How do you get rid of acne hyperpigmentation?

You can treat acne hyperpigmentation, aka “post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation” (what people usually just call acne “scars”) with hydroquinone and other skin lightening creams: kojic acid, azelaic acid, tranexamic acid, retinoids, alpha-arbutin, soy, licorice extract, among others. But it’s important to remember that those creams don’t treat the acne itself. “If a patient sees me and they just want me to treat the pigmentation related to their acne, I’m doing them a disservice by not treating their acne first,” explains Dr. Kwan, a board-certified dermatologist and the founder of Kwan Dermatology in San Francisco, CA.

So when it comes to post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, you have to address the underlying cause and then treat the pigmentation—or you can treat them concurrently.

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An area of skin, maybe a dot or a patch, that's darker or lighter than its base tone.

Also Called

Hyperpigmention, hypopigmentation, scar, freckles, melasma

Looks Like

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Frequently Found On

Neck, chest, hands, arms

Related Concerns

Learn More: Discoloration