One of the most common skin problems many of us struggle with is hyperpigmentation. This is when areas of our skin become darkened over time. It can be caused by daily habits, bad skincare, and products, or by chronic medical conditions.
However, one of the easiest ways to help us get rid of hyperpigmentation is by using skin-lightening soaps. So, let’s talk about hyperpigmentation and some of the best soaps that we can use.
Best Skin Lightening Soaps
There are many skin-lightening treatments available in the skincare industry today. However, one of the easiest and most affordable ones is the use of skin-lightening soaps.
These soaps are usually formulated with ingredients that inhibit the production of melanin and resurface the skin to gradually but effectively fade dark patches.
The most common ingredients you will find in skin-lightening soaps are kojic acid, vitamin C, retinol, collagen, niacinamide (sometimes), turmeric, papaya, and sandalwood.
During my ongoing struggle with hyperpigmentation, here are a few great ones that I have found:
- Kojie San Lightening Soap -Fast acting & very effective but can have a drying effect.
- The Kojic Acid Soap -Effective but more gentle on your skin since it contains moisturizers.
- VALITIC Skin Lightening Soap -Uses both kojic acid and turmeric.
- Aspen Kay Turmeric Soap (A very natural & gentle soap making it great for sensitive skin)
- Marie France Kojic Acid Skin Brightening Soap
1- Kojie San Skin Lightening Soap
This is the first skin-lightening soap that I ever tried for my hyperpigmentation. I had just been diagnosed with PCOS and my skin was not my friend at the time.
My neck, inner thighs, and underarms were darkened from uncontrolled insulin resistance and traumatized from the amount of waxing and shaving I was doing.
A friend of mine gave me a bar of this soap to try. Up until then, I had tried almost every OTC cream I could find (in my defense I was young, lazy, and not yet a skin professional).
Within 2 weeks of using the Kojie soap, I saw an obvious difference in the tone of my skin. However, at that time, my hormone imbalance and insulin resistance were still uncontrolled and I stopped using it because I thought It was not working.
Fast forward to a few years later, my insulin resistance and hormones are way better controlled and I tried the soap again. Amazing results!
Related Article – DIY & Medical Ways to Quickly Whiten Underarms Permanently
How it Works
The Kojie Soap contains Kojic acid which is one of the most proven methods to lighten your skin. Kojic acid works by inhibiting the production of melanin in your skin allowing it to get lighter.
The only issue I have with the Kojie Soap is that it makes my skin too dry if I use it every day. Also, it is not a permanent solution (no soap will be a permanent solution).
Over the years my skin has become very sensitive and strong ingredients make me too dry. But if you do not have super sensitive skin and you moisturize well, then this soap will be your best friend. The kojic acid will prevent excess melanin production in your skin for as long as you use it.
Related Article – Dry Armpits: How to Correctly Moisturize & What to Use
Where to Get the Kojie San Brightening Soap
2- Pure Kojic Acid Skin Lightening Soap
Between my first time using skin-lightening soap to now, I went down a rabbit hole and decided to look for and try different ones. Another one that I liked was the Pure Kojic Acid Skin Brightening Soap.
Its main ingredient is kojic acid, but to prevent excess drying and to nourish the skin, it also contains:
- Hyaluronic acid,
- Coconut oil,
- Tea tree oil extract,
- Vitamin C, and Vitamin E.
I loved the hydrating ingredients and my skin did not feel as dry after using it.
However, for me, the results took a bit longer to see than with the Kojie san soap. This is probably because there is a lower concentration of kojic acid in this soap.
Now, don’t get me wrong. Did it work? Yes! But I am an impatient person and my hyperpigmentation under my arms and on my inner thighs are on the moderate to severe side of the spectrum, so I wanted something stronger.
However, if you have mild hyperpigmentation (especially on your face), this soap could be great for you. It is excellent on sensitive skin too, but you still (and will always) need to moisturize.
Where to Get the Pure Kojic Acid Soaps
These soaps are also available with additional ingredients and they also work pretty well. I love the Koji White Kojic Acid & Papaya one and the Koji White Kojic Acid & Vitamin C one.
Click here to check out the Koji White Kojic Acid & Papaya Soap on Amazon.
They also have the Koji White Kojic Acid & Vitamin C Soap, click here to see it.
3- VALITIC Kojic Acid Dark Spot Remover Soap Bars
Another kojic acid soap I tried that I really liked was this soap by VALITIC. Its main ingredient is kojic acid for melanin inhibition, but it also contains retinol which resurfaces the skin, and collagen which strengthens and plumps the skin.
It also contains Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin E, Shea Butter, and Castile Olive Oil to hydrate and revitalize the skin.
A surprise ingredient that I loved is also turmeric. In traditional skincare, turmeric is known for its skin-brightening properties, and by this time I had also begun to look at how to incorporate natural ingredients into my skincare routine.
The soap itself did a great job. I saw a difference in my skin within 2 weeks of use and it did not make me feel dry and irritated.
