Melasma is a common skin disorder that causes brown patches to appear on the skin. Common causes of melasma are hormonal imbalances, pregnancy, sun exposure and the use of birth control pills and other medications. Treating and even removing melasma are possible.

Things You'll Need

Use a skin-care cleanser and moisturizer that contains around 10 percent glycolic acid; this will help the skin to shed pigmented layers and condition the skin for further treatment.

Get a professional chemical peel every week or two; this will help to remove deeper layers of the pigmented skin.

Have a series of 6 to 8 micro-dermabrasion treatments done by a professional, one treatment per week. This will help to remove any lingering melasma spots and help to smooth and brighten the skin’s tone and complexion.

Use a bleaching agent such as hydroquinone only as a last resort. Hydroquinone contains chemicals and has some side effects, one of which may cause even worse darkening of the skin.


  • Be sure to use sunscreen to protect the skin from further or new damage when removing melasma, as the skin will be more susceptible to burning during the above treatments.

  • If 10 percent glycolic acid cleanser or moisturizer is too strong for the skin at first, start with a lower concentration, such as 5 or even 3 percent.