New and Improved Treatment for Dark Knuckles (Science -Based)


A word from the author: let’s face it, having dark knuckles comes with a stigma. There is a tendency for people to associate dark knuckles with skin bleaching, hence, self-hate. On the contrary, dark knuckles are caused by a host of factors including: skin redundancy, genetics, exposure to harsh chemicals, dead skin cells etc. If I’m being honest, I would have to agree with the fact that dark knuckles are sometimes exacerbated by the use of skin lightening/bleaching creams. Frankly, I don’t care as much for what left you with an unusually pigmented knuckle as I do about helping you get rid of it. To accomplish this, I have committed to constantly searching, researching, tweaking and updating my regime.For me, It’s become a goal and a driving passion. –Rita

Products you will need:

Hydroquinone over 5%: http://bit.ly/1M0VXgc or KNUCKLE CREAMhttp://www.ebay.com/itm/291674327682?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649

10-12% AHA moisturizer: http://amzn.to/1miqZpZ  and

Tretinoin: http://bit.ly/1OeJE0D

Glycolic peel, 50–70% (preferred): http://amzn.to/1JAHOl1 this should be done at three-week intervals.  

TCA Peelhttp://amzn.to/1MQa2Z2

Broad spectrum sunscreen: http://amzn.to/1M0VeLS 


Screen Shot 2014-10-06 at 3.11.07 PM

Pretreat the knuckles with a combination of 

Hydroquinone over 5%: http://bit.ly/1M0VXgc, or

Dark knuckle serum: http://ebay.to/29cONqK

Dark knuckle soap: http://ebay.to/29dNWWu

  10-12% AHA moisturizer: http://amzn.to/1miqZpZ  and Tretinoin: http://bit.ly/1OeJE0D this should carry on for several weeks (about 3-6 weeks. Generally, the longer the better).

A word about hydroquinone: there was some controversy a few years ago regarding HQ. One caveat when using HQ is that long-term use can cause some irritation. It’s best to use it until results are achieved and then back off for a while. It can be started once again once your skin has had some rest time (Kotlus, 2015). During the rest/break period, feel free to substitute hydroquinone with Other efficacious skin lighteners like Skin Lightening treatment: http://ebay.to/1MhPMRk or Azelaic acid: http://amzn.to/1JAJPhf

Pretreatment helps to prevent postinflammatory hyperpigmentation, increases the depth of the chemical peel and speed epidermal healing. The products should be stopped approximately a week prior to the procedure to ensure intact epidermis.

What I use in place of hydroquinone: I personally use this natural lightening treatment: http://ebay.to/20lygaP. However, price-wise, it’s a bit on the high-end. Hence, It would be naive of me to assume that everyone would find it affordable. Which is why I resorted to recommending hydroquinone (It is after all, still considered a gold standard in the industry).

More hydroquinone alternatives

Dark knuckles serum:  http://ebay.to/29cONqK

Dark knuckles soap:  http://ebay.to/29dNWWu 

Peel Application








The patient should then cleanse his/her knuckle with a gentle cleanser. The skin is then defatted with isopropyl alcohol wipes to allow even penetration of the peeling agent: Glycolic peel, 70% (preferred): http://amzn.to/1JAHOl1 this should be done at three-week intervals.  

The peeling agent is then applied with gauze pad or sponge evenly across the knuckles. Allow peel solution to remain for 10 minutes. Apply a second layer over the first, allow to remain on skin for 5-10 minutes(optional). Neutralize the glycolic peel with tap water. After two minutes, 35% TCA peel is applied with a gauze pad, allow solution to remain for 10 minutes (or according to skin tolerance), you may add a second layer if you feel only one is insufficient and wash off


Post-Peel Treatment








After the peel, the patient must follow strict sun protection with a Broad spectrum sunscreen: http://amzn.to/1M0VeLS  reapply every 2 hours if out and about.

Use of hydroquinone post peel is very important to prevent development of hyperpigmentation. After several days, the patient can then resume using tretinoin and any other pre-treatment topical medication. If the patient tolerates the peel, a higher concentration may be used for subsequent peels.


Daily Routine and Directions







  • Do not use harsh soaps or liquid soaps containing alcohol on your hands. Use a gentle cleanser with AHA (Alpha Hydroxy Acid) to correct hyperpigmentation.
  • Always nourish your skin with an AHA moisturizer after washing your hands (amlactin: http://amzn.to/1miqZpZ is a great AHA infused moisturizer)
  • At night, scrub your hands with a mild scrub. Polishing each day will slough off dead skin cells that get trapped in the creases of your knuckles (Lancer, 2010).
  • When applying the cream or hydroquinone in morning, and at night, massage it furiously on your knuckles for 50 seconds.
  • A good cleanser will exfoliate and prepare the skin to drink in the ingredients of this skin lightening cream as well as the moisturizer.
  • You can also carry your moisturizer in your bag for when your hands get dry, perhaps when you are out and about or when you wash your hands. Don’t forget to use sunscreen if you are going to step outside (harmful UV rays are always present–whether in scorching sunlight or in frigid cold weather).
  • FOR INTENSIVE AT-HOME TREATMENT, slather your hands with an AHA moisturizer, coupled this lightening cream and wear a latex free glove to bed. The product will penetrate while you sleep and your hands will be soft, lighter and supple when you remove the gloves in the morning(Lancer, 2010).



Alam, Murad, et al. (2008) Cosmetic dermatology for skin of color. McGraw Hill Professional

Brett, Kotlus (2015) Pause and Reverse: How to look younger than your age with or without cosmetic surgery

Davis, E. C., & Callender, V. D. (2010). Postinflammatory Hyperpigmentation: A Review of the Epidemiology, Clinical Features, and Treatment Options in Skin of Color. The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, 3(7), 20–31.

Skin Obsession (2013) Instructions for the peel of the body. Retrieved from https://www.skinobsession.com/help_answer.asp?ID=17

Lancer, Harold (2010) Younger: The Breakthrough Anti-Aging Method for Radiant Skin