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Hyperpigmentation & Skin of Color

By: Jennifer Linder, MD
Posted: April 7, 2011, from the April 2011 issue of GCI Magazine.

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To avoid stimulating pigment deposition, it is wise to use lower percentages of ingredients in blends to prevent melanogenesis, rather than one ingredient at a high percentage that could potentially be surface-stimulating. See Melanogenesis Inhibitors to identify which ingredients to look for when creating products for Fitzpatrick skin types IV–VI.


One of the most important steps in any skin care regimen is that of sun protection. Although dark skin has more natural protection against UV exposure, this critical step cannot be omitted. With an understanding of the more reactive state of the melanocytes in people with dark skin—along with blends of gentle, beneficial melanogenesis-inhibiting ingredients—great success can be achieved in developing products for Fitzpatrick type IV–VI consumers.


  1. (Accessed Jan 27, 2011)
  2. S Badreshia-Bansal and ZD Draelos, Insight into Skin Lightening Cosmeceuticals for Women of Color, J of Drugs in Dermatology 6 1 32–39 (2007)

Editor’s note: This article originally ran in the September 2010 issue of Skin Inc. magazine. All rights reserved.

Scottsdale, AZ-based dermatologist Jennifer Linder, MD, is the chief scientific officer for PCA Skin.