6 Reasons Why Kojic Acid Soap Isn’t Working For You

Why Is Kojic Acid Soap Not Working For Me? Here’s 6 Reasons.

Ever wondered why Kojic acid soap has worked for so many people but has not worked for you? Here’s why.

  1. You’ve used it for less than 6 weeks 

“How come I’ve been using Kojic acid soap for 3 weeks and haven’t noticed a difference?”

If you’re reading this article, you’re probably in the same boat. People like us, with a darker, uneven skin tone, experience hyperpigmentation the worst. 

The thing about having darker skin: expect to wait weeks before you see results. 

This is because of all the dark pigment in our skin. As the Kojic acid soap stops more melanin from being produced, the skin slowly gets rid of the remaining melanin. 

The more melanin that you have in your skin, the longer you have to wait for your skin to lighten.

Be consistent!  You’ll likely see results between 6 to 12 weeks.

  1. You’re using other lightening products

If you have experienced irritation for more than a week while using Kojic acid soap, ask yourself this, “Am I using other brightening products that might have caused this reaction?”

Are you using products that have Hydroquinone? Or maybe even Glycolic acid?

If the answer to either one is yes, then that’s probably why your skin is irritated, dry, and darker than usual.

We can’t blame you for using a combination of these 2 or 3 ingredients. After all, they’re proven to even out skin tone faster but that’s not always the case!

If you’re like me, whose skin can’t handle all these powerful ingredients at once, then continue with only one. I would suggest that you only use Kojic acid since its a safer alternative to Hydroquinone and works better than Glycolic acid.

  1. You’re using less than 1% Kojic Acid soap

If you have a darker complexion, then chances are 1% Kojic acid soap will not work for you. Why is that you ask? That’s because the darker the skin, the more melanin (dark pigment) is produced. 

“What does this mean for me?”

In your case, it’s better to try higher concentrations of Kojic acid soap. You want the soap to be strong enough to lighten the different layers of your skin.  Using soap with 2 to 4% Kojic acid will hopefully do the trick!

Watch out, though. Using 2 to 4% Kojic acid soap can cause rashes, bumps, or even blisters to appear on sensitive skin.

  1. Sensitive skin 

“I’ve heard that there are side effects to using Kojic acid soap. How do I know if what I’m experiencing is normal?”

That’s an excellent question!

Redness, tightness, itchiness, breakouts, peeling and tingling sensations are to be expected during the first few days of using the soap.

If you find that you’ve had these for more than a week, it’s a sign that your skin is sensitive and might not be able to handle Kojic acid.

If you’re using 4% Kojic acid soap, it might be best to use a lower concentration. Why not give 1-2% Kojic acid soap a try? 

Remember, getting your skin used to the soap is the goal here. Use the soap three times a week for no more than 15 seconds. The less that your skin reacts, the more frequently that you can use the soap.

“When will I know if Kojic acid soap is not for me?”

Good thing that you asked that! 

Asian skin is considered to be more sensitive when using products used on the skin. Irritation, rashes, inflamed skin, itchiness, and pain are signs to look out for. If you experience any of these, stop using the soap immediately.

  1. Ultraviolet rays

Because of the soap’s ability to prevent the production of melanin, your skin would be extremely sensitive to the sun – resulting in sunburn. Ouch!

More than that, ultraviolet rays from the sun can trigger your skin to produce more melanin. Because of the newly formed melanin, your hyperpigmented skin would appear darker.

When it comes to sun protection, there are 3 things to remember:

  • Use sunscreen. A sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor of 30 will do
  • Minimize the time you spend under the sun. If that’s not possible, make sure to wear protective clothing
  • Increase your intake of vitamin D through diet or supplements

I know, I know. You’re probably wondering why vitamin D is important. Well, to satisfy your curiosity, vitamin D is an important vitamin that we mainly get from the sun. 

When we use sunscreen and limit our exposure to the sun, we limit the vitamin D that our body receives. This is especially true for people with dark skin.

The melanin in our skin acts as a shield reducing the amount of vitamin D that we would typically get from the sun.

Takeaway: as you protect your skin from the sun, increase your vitamin D intake. Eat food such as salmon, fish liver oils, and fortified foods or take supplements.

  1. You’re using a fake Kojic acid soap

Did you know that more than half of the population in India and Africa use a skin lightening product? With this skin lightening trend it could only mean that the amount of whitening products in the market are at an all-time high.

There are many downsides to using a fake Kojic acid soap. Consider yourself lucky if you haven’t experienced any side effects. You could have an allergic reaction to an unknown ingredient from the soap or worse.

How do we know if we’re using real Kojic acid soap?

First we have to consider the source. When buying products as important as soaps we want to make sure that we get them from official sources. This includes physical stores, official websites and authorized resellers.

Second, take note of the packaging. Does it look tampered with? Does it include the batch number, manufacturing, and expiration dates?

Remember to look for the contact information of the company so that you can reach out to them for any concerns.

When it comes to the actual soap bar, pay attention to its size, color and scent.
Compare it with the information you find from the actual websites and reviews online.

Lastly, take note of any changes you’ve experienced after using the soap.
If you find yourself suffering from any unusual kojic soap side effects , stop using the soap and go see your doctor immediately.


After using kojic acid soap for 6 to 12 weeks and still not seeing the desired outcomes, there may be an external component or kojic quality that is interfering with your treatment’s persistence. It’s possible that you’re mixing your kojic soap with any such skin-lightening products that contain glycolic acid and hydroquinone. Sensitive skin and inappropriate kojic usage might both slow down the effectiveness of the ingredient. Regular vitamin D intake advances the process and aids in protecting skin from sun damage.

After reading this article, you can now look back to how you first started using the product. With a couple of changes, you can decide for yourself if it’s worth giving a second shot.

By Rosey

Kojic Soap Queen. Vegan. Dog mom.

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