And the most important thing, it works! I keep these bars in my bathroom ready to be used on my hyperpigmented areas of skin (neck, inner thighs, and underarms). I choose not to use it all over my skin (because I like my general complexion) but if you want to do so, you can.
4- Aspen Kay Naturals Turmeric Complete Soap
Now, jumping onto the more nature-based soaps and skincare, I discovered a few great brightening and lightening soaps. They do not work as intensely and as quickly as the kojic acid soaps, but their effects are longer lasting if the cause of your hyperpigmentation is controlled.
The main ingredient in this soap and the others is turmeric. The curcumin in turmeric inhibits melanin production as well, but not as strongly as ingredients like kojic acid and hydroquinone.
However, if you have mild hyperpigmentation and dark spots, then this soap and others like it will slowly tone your skin and fade the dark patches.
It’s great on sensitive skin and it is non-drying. I saw an improvement in the skin tone of my neck and inner thighs within a month of consistent use.
I also saw great differences in the acne spots I had on my back. If you are looking for something to tone your skin and fade mildly pigmented spots or areas, this might be a great option for you.
Related Article: Turmeric for Dark Underarms – Benefits & Easy DIY Scrubs
5- Marie France Pure Kojic Acid Skin Brightening Soap
Finally, this is the one soap I will mention that I have not personally used. But hear me out. I have been told amazing things about it by people who have tried it.
Let me explain. I’ve reached that time in my life when almost all my grown friends are pregnant and making babies. Now, that’s great! But one of the biggest skin issues that come along with pregnancy is melasma and hyperpigmentation.
I have one friend that tried this soap for her melasma and now she hoards it and will continue to do so for the remainder of her pregnancy. She recommended it to others, who recommended it to others and they may have possibly started a movement. My point is that it works well for stubborn hyperpigmentation like melasma!
But you do not have to be pregnant to use this. So don’t worry! If you have stubborn dark areas of skin and you want to give this one a try, it could be worth the shot.
Some great natural soaps to consider are:
Additional Tips When Using Skin Lightening Soaps
- If you have noticed, most of the soaps I have mentioned use kojic acid as their main ingredient. While there are other skin-brightening ingredients, when it comes to soaps, I found that this is the most common, and most tolerable ingredient for sensitive skin like mine that gives the best results.
- If you have an underlying condition that could be causing your darkened skin, or you have no idea what could be causing it, I recommend that you see a dermatologist. If you know the cause of your increased pigmentation, you have a better chance of being able to fix it. Soaps and other treatments will also work better when you know exactly what you are dealing with.
- As always, I recommend that you do your research about ingredients that you are using to lighten your skin to make sure they are safe for your skin.
- Also always do a patch test before using the soap on big areas of skin or all over. Everyone’s skin is not the same and you can never tell whether you can experience a bad reaction or not.
- Keep an eye out for irritation or allergic reactions that can present with things like redness, swelling, burning or tingling, peeling, itching, and/or blisters. If you notice any of these, stop using the soap, wash your skin off, and seek medical attention.
Related Article – Best Potato Soaps – Benefits & Possible Side Effects
Where Do You Usually See Hyperpigmentation
Hyperpigmentation most commonly happens on and around the neck, on the inner thighs, on the underarms, knees, and elbows. However, it can also occur on other areas of the body.
For example, during pregnancy, along with developing a dark neck, thighs, and underarms, some women develop melasma. Melasma is a darkened patch of skin on the face that is hard to treat.
Other people can develop darkened skin in the areas of the body where their skin folds or rub together or where clothes can create friction (other than the inner thighs and underarms). These include areas like under the breasts, behind the knees, at the fold of the elbow, under the buttocks, and between any areas of skin that crease.
One of the most common kinds of hyperpigmentation is called Acanthosis Nigricans, which is caused by insulin resistance. It most commonly affects the neck, inner thighs and groin, underarms, and skin folds.
Causes Of Hyperpigmentation
Hyperpigmentation or darkening of the skin is caused by excess melanin production in the skin, which can be triggered by different conditions.
These conditions may include but are not limited to:
- Friction (between skin or between skin and clothes)
- Skin products that irritate your skin
- Inflammatory conditions that cause injury to your skin
- Hormone changes like in pregnancy or hormone diseases like Addison’s Disease, Cushing’s Syndrome, Hypothyroidism, or PCOS (Acanthosis Nigricans)
- Insulin Resistance like in Diabetes and PCOS (Acanthosis Nigricans)
- Some kinds of skin cancer and chemotherapy
Even though some hyperpigmentation like melasma and acanthosis nigricans can be hard to treat, they can be managed with the help and recommendations of a dermatologist and/or skincare professional.
While mild to moderate cases of hyperpigmentation can be treated using skin-lightening soaps, lotions, creams, and other topical treatments, you may also need more invasive or intense treatments depending on your skin and the severity of your condition.