Cosmelan Melasma Peel

The Cosmelan system is a dermatologist-grade peel that addresses melasma & other types of pigmentation to create a clearer complexion. Cosmelan is a two-part chemical peel that consists of the in-office application of Cosmelan followed by home maintenance skincare including the Cosmelan 2 depigmenting cream.

Recovery

7 - 14 days

Results

7+ days

Treatment Time

30 minutes

Aftercare

SPF + Cosmelan 2

Treatment science score

The Science of Cosmelan

  • This peel is best for melasma pigmentation
  • Part 1 of Cosmelan involves an in-office peel
  • This peel has a recovery of 7 to 14 days
  • The Cosmelan depigmentation cycle lasts 3 months
  • Part 2 of the Cosmelan system involves at home use of Cosmelan 2
  • Cosmelan can also fade pigment due to age spots & dark post inflammatory marks
  • The second part of the process maintains & amplifies the result from the peel
  • Home use included in the system is not associated with any recovery time

The Cosmelan Peel is one of the fastest ways to treat melasma pigmentation, however it is associated with a prolonged recovery of one to two weeks. Regardless, it can be useful for patients wanting immediate results with only one treatment.

What is Cosmelan?

Cosmelan is a novel peeling system for melasma that involves 2 steps- an in-office chemical peel mask, followed by an at home treatment program. It has a high efficacy rate for treating it, albeit a long recovery phase of up to 2 weeks.

What is involved with the Cosmelan system for melasma?

Step one starts with an application of the mask-peel in the office. This solution is washed off at home after 8 to 12 hours. It takes up to 14 days to recover from this first step.

Step two, day 14 to 3 months. Home skin care with the Cosmelan 2. This next phase amplifies the results from step one.

What conditions does Cosmelan treat?

Melasma is the standout condition that Cosmelan treats well. Other conditions that can respond to this peel include sunspots, age spots, dark acne scarring, & post inflammatory hyperpigmentation.

How good is it for melasma?

Cosmelan is a highly effective treatment for melasma pigmentation with an efficacy rate of 60-70%. It sits below the efficacy of Picosure Pro & medical management, however Cosmelan is a once off peel, with a downtime of up to two weeks.

Melasma treatment method

Downtime / recovery

Number of sessions

Efficacy / costs

Cosmelan 7-14 days 1 +++/$$$
Pico + medical 0 days 4 ++++/$$$

When do we recommend the Cosmelan peel?

Cosmelan has a narrow window of application. It is best employed for –

  • Superficial or mixed melasma
  • For patients with an allocated downtime of up to 14 days
  • For non-sensitive skin types

What results can I expect?

Pigment starts to improve at the one week mark & will continue to improve over the next few weeks. Maximal results are seen at 6 -12 weeks.

*Not all cases of melasma will respond to Cosmelan, it has an efficacy rate of up to 70%. Cosmelan has a long safety record with over one million cases treated worldwide.

How long do the results last?

Results following Cosmelan vary considerably, in some cases like post inflammatory hyperpigmentation, the results are permanent, whilst for melasma, remission periods range from 6 months to 5 years.

Limiting UV exposure & maintaining a prescribed at home maintenance program will help you achieve a clear, radiant & even toned-pigment free complexion.

How many sessions are required?

Results can be seen after just one session, visible as early as 7 days after the peel. Over the next few months your skin will continue to improve.

For stubborn cases of pigmentation, you may require an additional Cosmelan peel at the 6 month mark.

What is the recovery following the peel?

Recovery takes 7-14 days & goes like this-

Day 0-3: red, warm, irritate skin
Day 3-9: peeling, flaky & dry
Day 9+: less scale, less red, skin recovering

What is the Dermamelan peel?

Dermamelan is a supercharged Cosmelan peel. It has the same ingredients as Cosmelan but is 30% more powerful. The recovery period is twice as long, lasting 2-4 weeks. The results are marginally better in some, but not all cases.

What sets The Melasma Clinic apart from other Cosmelan peel providers?

At The Melasma Clinic we give you options for removing pigment. We are experts in all forms of peeling, including TCA, AHA, Cosmelan, Dermamelan & retinoic acid peels. We also have a selection of lasers that can treat melasma pigment without any downtime.

Cosmelan is a good option for patients who can take up to 2 weeks off, however you may want to discuss other treatment options with our clinicians. We individually tailor treatments for every one of our patients.

How does the Cosmelan peel program work?

