Skin discoloration is an all too common fact of aging. It's caused by a combination of factors including sun damage, and can make skin look prematurely aged. Traditional treatment was the use of hydroquinones, which have since fallen out of favor since some studies show they can have a toxic effect on the body.
A new system from Syneron, a medical manufacturer specializing in dermatological lasers, promises brighter skin and a more even skin tone over all. Dermatologist Dr. Tina Alster, founding director of the Washington Institute of Dermatologic Laser Surgery and clinical professor at Georgetown University Medical Center describes, "The Advanced Skin Lightening Lotion actually contains a lotion and the bio-activator. They are divided into two chambers - one that has the active ingredient and one that's the activator, and the two combine when applied to the face." The system also has an advanced therapy night cream and face wash.
Melanozyme is the active ingredient and it is an enzyme which breaks down the darkened pigments in the skin. Many other products serve to prevent future damage, but don't do much to fix the damage that's already occurred.
Actual results of elure after 28 days
Elure is applied to the face once or twice daily and over the course of a few weeks, results become apparent. "I see a lot of people with dark spots or blotchiness of the skin, and within about three weeks there's noticeable fading of the skin," says Dr. Alster. She says that this is an improvement over many of the other skin lighteners which can be irritating to the skin.
San Diego board certified dermatologist Dr. Tess Mauricio says that Elure has been proven to be effective in studies. "At my center, we did the split face study looking at 51 Asian females and comparing Elure with a 2% hydroquinone that's available in the store and also an herbal non-hydroquinone lightening cream. We had the study patients either apply the Elure product on one side or the other two products on the other side and also a placebo."
Dr. Mauricio says they found that Elure was much more effective than the other products. She found that there is a statisticaly significant improvement in skin lightening, tone, quality and luminescence. "Elure is superior than the other products and there's definitely a lot less irritation compared to the hydroquinone product that we compared it to," says Dr. Mauricio.
Other products can over time, do more damage to the skin. Dr. Lori Brightman of the Laser & Skin Surgery Center of New York says, "After long term use, some of those bleaching creams can actually worsen pigmentation, and we don't have those risks with this new brightening product."
Another benefit of this treatment is that it can be used on the vast majority of patients. "Elure is really safe in all skin types. What you're trying to do is decrease that photodamaged or sun spot look or even the mask of pregnancy, or melasma. This new enzyme - Melanozyme - is useful for any of those circumstances," says Dr. Brightman.
Leading Dermatologists Discuss Elure
Very few side effects have been reported with Elure and patients tend to be very pleased with their results. According to Dr. Alster, "So far I haven't seen any adverse events from this procedure. I have to say that the company itself did a lot of research with this. Around 17,000 people were treated, covering a variety of skin types and sensitivities and nobody had any ill effect. I think the formulation of this is gentle enough for everybody's skin."
Dr. Mauricio advises using the product under a physician's care, though it is used at home. "It is a topical lotion that patients can use on their own at home, but it is a physician dispensed product so it is best used under a physician's guidance."
How much does Elure cost? Though pricing will vary among physicians and geographic areas, patients should expect to pay around $120 for Elure.