Does Charcoal Soap Lighten Skin? Know the Truth

The answer of this question is ‘almost no’. You might be thinking why I said ‘almost no’ rather than only ‘no’.

To get it properly you need to know some information about dark skin. Why some people have dark skin and why others have fair? What are the factors responsible for dark and gloomy skin? And the final question is does charcoal soap lighten dark skin?

Today, in this post, I tried to answer this question from every angle. Hope this will help you to get the skin lightening effect of activated charcoal soap is it a myth or not.

Let’s see…

Factors Responsible for Dark Skin and Dull Skin


Mainly the amount of melanin in the skin responsible for the skin color. It is a pigment produces by the skin itself. A special type of skin cell named melanocytes produces melanin. It remains at the base of the skin and distributes melanin to the other skin cells.

The amount of melanin production triggered by sun exposure. Actually, the skin produces melanin to protect the skin from UV damage. That’s why people who lived in a cold country have fair skin and people in a warm country have dark skin.

Didn’t get it? Let me clarify.

Every people on this earth have the same number of melanocyte cells to produce melanin. In the cold country, the amount of sun rays (actually UV rays) is inadequate for the skin to produce vitamin D for the body and to do some other functions.

In this situation, melanocytes produce less melanin so that skin can get enough UV rays without any barrier. And it gives people a fair skin tone in the cold region.

The exact opposite thing happens to the people of warm countries. Their melanocytes produce more melanin to protect skin from excess UV rays and skin cancer.

Hope you can understand why people have different skin color in the different region on the world.

Besides, there are also genetic reasons for skin color. That means, if father and mother are black, definitely their children will be black in color. Sorry to say, it is not possible to explain the genetic reason for skin color here. And it won’t suit the post.

Read Also: Best Activated Charcoal Bar Soap to Treat Acne


Another reason for dark skin is sunburn. It happens when you remain under the sun for a long time. Mainly the uncovered body parts are affected most.

It damages your skin cells and gives your skin a dark color. Less intense sunburn is called suntan. It will get repaired after a short period of time. But, when the sunburn is extreme, you will face various skin problems like redness, burning sensation, dark tone, and even skin peeling.

The best way to protect skin from sunburn is by limiting sun exposure, covering the body with clothing, and use sunscreen.

Dead Skin Cells

Your skin produces dead skin cells every moment. Most of them fall off automatically from the skin. Some of them remain stuck with the skin due to skin oil, skincare products, and some other reasons.

Read Also: Best Body Wash with Activated Charcoal

If you don’t remove them regularly through exfoliation and washing, your skin will suffer from various problems. And one of the major problems causes by dead skin cells is dull and patchy skin. It covers your regular skin tone and gives a darker look.


Definitely, we, the human being are responsible for this. We damage our environment through different types of pollutions, now the pollutants attack us. If you are living in a city, you can not avoid pollution, most importantly air pollution.

City air consists of dust, dirt, smog, particles of burning oil, heavy metal, etc. All these landed on your skin when you remain outside for your day job. They could change your skin color if you didn’t wash them properly. Even these pollutants can cause various skin problems.


Water is essential for the body as well as the skin. Without water, your skin gets dehydrated and can not function well. It will weaken the skin cells and creates various skin problems including premature aging. Moreover, skin dehydration slows down cellular regeneration which leads to dull and gloomy skin.

Remember, dry and dehydrated skin aren’t the same. You should give special care if your skin is suffering from dehydration. I have a detailed post about dry and dehydrated skin, you should check it.


Lacking nutrition not only affects your body but also your skin. It makes your skin lifeless and gloomy. And this also affects your skin tone.

Malnutrition is a serious problem in some countries. It happened there because of the shortage of food.

But, in the USA, in spite of enough food availability, still you could experience malnutrition. It happens if your diet plan isn’t well managed. If you take lots of junk foods every day, you shouldn’t expect healthy and glowing skin.

Hormonal Imbalance

Hormones play an important role in our bodies. Its secretion fluctuates due to various reasons such as puberty, menstruation, menopause, pregnancy, and even medication.

This hormonal fluctuation causes various unpleasant problems like excess sebum production, acne, mood disorder, and changes to skin color and pigmentation.

It is hard to remove hormone-induced melasma and hyperpigmentation. If you have it you should take suggestions from a dermatologist.

Effects of Charcoal Soap on Skin Lightening

Those above-mentioned factors are mainly responsible for skin discoloration. There are several options with which you could make your dark skin fair. Though those aren’t our discussing topic.

Here I tell you what would happen if you use charcoal soap regularly to lighten your skin. Let’s see.

The major benefits of activated charcoal soap on the skin are exfoliation, cleansing skin, and most importantly detoxification through adsorption. If you want to know details, check my post – Benefits of Activated Charcoal Soap.

By analyzing the mode of action and benefits of activated charcoal soap, I reached a conclusion. Hope this will help you.

Activated charcoal soap has no effect on melanin production. So, you won’t get any lightening effects on genetically inherited skin color.

Besides it also has zero impact on skin darkening caused by malnutrition, dehydration, and hormonal imbalance.

As a great exfoliating tool you will get tremendous results on skin lightening caused by sunburn, dead skin cells, and pollution. It brings back the glowing newer skin for a rejuvenated look.

Does charcoal soap lighten skin
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Some activated charcoal soaps claim they can whiten skin tone. I found only one on – Koji White Charcoal Black Soap.

But, besides charcoal, there is one common key ingredient of these soaps – Kojic acid. Kojic acid can make your skin lighten by controlling melanin production (source).

So, finally, we can draw a conclusion that activated charcoal soap is really good for skin if you want exfoliation, cleansing, and detoxification from it. And you will be disappointed if you want a skin whitening effect from an activated charcoal soap.

The Last Words

Activated charcoal is highly beneficial for the skin for certain purposes. So, you should rely on activated charcoal soap on those points. You should not expect an irrational benefit from it. Just use activated charcoal soap to fulfill the purposes it serves.