinkles that are due to chronic sun exposure. More information about the Obagi Nu-Derm system can be found at my web site by following the link below.

Mitchell Schwartz, MD
South Burlington Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

A Blue Peel in itself will not correct Hyperpigmentation

a Blue Peel is an Obagi branded moderate depth TCA peel. The peel does not correct Hyperpigmentation and if done in a skin prone to Hyperpigmentation such as yourself may result in further Hyperpigmentation. A better approach but gradual is to use bleaching creams. Not glamorous but very effective. 

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 108 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.