Formulating Cosmetics with KOJIC ACID

Formulating Cosmetics with KOJIC ACID
August 8, 2020 Aidee Erhime
Kojic acid

Kojic acid (5-hydroxy-2-hydroxymethyl-4-pyrone) is a common ingredient found in skincare products that target hyperpigmentation. It is used in cosmetic products such as creams, cleansers, soaps and serums.

This acid works by inhibiting melanin production. It is usually a substitute to using other ingredients like Hydroquinone, Licorice extracts and Arbutin.

Read: Glutathione vs Hydroquinone: Which is safer for skin lightening

  • CAS NO:               501-30-4
  • Appearance:      White crystals
  • MF:                        C6H6O4
  • INCI:                     Kojic acid

How safe is Kojic Acid?

The acid is relatively safe as long as it is handled by well trained personnel.


  • Skin-lightening effect by inhibiting melanin formation
  • Promotes skin lightening and helps establishing an even skin tone on all skin types
  • Minimizes liver spots
  • Often used also to preserve or stabilize colors in cosmetic products
  • Can enhance shelf life through its preservative actions against chemical and microbial degradation

Kojic acid in formulation

  • In formulation, kojic acid works at overall optimum pH of 4.5-6. An alkaline pH environment would make the entire formulation highly unstable.
  • It is insoluble in lipids but soluble in water.
  • It should therefore be added to the water phase of the formulation.
  • Ensure that the water is warm. Adding kojic acid to hot water will make it less potent and more prone to oxidization.
  • Recommended concentration Percentage: 1-3%

In formulation, kojic acid works at overall optimum pH of 4

Read: Do Skincare cosmetics get absorbed into the bloodstream?

Why we love Kojic Acid

  • It has preservative properties.
  • Has anti-aging properties
  • It inhibits tyrosinase acticity.
  • Plays a role in fading skin hyperpigmentation.
  • It also antibacterial and anti-fungal effects.

Please Note:

If formulating for commercial sale, it is important to have the formulating company approved by relevant authorities in the specific country. Precautions should also be indicated on label.

An example of such precautions is: “Avoid contact with eyes, nose and other internal areas of the body. Product should be kept out of the reach of children. If ingested or injected, seek help immediately!”


The content displayed on the website is the intellectual property of the Botafrik. You may not reuse, republish, or reprint such content without our written consent. The information provided in this blog is for educational and informational purposes. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice. Should you decide to act upon any information on this website for any particular purpose or use, you do so at your own judgment.

While the information on this website has been verified to the best of our abilities, we cannot guarantee that there are no mistakes or errors. We reserve the right to change this policy at any given time, of which you will be promptly updated. If you want to make sure that you are up to date with the latest changes, we advise you to frequently visit this page.




Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *