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J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2011 Oct;25(10):1140-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-3083.2011.04130.x. Epub 2011 May 31.

Natural options for the management of hyperpigmentation.

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University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.


Facial hyperpigmented disorders are a common complaint in the adult population of all races. First-line topical treatments are usually hydroquinone or topical retinoids, which can cause irritant reactions. The need for better tolerated, yet effective, skin lightening agents that could be utilized by a wider population has led to the investigation of several potential botanical/natural compounds. There are currently many topical cosmetic formulations claiming skin depigmenting effects. A few of the ingredients (e.g. soy) are supported not only by in vitro results but also by a body of controlled clinical efficacy studies; other ingredients, instead, are backed mostly by in vitro data and a few small uncontrolled clinical studies. In this review, we describe the most common natural ingredients used for skin depigmentation and their major published studies: soy, licorice extracts, kojic acid, arbutin, niacinamide, N-acetylglucosamine, COFFEEBERRY(™) and green tea.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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