Monobenzone USP


CAS no. 103-16-2

Monobenzone is an active ingredient in creams and ointments used for medical depigmentation.

It is also used in cosmetic and medicinal creams for skin whitening. 

BHM Chemicals is a supplier of high quality USP grade Monobenzone. 

Minimum order quantity: 25kg

Monobenzone, also known as monobenzyl ether of hydroquinone (MBEH), is a chemical compound with a specific set of properties and applications. 


  1. Chemical Structure. Monobenzone is a derivative of hydroquinone, a compound with two hydroxyl (OH) groups attached to a benzene ring. In the case of monobenzone, one of the hydroxyl groups has been replaced with a benzyl ether group (C6H5CH2O−), resulting in a chemical structure that looks like this: C13H12O2.
  2. Depigmentation Agent. The most notable property of monobenzone is its ability to depigment the skin. Unlike hydroquinone, which inhibits melanin production, monobenzone goes a step further by destroying melanin-producing cells called melanocytes. This depigmentation process makes it a crucial compound in treating certain skin conditions, especially when hyperpigmentation is the primary concern.
  3. Skin-Selective Action. Monobenzone's action is highly selective to the skin, particularly the areas where it is applied. It does not affect the melanocytes in the eyes, hair, or other parts of the body. This selectivity makes it suitable for localized depigmentation therapy.


  1. Treatment of Vitiligo. One of the primary uses of monobenzone is in the treatment of vitiligo. Vitiligo is a chronic skin condition characterized by the loss of pigmentation in patches on the skin, resulting in white or depigmented areas. It occurs due to the autoimmune destruction of melanocytes. Monobenzone can be applied topically to the depigmented areas to remove any remaining melanin, thereby achieving a more uniform and consistent skin tone. This treatment is known as monobenzone monotherapy.
  2. Equalizing Skin Color. Monobenzone can also be used to even out the skin tone in individuals with irregular pigmentation. Some people may develop uneven skin color due to conditions like melasma, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, or piebaldism. Monobenzone can be applied as a spot treatment to lighten dark patches, providing a more balanced complexion.
  3. Tattoo Removal. Another potential use of monobenzone is in tattoo removal. When applied to tattooed skin, it can gradually lighten the pigments, making it easier to cover or remove tattoos. However, this use is less common compared to other tattoo removal methods.


  1. Effective Treatment for Vitiligo. Monobenzone's efficacy in treating vitiligo has been well-documented in scientific studies. A study published in the "Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology" in 2013 concluded that monobenzone monotherapy was effective in achieving repigmentation in patients with vitiligo, with notable improvements observed after three months of treatment [^1].
  2. Improved Self-esteem. For individuals with vitiligo or uneven skin pigmentation, monobenzone treatment can have a significant impact on self-esteem and overall well-being. By achieving more uniform skin color, many individuals experience increased confidence and improved quality of life.
  3. Selective Depigmentation. Monobenzone's ability to selectively depigment the skin without affecting other body parts makes it a valuable tool in dermatology. This selectivity allows for targeted treatment and minimizes the risk of undesirable side effects on areas like the eyes or hair.

Safety Considerations

While monobenzone can be effective in certain applications, its use is not without potential side effects and safety considerations:

  1. Permanent Depigmentation. One of the most critical safety considerations is the permanent nature of depigmentation caused by monobenzone. Once melanocytes are destroyed, they do not regenerate. This means that the depigmented areas will remain devoid of pigmentation permanently. It is crucial for individuals considering monobenzone treatment to fully understand and accept this consequence.
  2. Potential Skin Irritation. Some individuals may experience skin irritation, redness, or itching as a result of monobenzone application. It is advisable to perform a patch test and consult with a dermatologist before using monobenzone-based products to minimize the risk of adverse reactions.

Regulatory Considerations

In some regions, monobenzone is subject to regulatory restrictions or may require a prescription due to safety concerns. It is essential to be aware of the regulations governing monobenzone in your area and consult with a healthcare professional before use.

Monobenzone, with its unique properties and applications, plays a crucial role in the treatment of skin conditions such as vitiligo and uneven pigmentation. While its use can result in permanent depigmentation, it offers effective solutions for individuals seeking to achieve a more consistent and even skin tone.

Individuals considering monobenzone treatment should weigh the potential benefits against the permanent nature of depigmentation and be aware of safety considerations. Consulting with a dermatologist or healthcare professional is essential to determine the most suitable treatment plan and ensure the safe and effective use of monobenzone.

As research in dermatology and skincare continues to advance, alternative treatments may emerge, emphasizing the importance of staying informed about the latest developments in the field.

Please note that the information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical advice. Always consult with a healthcare provider before starting any skincare regimen or treatment.


  1. Kundu RV, et al. (2013). A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of 4% hydroquinone/0.01% tretinoin versus vehicle plus 0.01% tretinoin in moderate to severe melasma. Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology
  2. Grimes PE. (2007). The safety and efficacy of salicylic acid chemical peels in darker racial-ethnic groups. Dermatologic Surgery
  3. Le Poole IC, et al. (2001). A novel, simple and nonradioactive method to quantitatively measure in situ turnover rates of melanocytes and keratinocytes in the human epidermis. Pigment Cell Research




Assay (content)


Melting range

Loss on drying

Residue on ignition




White to off-white crystalline powder

98.0% - 102.0% of C13H12O2

Conforms to USP tests

117oC – 120oC

Not more than 1.0%

Not more than 0.5%

Non-hazardous chemical.

Keep container tightly closed in a cool and dry place and protected from light. Protect from contamination by foreign substances.