Kojic acid is now one of the important ingredients in lightening cosmetic especially in asian countries.
Kojic acid was discovered in 1989. It was derived from a Japanese fungus and is a by-product in the fermentation of malting rice for use in manufacturing of sake, a Japanese rice wine.
It is a new remedy for treatment of pigment problems like hyperpigmentation, melasma, chlosma, freckles and age spots. To make it work, it must be absorbed into the skin. Hence, it must be left for a few minutes before completely washing off for absorption to occur.
It functions as a lightening agent as it inhibits melanin production. The production of melanin involves an amino acid called tyrosine. Tyrosine is assisted by an enzime called tyrosinase to produce skin color pigment. Kojic acid counters the antioxidant properties of tyrosinase and thus prevents it from acting on tyrosine and producing melanin.
Kojic acid is used as an alternative to hydroquinone and glycolic acid as it is less harmful. However, it still can lead to mild to severe irritation on some skin types. It may make the area on which it is applied photosensitive compared to the rest of the body.
Living Proof Halal Cosmetic does not use kojic acid as its ingredient.
This article is written by Chai Yong of http://www.the-halal-cosmetic.com