A quick look at a lot of skincare products will reveal that kojic acid is one of the active ingredients that they use. It was originally discovered in mushrooms found in Japan in 1989. Primarily a skin lightening agent, it is used by those who want to reduce or minimize freckles and dark spots on their skin. More importantly, you can use kojic acid for acne scars that you’ve been trying to get rid of.
How Does Kojic Acid Work?
Kojic acid is often used to lighten the skin by inhibiting the production of melanin on your skin, going deep into your skin’s deeper layers to do so. It goes after the enzyme called tyrosinase which regulates melanin production. Melanin is a pigment that ranges from dark brown to black and is responsible for giving your hair and your skin its color. From the range of hues, it is a given that people with darker complexion have more melanin on their skin. When used in the right doses, it takes three months to work its magic. Of course, it may take longer to work on some people depending on the skin type and the person’s natural skin color.
Using Kojic Acid for Acne Scars and Acne
Because kojic acid has the ability to lighten skin, it evens out any form of discoloration seen on your skin’s surface. This would, of course, include scarring and dark spots, making the use of kojic acid for acne scars very effective.
The great thing about kojic acid is that it also works great against acne itself and not just on the scars that it would leave. It has antibacterial properties, therefore helping you get rid of existing acne and stopping more of it on its tracks even before they even begin to form. It also has the ability to reduce the skin’s pH levels, therefore increasing the level of acidity on the skin as a result. This is also part of kojic acid’s antibacterial properties as higher acidity would mean a less conducive environment for bacteria to grow along with other similar organisms that thrive on alkaline. It could also count as a form of exfoliant, helping your skin shed some of its older layers. These layers also trigger acne growth, as dead skin cells combined with the oil on your skin would clog up pores and cause pimples to form.
Kojic acid is effective against the skin disorder melasma, a skin condition that causes skin discoloration. This is common for pregnant women as melasma is a common side effect of pregnancy hormones. Kojic acid is also great in keeping food presentable as it has the ability to preserve the color of food from the surface.
Understandably, kojic acid could make your skin more sensitive as it lightens it. Because of this, it should be used in proper amounts and should come with added precaution. Especially during hot sunny days, make sure you put a generous amount of sunscreen and wear clothing that could shield your skin from the sun’s rays.