True of False: Can Castor Oil Help Treat Melasma?
Doctor Answers 3
False until proven in studies to reduce melasma.
Melasma can not be completely cured, however effective treatment are possible. This is because your skin is extremely sensitive to UV and even the smallest amount can stimulate your pigment cells to produce colour. The mainstay of treatment is strict UV protection- hats, sunglasses and SPF every 4 hours.
I prefer to use a combination of creams and laser for melasma. Hydroquinone can be used (5-8%), along with vitamin A creams. I usually start my patients on laser (low dose Q switch or Picosure) a few weeks after they commence on creams. Another laser I use is the Clear and Brilliant in the Permea setting combined with creams.
In some cases I combine glycolic AHA peels, and in other cases I use a tablet called Tranexamic acid to help. Melasma treatments should be tailored to each patient.
All the best, Dr Davin Lim. Laser, surgical and aesthetic dermatologist. Brisbane, Australia
Topical products for melasma
Thank you for your question. Melasma is a condition characterized by the appearace of dark patches on the skin. I have not heard of castor oil being used for melasma treatment. Common topical products used to treat melasma include hydroquinone, retinoic acid, salicylic acid, glycolic acid, lactic acid, vitamins C and E, kojic acid, alpha-arbutin, and licorice extract. Please consult with a doctor for specific recommendations. Good luck!