The Cosmelan system combines active ingredients with proven scientific value. These ingredients block pigment or melanin production. Cosmelan also inhibits the formation of new pigments. In more detail, it works by-

  • Accelerates epidermal turnover to remove the accumulation of melanin pigment
  • Reduces the amount of melanin formation
  • Blocks the transfer of melanin from the melanocyte to the skin cells
  • Blocks the migration of pigment to epidermal layers of the skin
  • Inhibits the synthesis of melanin within melanocytes

How do I use Cosmelan 2, following the Cosmelan peel?

Cosmelan 2 is the stage 2 of the Cosmelan program. This cream contains pigment correctors to be used as part of your at home routine. Our team will guide you as to when to transition to the second part of your routine.

Cosmelan 2 can be used once or twice daily, depending on how sensitive your skin is. Our clinicians will monitor your progress & guide you accordingly. If you have skin irritation, we will modulate your application to ensure your treatments are comfortable, yet still effective.

Can I use Cosmelan if I have sensitive skin?

Cosmelan is not advisable if you have sensitive skin as the peel is irritating as is Cosmelan 2 (contains skin acids such as kojic & ascorbic in addition to retinoids).

For patients with sensitive skin, we prefer to use pico lasers & medical therapy. Complex cases are managed by our dermatologist.

How do I maintain the results I have achieved?

The Cosmelan kit has enough for 3 months of treatment, however we know that melasma is recurrent, here is how we solve this problem-

  • Option of continuing Cosmelan 2
  • Transition to our laser or peel program
  • Medical therapy by our clinicians to maintain result

We tailor each & every patient according to their melasma pattern, lifestyle choices & skin goals.

Is laser a better option than Cosmelan for melasma?

Picosure laser can clear up melasma pigmentation within a few short weeks. Results are seen as early as one week after treatment; however best results take 8-10 weeks. The upside of the laser is that it has no recovery time & provides a higher clearance of melasma.

Treatment

Recovery

Number of sessions

Efficacy / costs

Picosure Pro 0 days 4 80+% effective
Cosmelan 14 days 1 60+% effective

Can Cosmelan be used to treat other areas of skin darkening?

Yes, Cosmelan can be used on areas such as the back, chest, elbows & knees. It is not recommended for flexural areas such as the underarm, groin or genital areas.

Whilst this peel can be used to treat dark elbows & knees, the efficacy rate is low.

What are the side effects of Cosmelan?

Side effects are different from expected effects (peeling & recovery of about one week). Rarely side effects can occur & include-

  • Allergies to active ingredients of Cosmelan
  • Melasma rebound
  • Prolonged redness & itching
  • Textural changes post peeling
  • Blotchy skin

Can the Cosmelan peel be used on all skin types?

Yes. Darker skin types will require a longer leave on period compared to lighter skin types.

Does Cosmelan contain hydroquinone?

In Australia, Cosmelan is free from hydroquinone, however in other parts of the world hydroquinone can be formulated with this peel. This is termed Cosmelan MD.

The active ingredients of Cosmelan include kojic & ascorbic acids in addition to a retinoid.

Your clinician will guide you through your specific protocol & pigment corrector. This only applies to potentially irritating agents, it is not a blanket guide for all topicals/pigment correctors 
.
Still sensitive, even if short contact? 
.
1️⃣Use half the amount (dilute in moisturizer) 
.
2️⃣ moisturiser before & after
. 
3️⃣Titrate use, ie. skip a day….or three
.
4️⃣Test spot for allergy (very rare, skin irritation more common). Use a tiny amount, apply to the inner arm, photograph 📸the reaction taking note of the time it takes to develop irritation. Show this to your treating clinician to interpret & they will guide you. Irritation is different from allergic reactions💯
.
👉🙏🏼Addition of topicals will be guided by your treating clinician, based upon your skin sensitivity, current topical use & treatment (peels vs lasers). Timing is important 
.
The Melasma Clinic
Brisbane | Sydney🇦🇺
.
#themelasmaclinic #melasma #dermatologistsydney

Your clinician will guide you through your specific protocol & pigment corrector. This only applies to potentially irritating agents, it is not a blanket guide for all topicals/pigment correctors
.
Still sensitive, even if short contact?
.
1️⃣Use half the amount (dilute in moisturizer)
.
2️⃣ moisturiser before & after
.
3️⃣Titrate use, ie. skip a day….or three
.
4️⃣Test spot for allergy (very rare, skin irritation more common). Use a tiny amount, apply to the inner arm, photograph 📸the reaction taking note of the time it takes to develop irritation. Show this to your treating clinician to interpret & they will guide you. Irritation is different from allergic reactions💯
.
👉🙏🏼Addition of topicals will be guided by your treating clinician, based upon your skin sensitivity, current topical use & treatment (peels vs lasers). Timing is important
.
The Melasma Clinic
Brisbane | Sydney🇦🇺
.
#themelasmaclinic #melasma #dermatologistsydney
...

