Alpha-Arbutin (α-Arbutin) is estimated to be more than ten times stronger than that of beta-Arbutin (β-Arbutin).
Beta Arbutin is a natural derivative of hydroquinone, has the similar mechanism as hydroquinone, it is not as aggressive. Beta Arbutin does not possess the same risks and serious side effects as hydroquinone, and as a result, hydroquinone requires a prescription.
Beta Arbutin and kojic acid are natural lightening ingredients. The main difference between arbutin and kojic acid is that kojic acid is more prone to oxidize (to react with oxygen) meaning it’s more sensitive to air, heat, and light. Beta arbutin and kojic acid are both great choices for lightening skin, but arbutin is a bit easier to store.