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Dr. Alpana Mohta Ranka, MD, DNB, IFAAD, is a triple-board-certified dermatologist with over 100 research publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals.


Kojic Acid for Lips: Dermatologist's Guide

Known for its skin-brightening properties, Kojic Acid has gained popularity in skincare. In this article, we delve into the specifics of using Kojic Acid for lips, exploring its benefits, precautions, and recommendations.

Benefits of kojic acid for lips

Understanding Kojic Acid's Role in Reducing Hyperpigmentation of Lips

Kojic Acid is a natural substance derived from fungi, particularly Aspergillus oryzae. When used in skincare products, its primary function is inhibiting melanin production, the pigment responsible for the color of skin, hair, eyes, and lips.

It does this by inhibiting the production of tyrosinase which is involved in the production of melanin.

Benefits of Kojic Acid for Lips

Hyperpigmentation Reduction

As already mentioned earlier, Kojic Acid's melanin-inhibiting properties extend to the lips, making it valuable in addressing lip hyperpigmentation issues. Whether caused by sun exposure or hormonal changes, Kojic Acid lightens dark spots, revealing a more even-toned pout.

Exfoliation and Renewal

Kojic Acid also acts as a very gentle exfoliant, promoting the shedding of dead skin cells from the lips. Unlike other acids, kojic acid's action is not harsh. This exfoliation process encourages cellular renewal, contributing to smoother, softer lips.

Antioxidant Properties

Beyond its pigment-inhibiting function, Kojic Acid boasts antioxidant properties. This helps protect lips from oxidative stress, reducing the impact of environmental factors that contribute to premature aging.

Precautions and Considerations

  1. Patch Testing: Before incorporating Kojic Acid into your lip care routine, performing a patch test is crucial. Apply a small amount to a small area of your lips and observe for any adverse reactions such as redness or irritation.

  2. Sun Sensitivity: Owing to its mild exfoliation effect, Kojic Acid may increase sensitivity to sunlight. Using a broad-spectrum lip balm with SPF when using Kojic Acid to prevent sun damage is imperative.

  3. Consistency is Key: Achieving optimal results requires consistent use. Incorporate Kojic Acid into your lip care routine and follow the recommended application frequency for noticeable improvements.

Dermatologist Recommended Products

Kojic Acid is a great option to address pigmentation issues and revitalize dark and dull lips. However, remember to protect your lips from the sun by using a lip balm with SPF. Aquaphor is a great option for that. You can apply Aquaphor on your lips around 5 minutes after the application of kojic acid containing lip balm.


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