Dr Vee Mang is an Australian trained physician with extensive experience in skin, having worked in the field of dermatology. She’s a cosmetic physician who works with Dr Van Park & Dr Davin Lim in Woollahra, Sydney
.
👉Her interests: Pigmentation, neurotoxin, acne management, anti-aging
.
📖Bookings: Open for consultation, send your expression of interest at our website, melasmaclinic.com.au Yes, an expression of interest is required for the Sydney clinic. 
.
The Melasma Clinic
Brisbane | Sydney🇦🇺
.
#themelasmaclinic #melasma

Dr Vee Mang is an Australian trained physician with extensive experience in skin, having worked in the field of dermatology. She’s a cosmetic physician who works with Dr Van Park & Dr Davin Lim in Woollahra, Sydney
.
👉Her interests: Pigmentation, neurotoxin, acne management, anti-aging
.
📖Bookings: Open for consultation, send your expression of interest at our website, melasmaclinic.com.au Yes, an expression of interest is required for the Sydney clinic.
.
The Melasma Clinic
Brisbane | Sydney🇦🇺
.
#themelasmaclinic #melasma
...

Dr Van Park is the co-founder of The Melasma Clinic. She’s a key opinion leader in the field of aesthetic injectables with her innovative & novel injection techniques with neuromodulators & soft tissue injectables
.
👉Rumor has it that Davin Lim fixed her melasma & hence why she founded this clinic. 
.
📖Bookings: She’s closed her books, but occasional consults may arise 
.
The Melasma Clinic
Brisbane | Sydney🇦🇺
.
#themelasmaclinic #drvanpark #dvp #clinicdvp #cosmeticphysician

Dr Van Park is the co-founder of The Melasma Clinic. She’s a key opinion leader in the field of aesthetic injectables with her innovative & novel injection techniques with neuromodulators & soft tissue injectables
.
👉Rumor has it that Davin Lim fixed her melasma & hence why she founded this clinic.
.
📖Bookings: She’s closed her books, but occasional consults may arise
.
The Melasma Clinic
Brisbane | Sydney🇦🇺
.
#themelasmaclinic #drvanpark #dvp #clinicdvp #cosmeticphysician
...

Davin Lim is a technician & co-founder. He comes up with the diagnosis, management plan & settings, nothing more. He fixed Van’s melasma & the rest is history☄️
.
👉In store: working on AI for ‘virtual Davin’, namely programmed AI bot for Q and A, coupled with AI video & virtual voice. Bot Q & A will be released in the next few weeks, virtual video & voice within 6 months (hopefully)
.
📖Bookings: handful of appointments available in Sydney every month, expression of interest via melasmaclinic.com.au 
.
🏡The Melasma Clinic
Brisbane | Sydney🇦🇺
.
#davinlim #drdavinlim #themelasmaclinic #dermatologistsydney #dermatologyclinicsydney

Davin Lim is a technician & co-founder. He comes up with the diagnosis, management plan & settings, nothing more. He fixed Van’s melasma & the rest is history☄️
.
👉In store: working on AI for ‘virtual Davin’, namely programmed AI bot for Q and A, coupled with AI video & virtual voice. Bot Q & A will be released in the next few weeks, virtual video & voice within 6 months (hopefully)
.
📖Bookings: handful of appointments available in Sydney every month, expression of interest via melasmaclinic.com.au
.
🏡The Melasma Clinic
Brisbane | Sydney🇦🇺
.
#davinlim #drdavinlim #themelasmaclinic #dermatologistsydney #dermatologyclinicsydney
...

