Should I spot treat Hydroquinone/Retinol on my middle eastern skin to lighten hyper-pigmented acne scars?

I'm 44 and of Persian descent. I don't know if I should be putting product all over my skin or applying spot treatment only.

Doctor Answers 4

Hydroquinone/Retinol Application

I would recommend application to the entire face because brightening/bleaching creams don’t actually bleach the skin. They inhibit the over productions of melanin that causes the pigmentation, by lowering the melanin the pigmentation will lighten over time.

By applying these types of products to the entire face you get improvement on the individual pigmentation and get an overall brightening of your complexion. The continued use will also help prevent future pigmentation and improve your tone and texture. When using these products it is important to also use an SPF of 50 every morning.

However, if you are still acne prone I would not recommend the use of Hydroquinone as it can cause acne prone skin to break out.Consult with a Board Certified Dermatologist to see which cream(s) is best for your skin type.


Irvine Dermatologic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Should I spot treat hydroquinone/retinol on my middle eastern skin to lighten hyper pigmented acne scars?

The hyper pigmentation that can result after acne can be treated successfully with a combination of hydroquinone and retinol. You can spot treat areas. But you may improve your results and your skin tone by Using the products all over your face.

Suzanne Kim Doud Galli, MD, PhD, FACS
Washington Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Fading darks spots in middle eastern skin

First, make sure to see your dermatologist to treat any ongoing acne issues, and to provide the optimal treatment options for you. Hydroquinone, with or without retinol or tretinoin can be helpful, as can other ingredients such as glycolic acid, vitamin C, and more. Your dermatologist will determine which products to use; all of these ingredients are potentially irritating, so you want to start them slowly under medical supervision.

Benjamin Barankin, MD
Toronto Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

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Middle Eastern Skin and hyperpigmentation

Many patients come to the office to treat hyperpigmentation, acne, or acne scars.  I particularly like hydroquinones with retinols or retinoids to treat the discoloration.  This treatment will also help prevent future outbreaks.  I like to combine a topical Vitamin C serum as well since this helps with the irritation and the hyperpigmentation as well.  As always please find a board certified dermatologist for the best cosmetic result.

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.