Review: Tri-Luma Cream to lighten age spots

Tri Luma Hydroquinone Cream

I’ve been very careful while using the Tri-Luma Hydroquinone Cream that my dermatologist has prescribed to me last month.   And since yesterday, after seven weeks of usage, I stopped applying anymore of it on my face because I noticed that some of my spider veins were more obvious than usual, which is a sure sign that my skin have become thinner. 

No more than eight weeks of usage for Tri-Luma
Now, Tri-Luma Cream should not be used for longer than eight weeks, as the steroid component may cause the skin to become thinner.  However, I was very cautious and examined my facial skin very closely on a daily period while using this product because it contains 4% hydroquinone.  Actually, my dermatologist didn’t tell me to stop using this after eight weeks.  Rather, I found out through my own reading on the Net and this just goes to show why we can’t always depend on advices of the so-called experts but be proactive in terms of reading up and doing our research as well.

Observe your skin while using a product with hydroquinone
For those who are new to hydroquinone, this is a skin bleaching ingredient to reduce pigmented age spots and blemishes.  Tri-Luma Cream specifically, has been said to be effective for those with Melasma.  I was careful with this product because I’ve long read that hydroquinone may act as a carcinogen or cancer-causing chemical, although its cancer-causing properties have yet to be proved in humans.

However, my main concern was that hydroquinone also has been linked with the medical condition known as ochronosis in which the skin becomes dark and thick.  And my concern was compounded by the fact that most products only contain 1.5% to 2% hydroquinone but here, I’m given with one containing 4%.  I was prepared to take the risk only because I know my skin condition.  It is fairly resistant.  I’ve tried products containing 2% hydroquinone once but it didn’t do a thing for my spots so I thought I’ll try this.  And the results?

Considerable lightening of my age spots
Tri-Luma Hydroquinone Cream did lighten up some of my age spots considerably, but none of them were erased entirely.  I also need to qualify that I’m also using a vitamin C topical so that may have aided the lightening process.  I suppose some of my spots could disappear if I continue using it but no way am I going to take the risk of thinning out my skin and suffering worst consequences.  Thick skin is actually a good thing!

So would I recommend others to try this product?  
I’m not prepared to recommend anyone to use this because this is a very potent cream.  Just look at the picture I took and noticed the “rusty” color on the opening and the cap?  But if you’re like me and you want to try this, then be selective on where you apply this and do examine your face carefully everyday.  You MUST use a sunscreen with good UVA and UVB protection while using this cream and don’t use it on a prolonged basis.

As for me, I’m going to stay away from hydroquinone-based products for my face but I may start using the cream to try erase some spots on my hands. 


  1. gia says:

    Tri-Luma works and is made of three composites. The rusty color is a normal reaction of hydroquinone as it ages. Always midly and gradually use the cream and anyone should be fine. Unless you have super delicate and sensitive skin (consult doctor).

    Gia: It did work to some extent for me, but I don’t think I want to try it anymore…

  2. Lucy Forester says:

    I purchased the large tube of Tri-Luma 2 weeks ago but eventhough I have been careful in how to aply it I develope an alergy every time I put it in my face. Is there anyway I can return this product? I purchased this cream through my local drug store becouse it was prescribed by my Dr. after developing some dark spots post CO2 laser treatment. Please reply. Thank you, Lucy Forester

    Lucy: I’m based in Singapore and have no idea what’s the return policy in the store you purchased your item from. You have to check with them. Btw, I’m just a normal consumer and not representing Tri-Luma.

  3. P.W. says:

    I am a 31 yr old woman and i have sufeered from moderate acne off and on since I was in high school. Once i finnaly got all my acne cleared up I started using triluma cream to fade the acne scars. It is the best. My face was completely blemish free after 8 weekes of treatment. i have been using it now for a year off and on and it still works. it also mkes your skin glow and line/wrinkle free!

