Kojic Acid Benefits, Uses, And Side Effects

If you’re passionate about skin care, you’ve probably come across numerous kojic acid products in your search for an ideal skin care routine. Find out everything about the benefits, side effects, and uses of kojic acid!


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1. What is kojic acid?

Kojic acid is a chemical that is produced from certain types of mushrooms or fermented rice. This skin care ingredient originated in Japan, but soon became known all over the world as the milder alternative to hydroquinone.

Like hydroquinone, kojic acid can penetrate deep into the skin layers and slow down the production of melatonin, allowing you to get rid of uneven skin colour caused by excessive pigmentation, scars, acne spots, and other things preventing you from having a flawless complexion.

2. Kojic acid benefits

The numerous kojic acid before and after photos prove that this skin care ingredient can do wonders for all types of skin and skin conditions, but what exactly can it do to enhance your beauty? Here are 5 biggest benefits of using kojic acid products.

  1. Melasma, or the appearance of dark spots on your face and body, is a very common condition, especially among pregnant women. Kojic acid can help you safely get rid of those spots.
  2. Even though kojic acid is derived from fungi, it has powerful antifungal properties. Use kojic acid-based products on fungus-prone areas to gradually make this annoying skin condition disappear.
  3. Kojic acid is known to effectively remove age spots and sun damage, making your skin look younger and preventing the signs of premature aging from being displayed on your skin.
  4. The antibacterial properties of kojic acid make it an essential ingredients for treating common bacterial skin infections that can have a strong negative effect on your health and appearance.
  5. While kojic acid cannot physically reduce the thickness of scars, especially old ones, it can make them less visible by evening out their colour and making them look closer to your skin tone.

3. Kojic acid uses

So how exactly to take advantage of all of the amazing benefits of kojic acid for the skin? Here are three most popular ways to use kojic acid in skin care:

  • Kojic acid soap can become the first stage of your skin care routine – simply make some lather with the soap and gently clean your face before washing it off. The best kojic acid soap is made by Kojie San, Beauche, White Gold, and other brands.
  • Kojic acid serum needs to be applied after cleansing the skin and before the rest of the steps in your routine. Serum contains a large number of active ingredients and can give you the kojic acid effect you’re looking for.
  • Kojic acid skin lightening cream is the final step in your skin care routine. Apply kojic acid cream twice a day to see the results. Kojic acid cream brand names include Kojic Clear and Bismid.

4. Kojic acid side effects

Even though kojic acid is viewed as a milder and safer alternative to the aggressive skin lightening components like hydroquinone, there are still several kojic acid cream side effects you should know about.

The most common side effect from using kojic acid is contact dermatitis, which can have such symptoms as skin redness, irritation, itchiness, rashes, or even pain. Discontinue the use of kojic acid products if you experience any of those symptoms.

Another side effect of kojic acid is that the longer you use it on your skin, the more susceptible to sunburn your skin becomes. To minimize the damage from the sun, don’t use kojic acid for a prolonged period of time and always wear sunscreen when going out.

Some studies link kojic acid to various forms of cancer, which is why it’s only safe to use kojic acid products with 1% concentration of the active ingredient or less.


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My name is Inna. I am a content writer with an English and literature background. As a mother of a 2-year old son, I love learning about children’s health and development, as well as finding new interesting toys and activities for my little one. I am also in love with all things tech and always keep my finger on the pulse of new smartphone and gadget releases. Another big passion of mine is beauty and makeup – every day I read about new trends in skin care and makeup and always look forward to trying them. Plus, I love pop culture, travelling, crafts, and anything that can make our daily life more thrilling!