Friday, June 21, 2013

Review: Kojie San Kojic Acid Soap

Note: This post has been edited on 04/11/2015 with additional information and pictures.

I've been using Kojie San on and off for the past 5 years. I've only used this brand because in the past, it was difficult to find a mainstream brand of kojic acid. When I last went to Watsons, it was the only soap that listed kojic acid as the first ingredient.

While the picture below shows the Kojie San soap for P50, I've previously bought the bigger versions for cheaper at P120 for 3.

Kojie San Whitening Soap

In the back, you can see the expiration date quite easily, along with the ingredients list. I find the box quite strange.

Ingredients: Kojic Acid, Sweet Orange, VCO, Glycerine, Vegetable Extract and Vitamin C.

As you can see, Kojic acid is really what you get when you buy this product, the sweet orange probably acting as a preservative for this product. It also acts as a pleasant orange scent for the duration of application. It washes of quite easily, so don't be afraid to use a second wash or lotion after it.

 For those who don't know, here's a bit about kojic acid: it's an acid that's capable of inhibiting melanin, or dark spots, on the skin. It's antibacterial, but its safety has been determined at concentrations of 1%, and any further use can cause sensitivity. Unfortunately, kojic acid at that level won't cause any skin lightening. It is not considered to be carcinogenic.

Kojie San Soap Box Ingredients
I've found that this product, is very good at cleaning the face and skin: I've found that even a henna tattoo stays on half as long when I use kojic acid. Long term use leads to increased succeptibility to minor cuts and abrasions, probably due to increased skin fragility. However, short term use is already irritating on sensitive areas such as the face and groin so it's best to wash it of as quickly as possible after lathering it on these places. It's fine on the thicker parts of my skin. Also, while my face gets a bit red if I leave it on longer than a few seconds, I don't break out from it.

On another note, a lot of leave-on kojic acid products are currently in the Philippine market. I'm not comfortable leaving something like this on my skin though.

Tips:  Don't use this product more than once a day, and moisturize straight after. You might feel a stinging sensation right after application, due to the fact that you are peeling your skin.  Thus, you should use a sunblock religiously if you decide to use this or any other peeling/whitening product.

Kojie San Kojic Acid Soap

While I don't have much experience with whitening products, I've noticed that using this soap has kept me from darkening during summer, as compared to when I use other, non-whitening soaps. I tend to use a bar of this every summer just to keep from changing my skin color. I also end up using a bar of this every 4 months, especially when my face is breaking out severely (due to its antibacterial properties - trying to control the bacterial spread of P. acnes). However, using this for too long will actually irritate my face even more so I tend to stop after 2 weeks and finish the bar for just my body. I have found that it does lighten my acne scars, though slowly compared to chemical peels from my dermatologist.

How does this compare with other whitening products? It doesn't work as well as hydroquinone but better than, though more harsh than papaya soap.

What I dislike most about this soap is that it melts easily! I used to cut a bar in half to keep it from melting quite so quickly. I buy the smaller versions if I'm too lazy to cut. Keep it away from possible sources of water and it will last around 4 weeks of heavy use.

Let's recap.

  • antibacterial - may help control acne
  • cleaning
  • whitening - effect on both normal skin and post-acne scars
  • inexpensive

  • can be irritating (drying or stinging)
  • melts easily
  • Not for long term use

  • Do not leave on sensitive areas for more than a few seconds
  • Use a moisturizer after
  • Use a sunblock after

  • Those interested in skin whitening
  • Those who are acne prone should check for a reaction first
  • Not for sensitive skin

Buy Again? Yes. Unless I get a definitive report I'll probably continue purchasing this product. I'd switch if I found a cheaper one with near the same ingredient list though.

It's a long weekend for me! This Monday, aside from the Starbucks promo, CBTL also has a special treat for Swirl Card holders: Get half of the Moroccan Mint Tea Latte from 3-5 pm as the last of their Thank You for 50 promos.

I'm kind of torn as to which one I'll probably get...

Happy weekend everyone!


  1. I like Kojic soaps! I've been using it ever since thanks to a review I read on before :) Kojic really helped clear my skin from unwanted dark spots :D

    1. It really is great! After 2 years, I still go back to it periodically, myself.

      Don't forget to wear sunscreen :)

  2. This Kojic Acid & Glutathione Dual Whitening Bleaching Soap has help to brighten and smooth my skin a great deal. People always compliment me on my silky smooth skin. Thank you.

  3. At least the moisturizing effect made my face less dry. But not the most effective kojic soap I've ever seen so far.