  4. sesame says:

    If it works for you, it’s great. I’m surprised that it makes your skin glow and wrinkle free though. Since it is completely blemish free, why continue? This is quite a strong cream…

  5. Maria Olsson says:

    Hi! I am a russian who has migrated from Sweden to the USA. I have developed melasma (dark spots) under my eyes and on my forehead. I visited a dermatologist in the USA, FL about 1 month ago. He prescribed me Tri Luma that contains 4% of Hudroquinone. Have you ever read about Hydroquinone?- I asked him. As I investigated it I found the information that hydroquinone has been banned in many european countries including France, Sweden and Russia etc, for concerns about increased cancer risk.The FDA admitted that the risk of using the drug is not known and more testing needs to be done.In fact, the FDA also warned that hydroquinone has been linked to a condition that disfigures the skin. Anyway,I tried the cream, a sample that the doctor gave to me. He prescribed to use it twice a week – Mondays and Fridays. It was terrible!!! I used it just once a week on my pigment spots because my skin got red, burning and after 1 week it was peeling. Some doctors prescribe to use it once, twice a day!!! I put it on only once a week. Ok, after 1 month, 4 treatments I have the result: my pigment spots have not been improved at all. Moreover, the skin is burnt and now I have very obvious dark red-brown spots. I really look terrible. I can’t put on any sunscreen because the skin is damaged by Tri Luma. I am so happy that I didn’t buy the full size cream which costs $200 and the insurance doesn’t cover it. I don’t want to buy cancer for $200. Thanks. I’ve also contacted russian and swedish doctors. They’ve forbade to use it strongly!!! They’ve suggested to use natural products such as juice of lemon, parcley, put camomile teabags on dark spots, oatmeal etc… and of course, avoid the Sun. Please be aware, read more information online.

  6. rosella boyd says:

    HI my name is rose,i used triluma coz my dermatologist precribed me one,after a few days that using it,ive noticed that its kinda burning &a red spot on my face,now its already been 4 weeks &the red spot still wont go away, what can i do to make that go away?pls help,,

  7. rosella boyd says:

    I dnt recommend this product to anyone dnt take any risk using this product,its not good,its just goin to make your face worst,

  8. sesame says:

    I think you should go back to the dermatologist who prescribed you for advice and you should not use the cream anymore.

  9. Corona says:

    Tri-luma is horrible used it for 2 and a half months and did not see any positve results. In my opinion it just made my melasma darker. I stopped using it. Going back to cosmelan had great results with that until they changed the formula on the C2 cream. Will be trying the new cosmelan md it’s suppose to be like the original formula but with better and faster results. Take my advice Tri-luma does not work!!!!!!!

  10. SJC girl says:

    My dermatologist prescribed Tri-Luma for several areas of melasma on my face. The tube was quite expensive and not covered by insurance. And having been in the medical field for my entire career I was surprised to read in the patient information that there has been some evidence of carcinogenity in lab animals. Probably the reason why it is banned in some European countries. Personally I will pursue less risky options to treat my melasma…like alpha arbutin and/or Kojic Acid. This product is just a little too scary to suit me.

  11. sesame says:

    Yes, it’s better to avoid using this altogether. Luckily I didn’t have too much issues while using it but I wouldn’t touch it again.

  12. Tonet says:

    I used this product after my glycolic peel. I just dab a little amount to the dark spots once every night and it works wonder. I also take vitamin C daily.

    Then, by day, I put a Legere BB Cream and the micro peel on my face is not visible at all.

  13. Zin Mio says:

    I wanna know where we can buy Tri-Luma in singapore without doctor prescription.

  14. sesame says:

    I don’t think you can get it without prescription.

  15. Feeling younger says:

    I am so shocked at all the negative responses on here. I did not know about the cancer possibilities of this cream. Yet the results for me were great. I used it once a day at night on a very big brown spot on my left cheek bone and a few other small really dark spots on my face and after a few weeks it got smaller and lighter. There were times when it would be a little red yet nothing terrible and it would be dry and peel. That seems pretty normal its getting rid of that layer of brown dead skin. If used carefully I do not believe there is any real danger. I used many other creams for weeks & months and never saw any results. Big waste of my time & money!

  16. sesame says:

    I guess the performance differs according to different skin types. But it’s better to be aware of the danger of using such a product. Long term usage is definitely not advisable.

  17. Ozana says:

    I’m so happy that I found a real review of Tri-luma. I’ve tried 2% hydroquinone and Retin-A and even laser and it kind of worked on the small brown spots. But not at all on a larger patch/melasma that I have right in the middle of my forehead. I was hoping to try Tri-luma. My dermatologist read really good reviews about it. She can’t prescribe it here in Switzerland but she said that I should try to get it from the USA. But now you say that it did not do any real good, I mean I expect from it to really erase these big patches. So yours did not go away??? Thanks.

  18. sesame says:

    No, not really. Plus, it’s not good to use on a long term. I know some people had success with it but it really depends on your skin conditions, It might work better for those with melasma for mine was hyperpigmentation spots.

