Meladerm and Alpha-Arbutin Side Effects
Posted October 16, 2009on:
Q: Does Alpha – Arbutin, one of the main components of Meladerm Advanced Pigment Reducing Complex, related to hydroquinone, has adverse affect on the skin?
A: The source of Arbutin is Bear Berry (Uva Ursi). Bear Berry is completely natural unlike hydroquinone which is synthetic. Arbutin is also present in many foods derived from plants. Under alkaline conditions Arbutin can be converted in hydroquinone. It is though not possible to have such a scenario on the skin. In the human body gastric fluids are alkaline, but for it to react with Arbutin, the same has to be taken orally to enter the intestines. Meladerm constitutes of Alpha-Arbutin which is the more stable and trustworthy form than the frequently used (beta) Arbutin. It does not easily hydrolyze into hydroquinone.
Arbutin does not carry any of the side effects exhibited by hydroquinone. They have different constituents and work differently on the skin to lighten it. Arbutin regulates melanin preparation and hydroquinone can be cytotoxic to melanocytes. Moreover FDA suggests non-usage of hydroquinone and has been rightly not been included in Meladerm. It can be concluded that in ordinary circumstances Alpha-Arbutin is safe for the skin.