Great info as usual HV,but what about the cancer scare surrounding the use of hydroquonine?Is there any truth in that?
This is very controversial. The increased risk of cancer has only been shown mice, but never in humans. And part of this basis is from the fact that hydroquinones lower melanin production, which leaves the skin subject to the effects of the sun. But this brings up another controversy as to whether or not the sun causes cancer. The answer here is actually no. The HPV virus causes skin cancer, but sunlight activates the HPV virus.
There is concern that these synthetic hydroquinones can cause other cancers in the body, but again this is speculation.
We also have to keep in mind that there is not a singular hydroquinone, but rather this is a group of chemicals. And there are natural and synthetic versions, which can have different properties. Uva ursi for example breaks down in to two separate hydroquinones with antiseptic properties, but are not carcinogenic. In fact I remember reading back years ago that this was becoming a popular alternative to the synthetic hydroquinones in places like India.