Ingredient Spotlight : Hydroquinone skin lightening (HQ).

What is Hydroquinone?

Hydroquinone skin lightening is an aromatic organic compound that is a type of phenol, a derivative of benzene. Widely used as a topical application in skin brightening/lightening to reduce the pigmentation of skin for over 40 years. It is a prescription only ingredient POM, and products containing hydroquinone skin lightening are only available on prescription after consultation with one of our prescribers.

What are the key benefits of Hydroquinone?

It is used to treat several skin conditions related to hyperpigmentation.  Including

  • melasma.
  • liver spots/age spots.
  • Freckles.
  • Acne scars.
  • Infammation caused by psoriasis or exczema.

How does Hydroquinone work?

It bleaches your skin by decreasing the number of melanocytes present. Melanocytes make melanin, which is what produces your skin tone. In cases of hyperpigmentation, more melanin is present due to an increase in melanocyte production. By controlling these melanocytes, your skin will become more evenly toned over time.

Can I use it every day?

It’s a tyrosinase inhibitor, in a 4% cream, HQ, can be used twice a day safely for up to 6 months. The efficacy of HQ can be enhanced with daily retinol use in conjunction.

Is there an alternative which is non prescription.

Yes creams that contains Arbutin, a bear berry plant extract that improves skin tone, lightening and evening pigmentation issues.

Which products contain it?


Obagi-C Rx C-Clarifying Serum Dry uk - Hydroquinone

Obagi-C Rx C-Clarifying Serum – 4% Hydroquinone cream

C-Clarifying Serum Oily reduces hyperpigmentation, such as dark spots and melasma, for a lighter, more even skin tone.

Obagi-C Rx C-Therapy Night Cream UK - Hydroquinone

Obagi-C Rx C-Therapy Night Cream – 4% Hydroquinone cream

C-Therapy Night Cream gradually diminishes dark spots with 4% hydroquinone and provides Vitamins C and E to your skin while you sleep.

OBAGI Nu-Derm 6 Sunfader UK - Hydroquinone

Obagi Nu-Derm 6 Sunfader – 4% Hydroquinone cream
Sunfader with SPF 15, helps to minimise uneven skin tone and brown spots. Sunfader contains 4% hydroquinone which helps to minimize uneven skin tone and brown spots.

OBAGI Nu-Derm 5 Blender UK - Hydroquinone

Obagi Nu-Derm 5 Blender – 4% Hydroquinone cream
Blender is an unique formula containing prescription HQ for the gradual lightening of hyperpigmentation, such as dark spots, sun spots, age spots, melasma, and other types of discoloration.

OBAGI Nu-Derm 3 Clear UK - Hydroquinone

Obagi Nu-Derm 3 Clear – 4% Hydroquinone cream
Clear is an effective prescription HQ treatment. Which helps correct hyperpigmentation, such as dark spots, sun spots, age spots, melasma, and other types of discoloration. Also gives a healthier-looking, more even skin tone.