  19. Claudia says:

    I noticed that my skin around my dark spot got lighter than my normal skin tone! Thats just worse…I think it makes the dark spot more noticable now. Is this a temporary side effect or will it just be permanent?

  20. sesame says:

    It might be temporary when you stop using the product.

  21. sagar says:

    yeh I do agree with the above comments it worked for me .I used many creams but this cream worked for me

  22. Tina says:

    Can anyone share some of your old tri luma with me. I purchased the new cream that just came back on the market which does not work well like before. If you have just a little left over from the old tube before it was taken off the market, please call and send it to me. or call me at# 704 492 3891…. does not matter about the tube being old, I just want the same results as before which worked well before taking off the market. I’m thinking there has been some ingredients remove from the tri luma before placing it back onto the market. I still have the new tube and I don’t want it because i see no results.
    feed backs please commit….,

  23. nouvia says:

    I’m an African American trying to get lighter skin ,I’m really dark after I had my baby ,will thus cream work for me?

  24. Shasha says:

    I am a mid-40s Singaporean Chinese lady. I personally tried alot of ways to get rid of my dark brown spots on my face cause I am quite fair so those dark spots look really obvious and also it does not conceal well even when I used some concealer on them.

    Tried the baking soda powder paste, tried castor oil, tried frankincense essential oil and lemon essential oil, lane labs sunspot cream, etc. All failed to get rid of my dark spot and finally triluma cream is the one that helps to significantly reduce the pigment and the size of the dark spot.

    I am aware of the 8weeks max usage per treatment course due to the possible carcinogenic ingredient as mentioned in the Internet. I managed to complete right to the 7th week cause I didn’t want to go to the max for both my cheek areas. I saw like 75% improvement on the dark spots. It is true that it doesn’t get rid of the dark spots completely. So I am left with 25% to do spot treatment currently.

    I only applied once nightly whereas daytime I will use my own anti aging blend (includes frankincense essential oil (because it helps to repair DNA and also prevent skin cancer), helichrysum, and etc).

    One thing I found is during the 7weeks treatment, if I expose myself to sunlight without adequate sunblock especially I found that the treated spots are more darker…. So that’s explained why my improvement is rated at 75% otherwise my improvement is rated at 85% if I do not go out at all. So be aware that a great sunscreen is very important should you use triluma.

    Oh yes, I do become more fairer and yes it does give me temporary glow. At times I do itch on some of the treated areas. Other than that, I do not have any side effects.

    Hope my review helps ?

  25. Lear says:

    Shasha, I’m a Singaporean too. Many many years ago I got the cream from a dermatologist but it was costly because at that time, I happened to know some GP doctors carried this cream too, I only paid the GP consultation which is about S$20 (a dermatologist’s consultation at less S$70), and the cream around S$98++ (a small tube).

    May I know where you get the cream from? I realize not all dermatologist carry this cream. It would be a great help if you could point me a direction.

  26. Sue Aleen says:

    Hi sesame. Have you heard about meladerm for pigmentation treatment? Can you do some review for this product. Lack of review for asian women online about this. Btw hi from M’sia 😊

  27. Sesame says:

    Hi Sue, thanks for raising this product to my attention. I have come across the brand but haven’t taken note of it in particular. Did a quick search and found some interesting active ingredients that help with skin brightening but definitely haven’t used it to be able to review it.

  28. Melody says:

    I am 63 yrs old. Just recently i used lemon juice to lighten my small dark patches but to my horror after a week i suddenly see large patches of darken spots on my skin.I went to see a dermatologist n was told those patches are melasma.I was given Tri,-Luna creme to apply. my dark melasma are still there but the area around it pinkish.I used for 2 weeks but don’t see much improvement instead some of my light age spots are turning darker instead.Shd continue using the creme? I know the pinkish spots disappear when I stop using the creme.I am waiting to return next week to see my dermatologist again.

  29. Sesame says:

    You should stop. The cream can aggravate. Are you using sunscreen to protect your skin?

  30. Maryam says:

    Hello, I am 38 year old iranian with very light skin and have melasma on my upper lip. I have receiced triluma from my friend and applying it since a few days! I feel its working on my melasma, but my skin is burning and became red! ? i will stop using it for now. What can I do that the redness goes away? It looks terrible!!


  31. Cyrus says:

    Hello i am from singapore and i was wondering if anyone knows where i can get the cream from.
    If you do have any information feel free to contact me at +65 9451 8860

  32. Wong says:

    Are there natural creams that could lighten dark spots on my skin?

    I heard Crystal Tomatoe is good. For your comments please.

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