IPL is awesome for non-melasma pigmentation but is often a cause of flare ups for melasma pigment. The reason is the excessive heat that is often associated with IPL. Exception to this rule is the use of exact filters in correct pulse widths with co-prescription of pigment inhibitors- medical therapy. It can be done, but the threshold for error is very thin💯
.
👉This patient: treated with old fashioned dermal toning with nano-lasers, Spectra by Lutronic, in addition to medical therapy
.
📆👉Timeline: 10 weeks. Pico lasers offer faster resolution, if performed correctly. 
.
Dr Davin Lim
Dermatologist
Brisbane | Sydney🇦🇺
.
#drdavinlim #IPL #IPLtreatment #melasma #melasmacure #melasmasurvivor #melasmaskincare #themelasmaclinic #sydneydermatologist

IPL is awesome for non-melasma pigmentation but is often a cause of flare ups for melasma pigment. The reason is the excessive heat that is often associated with IPL. Exception to this rule is the use of exact filters in correct pulse widths with co-prescription of pigment inhibitors- medical therapy. It can be done, but the threshold for error is very thin💯
.
👉This patient: treated with old fashioned dermal toning with nano-lasers, Spectra by Lutronic, in addition to medical therapy
.
📆👉Timeline: 10 weeks. Pico lasers offer faster resolution, if performed correctly.
.
Dr Davin Lim
Dermatologist
Brisbane | Sydney🇦🇺
.
#drdavinlim #IPL #IPLtreatment #melasma #melasmacure #melasmasurvivor #melasmaskincare #themelasmaclinic #sydneydermatologist
...

Dermamelan & Cosmelan peels have arrived 💯
.
👉Novel peels: are a good option for primarily epidermal melasma and superficial pigmentation, albeit a downtime of 6-12 days 
.
👌🏻Employ peels based upon diagnostic features of pigment and allowed recovery of the patient 
.
🏡The Melasma Clinic Sydney-Brisbane 🇦🇺
#melasma #cosmelan2 #cosmelanmask #cosmelanpeel

Dermamelan & Cosmelan peels have arrived 💯
.
👉Novel peels: are a good option for primarily epidermal melasma and superficial pigmentation, albeit a downtime of 6-12 days
.
👌🏻Employ peels based upon diagnostic features of pigment and allowed recovery of the patient
.
🏡The Melasma Clinic Sydney-Brisbane 🇦🇺
#melasma #cosmelan2 #cosmelanmask #cosmelanpeel
...

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What types of melasma are resistant to Cosmelan peels?

Though effective in most cases of melasma, Cosmelan has a failure rate of 30-40%. Certain patterns of melasma are more resistant to treatment, including –

  • Dermal melasma
  • Erythrotelangiectatic melasma
  • Rebound melasma, especially microneedling
  • Jawline melasma

Understanding the level of pigmentation & melasma subtype will improve your chances of success.

Should I discontinue my skin care before the Cosmelan Peel?

It is important to stop all retinoids (retinol, retinaldehyde, tretinoin), alpha hydroxy acids & other exfoliants 7 days before the Cosmelan peel. Using these products can increase the penetration of ‘actives’, which may prolong the recovery process.

When should I restart my skincare routine post peel?

Post Cosmelan peel, you will be transitioning the Cosmelan 2 program which entails the use of products to be used at home. The key ingredients for this second stage include Kojic acid, ascorbic acid, & a retinoid. Refrain from your own skincare line when using Cosmelan 2.

The Melasma Clinic difference

Our specialist clinic can effectively treat pigmentation in all skin types, employing bespoke treatment protocols that consist of skin care actives, picosecond lasers, clinical peels & in some cases prescriptive medication. With 20 years of dermatology behind us, we can manage all forms of pigmentation, from melasma, through to post inflammatory pigment.

Dr Davin Lim

645K subscribers

How to treat PIGMENTATION

If I can identify the cause of pigmentation, chances are I can treat it. This can only be achieved with careful real time examination…

More of our mostFrequently asked questions

Can Cosmelan make melasma worse?

How does Cosmelan compare to alpha hydroxy acid peels?

How does Cosmelan compare with Fraxel?

What about Cosmelan vs microneedling for melasma?

What about Cosmelan vs TCA peels for melasma?

Can I just use the Cosmelan 2 without the Cosmelan mask?

What is Cosmelan MD Depigmentation treatment?

What sunscreen is included in the Cosmelan pack?

Can I do Cosmelan at home?

Can Cosmelan be used when I am pregnant?

Does Cosmelan treat wrinkles?

Does Cosmelan cure melasma?

A SummaryMelasma treatments with Cosmelan Peels

Dr Davin Lim | Dermatologist
The Melasma Clinic, Brisbane | Sydney

Though a useful treatment for melasma, the Cosmelan & Dermamelan peel systems are hampered by two main issues, firstly the downtime of 7 to 14 days, secondly the lower efficacy rates as compared to pico lasers & medical management.

We disagree with the literature regarding the near 100% efficacy with Meso Aesthetics self-funded research papers. We do, however, agree that this peeling system is one of the easiest to master, namely clean the face, put on a mask, and wash off in 10 hours.