What is Kojic Acid?
Kojic acid soaps are made with kojic acid, a natural ingredient derived from a fungi that is native to Japan. The kojic acid is formed as a by-product in the making of Japanese rice wine.
Kojic acid can be purchased raw, as a white powdery substance made of tiny crystals. However, buying kojic acid as a natural ingredient in soaps or topical creams makes it much easier to use.
Kojic acid is known for its skin lightening skin properties and offers a safer alternative to chemical whiteners like hydroquinone. It is used to lighten dark spots or patches caused by sun damage, acne scarring or hyperpigmentation. Many people use kojic acid soaps on a regular basis to lighten the overall complexion of the skin.
In skin care products kojic acid work as a skin whitener by inhibiting the production of melanin, the brown pigmentation that gives your skin it’s colour. Age spots, acne scars and areas of hyperpigmentation will usually contain more melanin than the surrounding areas.
Is it safe for the skin?
Kojic acid is an all natural ingredient that is used not only in skin care products but also a preservative in foods. It is not known to cause any severe side effects and is safe for all skin types. People with naturally sensitive skin may find that the kojic soap causes dryness of the skin.
To use kojic acid soap if helps if you wet your skin with warm water first to open the pores. It is important to lather the soap and massage it gently into your skin. Avoid rubbing it in harshly and add a moisturiser or lotion after cleansing.
Some people report that their skin feels “tighter” or they may experience redness or break outs after using kojic soap in the first week. Don’t worry if this happens to you as the symptoms are usually temporary and will eventually go away. Obviously if they persist this product may not be right for you.
How long does kojic soap take to work?
Kojic acid soap can be used every day to get the best results, however, once a day is enough as too frequent use may cause hypersensitivity of the skin.
Skin care companies generally recommend using kojic acid soap for 8 to 16 weeks so see optimum results but many consumers report seeing a difference in as little as one week. Kojic acid works as an exfoliater, removing the dead skin cells, so your skin will start to look brighter straight away. The benefit of kojic acid is that it acts as an exfoliater and skin whitener all in one!
Of course the results will depend on your skin colour to begin with. People with darker skin will have to be a little more patient as the results will take longer than people with lighter skin.
What are the ingredients?
Kojic acid is the active ingredient in kojic soaps and, depending on the brand, this will be combined with ingredients such as glycerine, vegetable extracts, Vitamin A and C. Fruit extracts like orange, grape seed oil or papaya are often used to make an all natural product that is safe for everyday use.
The Kojie San Skin Lightening Soap contains a high-grade kojic acid combined with coconut oil, glycerin, tea tree oil, Vitamin C and a sweet orange oil which gives it a lovely fragrance! The coconut oil moisturizes and primes the skin for maximum absorption of the kojic acid. Kojie-san has been around since 2006 and remains one of the most popular skin whitening soaps among consumers.
Other recommended products include Marie France Professional Strength Kojic Soapwhich contains high concentrations of kojic acid and papain which acts to exfoliate and rejuvenate the skin. It can be used on the face to remove skin blemishes like acne scars, hyperpigmentation and can be used on the body to improve the appearance of dark elbows and underarms.
If you are looking for the dual benefits of kojic acid and glutathione you could try Kojic Acid & Glutathione Dual Whitening/bleaching Soap made by Professional Whitening. It is a little stronger than normal glutathione soap and may not be suitable for very sensitive skin. This soap is good for dark skinned people and consumers report seeing visible results in days.